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Answers to My Carpet Quiz

©Alan Fletcher -  Carpet Expert and Consumer Advocate

 

1. Do you know which padding to use for your home? Which padding is the best deal?

  • Rebond - Best bang for your buck! Most common.

  • Foam  -  Not usually a good choice, not very dense.
  • Rubber - Too expensive! Mainly used in commercial settings.
  • Synthetic fiber - Best for Berber styles on concrete
  • Recycled fabrics - Best for Berber styles on wood floors

 

 

2. Here are some common features padding may have for an extra charge. Do you know what benefits they provide? Which of these features do you think are worth paying extra for? 

  • Moisture barrier                                 Does not solve the pet accident issue
  • Odor eating                                       This will not eliminate urine odors
  • Anti-microbial                                    If you have a moisture problem, fix it.
  • None of the above -  These special features are not required, make little difference, if any, and are expensive. 
  • I donít know

 

3. Do you know what padding Density to choose? 

  • 4 pound                       Not dense enough, warranty void. Used in apartments.
  • 5 pound                       Not dense enough, warranty void. Used in apartments.
  • 6 pound                       Minimum density req. for most carpets, not good for Berber Styles
  • 7 pound                       Who makes a 7 pound pad? Not a common Padding Density. 
  • 8 pound                       Nice upgrade for all styles, great on stairs,  Req. for all Berber Styles
  • 10 pound                     Too dense for most homeowners. Great for stairs and main walkways.
  • Donít know

 

4. Do you know what thickness of pad is required?

  • ľ"                                                 Correct thickness for all Berber and commercial grade carpets
  • 3/8"                                               Used for some Berber and commercial grade carpets
  • 7/16"                                             CRI maximum thickness for residential applications
  • Ĺ"                                                 Commonly used but a bit too thick, warranty can be voided.
  • Donít know

 

5. Do you know about carpet fibers? Which fiber is most resilient?

  • Nylon                                       Best for high traffic applications, most resilient fiber.
  • Olefin or polypropylene         Used mainly in looped Berber styles and commercial-grade carpets
  • Polyester or P.E.T.                Lowest cost, matting and crushing a common problem.
  • Nylon / polyester blend          Upgrade: Matting and crushing problem reduced.
  • Sorona/Smartstrand               A newer product, made from corn polymer. Resists stains, Cleans easily.

 

6. There are different ways to make carpet.  Would you rather choose a Continuous Filament Nylon fiber or go with a Nylon Staple Fiber?

  • Continuous Filament Nylon (CFN) aka Nylon BCF or Nylon CF. 
  • Nylon Staple Fiber
  • I donít know

A Continuous Filament is the smart way to go. Carpets made with a staple fiber (short lengths of fiber) are prone to shedding and fuzzing. That means you would be vacuuming up bag after bag of carpet fibers. It is not fun, it's bad for kids and pets who may inhale the loose fibers and it makes your carpet look horrible. Shedding and fuzzing can continue up to one year after installation. 

 

 

Proper Carpet Care and Maintenance

How you care for your carpet will determine how long it will last. 

 

7. How many people live in your home? 

 

8. How many days per week do you vacuum on average?

7 & 8,  Rule of thumb, vacuum as many times per week as you have people living in your home. 

 

9. Do you have a good vacuum with a beater bar?

  • Yes                A beater bar is required by most carpet warranties. 
  • No
  • I don't know

 

10. How often do you have your carpet professionally cleaned?

  • Never
  • Every 6 months
  • Once a year
  • Every other year     is required to keep your warranty in effect
  • Every three years

 

11. Do you keep all the receipts for the professional cleanings?

  • Yes     you must retain proof, required to keep your warranty in effect
  • No
  • I donít know

 

12. Do you know what the following carpet definitions / conditions mean? Which of these conditions are covered by the manufacturer's warranty? 

  • Crushing
  • Fading or color loss
  • Footprints or indentations
  • Matting
  • Shading
  • Shedding
  • Filtration soiling
  • Wrinkles
  • Yellowing

NONE of the above

Even though you may or may not know what these terms mean, in most cases, none of these common carpet problems are covered by the typical manufacturerís warranty. Read your carpet warranty to find out what is covered and for how long.

 

13. Have you visited the website of "The Carpet and Rug Institute"? (www.carpet-rug.org)

  • Yes            A great place to learn all about carpet characteristics like allergies, air quality, installation procedures and more. 
  • No

 

14. Are you familiar with the requirements set forth in "The Carpet & Rug Institute's Standard 105 for Residential Installation"?

  • Yes             Your carpet must be installed to this standard. Required to keep your warranty in effect.
  • No

 

15. Do you know which manufacturer's warranties apply to your particular carpet?

  • Yes        It is your responsibility to know what your carpet warranty covers.  Get it and read it!
  • No
  • I donít know

Most carpet warranties are now available online. Here is my list of carpet mill websites

 

16. If some of your carpet is found to be defective and you file a valid claim with the carpet manufacturer, what do you think will typically happen next?

  • They will refund my money 100%.
  • They will refund a percentage of my money.
  • They will replace all my carpet with another carpet of my choice.
  • They will remove all of the old carpet and install new carpet of the exact same type and style.
  • They will remove the defective carpet areas only and install new carpet of the same type and style.
  • They will issue a pro-rated credit to your retailer equal to the cost of the carpet material only, for the affected area only. The credit is good only toward new carpet from the same manufacturer. They will likely not pay to remove your old carpet, move your furniture nor will they likely pay to have your replacement carpet installed.
  • They will pay to have the carpet repaired, if possible.

It is your responsibility to inspect the carpet for obvious defects before the installers install it in your home. This means you will have to ask the installers to roll it out for you to inspect thoroughly. (in your driveway?) Once the installers cut the carpet, you will lose your carpet defect warranty if an obvious carpet defect is found. In some cases they will pay the installers to remove and reinstall your defective carpet. It is unlikely they will pay to move your furniture or compensate you for your time and trouble or time off work. There may be some difference in color shading or texture from the old carpet to the new carpet due to dye lot variations. 

 

Carpet Installation

 

17. What is the best day to have your new carpet delivered to your home:

  • The day it is to be installed
  • The day before - 24 hours prior, stored in a heated area above 65 degrees, a warranty requirement.
  • The week before
  • I donít know

 

18. What is the best climate to have your carpet installed

  • On a warm day with the doors open
  • On a cool day with the doors closed
  • Any day with the heater on (above 65*F) before and during installation
  • I donít know

 

19. What should do you do before the carpet installer begins to install your new carpet?

  • Move all small breakables and valuables into a safe and secure area
  • Make arrangements for kids and pets to be out of the work areas
  • Check to make sure the installer will use a power-stretcher
  • Take photographs or a video of the entire area in case you need to prove damages in court
  • Make sure the installer has brought the right carpet style, quality and color
  • Have the installer roll out the carpet so you can check the carpet for obvious defects.
  • Make sure you have the original carpet sample so you can compare it with the carpet delivered

All of the above. It pays to have your eyes and ears open and be aware of what is going on in your home at all times. 

 

20. What do you do after the carpet installer is finished installing your carpet?

  • Call all your friends to come over and see the new carpet!
  • Inspect the carpet installation completely. Withhold final payment until you are completely satisfied.
  • Pick up all the carpet scraps and vacuum the carpet well.
  • Show the installer where you want all the carpet and pad waste to go.
  • Find out how long the carpet seams will look so obvious. 

The installer is to remove all scraps, haul them away, vacuum and finish job completely before you make the final payment. Carpet seams that look bad today, will look just as bad in a week or two. Don't let the installer convince you that the carpet seams will look better once the carpet has had time to settle in. Fix all problems right now, before you make final payment or withhold until you are completely satisfied. 

 

So how did you do?  

 

Did you learn something?  I have made this quiz an informative aspect of my website because I want you to learn what you need to know about buying carpet. There is so much more information you need to know before you spend a dime on carpet. The important thing right now is that you do your homework before you buy carpet. If you learned something by taking this short quiz, then it should be a wake-up call for you. The questions on this quiz are the easy ones. It gets harder to make the right choices and carpet scams are common.

 

Most people really think they know enough to buy carpet wisely, but few really do. Some people put their trust in the hands of carpet salespeople. This is a common mistake. I get e-mails all the time from consumers who blindly took the advice of a salesperson only to get burned. 

 

Carpet is a major purchase! Don't take chances. If you make just one simple mistake in your carpet purchase, you stand to lose hundreds of dollars or worse. You must choose a carpet that meets your needs and lifestyle. Your home must be measured accurately, you must use the correct pad, you must have your carpet installed correctly, you must follow your carpet warranty requirements and you need to get a Good deal for the whole job. 

 

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