Carpets help make a home what they are. Hopefully, your carpet makes your home cozy and beautiful. Choosing the right carpet to fit your lifestyle is an important decision with many factors to consider. Price, color, style, and your family can all have an impact on the type of carpet you choose, as can the more structural aspects like piles, density, weight, and fibers.
The term “carpet styles” refers to the way carpet fibers attach to their backing. Styles generally can be broken down into three sections: cut pile, loop pile, or cut and loop pile (a mixture of both).
Cut pile means that the fibers are not looped, but rather cut and twisted. Because of this, cut pile is often softer but tends to show footprints and streaks from movement more easily. Cut pile carpets come in many forms; plush, saxony, textured, frieze, and cable are all options that have different benefits. Saxony will show streaks and footprints, while frieze is long-lasting and often recommended for commercial use. Textured is rougher underfoot, while cable is very soft and comfortable. Plush carpet provides a smoother appearance.
Loop pile has fibers that are bent to make small loops. There are level loops or multi-level loops, which change the height and texture of the carpet. Loop pile is generally more durable and stain-resistant than cut pile, which makes it a good option for families with children or pets. Level loop pile is good for high-traffic areas, but will not be as soft as a cut pile. Loop pile is typically the cheaper style option.
Cut and Loop Pile
Cut and loop pile is the best of both worlds. It is both comfortable and beautiful, while offering diversity of texture and style. It also hides dirt well, which is a plus in a busy and active home.
In addition to carpet styles, there are the carpet fibers to consider. These fibers determine how durable and resistant the carpet is to damage. It’s important to consider your home’s needs before deciding on style or fiber.
Nylon is the most common carpet fiber; it is the most durable and the best choice for high-traffic areas and for families with children and pets. In addition, it’s easy to clean and maintain. However, it does stain easily and may need to be treated in order to protect against long-term stain damage.
At a lower cost, polyester is similar to nylon. It is more stain-resistant, but also less durable. It may be a good short-term option if you’re concerned about budget, but it will likely need to be replaced sooner than nylon would. Polyester is hypo-allergenic as well as mildew-resistant, but is not a good choice for high-traffic areas.
Olefin is a fiber known for being resistant to mold and mildew. While it won’t be as soft and comfortable as many other fibers, it will be the best option for areas with high levels of moisture, such as basements or bathrooms.
Wool is a premium, eco-friendly carpet fiber. While it is expensive and sometimes difficult to maintain, it is also durable and comfortable. Wool is susceptible to fading and absorbs moisture, which can lead to problems with mold. If you find yourself in need of a practical alternative to a wool fiber, consider acrylic. It is much more affordable, but also not as commonly available as other fibers.
Making a carpet decision is not always an easy task, and it’s important to choose the right option for your family, home, and budget. For more information about your carpet options and how to keep yours looking great and functioning the way you need, subscribe to our blog!