Choosing a new carpet can seem seem like an overwhelming task. It is, after all, one of the largest investments you can make for your home. When you walk into a showroom, you face a seemingly unlimited amount of choices, from color and texture to fiber types. So where do you start? The first thing you will want to consider is your lifestyle. A home filled with kids and pets will require a more durable carpet than someone living alone.
One of the most important things to look for when selecting a carpet is it’s Texture Retention Warranty. Texture retention refers to the carpet’s ability to retain it’s shape. The longer the warranty, the more confidence the manufacturer has in their product and the more likely it will look good in your home for years to come.
Fibers: Wool, Nylon, Polyester and Polypropylene
Wool is a premium luxury fiber. It’s all natural, exceptionally soft, hypo-allergenic and flame-retardant. It’s also rated high on soil resistance and is a great insulator. Wool is not ideal for homes with small children or pets, as it’s less resistant to stain than most other synthetic fibers.
Nylon is the most popular carpet fiber. Known for it’s durability, nylon is a synthetic fiber that wears exceptionally well. It’s easy to clean, resistant to soil and stains, is available in a variety of styles, and can be offered in a wide range of price-points.
Polyester is best known for it’s natural stain resistance. It’s exceptionally soft, easy to clean, and fade resistant. Although not as durable as nylon, polyester still provides years of excellent appearance retention. It’s made using recycled content, therefore available at a lower cost.
Polypropylene, or Olefin, is extremely resistant to stains, fade, and moisture. It’s solution-dyed, meaning that the color won’t fade even when exposed to intense sunlight. Olefin is not as resilient as other fibers, but holds up well in low-pile tightly looped styles such as Berbers.
Cut pile carpeting is the most popular style of carpet. The fibers are twisted together with the ends sheared off. The most important thing to look for with cut pile is how tightly the fiber is twisted. The tighter the twist, the more durable your carpet will be.
Loop pile carpets are not sheared off like cut pile, but rather left in loops which allows the manufacturer to create many different patterns and textures.
Cut and loop piles combine sheared fibers with looped fibers to create stunning patterns and designs. Dreamweaver’s Riverview, pictured above, is a cut and loop style carpet.
Carpet padding is an often overlooked but very important part of any carpet installation. Just as a building needs a solid foundation, carpet relies on a layer of padding for support, strength and insulation. Padding makes cleaning your carpet more efficient. It allows the vacuum to pull the carpet up slightly, eliminating more dirt and allergens. Carpet padding is rated by its density. The more dense, the more support.
Now that you’re armed with some carpet basics, you can decide what carpet works best for your lifestyle. If you want one of our knowledgeable staff members to assist in your choices, give us a call!