Square Yard Carpet: How to choose the right carpet for your home

Square Yard Carpet living room.

By Holly Hanchey

Once upon a time, wall-to-wall carpet was a luxury item very few could afford. With the advent of man-made carpet materials in the late 1960′s, carpeting became less expensive and therefore available to many more people, and took over floors across the country.

Today there are more choices than ever in flooring, especially carpeting, and it can be a little overwhelming. The choice is no longer limited to avocado green or persimmon orange polyester shag carpet; instead, consumers can choose between wool, nylon, polyester, and polypropylene carpet fibers, among others. And that’s all before choosing a color or pattern.

According to the carpet experts at Square Yard Carpet, there are some essential questions to ask before deciding on the best carpet for your home.

What kind of lifestyle do I lead?

The first question you should ask yourself is how you use your house, and by that we mean taking into consideration the people who live there and how the house is used.

Homes with children of any age will see a lot of foot traffic, and sometimes they’re carrying things like peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, fruit juice, or just tracking in dirt from the playground. Kids of all ages are tough on carpet. They don’t tread lightly and they sometimes spill. Pets are also tough on carpet, though for different reasons.

A house with children and/or pets will need a durable carpet with extra stain resistance, like polypropylene (also called olefin) carpets. However, high traffic areas might need something more resistant to the crushing of fibers, like nylon.

It should be noted that contrary to popular belief, carpet can be terrific for houses with pets and allergies. Carpet will trap allergens and pet dander inside the fibers and hold them until they are vacuumed up, leaving less allergens in the air to inhale.

What is the lifespan of the home?

When you’ve made a commitment to a house that will be a forever family home, it’s key to invest in quality flooring. When renovating your forever home, it’s best to choose flooring with a longer lifespan, like a 10- to 12-year carpet with a supportive pad underneath, to stand up to the wear and tear of daily living. Wool carpets are very durable and can last more than ten years if installed and cared for properly. On the downside, they are easier to stain and because they are a natural fiber, they can cost quite a bit more than man-made fibers.

If this is your starter home or maybe an investment property, and you know you’ll be moving in five years or less, you might consider installing something that’s a little less durable -- and less expensive -- and save some money. Polyester carpets are easy to clean – they can resist most water-based spills and wipe up easily. They are often less expensive that some other carpets. However, the fibers can fray easily, and with heavy use a polyester carpet will only last five to ten years.

Where is the carpet going to be installed?

There’s no rule that says you have to install just one kind (or color) of carpet in your entire home, and there is a good reason not to – every part of the home serves a different purpose.

In high-traffic areas, like living rooms, dens, family rooms, and hallways, you will want to choose a carpet with durability, not just stain resistance. Wool and polyester carpets are very resistant to crushing. The fibers bounce back easily and maintain their shape, so they are less likely to show wear patterns from walking or furniture placement.

Polypropylene carpets can be effective in areas that see a lot of sunlight as the carpet fibers are solution-dyed, which means the color is a part of the fiber that cannot be changed, making them resistant to fading in the sun or from harsh chemicals. It’s also more resistant to mold and mildew, where wool carpets are extremely susceptible to moisture and damp, and should never be installed in a basement.

Generally, bedrooms are where we want the most comfortable carpet under foot, and where durability is less of an issue. This is where polyester carpet shines – because of the way the fibers are developed, it is often softer and more pliable than other carpet fibers. As we mentioned earlier, it isn’t as durable as other fibers, so it’s best to use in a lower traffic area of the house, like bedrooms.

Before making a decision about installation of new carpet, it’s best to speak with an experienced carpet expert, like those at Square Yard Carpet in Henderson. Their goal is to make sure you install flooring you’ll love, and that will be perfect for your home.