Eamonn Dillon netted twice at Netwatch Cullen Park as 14-man Dublin moved a step closer to a top-three finish in the Leinster SHC.
Mattie Kenny's men knew they couldn't afford to slip up with just one more guaranteed game after this to come - Galway at home on 15 June - and duly took care of business.
Dillon's two first-half goals set the 2013 provincial winners on their way to their first win of the campaign having previously drawn with Wexford and lost to Kilkenny.
The Dubs lost half-back Shane Barrett to a straight red card just before half-time after a heavy collision that left Jack Kavanagh on the turf.
Carlow were eyeing the game as a great opportunity to pull off a priceless win and perhaps avoid bottom position in the table.
But Dillon's first goal after 13 minutes put early daylight between the teams and there was eight in it at half-time as Dublin cruised it.
A heavy wind buffeted the Carlow town venue but Dublin coped best with Paul Ryan also in excellent form and hitting 0-9.
There were strong performances too from veteran Conal Keaney, who struck 0-4 before being replaced, and full-back Eoghan O'Donnell who dominated in defence and even pinched a point.
The result means that Dublin can be hopeful of advancing from Leinster to the All-Ireland series if they beat Galway at Parnell Park in their remaining game.
As for Carlow, they're not technically relegated to the Joe McDonagh Cup but three defeats in a row leaves them on the edge of a return to the second tier.
Colm Bonnar's side never quite got to grips with a charged up and fully committed Dublin outfit that moved 1-04 to 0-02 ahead after 15 minutes.
Ryan, the lively Cian Boland and Ronan Hayes all pointed before Dillon took on the responsibility after winning possession from a long free in, darted away to the left and struck a low shot to the corner.
Keaney was hungry and efficient and added a point before beginning the move that led to Dillon's second goal in the 30th minute.
Keaney won possession out on the right in a group of bodies and fed Ryan who passed to the unerring Dillon.
Ryan closed out the first-half scoring to leave Dublin 2-10 to 0-08 ahead and they built on that eight-point lead despite Barrett's exit just before the break.
Keaney drilled three more points for Dublin in the third quarter as they opened up a 2-17 to 0-09 lead before Carlow clawed back a goal.
It came in the 50th minute when James Doyle did well to gather up possession after a long ball in before beating the advancing Dublin goalkeeper Alan Nolan.
The hosts hit 1-02 in total without response but Dublin points from Dillon, Hayes and sub Fergal Whitely left a dozen points between them at full-time.
Dublin: Alan Nolan; Paddy Smyth, Eoghan O'Donnell (0-01), Cian Hendricken; Chris Crummey, Sean Moran, Shane Barrett; Tom Connolly (0-01), Sean Treacy; Cian Boland (0-01), Danny Sutcliffe, Eamon Dillon (2-02); Conal Keaney (0-04), Ronan Hayes (0-02), Paul Ryan (0-09, 0-05f).
Subs: Darragh O'Connell for Connolly (33), Jake Malone for Boland (48), James Madden for Hendricken (49), John Hetherton for Keaney (54), Fergal Whitely (0-02) for Ryan (60).
Carlow: Brian Tracey; Alan Corcoran, Paul Doyle, Michael Doyle; Kevin McDonald, David English, Richard Coady; Jack Kavanagh (0-01), Sean Whelan (0-02); John Michael Nolan (0-01), Edward Byrne (0-01), Seamus Murphy; James Doyle (1-00), Chris Nolan (0-04, 0-02f), Martin Kavanagh (0-04, 0-02f).
Subs: Eoin Nolan for Coady (24), Ross Smithers for C Nolan (32-h/t), Ger Coady for Corcoran (35), Smithers for Murphy (44), Ted Joyce for Kavanagh (50), Denis Murphy for Byrne (59-64), Denis Murphy for J Doyle (65).
Referee: John Keenan (Wicklow).