TYPES OF CARPET: YOUR GUIDE TO CARPET
There are plenty of fiber types of carpet and carpet styles to choose from. Learn more about why carpet is a great choice for your home flooring.
- There are a variety of carpet styles, patterns and colors to choose from to satisfy any personal style and match any décor.
- Carpet’s cushioned surface absorbs sound and is less noisy to walk on than hard surface flooring.
- When considering affordability, carpet is one of the most economical flooring products to have installed.
- The insulating properties of carpet provide additional warmth underfoot during cold seasons.
- Carpet is a non-slip surface that is safe underfoot and provides a cushion to prevent breakage when delicate items are accidentally dropped.
- Most synthetic carpets are treated with static, stain and soil resistant treatments, making them easy to clean and maintain.
If you have any unanswered questions on carpet styles after reading through this guide, check out our Carpet FAQ page or get in touch with your closest Flooring America professional for more information.
Carpet Fiber Comparison:
To pick the right carpet fiber, consider how you live in each room. There are four basic types of carpet fiber:
Nylon is the most durable and stain resistant carpet fiber available, when treated with stain protection. It is the fiber of choice for homes with pets and children and for those who entertain a lot. Perfect for heavy traffic in hallways and stairs.
Polyester is known for its luxurious look, feel and wonderful selection of colors and styles. It’s a good value for homes with a normal amount of traffic.
Olefin offers good stain and moisture resistance, but scores below nylon and polyester for wearability It is best suited for loop pile construction or high, very dense cut piles.
Favored for its natural beauty. Wool carpet has natural soil resistance qualities, but is not inherently stain resistant. Wool looks good for a long time and is well constructed.
Over 90% of residential carpet is manufactured as tufted carpet. A tufting machine works like an oversized sewing machine with hundreds of needles that insert loops of fiber (tufts or stitches) into the carpet’s backing to form the face pile of the carpet.
How long your carpet will last depends on how well it is made. Quality construction will affect the durability, appearance and price of the carpet and is most influenced by the twist of the fibers and the density of the tufts.
Twist refers to how tightly the fiber (carpet yarn) has been twisted. The tighter the yarn is twisted, the better the carpet will stand up to crushing and matting.This is especially important in cut pile carpet, because the tips are exposed and can easily become untwisted. Frieze carpet has the highest twist level at about 7-9 twists per inch (TPI), whereas most cut pile carpet styles have between 3-6 twists per inch.
Density refers to both the amount, and how tightly packed together the fibers are within the carpet. The closer together the fibers are placed, the denser the carpet will be, and the better it will wear and perform.
Ways to check for carpet density include trying to reach the carpet backing by pressing your fingers on the carpet fibers. The more difficult it is to reach the backing, the denser the carpet. Or with outward facing tufts, bend the carpet into a U-shape and look at how much of the carpet backing is visible. The less backing that shows, the denser the carpet.
Stain Resistant Carpet: What Level Do You Need?
Consider how you live in each room. If you have kids, pets, and high traffic areas or entertain a lot, you will want to choose a carpet with stain resistance. The desire to protect your home with quality stain resistance won’t limit your choice of carpet styles and colors.
The primary factor in determining stain resistance is carpet fiber type: nylon, polyester, olefin or wool. Beyond fiber type, most manufacturers apply post-production stain protection treatments to enhance the natural stain resistant properties of any fiber. Ask your Flooring America Sales Professional for assistance in making a flooring choice to suit your lifestyle. And, be sure to reference our Five Star Selection System to help guide you to the right level of warranty protection.
Carpet texture refers to how the fibers of the carpet are attached to the backing of the carpet. Primarily, there are three different types of carpet texture.
Cut pile carpet consists of yarns that are cut at the ends. The soft feel of cut pile carpet makes it a perfect choice for the most comfortable areas of your home – bedrooms, living rooms and family rooms.There are five basic styles of cut pile carpet: Velvet, Saxony, Frieze, Shag, and Cable, each provide a different look and texture. The primary difference among these styles is the amount of twist in the yarns that will ultimately influence the carpet’s durability.
Loop carpet has yarns that are looped and uncut on the carpet surface. The pile height can vary from low, tightly constructed to a more luxurious high-level pile. Loop carpet has, strength and soil hiding capabilities. This style is ideal for heavy traffic areas. Berber is the most popular style of loop carpet that can be constructed as a level-loop or multi-loop carpet.
As the name suggests, this carpet has a combination of high cut tufts and lower loops in a variety of sculptured patterns. Cut-loop carpets offer good performance but are slightly less durable than loop carpets.
There are two popular methods for dying carpet; both methods offer great color.
The fiber is dyed before the fiber are woven. This method gives the carpet stronger stain and fade resistance, along with resistance to harsh cleaning agents, such as bleach.
This method is completed during the post-tufting process and most suitable for woven carpet. It is a process that achieves solid colors.
Think of your floor as the fifth wall that connects all other design elements in the room. Consider the walls, window treatments and other furnishings when choosing a color scheme. Bring fabric and color samples when you visit our store, where our flooring experts will assist you.
All these elements make a difference in how your floor will look. Don’t forget to check out Installation to learn all about the little details that make a big difference when transitioning from old floors to new.
Between fiber type, texture and color, there is a lot to consider when selecting the right carpet for your home. Use our My Design Finder tool to select a style that fits your lifestyle or reach out to your local Flooring America expert for more information.