What Are The Different Types of Carpet?

Dog and owner running on Shaw Pet Perfect carpet available at Johnson's Flooring in Clayton, Ohio and Springboro, Ohio
Shaw's Pet Perfect carpet is ultra durable and easy to clean - now on display in our Clayton, Ohio and Springboro, Ohio showrooms

Carpet is still one of the most popular flooring choices for homeowners (see our blog about the Top 5 Benefits of Carpet). There are many types of carpet available and customers in our Clayton, OH and Springboro, OH flooring stores commonly ask about the different types of carpet fibers and carpet styles. Read on to learn more!

Types of Carpet Fibers

Before you make the decision on the type of carpet to buy, it’s good to know the different types of carpets and the fibers that they are made of. The two most common types of carpet fiber are polyester and nylon.

Polyester Carpet

Shaw Within Reach polyester carpet available at Johnson's Flooring in Clayton, Ohio and Springboro, Ohio
Shaw Within Reach Polyester Carpet

Many of today’s carpets are made of polyester fiber, which is man-made from plastic polymers. Three main advantages of polyester carpet:

  1.  Color – the make-up of polyester fiber allows it to hold vibrant colors. Homeowners looking for a unique color, or colors, to complete the design of their home should consider polyester carpet.
  2. Softness – polyester carpets feel especially soft, perfect for a cold winter day or when you just hop out of bed.
  3. Environmentally Friendly – much of the polyester fiber used in carpet today contains post-consumer content, mainly recycled water bottles. Additionally, polyester is a bio-degradable product once the carpet reaches the end of its useful life.

The main drawback to polyester is that it is more prone to flatten under the weight of household traffic as the years go on. However, new polyester carpets, such as Shaw’s Pet Perfect style, offer the durability of nylon along with the advantages of a polyester carpet.

Nylon Carpet

Living room with Mohawk Ultrastrand Nylon carpet; Johnson's Flooring in Clayton, OH and Springboro, OH
Mohawk Ultrastrand Nylon Carpet

Nylon carpet contains fibers made from synthetic polymers and is the most popular type of carpet today. Three main advantages of nylon carpet are:

  1. Soiling Resistance – dirt and other soils will cut carpet fibers over time. The make-up of nylon carpet reduces the amount of damage done to the carpet by dirt and other soils, keeping the carpet looking newer, longer.
  2. Durable Against Traffic – nylon is very good at retaining the texture of the carpet over time, showing less traffic patterns as time goes on.
  3. Stain Resistance – although all carpets can be stained, nylon is normally manufactured with a treatment that prevents spills from soaking in immediately. This gives you the time to clean-up the spill before any long-term damage occurs. Polyester is also very stain resistant and either fiber would be an adequate choice if stain resistance is a top priority.

The main drawback to nylon is that it can be more expensive than polyester.

Types of Carpet Styles

Another important feature to pay attention to when choosing carpet is the carpet style, or construction. There are three main types of carpet styles:

Cut Pile

Cut pile carpets are created when the fiber (yarn) of the carpet is cut to a specific height and twisted to create a uniform texture. Cut piles are the most popular type of carpets today. You may have heard of shag carpet (taller height), saxony carpet (lower height, smoother), or frieze carpet (twisty, medium height, referred to as modern shag) – all of which are considered cut pile carpets!

Cut pile carpets are soft and offer a variety of colors and textures. Carpet textures can either be solid (single color with uniform texture), tonal (tone on tone color variation), or accent (speckled color variation).  

Two disadvantages of cut pile carpets are footsteps are more apparent from every day traffic and the fiber breaks down faster when compared to loop pile carpets.

Shaw Tonal Comfort Colorwall light colored carpet available at Johnson's Flooring in Clayton, Ohio and Springboro, Ohio
An example of a cut pile carpet (Shaw Colorwall Tonal Comfort)

Loop Pile

Loop pile carpets are created by not cutting the fiber and “looping” the fiber back into the carpet backing. The most common type of loop pile carpet is berber.

Loop pile carpets are known for excellent appearance retention and minimize the appearance of every day footsteps.

Two disadvantages of loop pile carpets when compared to cut pile are that they are not as comfortable and the yarn is easier to snag (i.e. pet nails).

Shaw Pet Perfect+ brown carpet available at Johnson's Flooring in Springboro, Ohio and Clayton, Ohio
An example of a loop pile carpet (Shaw Pet Perfect+)

Cut/Loop Pile

Some carpets contain a combination of cut and loop piles. This allows the carpet to have a wide variety of different patterns and designs. 

Shaw Pet Perfect+ light brown patterned carpet available at Johnson's Flooring in Springboro, Ohio and Clayton, Ohio
An example of a cut/loop pile combo carpet (Shaw Pet Perfect+)

Which Carpet Is Best For My Home?

Choosing carpet for your home is an important decision and one that should be made with your specific lifestyle, design, and budget factors in mind. We carry a wide variety of carpet types suitable for any budget from manufacturers such as Shaw Floors, Mohawk, Heartland, Aladdin, and Anderson Tuftex.

If you have additional questions after reading about the common types of carpet fibers and styles, please don’t hesitate to contact us. The flooring specialists in our Clayton, OH and Springboro, OH flooring showrooms are ready to assist you with any questions you may have!

Are you interested in having carpet installed in your home? Let our professional installation teams handle it for you. Request a free estimate today to get started!

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