There are many reasons why carpet endures as a popular flooring choice. Most often, the decision to install carpet comes down to warmth and comfort. Hardwood and tile floors can look stunning, but they don’t offer the same cozy feel as carpet.
When you make the decision to go with carpet you still have a whole host of choices ahead of you. Carpet comes in infinite styles, colors, and materials, so you need to put some thought into how it will be used before browsing the options. Some materials may require frequent cleaning that won’t fit into your schedule, with others may come with a higher price tag. The wrong carpet may wear out quickly, fade, or show stains.
There are just so many kinds of carpet available today and, while it’s great to have options, the selection can be overwhelming. If you’re thinking of putting carpeting into your home, but have no idea where to start, read on to discover some handy information that may help make the process easier.
Loop or No Loop
All the styles of carpet basically fall into one of two categories: cut pile and loop pile. If you look at samples closely, it’s easy to figure out which style is which. The tufts in loop pile carpet are small loops. If you ran your fingers through loop pile carpet, it would catch on the individual loops. In cut pile carpet, the ends are free, so you could run your hand right through it and not catch on anything.
Loop piles tend to be more durable, so they’re often chosen for areas of the home that see a lot of traffic. Families with small children are often attracted to this type of carpeting, especially for playrooms and family rooms, as loops piles usually stand up well to a lot of activity. Cut pile carpets usually look and feel plusher. People with pets that scratch may trend toward this type of carpet as the fibers are not as easily caught and pulled as loop pile fibers are.
Once you’ve chosen a pile, you’ll want to consider the best type of carpet material for your lifestyle. Most carpets are made from polypropylene, polyester, nylon, or wool. If you’re worried about stains, the carpets made from polypropylene and polyester are usually the easiest to clean. These fibers will release most stains with little effort. With nylon carpets, there’s a treatment that you put in that will allow you to take stains out.
As for wool, the natural fibers are more absorbent and require extra care to keep them clean. If you have a kid-friendly or pet-friendly home that is more likely to see messes, then you’ll probably want to go with a fiber that is more stain resistant.
As you might expect, the price range of carpet is quite wide. At the lower end are the synthetics, with polypropylene usually being the least expensive, then polyester, and finally nylon. Natural fiber carpet is generally a lot pricier than the man-made fiber products, but also has a high quality look and feel.
When you have chosen a specific type of carpet, it’s a good time to dive into carpet style choices. Carpet comes in countless styles and colors. Don’t become too bogged down by all of the names. It’s best to just keep your personal needs in mind. In general, carpets with longer, less dense fibers create a more dramatic or fun look. These types of carpet don’t usually do as well in high traffic areas. Carpets with lower or multi-level fibers tend to hide footprints better and usually maintain their appearance for longer. It’s also important to note that the more closely packed the tufts of carpet fiber, the more luxurious it feels and the more formal it looks.
Remember, buying carpet is a very personal choice. You should take a lot of lifestyle factors into account before making your final decision. With so many options available, you’re sure to find one that fits your style and budget.