In Summary - Carpet/Vinyl Fitter
Carpet/Vinyl Fitters typically work in the following Career Sectors:
- Carpet Fitter-Floor Layer - from: N.C.S. [UK]
The Work - Carpet/Vinyl Fitter
In occupied buildings it may be necessary to remove furniture and fittings as well as existing floor coverings. It is also important to remove all traces of old adhesives. The carpet fitter will have to be able to discuss suitability of flooring with customers.
The first consideration is the condition of the sub-floor, which must be flat, because any undulations or damage will soil the appearance of the floor covering. The Carpet Fitter must ensure that the floor is flat and prepares a flat surface by spreading a layer of levelling compound. The next task is to measure the floor area, and measure and cut the material. It is usually cut slightly over-size to allow for irregularities in the shape of the room.
Certain types of carpet are stuck down with adhesive, which is evenly spread with a trowel or roller. Adhesives have to be handled carefully, and it may be necessary to wear a mask or even, in enclosed areas, to use a breathing apparatus. The flooring material is laid to protrude up the skirting board and is cut by hand, with a carpet knife, round the perimeter, to give a snug fit. An alternative to adhesive is the use of a "gripper"- a piece of wood with upwardly protruding nails. The edges of the carpet may be sealed together with heated tape, or hand sewn. The simplest type of work a carpet fitter does involves the laying of carpet tiles. The main concern here being maintaining the 'bond', i.e. laying the tiles straight.
Laying carpet with a repeating pattern can be complicated. The appearance of fitted carpet is extremely important, and it may be necessary to stretch it to give a good fit, using special equipment. Sometimes a plain border is fitted around a patterned carpet, and doing this neatly is a highly skilled job.
Most commonly reported Work Tasks
- Inspect the surface to be covered to determine its condition, and correct any imperfections that might show through carpet or cause carpet to wear unevenly.
- Roll out, measure, mark, and cut carpeting to size with a carpet knife, following floor sketches and allowing extra carpet for final fitting.
- Join edges of carpet and seam edges where necessary, by sewing or by using tape with glue and heated carpet iron.
- Cut and trim carpet to fit along wall edges, openings, and projections, finishing the edges with a wall trimmer.
- Plan the layout of the carpet, allowing for expected traffic patterns and placing seams for best appearance and longest wear.
- Stretch carpet to align with walls and ensure a smooth surface, and press carpet in place over tack strips or use staples, tape, tacks or glue to hold carpet in place.
- Take measurements and study floor sketches to calculate the area to be carpeted and the amount of material needed.
- Install carpet on some floors using adhesive, following prescribed method.
- Clean up before and after installation, including vacuuming carpet and discarding remnant pieces.
- Measure, cut and install tackless strips along the baseboard or wall.
Most commonly reported Work Activities
- Performing General Physical Activities Performing physical activities that require considerable use of your arms and legs and moving your whole body, such as climbing, lifting, balancing, walking, stooping, and handling of materials.
- Handling and Moving Objects Using hands and arms in handling, installing, positioning, and moving materials, and manipulating things.
- Getting Information Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.
- Inspecting Equipment, Structures, or Material Inspecting equipment, structures, or materials to identify the cause of errors or other problems or defects.
- Making Decisions and Solving Problems Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.
- Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates Providing information to supervisors, co-workers, and subordinates by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person.
- Estimating the Quantifiable Characteristics of Products, Events, or Information Estimating sizes, distances, and quantities; or determining time, costs, resources, or materials needed to perform a work activity.
- Monitor Processes, Materials, or Surroundings Monitoring and reviewing information from materials, events, or the environment, to detect or assess problems.
- Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge Keeping up-to-date technically and applying new knowledge to your job.
- Operating Vehicles, Mechanized Devices, or Equipment Running, maneuvering, navigating, or driving vehicles or mechanized equipment, such as forklifts, passenger vehicles, aircraft, or water craft.
Interests - Carpet/Vinyl Fitter
This occupation is typically suited for people with the following Career Interests:
Realists are usually interested in 'things' - such as buildings, mechanics, equipment, tools, electronics etc. Their primary focus is dealing with these - as in building, fixing, operating or designing them. Involvement in these areas leads to high manual skills, or a fine aptitude for practical design - as found in the various forms of engineering.
Realists like to find practical solutions to problems using tools, technology and skilled work. Realists usually prefer to be active in their work environment, often do most of their work alone, and enjoy taking decisive action with a minimum amount of discussion and paperwork.
Practical hand skills are necessary for accurate fitting and cutting of materials. Carpet Fitters require basic numeric skills for measuring, and an appreciation of design is useful, particularly for laying and matching patterned carpet. Good colour vision is also important.
Physical fitness is essential as Carpet Fitters spend much of the working day on their hands and knees, and they need to be able to lift and carry rolls and boxes of flooring material. You must be efficient and reliable as others will be waiting on your work to finish.
A courteous and pleasant manner is required when dealing with clients. Carpet Fitters often face situations on building sites, where other trades people, such as electricians or carpenters, are trying to finish their work at the same time. Handling this requires tact and flexibility. Carpet Fitters also need to be able to co-operate with others in their team, as they normally work in pairs, but may work in groups on larger jobs.
Entry Requirements - Carpet/Vinyl Fitter
Pay & Salary - Carpet/Vinyl Fitter
Salary Range (thousands per year)* 18k - 28k
Last Updated: March, 2017
* The lower figures typically reflect starting salaries. Higher salaries are awarded to those with greater experience and responsibility. Positions in Dublin sometimes command higher salaries.
Labour Market Updates - Carpet/Vinyl Fitter
Growth in employment (+11%) has been driven by commercial sector activity with employment growing strongly since 2014.
National Skills Bulletin 2018