Wall-to-wall carpet is a perennial favorite for bedrooms and living areas. It’s made by pulling soft fibers, such as wool or nylon, through a woven backing, then gluing on more layers of backing to strengthen the material. You install it by nailing it down over a layer of padding, which adds cushioning and prolongs the life of the carpet.
Carpet comes in a wide variety of colors, textures, and materials. It can be made from:
- Wool, a durable material that naturally resists moisture and stains
- Nylon, a strong, wear-resistant synthetic material that lasts a long time and can be recycled at the end of its life
- Acrylic, a synthetic material that’s resistant to mildew, crushing, and insect damage
- Polyester, a moisture-resistant synthetic fiber that can be dyed to produce bright colors but is vulnerable to staining
- Polypropylene, a plastic highly resistant to moisture, mildew, and stains, which can be used both indoors and outdoors
Carpeting varies in thickness and fiber density. In general, the higher the density, the more durable the carpet will be.
Many people like carpet because it feels soft and warm underfoot. It’s also quiet, slip-resistant, and fairly easy to install.
Carpeting is more difficult to clean than hard flooring. Even with regular vacuuming, it can still harbor dirt that only steam cleaning can remove. It’s also vulnerable to staining. The soft fibers of a carpet can harbor allergens such as pollen and pet dander, making it a bad choice if anyone in your home suffers from allergies.