Understanding the options at your disposal is crucial when shopping for low pile carpet types. These types of carpet are further classified by their texture, build quality (construction), their ability to resist stains, the type of carpet fiber used, and the dying method used to color them. Here is what you need to know about low pile carpet types.
Low Pile Carpet Types
Low pile carpets are classified by the type of carpet fiber used in their construction. Here, you have options such as nylon, wool, polyester, and olefin. Each of these carpet fibers have their advantages and disadvantages. For instance, woolen carpets are naturally gorgeous and soil resistant, but they stain too easily. Olefin is highly moisture resistant but scores low when it comes to durability. Polyester looks and feels luxurious, and although it offers a wide range of colors and styles, it is not nearly as durable as nylon. Nylon, is by far the best type of carpet fiber for heavy traffic.
The majority of carpets designed for residential use are created using a tufting machine. A tufting machine can be described as a large type of sewing machine that loops hundreds of fiber strands onto the carpet backing. This results in the formation of the plush side of your carpet.
Tightly twisted carpet yarns make the carpet more durable and resistant to matting. The most tightly twisted low pile carpet type is frieze, which has about 9 twists per inch. Cut pile carpets are have the loosest twists, and although this makes them feel softer to the touch, it also makes them susceptible to unraveling.
Another way to distinguish a properly made low pile carpet from a poorly made carpet is by checking the fiber density. The more tightly packed the looped carpet fibers are, the better it handles wear and tear.
Carpet textures differ a great deal because of the type of fiber used, but they are also greatly affected by the construction technique used to manufacture them. For instance, cut pile carpets feel softest because their yarns are cut at the ends. Types of cut pile carpets that you might be familiar with include shag carpets, frieze carpets, velvet carpets, cable carpets, and Saxony carpets, all of which have mildly different textures.
Looping fibers onto the carpet backing results in loop carpets, which consist of uncut fibers that can be densely or loosely spaced depending on the quality of the carpet. Cut loop carpets contain a mix of cut pile and looped fibers, which is done to create patterns on the carpet’s surface. They are marginally less durable than loop carpets.
The type of carpet fiber you settle for will determine the level of stain resistance your carpet will have. However, carpets these days come with additional stain prevention treatments which are added after their construction. These can enhance any type of fiber’s stain resistance properties.
Low pile carpet types are also categorized by the method of dyeing used to color them. Continuous dyeing is mostly used on woven carpets during the post-tufting process. It is a reliable method for achieving nice, solid colors. Solution-dyed carpets usually have their fibers dyed before they’re woven together. As a result, they are slightly more resistant to staining and will not fade easily even when you use harsh cleaners on them.
There are many different types of low pile carpets. Making sure you understand the fiber type, construction, texture, stain resistance, and dye technique are very important.