Just Floored: How to Choose Carpet

When picking carpeting for your home, you need to learn about the different styles materials and quality to ensure durability and comfort for your long term satisfaction.{{more}}

There are so many different styles, colors and brands that the selection process can make your head spin.

My customers always comment there is so much to chose from they don’t know where to begin.

Narrow down the selections by asking questions. The first question is always the same; what is the traffic like in the room you are carpeting?

My job is to narrow down the selections.

A Saxony carpet is also referred to as a velvet or plush. It is a cut pile that works well in a formal dining room, living room or bedroom.

It shows footprints and vacuum marks and is typically not a good choice for high traffic areas.

The other styles of carpet include textured, freize, sculptured, looped and berber. These perform well in high traffic areas like hallways, stairs, etc.

Once you have determined the style that best fits your project, the next selection is quality. Quality is determined by several factors.

The first factor is face weight. Face weight is the number of ounces of fiber per square yard and it typically ranges from 20 to 80 oz.

Higher face weight means heavier, more resilient and durable carpet. Look for a minimum face weight of 34 to 40 oz.

Next, look at twist. This is the number of times a tuft is twisted per inch. More twist makes a more durable carpet.

Select a carpet with a twist of 5 or higher. Now check density, density is a measure of fiber thickness and how tightly the fibers are packed. Look for density rating of 2,000 or more.

Bend the carpet sample backwards to get a feel for density. If you can easily see the backing you are holding a low density carpet.

Always check the labeling on the carpet for information on the quality. You can also check manufacturer websites where you can obtain information regarding the product.

In a nutshell, do your research and make sure a salesperson does not make the decision for you. Base your carpet and pad decisions on your lifestyle, household needs from children, dogs, cats and traffic.

Consider the lifespan you are looking for from the carpet and the maintenance it will need. Common sales gimmicks such as “Free pad” and “Free installation” can get you a cheap pad that can wreck your carpet.

Annamarie Amore is the owner of the Amore Interior Design Center. She can be reached at amoreinteriors@yahoo.com.