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Common Carpet Questions

By Alan Fletcher - Carpet Expert and Consumer Advocate


Should we install Berber Carpet in our basement?

I am having trouble choosing from ALL the different suggestions for carpet for my 600sq. Ft. basement. It is a dry basement except for one drain on the floor near the washer that spills out a little, this area is not going to be carpeted though. We have no kids and only 2 cats that rarely go down there. 


I had actually found a great Berber carpet through a manufacturer on EBay for $7 sq./yd, but after reading these questions was scared away from both EBay and Berber. This is an entertaining basement with a built-in bar, pool table and entertainment area. Can you simplify my search to 1 or 2 specific budget friendly recommendations? Is it crazy to try and install it ourselves?


Alan's Response:


Yes, it would not be wise to try to install carpet yourself if you want it to look nice and last as long as possible. If your basement is dry you can select any style you wish, I would suggest you consider a level loop or cut-pile commercial grade styles as they are relatively inexpensive, can be installed with or without padding, easy to clean and last a long time. 


If you want something more plush and want to save money then consider go with an apartment grade, nylon plush style. You could go this route and only spend about $15-18 per yard total - carpet, pad and installation. Cats love to scratch on Berber styles, and moisture is the worst enemy of Berbers, so I don't suggest you choose Berber for your basement.



Should I upgrade to Berber in my Brand New House with a Dog?

I just bought a brand new house and I am doing quite a few upgrades. I was wondering should I upgrade my carpet to Berber? Which is about another $3000. Is it worth it or should I just go with what the contractor going to install? Does Berber carpet last longer than any other carpet? The only carpet area I have is upstairs, in mostly the bedrooms and stair. There will only be 2 people living there and we tend not to make a lot of mess, but I do have quite a few guest over throughout the year. In addition, I have a dog (lab) but I am going to try not to let her go upstairs. I appreciate for any suggestion you can recommend.


Alan's Response:


Forget Berber, you have a dog and it will snag the carpet. If you want to upgrade go with a carpet that will tolerate dogs and the occasional heavy foot traffic you have. A frieze style would be a good choice as would any nylon plush style carpet. You really need to read my book before you make your selection and follow my advice to keep from being scammed or overcharged. Selecting the right carpet, padding and getting proper installation is more difficult than most people think.



Best Padding for Berbers

I just purchased a Berber by Mohawk a tight loop. I am installing this on a concrete floor and the salesman said that a 40 oz felt pad would be good (I don't know how this translates into the weights you gave for cubic feet). He mentioned it was a 1/2 inch but shouldn't be a problem. 

(I had read your site about 3/8 max for Berber) He said that the density of felt versus the thickness of Rebond would not damage the carpet Do you agree? It is not being installed for another 2 weeks so I have time to change my mind. BTW the salesman was very nice no pressure at all it was my idea to go for a "softer" feel.


Alan's Response:


A 40-ounce, 1/2" thick Felt pad would probably be fine, but has no sponginess at all. A 1/4 to 3/8 inch, 8 pound, Rebond would be cheaper and provide a little more "give" underfoot. Either pad would be acceptable but dollar for dollar Rebond padding is what I would choose. I have my doubts about the 1/2" thickness of the felt padding your retailer is suggesting, so make sure to follow the manufacturer's padding requirements to ensure your warranty won't be compromised.



Buying Carpet Wholesale

I am thinking about buying our carpet thru one of the many carpet mills located in Georgia at wholesale prices. What do you think? 


Alan's Response:


There are a lot of carpet outlets in Georgia, especially near Dalton where there are more carpet mills located than anywhere else in the world. If you know what you are doing, you can find some great deals this way. If you live close to Georgia and want to make the trip to buy carpet then do. 


You have to do your homework! Just be very sure you know exactly how much carpet you need, and exactly what type, style, twist, density and quality of carpet you want to buy before going. Also, lining up a qualified installer can be difficult. Read my e-book before you make your carpet buying journey to Dalton, Georgia!



Stain Proof Carpet?
I have bad carpet stains from water flooding and it cannot be removed via professional steam cleaning. What carpet can I replace it with that is absolutely stain proof and cannot be stained again by water flooding?  The carpet is in the basement, which is a full basement and entertainment room.

Alan's Response:


There is no carpet made that is totally stain proof. There is a new carpet fiber available that claims to be almost stain-proof, it is called Sorona, and it is a polymer made from corn. Originally, Dupont came up with the idea back in the 1940's but it was too expensive to make back then. I don't think Sorona is as durable as nylon, but it will be interesting to see how well this fiber performs in the next 10 years or so. Prices are pretty high for carpets made with the Sorona fiber  right now, probably because it is so new on the market, hopefully the cost will go down in the next few years. We'll keep our eye on this fiber!





Alan's Preferred Carpet Dealers


It's getting hard to find a reputable carpet dealer these days! That's why I've created a special hand-picked list of over 400 locally owned Carpet Dealers who offer Free estimates, fair prices, knowledgeable staff, honest measuring and qualified installers. See my Recommended Carpet Dealers near you!


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