In the UK the most carpets produced are either woven or tufted.
The traditional method of making carpets is weaving the yarn into the backing material. Woven carpets are produced on a large loom using coloured yarns to produce either patterned or plain carpet. Producers of woven carpets are Axminster and Wilton. This type of carpet tends to be more expensive than the tufted carpet as the manufacturing process is longer.
The most popular type of carpet in the Domestic market, it is usually quicker and cheaper to produce. The yarn is input to the backing material and bonded to a secondary backing made of hessian or a manmade alternative.
Carpet can be made as a mixture of natural and synthetic fibres or as 100% of the same fibre.
Carpets can be 100% wool or mixed with synthetic fibres to make a blend. Common blends being “80/20” wool / synthetic or “50/50”. Wool is a popular buy as it is very durable material and gives a warm feel. The durability of wool means it a very good carpet for highly used areas like hall, stairs, landing and living rooms. Wool is also naturally flame retardant.
Nylon, polypropylene and polyester are commonly used in the production of carpets. These materials are generally easy to clean and are stain resistant, making it a popular choice for children’s’ rooms.
There are many different textures of carpets giving differing wear properties and feel.
Twist Pile Carpets
The most commonly used tufted carpet, the twist is a cut pile made from twisted fibres. Twist pile carpets can be plain, flecked or heather (slightly mottled). The flecked and heather carpets are excellent for high use areas as marks are not as prominent. Twist pile carpets are suitable for all areas of the home.
Velvet Pile Carpets
A velvet carpet is a more luxurious style with a soft smooth appearance. The fibres in velvet carpets are straighter which can show areas of light and dark shading. Suitable in all rooms this is a particularly good choice for bedrooms or formal living rooms where a style of richness and indulgence is desired.
Loop Pile Carpets
This style of carpet is made from uncut loops of yarn. The loops can be differing in height to give various patterns and texture or a uniform loop has the same height (a level loop pile). This type of carpet is popular in busy rooms as foot tread marks are hidden. A loop carpet is not recommended where there are animals as their claws could catch on the loops.
Berber Style Carpets
Berber style carpet is traditionally a loop pile carpet with small flecks of dark colours onto a lighter coloured background. There are also twist pile ‘berbers’ with a cut pile twist rather than the loop.
Saxony Style Carpets
A Saxony carpet is a deep pile carpet which is popular in bedrooms as it has a look of luxury and a sensuous feel. The long pile naturally can easily flatten and is therefore not recommended on heavy use areas such as stairs or main living areas. These are available in both wool and man-made fibres.
Sisal, Seagrass, Jute and Coir are all types of natural flooring. They come in various different textures, giving a natural feel to the foot with an interesting look.
From a simple motif pattern in the carpet to a bold stripe, there are many modern and contemporary patterned design carpets produced today as well as the more traditional styles.
If a stair runner is the style you are looking for, we will offer advice on what will work well for you. There are many options for the stairs from stripes to a simple motif pattern with a bold colour or a plain carpet finished off with stair rods.
Carpet Characteristics and Carpet Care
There can be a minor colour variation between the carpet samples to the actual carpet you receive. Carpets are produced in batches and although high standards are set for achieving a consistency of colour there could be a very minimal difference. All manufacturers ask you to allow for a certain percentage of deviation from the sample to the carpet that you actually get, this will be stated on the back of the sample. Please read the advice given on the samples as it will also give you advice on pile reversal.
Room lighting and wall colours can have a big effect on the colour of the carpet. It is always important to view the carpet sample in the room where it will be fitted before making your final decision.
After carefully choosing your carpets, now it is important to look after them to maintain their longevity! Here are a few guidance notes on after care for your carpets:
- Regular vacuuming is recommended.
- Cut pile carpets should be vacuumed with an upright cleaner with a beater bar and brush.
- Loop pile carpets should be vacuumed with a cylinder cleaner using the suction head only.
- A large doormat will prevent dirt from coming into your house. Why not ask us about using any carpet left over to make a mat?
- Always refer to the Manufacturers’ guidance on aftercare.
Carpets can fade if regularly exposed to strong direct sunlight. It is recommended to limit the amount of direct sunlight on your carpet by filtering the sunlight with curtains or blinds.
Shedding or is when small excess fibres of the carpet shed or fluff in the first few months of use. It is quite normal and does not mean there is a defect in the carpet. Regular vacuuming usually resolves this problem.
Under Floor Heating Systems and Tog Ratings
As Under Floor Heating Systems are a lot more popular, we are very much aware at May Flooring Limited of Tog ratings for both carpets and underlays. Carpet and Underlay Tog ratings can vary and different Under Floor Heating Systems also vary. It is very important to inform us of your Under Floor Heating System at the early stages of choosing your flooring.