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Guide to Carpet Fibers :: Find the Right Carpet for You


Choosing a carpet is a confusing business. Carpets made from different types of fibers have very different properties. This guide to the most common carpet fibers will help you to make the choice in carpet that is right for you.

* Nylon

Nylon, which is used in at least 65% of carpets, is extremely strong and resilient. Carpets made from nylon are durable and don’t shed many of their fibers. If you are looking for a practical carpet that can stand up to a lot of traffic, then a nylon carpet is just what you need.

Nylon fibers are slightly more expensive than some other types of fibers, but a carpet made from nylon will last for many years. Most nylon carpets are treated with chemicals to make them resistant to stains.

* Polypropylene

Polypropylene fibers are the best of the bunch when it comes to resisting stains. A polypropylene carpet holds its color even if exposed to strong sunlight or bleach. However, polypropylene fibers don’t perform as well as nylon fibers under heavy traffic. Dragging a piece of furniture across a polypropylene carpet can cause the fibers to become permanently misshapen.

Polypropylene fibers are cheaper than other types of carpet fibers. Combined with nylon, they create blended carpet, which captures the best properties of both of these materials.

* Polyester

Are you looking for a soft carpet that is rich in color? Polyester carpets feature the most beautiful colors and patterns. Their gorgeous decorations are built to last as polyester fibers are highly resistant to fading and staining. Polyester carpets come in a range of textures, including luxurious long pile that feels heavenly underfoot.

Polyester carpet is less hard-wearing than other carpet types. For this reason, many customers choose to limit their use of polyester carpet to the bedroom, selecting more durable types of carpet for the other rooms of the house. Polyester carpets do shed their fibers, but they are easy to clean and can stay looking their best for many years if treated carefully.

* Wool

Wool is the traditional carpet fiber. Although more expensive than other fibers, wool offers excellent durability. Wool carpets are often richly colored and blend in beautifully with traditional décor. Although they do fade with time and with exposure to sunlight.

Soft and warm underfoot, a wool carpet represents the ultimate in luxury. However, because it is a natural fiber that soaks up water easily, wool is susceptible to mold and mildew if it gets wet. (For more on this topic, see our article – What to Know about Professional Area Rug Cleaning.)

Although very few homeowners can afford to fit their entire house with wool carpets, wool rugs are very popular. A large wool rug makes a room with a wood or stone floor feel much cozier and more homely.

Which Carpet is Right for You?

When choosing a carpet, it is a good idea to make a list of your requirements and rank them in order of importance. If you are looking for an inexpensive, stain-resistant carpet, then polypropylene is a good choice, whereas nylon fibers will give you a carpet that will last a lifetime. Polyester carpets are soft and comfortable choices for low-traffic areas, while wool offers the ultimate in softness and durability for those who can afford it.


 This guest post was contributed by Lucy Massey, for Empire Carpets. For more Home Guides from Building Moxie, please explore our category = Guides. Cheers. ~jb,

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