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How to Remove Carpet from under an RV Slide Out

When the carpet in your RV’s slide-out starts to get worn or discolored, it’s time to usher in a replacement. Maybe it’s not even worn out, and you just want a change of scenery. Whatever the reason, you’ll want to know exactly how to remove carpet from under the RV’s slide-out. 

Removing these carpets is fairly easy to do, even if you’ve never tried to do it before. It’s a simple step-by-step process that you can get done in an afternoon. 

To remove carpet from under an RV slide out, you’ll start by making cuts to the edges of the carpeting. Then you’ll pull up the carpet, before scraping off the glue underneath. Be careful not to damage the vinyl under your slide-out. 

How To Remove Carpet From Under RV Slide Out 

Removing carpet from under your RV slide-out isn’t terribly difficult. However, It goes around that removing carpet is one of the hardest things an RV owner can do. It leaves a lot of DIY-ers skeptical about removing the carpet from under their RV slide-out. 

Some of the associated worries include damaging or causing leaks in their slide-out. 

That’s why it’s extra important to be careful when you try to rip up the carpet in your RV slide-out. As long as you keep the correct tools in mind, you’ll be able to keep everything intact. 

Tip: Make Sure Your Slide-Out Is At The Right Height

Make sure you also have a properly adjusted height for your slide-out. Imperfect adjustments can be very dangerous when you’re working with the carpet. At the very least, it can make it so that you mislay new flooring, or miss spots where you try to remove the carpet. 

Adjust The Height Of Your Slide-Out

To adjust the height of your RV slide-out, gather up a measuring tape, a notepad, gloves, and a wrench. 

Measure the slide-out, including how much of a gap the slide-out takes on. Make sure to measure both sides to have full coverage. Then, deploy the side-out fully and measure again. Notate all of these measurements. 

When you’ve measured, you’ll be able to track if one side is out more than the other. If it is, you’ll need to make some adjustments. This is also the case if the sides are misaligned. 

If anything is misaligned or sloped, loosen the jam nut with a wrench. These will be on the Active side of the slide-out. Don’t remove the bolts, though; you’re only loosening them here. 

This will take some trial and error. You might need to loosen and tighten multiple times before you have the slide-out completely level. While doing so, make sure the locking nut is intact. 

This should keep your slide-out aligned, making it much easier and safer to remove the carpeting. 

Tools 

There are a few tools you’ll need to take up the carpets in your RV’s slide out. What you’ll need is fairly simple, and might already be in your toolbox. 

  • Razor Blades
  • Gloves
  • Cleaner
  • Paper Towels 
  • Vacuum Cleaner 
  • Trash Bags
  • Screw Extractors 
  • A Hammer 

Once you’ve got all of your tools gathered, you’re ready to begin. 

Step One: Cut Off The Edges 

Take your razor blade and begin to cut the edges of the carpets. It’s best to start this in the middle so that you don’t cut the paddings under the carpet. If you don’t have a razor, a sharp knife can be used here instead. 

Step Two: Start Pulling

Reach under the edges of the carpet and start to pull it up and back toward you. It might be best to wear gloves during this to avoid injury to your fingers and nails. As you pull, use your razor blades to help separate the carpet from the flooring. 

Doing so makes it easy to cut the edges, and it will, again, keep you from cutting the insulation. 

Step Three: Scrape Off The Glue 

Scrape off the glue that was on the carpet and floor below. You should be able to do this by hand, simply peeling it up bit by bit. Stubborn bits of glue can be removed with a razor, knife, or scraper tool. Use a bit of force to get it to come up entirely. 

You might find some staples within the carpet. Remove these manually instead of forcing them up with the carpet. Failure to do so might damage the floor.

Once you’re done, you can move on with pulling up additional sections of carpet. This should help loosen the carpet from the flooring below. 

Step Four: Remove The Screws 

Cut around the parts on the floor that are near screws and begin to remove them. You can use a screw extractor here. If you don’t have one on hand, a wrench will be fine for removing them as well. 

If you find small nails holding down any part of the carpeting, that’s where your hammer comes in handy. You can also use the hammer to create leverage for pulling the carpet itself up. 

Tip: Do Not Damage The Vinyl 

When using your razor blade, take care that you’re not angling it too far downward, or too close to the vinyl of the RV. Scratches can damage the soft vinyl, causing excessive wear on it. This will ruin the longevity of your vinyl. 

When you pull up your carpet, use your knife or razor carefully, and go nice and slow. This will keep everything underneath perfectly safe. 

Step Five: Clean Up 

Once the carpet and screws are completely pulled up and removed, you’ll want to clean up. Use any regular all-purpose cleaner and tidy up any hardware underneath. You can also clean up the vinyl. It might be in your best interest to vacuum the area as well, since you might have extra carpet bits. A vacuum will easily handle the extra fuzz. 

This is a good idea because your flooring will have collected a lot of dust and particulates. No matter what you’re replacing the underside with, you’ll want to make sure you’re not trapping any extra dirt beneath it. 

Why Do RV Slide-Outs Have Carpets In Them? 

The carpet is there so that the slide-out doesn’t drag the main flooring when it moves. The carpet acts as a buffer to keep everything rolling smoothly. 

If you’re looking to replace it, make sure you do so with something that will pass easily under the slide-out. It needs to allow for easy movement. Laminate tiles or vinyl will do the trick well. 

Conclusion

When you’re ready to remove carpet from under your RV slide-out, you can do so fairly easily. All you’ll need to do is cut away the edges of the carpet and carefully pull the carpet up. Take the time to clean up the hardware as you go. Use a razor blade or knife to help cut away the carpet and pull it away. 

Be sure to check that your slide-out is level when you begin. You can check this by going outside, extending the slide-out, and measuring it on every side. If you come across discrepancies, unscrew the jam nut and tighten it in place. 

If you’re worried about getting hurt, be sure to wear gloves. After you’re done, be sure to vacuum up the leftover carpet bits. 

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