Carpet tacks come in four general styles and corresponding sizes: regular, extra-wide, tri-tack, and commercial. Made out of strips of wood with tacks projecting from the strip, carpet tack strips grab onto the backing of the carpet to hold it in place. This is made possible when the strips are applied to the floor with nails, which have already been attached to the strip..
Considered one of the cheapest carpet tacks available, the regular carpet tack is 7/8 inches wide. Generally made from plywood, regular carpet tacks are useful for installing carpet in both residential and commercial properties, Regular tacks are generally chosen for their low cost but do not have the additional staying power of some of the larger strips available.
Though the regular carpet tack is the cheapest, the extra-wide is the most common due to its additional durability. Set in a one-inch strip of plywood, the rows of pins in the front and back of the strip are more widely spaced to allow "extra strength and easier hooking with stiff carpets or thick cushion" says the Halex Corporation, a manufacturer. Due to the extra-wide carpet tack specifications, (which meet CRI-104 and CRI-105 carpet installation requirements for residential properties), the extra-wide tack holds the carpet more securely in place than the regular tack..
Quickly becoming one of the most popular carpet tacks on the market, the Tri-Tack carpet tack was first marketed in the 1990s. It has three full rows of tacks anchored in a 1¼-inch plywood strip. With the tri-tack, installers can accomplish the same results as "double stripping and full width commercial carpet strip," without the added cost of these materials, claims Halex, a manufacturer. Though generally used in commercial installations, tri-tack carpet tacks are also useful in the installation of carpet in troublesome residential properties. Designed for the installation of thicker carpets such as Berber, they also meet the required specifications for CRI-104 and CRI-105 commercial and residential installations.
While described as a commercial carpet tack style, this type of tack is approved for CRI-104 and CRI-105 commercial and residential installations. Generally utilized for larger and some of the most difficult installations, the commercial carpet tack is constructed of three rows of pins on a 1-¾ inch plywood strip. Aside from the size of the plywood strip, this form of carpet tack has anchoring nails that are "positioned closer to the wall to prevent carpet tack strip from lifting during heavy stretching," says Halex.