When you are looking for carpet there are several factors to consider, but let's start with the basics:
(1) What fiber should I choose?
Nylon 6, 6
Olefin: This is a fiber that we would strongly advise against. It wears terribly, and movement of furniture can easily cause burn marks in the carpet
Viscose: This is also a fiber that we would strongly advise against. It may look very nice as it is an attempt to mimic silk synthetically, but it will not last very long unless it is hung on the wall. When this fiber gets wet it deteriorates, which means you would never want it to get dirty.
Polyester: There is a lot of this fiber on the market. The benefits of this fiber is that it is very stain resistant. Although that is a selling point, the down side is that it does not wear well. Traffic areas will start to look dark not because they are dirty, but because the fiber is damaged.
Nylon 6: This is a decent fiber that wears well. It is not the most stain resistant, but overall it performs well.
Nylon 6, 6: We highly recommend this fiber because it does very well in terms of wear and being stain resistant. While it may not match polyester in stain resistance, it comes pretty close. In the end, it performs by far the best if you are looking for a synthetic fiber.
Wool: We highly recommend this fiber because a good quality wool will last a very long time if maintained. It has natural stain resistance and wearability characteristics. If you are looking to have a natural product installed in your house, this is the fiber you are looking for.
(2) What pad should I purchase?
Throughout the years we have seen many different pads come and go. Each setting may have different factors to consider, but here is a general guide.
Thickness: Most of us might want to have a nice soft pad, but the give and take of that is the longevity of the carpet. If the pad is not firm (at least an 6 lb pad), then it may deteriorate faster than intended. Pad usually falls within the range of 3/8"-9/16" in thickness. Typically, if you want a more cushy soft feel to the carpet, then a 6 lb rebond pad would be recommended. If you want it to be more firm and would like the best option for longevity of the carpet, usually a 8lb rebond pad would be recommended.
Type: There are several different pads available, but for a majority of the time, a 1/4" - 1/2"" rebond pad for synthetics, or a 1/4" - 1/2" natural pad for a natural fiber.
Moisture Barrier: In theory, the moisture barrier is great because it stops stains from soaking down through the pad and possibly even to the sub-floor. While this may be true, there are a few factors worthy of consideration:
(1) Stains will spread out, instead of soaking down. Stain may become at least 3 times larger than if there were no moisture barrier.
(2) IF there is any wearing down of the moisture barrier, a carpet cleaner will not be able to soak it out. The contaminants will be trapped under the pad. The same is true along the wall, as the pad stops at the tack strip.
With all these factors being considered, it is best to have an on-site consultation. We will do our best to help you find the product that best suits your environment, budget, and decor. Feel free to give me a call at 303-728-4531.