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Facts about carpeting

Correctly chosen and installed carpeting should last for upwards of 20 years, and should provide your desired comfort and value. Some carpets and fibers are now maunfactured with the environment in mind, and can even be recycled. Carpet pad is also often recycled. Carpet, can help keep your feet warm in the winter, and when kept clean can even help with allergies if the right fiber is chosen. Most carpet is manufactured in Georgia, and may help create more jobs than a foreign tile or hardwood!

 

Durability, price, stain resistance, insulation ability, air quality, sound reduction, and many more factors can make a new flooring decision difficult. At carpet.org, you can information on these carpeting attributes to make your decision an educated one.

 

As you can see, your carpet choice is important and a long-term decision - so research your options here and choose carefully! Don't forget that installation by a non-certified installer can void your warranty!

 

Carpet Fiber

Acrylic

Nylon

Polypropylene

Art Wool

Olefin

Recycles

Blends

Polyester

Wool

 

Almost all carpet (97%) is made from synthetic fibers. Synthetic fibers are more resistant to stains and much less expensive. However, natural fibers tend to resist crushing from traffic.

 

Major carpet producers such as DuPont, Solutia, Interface, and Allied Signal have brand names for their carpets. These brands are generally made from one or more of 6 types of fiber: acrylic (art wool), nylon, olefin (polypropylene), polyester, wool, and recycled material.

 

Acrylic

Acrylic fiber is known as art, art wool, or man-made wool because it is an artificial fiber. This fiber provides the look and feel of wool at a fraction of the cost. It resists static electricity, moisture, mildew, fading, crushing, staining, and sun damage. However, acrylic fiber is not durable enough for high traffic areas (it fails under abrasion when compared to other fibers).

 

Blends

Blends are typically made from nylon and olefin. This blend is resilient but the different fiber types often resist stains unevenly. Stains will often stand out prominently with these blends.

 

Nylon

Nylon is the most popular fiber (about 90% of residential carpets and 65% of all carpets). Nylon is a good choice for all traffic areas because it is durable and static free, maintains fiber height, and resists soiling, staining, and mildew. Nylon fibers, which are dyed after production, maintain color. Nylon carpets vary from $8 per square yard for cut piles to $30 for multi-level loops. Nylon comes in continuous or spun fibers. Spun carpet is made of short lengths of fibers that are spun together. These continuous fibers are less likely to unravel.

 

Olefin (Polypropylene)

Olefin (polypropylene) is the next-best seller after nylon (about 80% of commercial carpet). These fibers are colorfast because the production process involves mixing polypropylene with dyes. Olefin works best in loop carpets such as Berbers. It is strong (resisting abrasion), mildew resistant, moisture resistant, and easy to clean (bleach can be used safely in some cases). However, olefin can be easy to crush depending on the pile. This fiber is good for indoors and outdoors (e.g. artificial sport turfs). Olefin carpets are the most inexpensive fiber ranging from $7.50 per square yard to $40 per square yard for Berbers.

 

Polyester

Polyester does not hold its fiber height under traffic and shifting weight as well as other carpet fibers. Polyester is luxurious, durable against abrasions, easy to clean, and resistant to water soluble stains. Polyester carpets costs less than wool and nylon. Prices range from $7 per square yard for lighter cut piles and $24 per square yard for heavier cut piles. However, polyester can fade with sunlight. Return to Top

 

Recycled

Some carpet is made from recycled material. PET (Polyethylene Terephthalate) carpet is made from recycled plastics of consumer packaged goods (typically soda and other rigid containers). PET carpet is durable, water resistant, and static resistant. More about Recycled Carpet

 

Wool

Wool is luxurious, strong, and stain resistant. It maintains its fiber height. Wool also has its weaknesses. It can maintain static and moisture, tends to fray, and is expensive (ranging from about $18 per square yard for Berbers to $66 for cut piles). More about Wool

 

Carpet Pad

Foam Pad Frothed Foam Pad Rebond Pad Waffle Pad

Buying new carpet? Wait! There are a few things you need to learn about carpet pad first. All-too-often, consumers head to their local home improvement store or carpet retailer, spending endless amounts of time, energy, and yes, money, choosing just the right carpet texture, thickness, color and even manufacturer, only to order their new flooring without giving the underlying pad more than a passing thought. Yet, it is the carpet pad that will determine how comfortable your carpet is, not to mention how long it will last.

 

Laying a houseful of new carpet can be expensive, so why not ensure that whatever you choose will last as long as it possibly can? Choosing the right pad can help keep your carpet looking and feeling great for years to come. Not taking the time to pick a good pad will also ensure something: your carpet won’t feel good underfoot and it won't last!

 

Choosing a good carpet pad ensures several things:

Your carpet will feel more comfortable. Think about it. If you lay your new carpet directly on plyboard, or worse yet, concrete, what’s cushioning it? Walk across carpet with little or no padding and you’ll feel the difference! Carpet pad adds another layer of cushioning between you and the subfloor.

 

Your carpet will last longer. There are a lot of things that can damage a carpet: furniture, spills, and even the flooring underneath. Even walking on top of carpet with no padding can cause friction underneath that will wear it away. Carpet pad helps to protect your new carpet from rough edges, nails, screws and other damaging things on your subfloor.

 

Your carpet will look nicer. Heavy furniture can pit or dent carpet without a suitable pad underneath. The thicker the padding, the better your carpet can withstand the weight of your furniture. Besides, carpet with quality padding tends to stain less too. Maybe because the staining agent has somewhere else to go besides the surface.

 

As you can see, looking for a high quality carpet pad isn’t just a good idea, it is a necessity. Without it the investment you make in that new carpeting won’t last. It’ll wear faster; look worn before it should and feel downright hard and uncomfortable. Not sure which carpet pad is right for you? Be sure to check the manufacturer's recommendations carefully and don’t be afraid to upgrade a notch or two to ensure the best result. Sure, it will cost a little more, but it will be well worth the investment in the long run.

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