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Carpet 101


Your Guide: Carpet 101

Understanding a few fundamentals about carpeting will give you confidence in making the right choice.


For a soft, warm, cozy room, there’s nothing like wall-to-wall carpeting. Because it can add texture, proportion, and color to a room, carpet is an essential decorating element. It also allows homeowners to express themselves, set a room’s mood, and define the function of a space.   

The good news for carpet lovers is that there are tons of different colors, styles, and options to choose from. The bad news is that there are tons of different colors, styles, and options to choose from. Joking aside, if you’re about to buy carpet, here are some things you should know that’ll help you make the best choice.

Fiber Makes a Difference

Photo by Tincho Franco on Unsplash

Before looking at color or texture, look at fiber. That’s because the carpet fiber has everything to do with how your new carpeting will feel underfoot, and how it will stand up against pets, kids, foot traffic, spills, and stains. 

Most of what makes up carpet IS the fiber. To manufacturer carpet, fiber yarns are looped back and forth through a backing material. Fiber yarns can be made of synthetic material like nylon, polyester, polypropylene, acrylic, and triexta, or from a natural material, like wool.

The Right Pile Can Disguise Dirt

Photo by Ran Berkovich on Unsplash
Once the loops are woven through the backing material, the manufacturer will leave them as they are or cut the fiber loops. It’s how the loops are cut that creates what’s known as the carpet pile. There are several pile styles, each resulting in a different look, feel, and texture. Some cuts hide dirt more easily, while others show every foot (or paw) print. Knowing the characteristics of each type of pile will let you match the look you want and the durability you need with your room’s purpose and foot traffic.

Pick Your Pile

Pile has a major impact on the look and feel of carpet. Cut, loop, or cut-and-loop – with these carpet pile types come many variations. Living spaces like dens, bedrooms, hallways, and stairs do well with cut pile because it offers a happy balance between comfort and durability. Cut pile ranges from short to shag and is one of the most popular choices. High-traffic areas do well with loop pile carpeting. Its low profile helps hide traffic patterns (and the dirt that comes with it). Loop pile ranges from flecked Berbers to patterned and level loop. For the best of both worlds choose cut-and-loop pile. From geometrics to florals, cut-and-loop carpeting adds depth and interest to any room.

Don’t Forget About Durability

Photo by Nathan Dumlao on Unsplash

Since you’re going to literally live with your carpeting for many years to come, it only makes sense to think about how much day-to-day living it’ll face. If you need tough-as-nails kind of durability, look at nylon or trixeta carpeting. For pretty, yet less traveled areas, wool or acrylic offers a nice feel and appearance.

Decide What Matters Most 

Quality and performance. Sounds like a car, right? Indeed. But it’s also what carpeting is all about. For maximum quality and performance from your carpeting, consider both the face weight and carpet density. Carpet face weight refers to the weightiness of the fiber found in a single square yard of carpet. When measured in ounces, this can help determine how durable a carpet will be. The higher the face weight, the more durability you can expect. Density, on the other hand, refers to how close the fibers are to each other. The higher the density, the more durable the carpet.


Why guess at which kind of carpet will look best in your home? RiteRug Flooring Experts can bring samples right to you. In fact, it’s just like having the store brought to your door. For more information about carpeting, stop by one of our showrooms or schedule an in-home shopping consultation today.