Carpet Calculator

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How Much Carpet Do You Need?

FDP will come to you for a FREE, no obligation, consultation visit. A carpet professional will bring samples directly to your space & will accurately measure your areas, to determine exactly how much carpet is needed. Our experienced & knowledgeable calculations factor in the carpet roll widths and the install layout plus variations due to seaming, carpet grain, texture & pile direction, & repeating pattern adjustments.

When contacting FDP to make a carpet request it can be very helpful to have a ROUGH idea of how much carpet you will be needing.

Calculating Carpet

To help you estimate how much carpet you may need and approximate the possible cost for budgeting purposes we have included a little background information. Ninety percent of broadloom carpet is manufactured in rolls 12 feet wide. (Occasionally 15 ft widths or other sizes may be available but usually carpet is ordered in 12 foot roll widths.) If the area you are carpeting is LESS THAN 12 FT WIDE, (or if you are purchasing CARPET TILES) then measuring for carpet is easy to calculate and instructions are given in the section below.

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Measuring for Carpet IN AREAS LESS THAN 12 FEET WIDE & for Carpet Tiles (Rough Estimate Only)

 To determine a floor’s square footage multiply the length times the width in feet. When measuring, ROUND UP to the nearest foot measuring both the longest and the widest part of the room (and halfway out into all doorways).

Measuring for Carpet In Areas GREATER than 12 Ft Wide (Rough Estimate Only)

If you have a room that is wider than 12 feet you will need to have a seam(s). And this is where
measuring gets more complicated and should be calculated by your carpet professional. Ideally you want to minimize the amount of seams as much as possible.

EXAMPLE: You want to carpet an area 16 feet wide x 16 feet long using a 12 foot wide roll of carpet.
The main piece of carpet would be 12 ft wide (the width of the roll) x 16 foot long. Since the room is 16 ft wide an additional 4 ft wide by 16 ft long strip will have to be seamed along side. (16 ft wide room – 12 ft wide roll = 4 additional feet on the side) To install with only one seam, you would have to order a 34 foot length of carpet. Here is the breakdown: one 12 foot x 16 foot main piece + one 12 ft x 16 foot piece (to cut a 4 foot side piece) plus 1 foot to each length to cover irregularites***
(16 + 1) + (16 + 1) = 34 ft length x 12 foot roll

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For irregularly shaped floors: (Rough Estimate Only)

Sketch a floorplan. Divide the room into imaginary rectangles & squares. Once in individual sections, with a tape measure, measure the Length & Width of each section, writing down the figures of each area on your floor plan. (Be sure to measure into doorways.) Calculate the square footage in each section by multiplying the L x W in for each area. To determine your TOTAL square footage just add all the individual sections together.


Divide the square footage total by 9. A yard is 3 ft long, so a square yard is a square that is 3 ft x 3 ft = 9 sq ft
The price per square yard = 9 x the price of a square foot

Multiply the linear feet x 1.333 to get your square yard figure.

For Stairs: (Rough Estimate Only)

Total Square Footage of Stairs = L ( # of steps x 2) x Width of Steps Measure the Width of the stairway. (Round inches UP to the nearest foot).

Length = the number of steps in the stairway multiplied by 2 (feet).

Always add an additional 10% to your total figures

to cover room irregularities, accommodations for carpet grain & texture, seaming, pattern repeats, baseboards, thresholds…

This extra 10% (multiply x 1.10) is needed to insure that you have enough material so as not to run short during the carpet install.

Multiply total square footage x 1.10 = total required square footage.

Formulas to Convert Different Unit Prices for Cost Comparison

When looking for carpet you may notice that different companies might advertise their carpet specials using different units of measure.

Price per square foot is the unit price or base price that the other figures are based on. Knowing these formulas will help you compare items dollar for dollar.

Price per sq ft = Base Unit Price $6 per sq ft
Price Per Linear Foot = Unit Price x Width of Roll $6 x12 ft wide = $72
Price per square yard = Unit Price x 9 {9 sq ft to a sq yd} $6 x 9 sq ft = $54

Formulas to Convert Different Unit Prices for Cost Comparison

Carpet projects often require additional expenses for other materials – besides the carpet itself – PLUS the installation cost. So when planning your budget don’t forget to include such things as padding, tack strips, transition strips, seaming strips, backing tape or adhesive, molding or cove base…
PLUS labor charges for rip-out of old carpet &/or for removal & disposal (if needed), floor prep, cutting doors & trim work, PLUS the installation labor.