to Shop-at-Home for New Carpet!
Alan Fletcher - 30-year Carpet Expert & Consumer Advocate
I'm Alan Fletcher, a 30-year Veteran of the Carpet Business and Consumer Advocate since 1998.
from the flooring business in 2006 and no longer sell or
install Carpet. Now as a consumer advocate my goal is to help homeowners
learn how to choose new carpet & padding wisely; how to obtain
qualified installation; how to save the most money
possible; and how to keep from becoming the victim of a Carpet Scam! It
doesn't get any better than that, and it's a free service!
Shopping for Carpet
In-home carpet shopping
is growing in popularity but also has certain risks that you need to be aware of,
and that is what
this website is all about. If you are not careful, you could end up buying
the wrong carpet, get a lousy installation job and pay way more than you
to Buy Carpet?
you are considering calling a mobile shop-at-home service, or Carpet Retailer
who has a showroom but is willing to bring samples to your home for your
there are a few important things you need to know to protect yourself from
being scammed, overcharged and sold the wrong goods or materials. If
you are looking for an honest, reputable, locally owned Carpet Retailer,
you might want to visit my Preferred
Carpet Dealer Directory to see who I recommend
To Avoid Common Carpet
thing you need to learn about "Shopping for New Carpet at Home"
is how to not fall prey to High Pressure Sales Tactics. For example, pushy salespeople may try to pressure you
into signing a contract before you have a chance to comparison shop. They
may tell you that the price quoted is a "Today Only"
price. Never agree to buy anything if you feel pressured. You have the
right to get several estimates and take your time making up your mind.
Honest and reputable
carpet retailers will not strong-arm you into signing a contract right now. Sure, every salesperson would
be happy if you agreed to buy from them on their first visit. However, you need
to make sure you take the time to comparison shop and get more than one bid or estimate
before you make your final choice. You should
always consider your carpet choices carefully and take a few days
to compare prices, colors, styles and quality.
majority of Carpet
Dealers who offer shop-at-home services are honest and reputable, but
there are dozens of Carpet Scams you need to
avoid regardless of who you choose buy carpet from. So take your time, read all my carpet buying
and learn everything you can about
buying new carpet before you visit any local carpet stores or have any carpet
dealer bring carpet samples to your
home. I can help you choose new carpet wisely and avoid most carpet scams if you are willing to take the time to do your
more about... Carpet
& Switch Scams
How to Select the Right Carpet
if you are able to avoid all the carpet scams you encounter, you still need to
right carpet. If
you choose the wrong carpet, it may not last as long as you expect. That's why I
decided to create a simple but powerful Carpet
Traffic Test. This simple two-minute test will help you
determine the level of foot traffic you have in your home and help you
determine the right grade or quality carpet to meet your needs and goals and
lifestyle. Then take a look at my Carpet Durability Rating Guide to
get an idea about how to select the right grade of carpet.
here to view a larger version of Alan's
Carpet Durability Chart (PDF Format)
carpets are rated by the carpet manufacturer using a simple method called
the PAR Carpet Rating System.
This is where they assign a number from 1 to 5 that indicates the durability
level of the carpet based on a typical family of four scenario.
I don't recommend you rely on any carpet rating system
solely to make your carpet choice. Buying the right carpet will require
that you answer some basic questions about what you want to accomplish. For
example, how long do you want your new carpet to last?
Selection - How to Choose Wisely!
common problem consumers face when buying new carpet, is choosing the right
quality of carpet. Every homeowner has different needs & goals that need to
be predetermined before a suitable carpet selection can be made. Some folks are retired
or have no kids or pets and therefore may have light
foot traffic. Other folks have heavy foot traffic from having
large families with lots of small children, pets or active teenagers.
Each different home scenario requires a different grade or quality of carpet. I refer
to this as "Carpet Durability". No matter what the
circumstances, each and every home has very different needs and goals that
need to be identified and considered very carefully before selecting the proper carpet
durability and quality level can be determined. And unless you consider all the variables and factors carefully, your new carpet will not last as long as you might hope.
more about: The PAR Carpet Rating System
is Carpet Durability Determined?
are several specifications that determine if a carpet can handle your level of foot traffic.
The main factors are:
are several different types of carpet fibers to choose from. For example;
Nylon is known as the most durable fiber available today and is also the
most expensive to manufacture. But not all nylon fibers are created equal.
Some are more durable than others and some nylon fibers are made softer
than others due to the diameter or "denier" of the strand. The
thinner the fiber strand the softer the carpet will feel. But does a
softer feel make for a less durable carpet?
groups of fiber strands are gathered together and twisted they form into
"Tufts" These tufts are inserted into the carpet backing to
create various styles of carpet. When the tufts are twisted together they
use heat to "set" the tufts - similar to how women use a curling
iron to curl their hair. The number of twists formed per lineal inch is
how they determine the "Tuft Twist" rating. Most plush style
carpets have a tuft twist rating of 4 to 6. Frieze styles are known for
having a tuft twist rating of 6 to 8. Generally speaking, the higher the
tuft twist rating the longer your carpet will retain it's "like
new" appearance. This is because over time the tufts may begin to
lose their twist or "blossom", causing the carpet to gradually
lose it's like new appearance.. Some carpet fibers are able hold their
"twist" better than others and this ability is known as being
more "resilient" Nylon is the most resilient carpet fiber
available today. Polyester is the least resilient carpet fiber.
face-weight is the weight of the fiber that is used to manufacture the
carpet pile. Face weights range from 20 ounces to 120 ounces and most
residential carpets sold today are between 30 to 60 ounces. Generally
speaking, the higher the face-weight, the more durable the carpet will be.
But this does not always hold true. If the pile height is too tall, it may
be more prone to matting and crushing. Depending on your level of
foot traffic, you may need to limit the pile height and increase the face
weight. This is what we call the "Pile Density" rating.
a simple mathematical formula we can take the Pile height and pile face-weight to
determine the Pile Density rating. Generally speaking, the higher the pile
density the more durable a carpet will be. This holds true more often when
the pile height is not too high as to limit the potential for matting and
crushing of the pile. I prefer a pile height of less then 3/4".
Once the carpet tufts begin to fall over,
become matted or crushed, the carpet will quickly lose its like-new appearance. Some carpet fibers
are more prone to matting and crushing than others. With nylon carpet, a
professional steam cleaning will usually restore the tufts to their original upright
position and allow your carpet to regain all or most of its like-new
appearance. This is because nylon is a very resilient fiber,
meaning it has the ability to bounce back to its original position. However, carpets made from fibers
like Polyester or P.E.T. Polyester are not as resilient as nylon and will not yield the same
What is the best pile height and density rating
that will best serve your needs and goals?
carpet has it's own unique manufacturing specifications. It's up to you to
find out what these specifications are and make sure you buy a carpet with
sufficient specifications that will meet your needs. I know it must sound
daunting to you, and it is. However I will help you make sense of it all and
make it less confusing. If you are not familiar with the carpet
specifications listed above, then you should read my Carpet Buying Guide
ebook before you begin
shopping for carpet. You must understand what these terms mean in order to
know how to choose the right carpet for you.
Start with my free Carpet
Traffic Test to see what grade of carpet you need to buy. Then
we will go forward from there.