Carpet. These days, there are a lot of flooring options available, but carpet continues to be among the most popular choices. There are a lot of factors to consider when selecting carpet. To ensure that you select the right kind of carpet for your home, you must first know about the different kinds of carpets.

Carpet can be characterized by the types of fibers used in the manufacturing process. The most commonly used fibers include nylon, olefin, polyester, and wool. Each of these fibers has its own performance characteristics. Which fiber you choose depends on your lifestyle, budget, and personal taste. For example, olefin is very stain resistant but can easily crush, and polyester fibers are known to be soft and stain-resistant, but can easily mat down and wear out. Nylon carpet is one of the more expensive synthetic fiber carpets, but it is also the most durable. These fibers are typically fade- and moth-resistant and can last for a very long time.

The aforementioned fibers are all synthetic. Wool is of course a natural fiber. Wool is expensive and largely unknown in the United States, where only 3% of the market is in wool. In Europe, 20% of the market is in wool. While wool is expensive, it offers a wealth of advantages. It is very durable, resists dirt and staining, and can even help people with asthma because this fiber automatically absorbs water (and dirt) out of the air and releases water as humidity levels change. And, for the environmentally conscious, it is renewable.

Carpet is also characterized by the way it is constructed. Broadly speaking, carpets can be woven or tufted.  Woven carpets are made on a loom, while tufted carpets are rows of yarns that are machine-punched and glued to a backing. With tufted or pile carpets, the pile can be cut, both cut and looped, level looped, multilevel looped, and textured. Each of these variations produces its own visual effect. While a cut pile carpet is a very simple option for your floor, you can always go for textured or multilevel-looped carpet to add style to your home.

Carpets are typically available in either 12’, 13’2” and 15’ widths. The width is not that important a consideration since carpets are often seamed when needed and the seams are barely noticeable.

An important consideration, though, is durability, which is a function of the fiber type. For the typical homeowner, we always recommend nylon. Polyester, which is less expensive, is a good choice for rental property or as replacement carpet when placing your home on the market. For high traffic areas, a looped Berber is worth considering.

Another consideration is pattern, and it is often overlooked. There are several ways to create pattern. The height of the tuft can vary, creating shapes. The width of the loops can be varied. A combination of cut and loop can create interesting effects. And of course fiber of different colors can create effects.

Once you have selected the carpet type, the next vital thing is the color. Color is a matter of personal preference, mostly. Clients often try to avoid a carpet that is too dark because it can make the space look dark. A lighter color creates the illusion of a larger space whereas a dark color gives an intimate feel to the setting. And if you are the sort who keeps changing the decor of a room very often, go in for a neutral shade of carpet that can blend with most the colors.

With so many considerations, let the experts at Floor Coverings International in Cincinnati, OH, help you make the right choice for your home.