How to Save BIG on Carpet
By Alan J. Fletcher - Carpet buying expert
and trusted consumer advocate
"When you need to replace
the carpet in an apartment or rental home you will often need new pad too. But
there may be times when you can save money on padding by reusing some or all of
the pad if it is still in good condition."
The purpose of installing padding
under carpet is to provide a soft cushion of comfort when walked on, to support
and protect the carpet from excessive wear and abrasion, and prevent the carpet
from losing its "stretch" prematurely.
Padding is rated two ways, by
thickness (height) and by density (weight).
The thickness of padding does not represent the quality. The
quality of pad is always determined by density, and is measured in pounds. The
more dense a pad, the better the quality (For example A 6-pound pad is better
quality than a 3-pound pad). A dense padding has more matter and less air, and
provides more support.
Installing a higher quality pad can extend the life span
of any carpet significantly, and may allow you to save some money in the long
run. Low-density padding contains more air and less matter, and will only last a
year or two before it becomes noticeably deteriorated and becomes flat. Padding
prices will vary depending mainly on the basis of density, not by thickness.
Sometimes it is possible to reuse the old pad that is under
your existing carpet if it is in good condition, provided it has not
deteriorated, and it has enough resiliency or density left in it to support your
carpet properly. You or your maintenance person can easily determine if your
existing pad is re-usable. Donít rely solely on a carpet installer or retail
salesperson to determine this for you, as they may not have your best interests
If your padding has noticeable odors from pet urine that have
soaked through, you will have to replace the pad. It would also be a good idea
to seal the sub-floors with a paint/sealer product designed to help cover the
odor permanently, prior to installing new padding.
In order to you to determine if your pad is reusable, you
must be able to completely inspect it. After the old carpet has been removed,
carefully inspect the pad, especially in the high traffic areas.
You are looking
to see if the pad has deteriorated. It is supposed to be spongy under foot. Step
on the pad. It should feel like it has some spring left in it.
If it has become
flat and lifeless you will need to replace some or all of it. Areas that have
limited signs of wear can be used again.
Compare the hallway padding with the padding in a closet to
see what the difference is, as the padding in a closet should be practically
like new since it is a very low traffic area. This will give you a good reference for
Learn more about saving
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