But by that time the £35m forward had already played a huge part in a victory that was secured with a rampant first half-display by the home side.
Carroll was undoubtedly the catalyst, with his physical threat and aerial presence giving the Hammers a cutting edge and creating a platform for Taylor, Mohamed Diame and the excellent Vaz Te to run at a constantly exposed home defence.
That was evident within a minute as Carroll's header allowed Vaz Te time to pick out Nolan, who drilled a fabulous first-time finish back across Mark Schwarzer and in at the far post.
Steve Sidwell, Mahamadou Diarra and new recruit Kieran Richardson failed to get to grips with the pace and movement of West Ham's midfield, which was brilliantly led by Diame and Mark Noble.
While Carroll will rightly take most of the plaudits, Vaz Te's pace and willingness to run at the visiting defence provided the biggest goal threat.
He went close with a near-post effort and also played a fine crossfield pass which saw Carroll nod the ball back to Diame whose strike was tipped onto the bar by Schwarzer.
A second home goal seemed inevitable and came when Reid was allowed a free run at Taylor's inswinging near-post corner to head home from six yards.
Jonathan PearceBBC Match of the Day commentator
"The game was dominated by Andy Carroll. He made all the difference between the two teams in the first half and the game was over by half-time. Fulham were better after the break but just couldn't deal with Carroll. West Ham fully deserved their win."
Fulham had barely threatened, with long-range efforts from Damien Duff and Steve Sidwell as much as they could muster, and they could have no complaints at being 3-0 down at the interval.
Carroll's presence from a free-kick drew the attention of three home defenders and when the ball broke loose, Taylor reacted first to smash a low half-volley into the corner of the net.
Brede Hangeland almost got a goal back on the stroke of half-time but Fulham never looked like getting back into the match despite an improved second-half performance.
Their main hope came in the form of their own
deadline day recruit Dimitar Berbatov,
who showed flashes of his undoubted quality during an encouraging appearance as a second-half substitute.
He nearly teed up a late goal for Hugo Rodallega, whose shot forced a decent block from Jussi Jaaskelainen, while Duff also went close.
But West Ham had already done the hard work before the break and were able to sit deep, defend their lead and ease to victory.
Fulham manager Martin Jol on his side's failure to deal with Andy Carroll:
"If you are 5ft 8ins or 5ft 10ins tall maybe you have got a problem but we should have coped with it.
Jol blames 'horrendous defending'
"Every game you see him, in the European Championships, you see he is good in the air, he is probably the best in the Premier League but I still feel there are a few answers for that but we couldn't cope with that.
"The only positive for today was to see Dimitar Berbatov again and to see his class and quality, I have missed it.
"What I did see was Berbatov brought other players into his play and that is his quality. Hopefully with Bryan (Ruiz) available for the next match...we should be a bit more positive.
"I tried everything but we missed out on a couple of players yesterday and in the end we have to be happy that Berbatov is there and Rodallega and Petric.
"Dembele, I really felt he would have stayed because £15m is a big clause, but they paid up and they always do that in the last week, I know that from my time there so it made life miserable for me."
Full Time The referee blows for the end of the match.
Foul by Mark Noble on Mahamadou Diarra, free kick awarded. Mahamadou Diarra restarts play with the free kick.
Kevin Nolan gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Mahamadou Diarra. Mahamadou Diarra restarts play with the free kick.
Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Mahamadou Diarra by Ricardo Vaz Te. Mahamadou Diarra restarts play with the free kick.
Hugo Rodallega takes a shot. Save by Jussi Jaaskelainen. Hugo Rodallega takes a shot. Save by Jussi Jaaskelainen. Corner taken by Damien Duff, save by Jussi Jaaskelainen.
Damien Duff takes a shot. Fantastic save by Jussi Jaaskelainen. Inswinging corner taken from the right by-line by Damien Duff, clearance by Matthew Taylor.
Ricardo Vaz Te crosses the ball.
Alex Kacaniklic takes a shot. Save made by Jussi Jaaskelainen.
Kevin Nolan challenges Steve Sidwell unfairly and gives away a free kick. Mahamadou Diarra takes the direct free kick.
Robert Hall takes a shot. Sascha Riether gets a block in.
Outswinging corner taken by Damien Duff.
The referee blows for offside. Mark Schwarzer takes the free kick.
Substitution Robert Hall is brought on as a substitute for Guy Demel.
The referee blows for offside against Damien Duff. Jussi Jaaskelainen takes the free kick.
Hugo Rodallega takes a shot. Jussi Jaaskelainen makes a save.
Dimitar Berbatov takes a shot. Blocked by Winston Reid. Steve Sidwell takes a shot. Blocked by Winston Reid. Damien Duff takes the outswinging corner, Steve Sidwell takes a shot. Save by Jussi Jaaskelainen.
Substitution Carlton Cole is brought on as a substitute for Andy Carroll.
Substitution James Tomkins comes on in place of James Collins.
Hugo Rodallega takes a shot. Blocked by James Collins.
Inswinging corner taken right-footed by Mark Noble from the left by-line, Foul by Andy Carroll on Mahamadou Diarra, free kick awarded. Mark Schwarzer restarts play with the free kick.
Matthew Taylor takes a shot from a long way out which goes wide of the right-hand post.
Substitution Alex Kacaniklic comes on in place of Kieran Richardson.
Hugo Rodallega takes a shot. Blocked by Guy Demel.
Kevin Nolan takes a shot. Blocked by Brede Hangeland.
Free kick awarded for a foul by Andy Carroll on Mahamadou Diarra. Free kick taken by John Arne Riise.
Guy Demel challenges Hugo Rodallega unfairly and gives away a free kick. Direct free kick taken by John Arne Riise.
Inswinging corner taken left-footed by Matthew Taylor from the right by-line, free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Mahamadou Diarra by Andy Carroll. Mark Schwarzer restarts play with the free kick.
Ricardo Vaz Te takes a shot. John Arne Riise gets a block in.
Free kick awarded for a foul by Mahamadou Diarra on Ricardo Vaz Te. Kevin Nolan takes the free kick. Matthew Taylor takes a shot. Mark Schwarzer makes a save.
The assistant referee signals for offside against Dimitar Berbatov. Jussi Jaaskelainen takes the free kick.
Shot on goal by Ricardo Vaz Te from just inside the area goes over the target.
Unfair challenge on Andy Carroll by John Arne Riise results in a free kick. Direct free kick taken by Jussi Jaaskelainen.
The second half has started.
Substitution Mladen Petric leaves the field to be replaced by Dimitar Berbatov.
45:00 +1:10 Half time
Half Time The first half comes to an end.
Effort on goal by Guy Demel from just inside the penalty area goes harmlessly over the target.
Inswinging corner taken left-footed by Damien Duff from the right by-line, clearance by James Collins. Corner from the right by-line taken by Damien Duff, save by Jussi Jaaskelainen.
Foul by Sascha Riether on Mohamed Diame, free kick awarded. James Collins takes the direct free kick.
Foul by Mark Noble on Kieran Richardson, free kick awarded. Direct free kick taken by Mahamadou Diarra.
The assist for the goal came from James Collins.
40:52 Goal scored
Goal - Matthew Taylor - West Ham 3 - 0 Fulham Matthew Taylor fires in a goal from just inside the penalty area to the bottom right corner of the goal. West Ham 3-0 Fulham.
Unfair challenge on Ricardo Vaz Te by Kieran Richardson results in a free kick. A cross is delivered by James Collins,
The ball is crossed by Aaron Hughes, blocked by Joey O'Brien.
Kevin Nolan takes a shot.
Mohamed Diame takes a shot. Sascha Riether gets a block in.
Mladen Petric takes a shot. James Collins gets a block in.
Mahamadou Diarra fouled by James Collins, the ref awards a free kick. Mahamadou Diarra takes the direct free kick.
Matthew Taylor provided the assist for the goal.
28:37 Goal scored
Goal - Winston Reid - West Ham 2 - 0 Fulham Winston Reid grabs a headed goal from close in. West Ham 2-0 Fulham.
Matthew Taylor takes a inswinging corner from the right by-line to the near post,
A cross is delivered by Damien Duff, save by Jussi Jaaskelainen.
Steve Sidwell takes a shot. Save by Jussi Jaaskelainen.
Winston Reid gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Mladen Petric. Direct free kick taken by Mahamadou Diarra.
John Arne Riise fouled by Andy Carroll, the ref awards a free kick. Direct free kick taken by John Arne Riise.
Corner taken by Matthew Taylor from the right by-line, save made by Mark Schwarzer.
Matthew Taylor takes a shot. Sascha Riether gets a block in.
Andy Carroll takes a shot. Blocked by Aaron Hughes.
Kevin Nolan produces a right-footed shot from just outside the area that goes harmlessly over the bar.
Mahamadou Diarra has an effort at goal from outside the box which goes wide left of the target.
Ricardo Vaz Te takes a shot. Mark Schwarzer makes a save. Corner taken by Mark Noble from the left by-line, clearance by Aaron Hughes.
Mohamed Diame takes a shot. Save made by Mark Schwarzer. Corner taken by Mark Noble from the left by-line to the near post, Steve Sidwell manages to make a clearance. Mladen Petric concedes a free kick for a foul on Winston Reid. Free kick taken by Jussi Jaaskelainen.
Kieran Richardson takes a shot. Save by Jussi Jaaskelainen.
The ball is crossed by Matthew Taylor.
Assist on the goal came from Ricardo Vaz Te.
0:53 Goal scored
Goal - Kevin Nolan - West Ham 1 - 0 Fulham Kevin Nolan finds the net with a goal from just inside the area to the bottom right corner of the goal. West Ham 1-0 Fulham.
The match gets underway.
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