Buying The Right Carpet for Your Home

Some tips for you to purchase the perfect carpet for your home


If you are planning to replace the carpets in your home or if you are thinking to buy new carpets, either way, you need to research and think a lot before reaching any decision. If you are thinking to carpet the entire home, you can think of some softer material carpet for your bedroom, whereas the high traffic areas in the room may need something more dense and tight. Before deciding to go for any particular design, you need to check the durability of the carpet. A good, basic check is that you put your thumb on the carpet and press it firmly. The more quickly the carpet springs back and recovers from the thumb impression, the more resilient, strong and dense it is. The density of the carpet is important if the carpet is to be installed in a high traffic area such as hallways or stairs in the home. The density of the carpet is a parameter which can be noted by the fact that how closely each fiber is knitted to another. To investigate that, you need to turn the carpet over and check how much space is present between the tufts. If the space is too much, the carpet is not resilient or strong enough. This article provides some very basic and nice tips which you can use before reaching any decision on selecting a carpet for your home.

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Wool - Generally used for high-quality carpets, you’ll pay more for a natural carpet, but you’ll get a great looking floor covering that is made from sustainable fibre, is resilient and highly durable. It gets top mark for insulation too – good for reducing heat loss and noise – and it retains its appearance remarkably well. It’s also feels beautiful and soft underfoot!

Wool-mix - Some consider a mix of 80% wool, 20% manmade fibres, such as polyamide or polyester, as the best combination for an all-purpose carpet.

Polypropylene - This manmade carpet fibre is a popular choice because it’s hardwearing and resistant to stains. It can be cleaned using a part-bleached cleaning solution, although always check with the manufacturer or retailer first. However, Polypropylene is flammable and not self-extinguishing.

Polyamide (also known as nylon) - Available in a wider range of hues and vibrant clear colours, that can’t be reproduced in wool. A good all-rounder for family homes, good-quality polyamide or nylon carpets come with built-in stain resistant treatments and score high marks for wearability.

Polyester - Often used for textured or shag carpets. Polyester is most like wool in appearance and feel, and is remarkably soft, durable and stain resistant. Most often used as a blend, rather than on its own.


Woven or tufted?

There are two types of carpet most commonly sold in the UK, tufted and woven carpets.

Woven carpets, such as Axminsters and Wiltons, are made using traditional loomed methods and are labour intensive. You’ll get a premium finish but these widely regarded top-end carpets also come at a premium price.

Tufted is the most popular carpet type today and is made by a row of needles punching the pile yarn into a base material. It’s easier to manufacture and can be made using all types of yarns with a variety of finishes. Tufted carpet can be looped or cut (or both).


Axminster – Made rather like an oriental rug, with fibres woven in and out through the surface backing on an Axminster machine. Axminster carpets are known for their rather grand, intricate patterned designs, quality and durability, and they are expensive. Until recently, most Aminsters came in a velvet finish, but now manufacturers are using twisted yarn as well, to reduce shading.



As well as working as a shock absorber, adding cushioning and comfort underfoot, a good underlay helps keep the heat in and could help reduce your energy bills. Invest in a good underlay, if you can, whatever the budget for your carpet. A heavy-duty one will extend the life of your carpet and may even outlast it. Underlay helps a new carpet to sit properly and wear evenly. It reduces pile compression and enables a carpet to keep its appearance for longer.

Look out for an underlay with good acoustic qualities for areas with heavy footfall, particularly if you have teenagers living in the house!

Underlays come with a tog rating, the higher the tog, the better the insulation. If using underlay with underfloor heating, you won’t need anything above a total rating of 2.5 tog.

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