A selection of definitions and often used phrases in carpets and flooring
30oz, 40oz, 50oz, Berber, Binding, Carpet, Colour Matching, Crumb Rubber,Crushing, Density, Door Cutting, Double-Glued Seams, D.P.M., Edging, Face Weight, Fading On Wool, Feltback, Fiber, Flattening, Flocked, Fuzzing,Heatsetting, Hessian Back, H/S/L, Indentations, Knitted, Laminate Underlay, Level Loop, Loop Pile, M², Matting, Memory, Multi-level Loop, Needle Punched, Pile, Pile Reversal, Pile Weight, Pilling, PU Foam, Pulled Loops, Rippling, Samples, Saxony, Shading, Shedding, Snags, Soiling, Sponge Rubber, Sprouting, Stretch & Trim, Static Electricity, Texture Retention, Tufted, Twist,Twist Level, Velvet, Waterfall Installation, Weight, Whipping, Woven, Yarn, Yarn Count
See Loop Pile
Binding (edging / Whipping)
Running cord or thread round the edge of the carpet to to prevent unlaying and for a neater and more decorative look.
Carpets are produced in batches, known as creels - and usually each batch produces between 500m² - 3000m² in a single width, depending on the creel size. Whilst the recipe used by the dyer remains constant, and is followed to the letter, in each separate production of the colour reproduction will vary from batch to batch. However production is matched back to the original or master sample to ensure that the colour remains 'within a commercial tolerance'.
Flooring or underlays may be thicker than the one previously installed, this may cause it to rub or catch on the bottom of the door. Door cutting is the process of trimming the door down to allow it to open and close freely without damaging the flooring.
Face Weight (Weight)
Face weight is the number of ounces of fiber per square yard in the face of the carpet (not including the backing). The face weight affects performance and durability. Face weight is different from density because it varies with carpet height.
Fading on Wool
Carpets made from wool can and do fade in use. The degree of fade can vary depending on the colour chosen and the local conditions to which the carpet is subjected. Fading can be caused by exposure to ultra violet light which is found in daylight, but is accelerated when sunlight shines directly onto the carpet. This has the effect of lightening or "Bleaching" the colour just as exposure to sunlight will lighten human hair. Wool is after all animal hair.
Flattening will occur as a result of traffic which eventually flattens the pile particularly in the main areas of use. All pile fabrics will flatten to greater or lesser degree dependent on the amount of traffic to which it is subjected and the construction (tuft density/pile fibre/height/weight) of the product concerned.
Fuzzing occurs when fluffy particles appear on carpet surfaces. It is caused by fibers that loosen because of weak twist or snags. Professional carpet cleaners can shear the carpet to remove fuzzing.
When a carpet is subjected to a heavy point load, such as under the legs of furniture, it is unreasonable to expect the carpet not to indent. Usually, the longer the load is in place, the longer will be the time for the pile to recover. In the case of very heavy loads in place for considerable time, the recovery time can be very considerable.
When all the loops are of the same height, a highly flexible and durable carpet is created which has a natural, casual appearance even when (commonly) it is made from synthetic fibres. The tight loop texture tends to hide marks so its a good blend between luxury and practicality.
Loop Pile (Berber)
Berber loop pile carpets look like and are named after a handmade, bulky wool carpet made by the Berber tribes of North Africa and Asia. The loops are made from thick or bulky yarns of wool, nylon, polypropylene or a blend of these fibres to give a cushioned effect underfoot. These carpets are available in an assortment of colours and may be flecked and be either level loop or multi-level loop.
Matting is the usually irreversible adhesion of carpet yarn caused by traffic or dirt.
The loops vary to two or sometimes three loop heights to create informal, random textures which are very forgiving for marks and stains and therefore very suitable for high traffic areas and busy family rooms.
This doesn't affect the wear. Pile reversal or shading is a feature of cut pile carpet. Traffic bends the carpet fiber in different directions creating an impression of light and dark areas. Regular vacuuming can create uniform shades. It is not recognised as a manufacturers fault.
Pilling occurs when fluffy particles appear on carpet surfaces. It is caused by fibers that loosen because of weak twist or snags. Usually, you can simply cut the pills with sharp scissors. If the pills are large, however, call in a professional carpet cleaner, retailer, or installer to resolve the problem.
PU (Polyurethane) Foam
A type of underlay. Typically made from recycled foam offcuts, the foam provides excellent comfort and performance levels with lots of thickness options. Can be recycled again after use.
Pulled loops occur only in looped pile carpet where one or more loops in the continuous pile is pulled through the primary backing of the carpet. This is usually due to come local condition, possibly some sharp object which has caught in a loop in situ and has resulted in a pull. Pulled loops are easily dealt with by trimming the offending end level with the rest of the pile. They should not be left as this could result in further loops being pulled and developing into a ladder.
A type of cut pile. Saxony textures are made of twisted yarns, which should be heat set. The tips remain very distinct, rather than blending together to form a very elegant finish. Saxony textures show footprints and vacuum marks so are suitable for more occasional rooms in the home. More textured variations improve practicality of saxonies.
Shading is the same as pile reversal.
New carpet tends to shed for a few weeks after installation. Regular vacuuming can resolve this problem. Shedding is more common in cut pile carpet and in wool carpet. Synthetic fiber carpet (such as nylon) does not shed as much.
Snags can occur when an object tangles in carpet. Usually, you can simply cut the snag with sharp scissors. If the snag is large, however, call in a professional carpet cleaner, retailer, or installer to resolve the problem.
Sprouting (Fuzzing / Pilling)
Sprouting occurs when fluffy particles appear on carpet surfaces. Usually, you can simply cut the sprouts with sharp scissors. If the sprouts are large, however, call in a professional carpet cleaner, retailer, or installer to resolve the problem.
Stretch & Trim
Over time some carpets may stretch/settle to create excess carpet in certain areas, this is resolved by taking the carpet up at the edges and stretching it to take out the excess and then trimming/cutting this excess off.
Velvet textures (sometimes called 'velour' or 'plush') all have a level surface pile of approx 5mm to 10mm height, which is then sheared to give a smooth finish. With very little twist in the yarn, the ends blend together which then further enhances the overall finish. These carpets tend to 'shade' (see Pile Reversal) with heavy use. Footprints show easily and the colour looks different place to place because fibres lying in different directions reflect the light differently. A luxury for occasional rooms.
Stairs are composed of a tread (the upper horizontal part of a step) and a riser (the upright member between two stair treads). Waterfall installation attaches carpet to two points on each step (one at the back of the tread and one at the bottom of each riser). This type of installation extends the life of carpet on stairs. When the carpet on the treads become worn, they can be taken up, reversed, and reinstalled with the worn areas placed over the risers.
Whipping (Edging / Binding)
Running cord or thread round the edge of the carpet to prevent unlaying (exposed strands) and for a neater and more decorative look.
Interlacing strands of fiber into a yarn forms woven carpet.