CRI 104/105 Carpet Installation Standards
The industry’s gold standard resource for commercial and residential carpet installation, the CRI 104 and 105 standards provide installers, retailers, specification writers and building owners with detailed principles and guidelines for carpet installation.
Representing more than 25 years of information-gathering and installation expertise, CRI’s 104 and 105 carpet installation standards are the only carpet installation standards created and supported by the industry.
In 2015, the CRI convened industry leaders to update the 104 and 105 standards to address innovations that require new approaches to carpet installation, particularly planning and subfloor preparation. These changes reflect the industry’s ongoing dedication to quality and customer satisfaction.
CRI offers both standards as a free download:
CRI 104 Installation Standard (Commercial) (PDF 704 KB)
CRI 105 Installation Standard (Residential) (PDF 700 KB)
Understanding Different Installation Methods
Stretch-in Installation: There are situations in which a specifier will wish to utilize the stretch-in method. Its selection may be for one of the following reasons:
Provides enhanced underfoot comfort, acoustical properties (i.e., higher noise reduction coefficients and higher impact noise ratings) when installed with a separate cushion
Increases thermal insulation (R-value)
Can be used over floors that are unsuitable for glue-down
Corrective measures, such as seam repair, may be easier to perform
Removal costs usually are less than the removal of an adhered installation
Stretch-in installations should be avoided in the following cases:
On ramps and inclines
Where office systems furniture and demountable partitions are utilized
Where heavy rolling traffic is likely
Where there is excessive humidity
When carpet has a unitary backing or other backing systems designed only for glue-down installation
Direct glue-down installation:
Suitable for rolling traffic and ramp areas
Seams are more durable since there is no vertical flexing
Minimized buckling in buildings that have HVAC systems turned off for extended periods of time
No restretch situations
Virtually eliminates incidences of seam peaking
No restrictions to area size
Intricate borders and inlays are possible
Double glue-down installation: This method combines the stability of direct glue-down carpet with the cushioning benefits of a separate cushion, stretch-in installation, as outlined below:
Improves carpet appearance retention, under foot comfort and overall performance
Simplifies carpet bordering and inlaying
Suitable for wheeled traffic areas
No restrictions on size of area
Americans with Disabilities Act Carpet Compliance
The intention of the Americans with Disabilities Act is to ensure that people with disabilities have access to employment, public accommodations, government services, transportation, telecommunications and commercial facilities.
An important consideration is the threshold height between two areas of different surface types. Requirements by the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) allow carpet having a pile height of half an inch or less (measured from the bottom of the tuft). Exposed edges should be fastened to floor surfaces with trim along that edge. Carpet with a pile height over a half-inch must have a transition ramp between the surfaces.
The placement of carpet in the affected public areas of commercial facilities places certain obligations on the specifier, building owner and others. Compliance requirements should be thoroughly understood by the specifier. The following section has been excerpted from the ADA requirements:
4.5 Ground and Floor Surfaces
4.5.1 General. Ground and floor surfaces along accessible routes and in accessible rooms and spaces, including floors, walks, ramps, stairs, and curb ramps, shall be stable, firm, slip-resistant, and shall comply with 4.5.
4.5.2 Changes in Level.
Changes in level up to ¼ in (6 mm) may be vertical and without edge treatment.
Changes in level between ¼ in and ½ in (6 mm and 13 mm) shall be beveled with a slope no greater than 1:2.
Changes in level greater than ½ in (13 mm) shall be accomplished by means of a ramp that complies with 4.7 or 4.8.
4.5.3 Carpet. If carpet or carpet tile is used on a ground or floor surface, then it shall be securely attached; have a firm cushion, pad, or backing, or no cushion or pad; and have a level loop, textured loop, level cut pile, or level cut/uncut pile be ½ in (13 mm).
Exposed edges of carpet shall be fastened to floor surfaces and have trim along the entire length of the exposed edge. Carpet edge trim shall comply with 4.5.2.
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