Selecting The Best Carpet

Many customers thinking of replacing their carpet have asked my opinion. I am certain they are frustrated by all the choices and want a recommendation from someone with many years of cleaning and repairing experience.

carpet selection and installation

This frustration has led many to abandon carpet as a flooring choice, thinking all carpet is a nuisance, leading to disappointment and/or high maintenance costs. Purchasing carpet however, shouldn’t be a scary thought or a risky experience… Think of buying carpet as an investment in making your home a warmer, softer, comfier place to live. 

I’ve found 4 basic keys to remember when buying new carpet that will guarantee you’re happy with your investment for 15-20+ years:

  1. Get 100% Nylon only, not a blend, not poly- anything, just 100% Nylon.
  2. Get a dense weave, the color and style is up to you and your tastes. Carpet density is the key to having a carpet retain its like new appearance longer. The higher the density the more durable the carpet will be. Dig your fingers into the pile of the carpet. Are the fibers tightly packed or are your nails digging into the backing of the carpet? Thin threadbare carpets are less expensive and don't wear as well. Thick plush carpets are more expensive and wear longer. I will say that the most popular and prevalent weave is cut pile.
  3. Get STAINMASTER® protection (stain treatment), not SCOTCHGARD™ (soil treatment). STAINMASTER® is a vastly better protection system and worth spending a bit more to get. Your goal is to get value on your purchase, so you love your carpet for 15-20+ years!
  4. Do not void your manufacturer’s warranty by installing your nice carpet improperly. The manufacturer has specifications on the install, including required pad thickness. Retailers will suggest a pad upgrade (feels better, handles traffic better, etc.), and you may be tempted. Don’t deviate from the manufacturer’s required pad thickness or any warranty requirement (maintenance). Check their specifications before you order and talk with the warranty departments if necessary.
A word about Berbers. Berbers are a loop pile weave utilizing a continuous fiber woven on a diagonal to the carpet's backing. This fiber, for the most part, is made of wool but can be nylon. Olefins are not Berbers (although labelled as such). They are made of polpropylene/plastic and not woven on the diagonal.
 
Berbers are properly installed with thin padding resulting in a very firm feel. You may be considering a Berber carpet for its reputation of durability and withstanding traffic lanes. This is true, but remember the 4 guidelines presented above. Plus, I’ll add one more for Berbers.
 
       5. If you want a Berber get one woven with small loops. Berbers are woven in many styles: single level, textured, multilevel,            cut and loop, and multilevel cut and loop. Whatever you desire, but remember, the smaller the loop the better it will hold up to              wear, crushing and traffic. You may be thinking a bigger loop will give you more cushion. However, it will wear, crush/mat, and            form traffic lanes resulting in your dissatisfaction.
 
Frequently, home owners neglect appropriate and regular maintenance, and then blame the carpeting for prematurely wearing out. Remember, cleaning really is the secret to keeping any carpet looking good. The hardest thing on carpet is the dry soil we track in. If not removed this soil acts like sand paper and destroys the definition of the fibers giving it that crushed matted look, and forming traffic lanes prematurely.
 
A professional cleaning every year is a must, but the very best thing you can do to prevent wear in your high traffic areas is regular vacuuming. Once a week at the very least.

 

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