When you buy carpet for your home, you will also need to select carpet cushion or carpet padding. Combined, they create a carpet system.
Carpet padding helps by extending the life of your carpet. Think of it as a shock absorber for your carpet. The pad you choose is the equivalent of insurance for assisting the life of your carpet.
As Leggett & Platt explains in Which carpet pad is right for you?,
Always ask for the premium pad since a premium performance pad plays a very important role in the life of a carpet – it absorbs footstep and furniture impact that could stress the carpet. Carpets that are placed without a carpet pad lose an average of 19 percent of their height over a period of time, while carpets placed on carpet pads lose only 5 to 10 percent.
The quality of carpet pad can affect the quality of your carpet. Choosing the wrong pad can have negative consequences, such as voiding the carpet warranty. Carpet manufacturers will often recommend the best carpet pad choices, ironically, many retailers never offer the best pads.
Carpet cushion also provides a more comfortable, luxurious feel underfoot; it insulates the floor and reduces energy costs; it reduces noise making for a quieter home.
And, depending on the specific cushion you select, it may also include an antimicrobial to protect from mold and mildew or a moisture barrier to help prevent spills and accidents from reaching the cushion and subfloor (an important consideration if you have pets or small children).
When you shop for carpet at Classique Floors + Tile, you will learn about the options available early on in the purchase process. You will need to include new carpet padding with your carpet purchase.
How Does Carpet Padding Extend the Life of Your Carpet?
Carpet cushions are evaluated based on density and thickness of the material. Density is measured in pounds based on the weight of a cubic foot of the material. Thickness is measured in fractions of an inch.
The best carpet padding supports your carpet over its lifetime. It cushions the footsteps of the people walking on the carpet while ensuring that the carpet doesn’t bottom out or flex so much that it eventually starts sagging. The greater the traffic, the denser a pad you will want for your carpet.
Too thick a carpet pad will contribute to your carpet stretching out.
Many consumers believe carpet cushion is used for the purpose of comfort under foot. While this is a result of the use of carpet padding, the primary reason for carpet cushion is to absorb impact that the carpet would otherwise be subjected to. This impact can cause synthetic latex to break down, backings to stretch, separation of the primary backing from the secondary backing (delamination) and unnecessary stress on the face fiber. The best performing carpet cushion actually provides less comfort under foot, but extends the life of the carpet installation by absorbing the abuse.
Two of the most common mistakes by consumers is to purchase a carpet padding that is too soft or too thick. Carpet cushion that is too soft, bottoms out when exposed to foot traffic. This allows the carpet to assume the rest of the impact burden; thus shortening carpet performance life.
According to the Carpet and Rug Institute’s advice for selecting the right cushion,
“When selecting cushion, check the carpet manufacturer’s requirements for thickness and density. A general rule of thumb for most residential carpet applications is to choose cushion no more than 7/16 inch thick and no less than 1/4 inch with (at least) 6 pounds per cubic feet density. If the carpet is a berber or a low profile carpet, choose a cushion no more than 3/8 inch thick with 8 pounds density.”
What Types of Carpet Padding Will You Find at Classique Floors?
Some flooring stores don’t offer much choice when it comes to carpet cushions. At Classique Floors + Tile, we do. In fact, we have a special display where you can explore and feel the differences between the different options available. More specifically, you will find:
- 7/16 inch thick Rebond Carpet Cushion with 6 pounds density and 8 pounds density. Both are made of recycled urethane and are 100% recyclable.
- 7/16 inch thick Fiber Pad with 8 pounds density. This product is ideal for wool carpet and is is made of 100% recycled material.
- 15/32 inch thick Memory Foam Carpet Cushion with 8 pounds density. This product also includes Ultra-Fresh antimicrobial to prevent mold, mildew and odor, as well as the SpillTrap moisture barrier to prevent spills and accidents from reaching the cushion and subfloor. It is made of recycled materials and is recyclable.
- 7/16 inch thick Pure Comfort Memory Foam Healthier Choice Carpet Cushion with 10 pounds density where $.10 per square yard sold is donated to the Breast Cancer Research Foundation. It is 100% recyclable and hypo-allergenic. This product doubles your carpet texture warranty, too.
I hope you found this ultimate guide about the different carpet pads or cushions available at Classique Floors helpful. Let me know what questions you have.
Thanks for reading,