Baseboards Over or Next to Carpeting


I had a contractor, whose opinion I value, tell me that the way he does baseboards for a room intended for carpet is to raise the baseboards so the carpet guy can slide the carpet in under. He said that that's the typical way of doing it nowadays. He wants to do that on a job for me.
I am not sure if I like that look, and have always seen the carpet butted up against a baseboard.
Any opinions on the aesthetics of his approach?
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"Buck Turgidson" wrote

I think this is an locality thing. In this area, for carpet, I've just seen it with tack strip about 1/2" from baseboard, then tucked against baseboard.
For sheet vinyl, the baseboard sits on top, barring there's not a shoe mold.
For ceramic,wood, or laminate, there seems to always be shoe mold.
It probably would be a good idea, to get local opinions from an actual carpet/flooring supplier/outlet.
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Roso wrote:

Maybe I have not been looking in the right places, but I have ALWAYS seen the baseboard left up some (normally about 1/2 inch) and the tack strips set inside just a bit, and then the carpet is tucked UNDER the baseboard.
Don
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Buck Turgidson wrote:

its a good look and it's really the right way of doing it. You have a good contractor! Many would just make it easy on themselves and install it against the floor. Just make sure you tell him what type of carpet your installing, short or long pile?
RV
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but you can\'t make them THINK"
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You can make the call on the aesthetics, my question would be what if you or a subsequent owner decides to take out the carpet?
--
When the game is over, the pawn and the king are returned to the same box.

Larry Wasserman - Baltimore Maryland - snipped-for-privacy@charm.net
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On Fri, 08 Dec 2006 23:52:50 -0600, snipped-for-privacy@fellspt.charm.net () wrote:

I lived in a luxury building, built in 1930 in Brooklyn NY, when Clinton Hill was one of the 3 status neighborhoods in all of Brooklyn, maybe the most ritzy. Although when I lived there, I could afford it.
Hardwood floors throughout, and wall-to-wall carpeting was not used then, ?or at least not popular?
But in the kitchen, the baseboards were at least a quarter inch higher than the floor. The (real) linoleum was worn out, and I ripped it up. Wasn't thick.** It was really nice when the installer put the vinyl linoleum under the baseboards. Even though the vinyl was much less thick than the space available, that part never bothered me. I guess in a way it is "impure" or something for there to be more space than needed, and that's the kind of thing I care about, but in this case it didnt' bother me.
**The guy who came to install the vinyl linoleum floor (in 1975 charged 10 dollars for delivery and installtion. Of course it only took him 5 minutes to install, and he did a great job. It would have taken me at least 4 hours. I'm not counting the time it took to move out the fridge, the stove, the sink, the cabinet under the sink, and everything else.)
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Buck Turgidson wrote:

OK, I am going to give my assessment of this and why. I have been doing trim for over 35 years. I am a general contractor now, but I started out as a trim sub about 30 years ago. I have been putting in baseboard for a long time.
This raised base technique is fairly new. It started about 20 years ago or so, but I had never seen it before that. At first, I balked at doing it that way because I thought it was stupid. I had always run base right against the floor and the carpet was butted against it. I had several builders that demanded it and so I did what I was told and installed it however the client wanted it. I did do some research to find out why people would want it this way and although I have not found anyone that can give me a definitive answer to this question, I have come to a conclusion.
Baseboards and door casing used to be 2 totally different animals. Similar, but different. If you had 2-1/2" casing, the base would be 3-1/2". If the casing was 3-5/8", the base would be 5" or thereabouts. Same profile on the small edge, but a wider "flat area". It still exists like that today.
Compare the two at this site:
http://www.door.cc/Wood-Moldings.html
Some builders began to use casing for everything, door trim and base. It saved a little money. These are the guys that wanted the base raised off the floor. If you want the same width (or the appearance of the same width), then if you use the casing for base, you have to raise it off the floor in order for more of it to be visible after the carpet is installed. You don't have to do this when using casing and base.
It was done so much, that it became the standard for about 50% of builders, whether they used base or casing for the base trim. Since noone knew any better, it has become an accepted way of doing things.
Just my informed opinion, but I defy anyone to give a better reason for raising the base off the floor.
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Robert Allison
Rimshot, Inc.
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Robert Allison wrote:

When you have to paint the baseboard you will be glad it was raised. It makes it easier to apply the paint or stain without getting any on the carpet.
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As almost all of your posts are this was a nice informative post Robert.
BTW for the OP. It is also the defacto standard around here in all price ranges of home.
tmurf has a very valid point about future painting.
But, there is one downside to the raised BB process. There is no way to caulk between the BB and the floor when you raise them. Even in a new insulated house this can be a major entry point for cold air in colder climates.
Colbyt
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