Before you make any big purchase, it’s always a great idea to do a little bit of research – after all, knowledge is power – and the more informed you are, the better decision you’ll ultimately make. Trouble is, quite a bit of that information is scattered all over the internet, and friends and family and more like to give you their personal opinions rather than facts you can use. Fortunately, this is a guide that will provide the answers you need about buying flooring.

Things You Wish You Knew before Buying Flooring

Choosing new flooring can easily be an intimidating and daunting task. Frankly, anyone can get overwhelmed by the sheer number of products, styles, colors, functions, and aesthetics. But, by knowing some basics, you’ll be able to narrow down the best options for your home. So, let’s get right down to the nitty-gritty.

How to Tell Cheap Carpet from a Quality Product

When it comes to purchasing a new carpet, it can be difficult to tell the difference between a cheap product and a quality one. While the price tag can be a good indicator of the quality of the carpet, there are other factors to consider. Here are some tips for telling cheap carpet from a quality product:

  • Fiber type: The type of fiber used in the carpet can be a good indicator of its quality. Nylon and wool are both durable and long-lasting fibers that are commonly used in high-quality carpets, while polyester and olefin are cheaper fibers that may not hold up as well over time. However, you’ll need to dig into the particulars to make a more informed decision.
  • Density: The density of the carpet is another important factor to consider. A high-density carpet will have more fibers per square inch, making it more durable and resistant to wear and tear. A low-density carpet, on the other hand, will have fewer fibers and may wear out more quickly.
  • Twist: The twist of the carpet refers to the number of times the fibers are twisted together. A high twist count will make the carpet more durable and resistant to crushing and matting. A low twist count, on the other hand, will make the carpet more susceptible to wear and tear.
  • Backing: The backing of the carpet is also important to consider. A quality carpet will have a thick, sturdy backing that is resistant to tears and punctures. A cheap carpet may have a thin, flimsy backing that can easily tear or puncture.
  • Warranty: The warranty that comes with the carpet can be a good indicator of its quality. A quality carpet will come with a longer warranty that covers defects and wear and tear, while a cheap carpet may only come with a short warranty or no warranty at all.
  • Feel: The feel of the carpet can also give you an idea of its quality. A quality carpet will feel soft and plush underfoot, while a cheap carpet may feel rough or scratchy.

By considering these factors, you can better distinguish between a cheap carpet and a quality product. Remember, investing in a high-quality carpet can save you money in the long run by lasting longer and requiring less frequent replacement.

What Big Box Stores Won’t Tell You about Carpet

It’s important to note that not all big box stores withhold information about the carpets they sell from their customers. However, some big box stores may prioritize their profits over providing comprehensive information to their customers. Here are a few things that big box stores may not always tell their customers about carpet they sell:

  • Low-quality padding: While big box stores may offer a low price on carpet, they may not always include high-quality padding in the installation package. Cheap padding can cause the carpet to wear out more quickly and can even void the manufacturer’s warranty.
  • Hidden costs: Big box stores may advertise a low price on carpet installation, but they may not always disclose additional costs like removal and disposal of old carpet, moving furniture, or adjusting subflooring. These costs can add up quickly and may come as a surprise to customers.
  • Limited warranty: Some big box stores may offer a limited warranty on their carpet products, but they may not disclose the details of the warranty or the potential for issues like color fading or wear and tear. This can leave customers feeling frustrated and without the protection they thought they had.
  • Subcontracted installation: Big box stores may not always disclose that the installation of the carpet is subcontracted out to a third-party contractor. This can lead to inconsistent quality of installation, as well as difficulty in holding anyone accountable if issues arise.
  • Limited selection: While big box stores may offer a wide variety of carpet options, they may not always carry the highest quality products or have the expertise to guide customers to the best options for their needs.

As you can see, it’s very important for customers to do their own research, ask questions, and be skeptical when shopping for carpet at big box stores. By educating themselves and being aware of potential pitfalls, customers can make informed decisions and find the best carpet for their needs.

Key Differences between Laminate and Carpet Flooring

Laminate flooring and carpet are two popular flooring options, each with its own unique characteristics. Here are some key differences between the two:

  • Material: Laminate flooring is made from synthetic materials, typically high-density fiberboard or medium-density fiberboard, and a photographic layer that mimics the look of wood, stone, or other materials. Carpet, on the other hand, is made from a variety of materials, including wool, nylon, and polyester, and features a pile of fibers that are either woven or tufted.
  • Maintenance: Laminate flooring is relatively easy to maintain, requiring regular sweeping or vacuuming and occasional mopping with a damp mop. Carpet, on the other hand, can be more challenging to maintain, as it is prone to staining and requires regular vacuuming and periodic deep cleaning.
  • Durability: Laminate flooring is more durable than carpet and can withstand heavy foot traffic, scratches, and spills. Carpet is more prone to wear and tear and can be easily damaged by stains, pet claws, and furniture.
  • Comfort: Carpet provides a soft, cushioned surface underfoot that is warm and comfortable, making it a popular choice for bedrooms and living areas. Laminate flooring, while durable and low-maintenance, can be hard and uncomfortable to walk on, especially for extended periods of time.
  • Installation: Laminate flooring is typically installed using a floating floor system that locks the planks together without the need for nails or glue. Carpet, on the other hand, is typically installed using tack strips and requires stretching and tucking to achieve a smooth, seamless finish.
  • Cost: The cost of laminate flooring is typically lower than that of carpet, as it is a synthetic material and can be manufactured at a lower cost. Carpet, on the other hand, can be more expensive due to the higher cost of materials and installation.

Overall, laminate flooring is a more durable, low-maintenance option that is ideal for high-traffic areas like kitchens and hallways. Carpet, on the other hand, provides a comfortable, cozy feel that is perfect for bedrooms and living areas. Choosing between the two ultimately comes down to personal preference and the specific needs of your space.

For more information about flooring, you can speak with one of our experienced professionals who can give you all the information you need in order to make an informed decision and choose the right product for your space. We’ll listen to your concerns and help point you in the right direction so you’re ultimately happy with the flooring you buy.