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Methods of repair

The "Shaving" Method You can sometimes improve the appearance of the carpet by using a razor blade and carefully shaving off the melted ends, taking off as little material as you can. This works best with shags and dense carpets, but only if the burn is not too deep.

The "Hair Club for Men" Method Find an area that you can "borrow" some fibers, such as the inside of a closet, under a radiator, or, better yet, a remnant from the original installation. Using a razor, trim the damaged area down to the backing. Using a toothpick or very small flat screwdriver, apply a waterproof adhesive, such as GOOP, carefully onto the backing. Do not get any on the surrounding fibers or you'll glue them together! Press the strands of fiber into the GOOP. Let the GOOP dry for 24 hours. If necessary, carefully trim the glued-in fibers back to the level of the carpet. If you have an aversion to using a solvent based product, you can use a clear latex adhesive caulk. I prefer the GOOP because it has more initial tackiness and is more indestructible when dry.

The "PLUG" Method
This method involves completely cutting out the damaged carpet and replacing it with a new piece. Before you start, be aware that if your carpet has faded or is very worn, the patch may be noticeable. So do the smallest patch you can to improve your chances of aesthetic success. A triangle is better than a rectangle for little patches. It's just easier to cut and easier to reproduce for your patching piece. Carpet does have a grain. You can see it when you vacuum... ever notice how the carpet "smooths" out when you put the vacuum in one direction, and seems to fluff up when you move in another direction? That is the grain, caused by manufacturing methods. This is more pronounced on some carpets than others, and you should observe your own carpet to see if you need to orient the patch to match the existing grain. Many repair articles tell you to use carpet tape for this repair. Good idea if you are doing a large patch, but most patches are small, so by the time you try to force the tape through a little hole, it is a balled up useless clot of hair, dirt, and carpet fibers. If the hole is near enough to a wall so that a little rollback of the carpet is possible, use the carpet tape. If not, use good old GOOP! There is a second reason not to use the tape. Self-stick carpet tape is less moisture resistant than GOOP, so future carpet cleaning may cause a taped patch to release.

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