Can Gaffer Tape be used on carpet?

Posted by Mark Gibbons on 9th Dec 2020

Heavy duty gaffer tape stuck to carpet

Gaffer tape is great stuff; its uses are almost endless, and there's little it can't stick to. But, can gaffer tape be used on carpets? To find out, we put a range of gaffer tapes (and duct tapes) to the test.

Testing over a 60 day period, we found that gaffer tapes with high strength adhesives performed best. Additionally, a simple multi-purpose duct tape was just as good, depending on how it is being used.

Testing gaffer tape on short-pile 'office' carpets.

We performed our tests on commercial-grade, short-pile carpets; those you often see in schools and offices. They were all cleaned before use to help get the best results and the temperature remained at approximately 21°C throughout the test.

A strong adhesive is key.

All the tapes we tested initially stuck to the carpet, but it was those with a high strength adhesive that gave the best results longer-term. When compared to gaffer tapes that have a lighter bond, the high-strength adhesive was less susceptible to lifting at the edges. As a result, they were less likely to be kicked up and remained in place for longer.

What about residue?

Even after 60 days, none of the gaffer tapes we tested left residue behind. Additionally, we had the same result for the duct tapes. Although harder to remove, the duct tapes also peeled away without leaving residue.

However, if you're sticking something to the carpet, for instance, rubber cable, a simple duct tape may not be suitable. In a separate test, we found that some duct tapes were more likely to leave residue on rubber cable when compared to a quality gaffer tape. 


Duct tape worked great on carpets.

All the duct tapes we tested worked great on our carpet. Duct tape tends to come with a high-strength adhesive as standard, therefore, the performance was very similar across the range we tested. It stayed firmly in place; however, it was a little tricky to lift up.

Best in testMulti-Purpose Duct TapeHazard Duct Tape

A heavy-duty gaffer tape was best.

If you're looking for something to stay down for a long time, a heavy-duty gaffer tape would be our preferred choice. It held firmly in place and was more resistant to foot traffic. Additionally, if you're securing items to your carpet, like rubber cable, using a good quality gaffer tape should help minimise residue on your cables.

Best in test: Industrial Grade Gaffer Tape

For best results: 

  • Choose a durable gaffer tape with a strong adhesive. 
  • Make sure the carpet is clean before applying the tape.
  • Apply firm pressure to help it stick.

Testing information: We performed these tests in-house and in real-life situations - not in a lab. As a result, you may not always get the same results for every application. Therefore, we recommend all users assess the suitability of any product themselves, and for their specific application. We also only tested a handful of products, therefore these results should only be considered as relevant for the individual products tested. 

Products we tested: Multi-Purpose Duct TapeHazard Duct TapeIndoor/Outdoor Duct TapeHigh-Tak Duct TapeLow Residue Gaffer TapeHigh-Tak Gaffer TapeIndustrial Grade Gaffer Tape

Need help? Talk to our Team