What You Need to Know About Carpet Pile

carpet pileSometimes it may seem like carpeting has a language all its own.  From nap to face weight to pile it can be confusing to understand what someone is talking about when they are trying to describe carpeting.  Many of the terms used in the industry are self-explanatory, but some are strange and need explanation.  To get a better grasp of carpeting terms used today, you can read through this glossary of carpet terms.  The most important term that you need to understand if you’re in the market for new carpet its “pile”.  Carpet pile is referring to the actual surface of the carpet where you would walk.  The pile is created by looping yarn made of cotton, polyester, nylon or other materials through a backing.  After the yarn is looped it can be treated, cut or twisted to create all the different varieties of carpeting available today.

Choosing the right carpet pile for your room or space is secondly only to choosing the right color or pattern.  Some carpet piles are comfortable and soft, while others can be more firm.  Some carpet piles can withstand years of heavy traffic, while others will wear out quickly even in low traffic areas.  In this article will discuss some of the different carpet pile options and where they can be used to last the longest.

The most common style of carpet sold today is cut pile carpeting. Cut pile carpeting means that after the yarn is looped through the backing, the loops are literally cut to create individual fibers standing on end.  Cut pile carpeting tends to be soft and even looking but can leave trails from vacuums and footprints.  These carpets also tend to be difficult to clean as the individual fibers can trap dirt and stains deep below the surface of your carpet.  Cut pile carpeting is a great option for your home in living rooms and bedrooms.  Cut pile carpeting may not hold up will in high traffic areas like hallways or commercial spaces.

Twisted or frieze carpeting is a slight variation of the cut pile variety.  The same cut strands of yarn are then tightly twisted together to create a messy and soft surface to the carpeting.  Twisted carpeting still retains the softness and comfort of cut pile carpeting but loses some of the uniform look.  Because of its uneven look twisted pile carpeting often does a good job hiding dirt or stains and does not leave footprints or vacuum trails.  Twisted pile carpeting is a great option for higher traffic areas as it tends to look great, even if it’s slightly worn.  Consider using twisted pile carpeting in hallways and even some commercial applications.

Carpet PileLoop pile carpeting is one of the most wear resistant and heavy duty carpeting options available.  Also known as “berber pile”, loop pile carpeting is similar to cut pile carpeting except the loops of yarn are never cut.  The intact loops of yarn add a considerable amount of strength to the pile making it a very durable carpet suitable for even the highest traffic areas.  Loop pile carpeting doesn’t provide the same level of softness as cut or twist pile carpeting so it should be considering for more commercial use or very high traffic areas.

The most luxurious carpet piles available are saxony or velvet pile carpets.  Saxony pile carpet is similar to twist pile except the twists are looser allowing the strands of carpet to stand up giving the carpet a very soft and even fuzzy feel.  Saxony carpet is very comfortable and inviting but wears even more easily than cut pile carpeting.  Saxony carpet should be used only in low traffic areas such as formal living rooms or guest bedrooms.  Velvet pile carpets are not actually made from velvet but from a very short densely packed pile.  The density of the fibers gives the carpet a very uniform and smooth look, and the shortness of the pile can make the carpet feel more like a velvet than carpet.  Velvet pile carpets are very susceptible to wear and should only be used in the lowest traffic areas, or an area where a luxurious feel is very important.

Choosing the right carpet pile for your space can be a difficult decision without actually seeing and feeling the differences for yourself.  In the Charleston area, head down to Carolina Flooring Services’ show room at 3830 Dorchester Rd. in North Charleston.  You can always speak with any of our flooring staff for more information by calling us at 843-226-0700, and when you’re ready for your new carpet, let us show you how inexpensive our professional installation services are!  Visit our website for more information on our carpet installation services today!

Pictures provided by:

Carpet Pile – By Reinier Slerag – Licensed by Creative Commons Share Alike 3.0 Via Flikr – Original Link
Loop Pile Carpet – by Pi_Guy_31415 Licensed Under Creative Commons Share Alike 3.0 via Wikipedia – Original Link

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