How to Install a Vinyl Runner on Carpeted Stairs

Hunker may earn compensation through affiliate links in this story.

Things You'll Need

  • Vacuum cleaner

  • Cotton cloth (optional)

  • Carpet cleaner (optional)

  • Water (optional)

  • Measuring tape

  • Staple gun

  • Utility knife or scissors


Obtain a vinyl runner that is suitable for the type of carpet you have on your stairs. Purchase a runner with short studs for low-pile carpets or one with long studs for carpets with high pile.

You can purchase a vinyl runner that is smaller than the width of the treads or one that can cover the tread of each step completely.

A vinyl runner is ideal when you wish to protect the carpet on your stairway from dirt and damage. The transparent plastic runner allows a view of the carpet underneath, is durable and requires little maintenance. You do not need prior experience to install a vinyl runner on your stairs because the process is straightforward. You can complete the job in a few hours with tools that are available for rent or purchase from a home improvement store.


Step 1

Vacuum dust and dirt off the carpet on the stairs before installing the runner. Scrub off any stains with a cotton cloth, carpet cleaning solution and water. Wait for the carpet to dry.

Step 2

Measure the distance from the bottom of the vertical riser on one step to the back edge of the step's tread. Multiply the measurement by the number of steps in the stairway. Measure the width of a step. Use these measurements to determine the length and width of vinyl runner you need.

Step 3

Unroll a small section of the runner from the bottom of the stairs to the third step. Place the edge of the runner against the bottom edge of the first step. This is the corner between the floor and the step. Ensure that the teeth behind the runner rest against the carpet on the step.


Step 4

Staple the edge of the runner to the rise. Place one staple pin in the middle and one at each end of the edge of the runner. Staple the runner under the nose of the step. Ensure that the fabric is taut.

Step 5

Smooth the runner up to the top of the first step. Staple it to the back of the step and midway up the rise of the next step.

Step 6

Repeat steps 4 and 5 for the remaining steps. When you reach the last step, cut the runner so that the edge stops just under the nose of the landing. Staple the edge of the runner with three staple pins.



Tina Amo

Tina Amo has been writing business-related content since 2006. Her articles appear on various well-known websites. Amo holds a Bachelor of Science in business administration with a concentration in information systems.