Purchasing Carpet


A quality installation can help your carpet provide long-lasting performance.

It is very important that the carpet be installed by a reputable, reliable installer who should follow the installation instructions recommended by the carpet manufacturer or the minimum guidelines set forth in the Residential Installation Standard CRI-105.

Carpet Cushion

Carpet cushion is a necessary foundation for your carpet.  It protects your new carpet investment while making your carpet look better, longer.  Quality cushion protects; it offers comfort and makes vacuuming more efficient, while reducing noise levels and insulating against cold.  Select the highest-quality cushion you can afford and ask about its performance warranty. Visit the Institute of Canadian Undercushion Manufacturers web site at www.carpetcushioncanada.org.

Floor Covering Adhesives

Most residential installations do not require a floor covering adhesive. In installations where adhesive is used, such as in basements or on concrete floors, ask for low volatile organic compound (VOC) adhesives that are environmentally-friendly.

Prior to Installation

A quality installation can help your carpet provide long-lasting performance Vacuum the old carpet to remove dust and dirt. Provide fresh air ventilation during removal of the old carpet and undercushion. Vacuum the sub-floor after removal of the old carpet and undercushion to remove remaining dust and dirt.

Costs of Installation

If you don't feel comfortable installing the carpet your purchase yourself you can hire local contractors who will install your carpet for you. As mentioned above, the quality installation can help your carpet provide long-lasting performance, and as such the least expensive contractor may not be the best route to go. We recommend if you hire a contractor to ask for references, research their company, find out if they have any reviews online. Confirm that your installer is using the installation guidelines of the carpet manufacturer. Also, we recommend using this carpet installation cost estimator, which we have found to be the most precise carpeting calculator on the internet.


Ventilation During Installation

During installation, open windows and doors for an adequate supply of fresh air, and operate the fan of your heating or air conditioning system. Continue to ventilate with fresh air as much as possible for 48 to 72 hours. Portable fans may also be used. People who are allergy prone or sensitive should consider leaving the area or avoiding the premises while the carpet is being removed and installed.

Vacuum immediately after installation to remove installation debris.

New carpet characteristics

After your carpet has been installed, you may notice some characteristics that are common but may need explanation.

Fluffing / Shedding
Fluffing / Shedding occurs when loose fibres are released from the surface of the new carpet. This normally subsides within a short time.
Sprouting is the term used when long pile tufts emerge above the normal pile surface. They can be easily removed by clipping the extended yarns with scissors. Never pull the yarns.
Pulled Yarn / Fraying / Ravelling
Pulled Yarn / Fraying / Ravelling may occur occasionally along the walls or at the seams, if seam sealing was incorrectly done during installation. Do not pull the yarns. Call your retailer or the installer.
Shading / Pile Reversal
Carpet shading is a characteristic of all types of cut pile Saxony and plush carpets, and may occur in loop pile carpets. Whether it be the highest priced hand-made Oriental rug or the least expensive tract home installation, this phenomenon may occur. There are, however, various types of shading.

These various types of shading are defined in the International Organization for Standardization publication "Textile Floor Coverings - Vocabulary" (ISO Standard 2424) as follows:

Shading is a change in the appearance of a textile floor covering during normal use due to localised alterations in the orientation of the fibres, tufts or loops. This is not a real change in hue, but a difference in light reflection that can occur as temporary shading or tracking, which are defined as follows:

Temporary shading is a reversible localised change in the orientation of the pile of a textile floor covering during normal use (sometimes described as a normal characteristic of certain cut pile textile floor coverings, ie: footprints, vacuum marks, etc.).

Tracking is a gradual change in the appearance of a textile floor covering from the edge to the middle of a narrow band caused by repeated walking over the same area which may result in a localised change in pile orientation and may be irreversible.

Pile reversal is an irreversible localised change in the orientation of the pile of a textile floor covering. This phenomenon has different names in different countries.

In North America, pile reversal is often referred to as "watermarking" or "pooling" since the areas in which the phenomenon occurs often look as if they are wet. Although much research has gone into finding the cause of this occurrence, no one to date has found the cause or cure. It is not limited to carpets produced by any particular manufacturing method and can occur in carpets made from all pile fibres. It only happens on a few installations of the same carpet style. Furthermore, if several carpets are laid side by side in an area prone to "watermarking", the pile reversal pattern has been shown in some instances to run from carpet to carpet.

Since there is no known cause for this to happen, and since it happens only infrequently on installations of the same style of carpet, it is clearly not a manufacturing defect. Therefore, as distressing as this change of appearance may be to certain purchasers, this shading may occur on a small percentage of Saxony or plush carpet installations and is an occasional characteristic of these luxurious products. If these effects are not desired, it is suggested that another texture of carpet be selected.

Buckling and Wrinkling (rucking)
Buckling and Wrinkling (rucking) occur when carpet has not been properly stretched during installation. The carpet should be re-stretched. Please consult your dealer or installer.
Pile Crush
Pile crush occurs when traffic and heavy furniture result in a loss of pile thickness by compression and bending of tufts.

Indoor Air Quality

Today we spend 90% of our time indoors, at home or at work, often in energy-efficient buildings that lack sufficient fresh air ventilation.  Various construction materials, surface finishes, interior furnishings, renovating and cleaning agents, play important roles in the quality of indoor air.

New carpet may give off a mild scent that dissipates rapidly.  We recommend the following common-sense steps to help you ensure that your carpet contributes to a high level of indoor air quality.

  • Ventilation for 48 to 72 hours is suggested when carpets and other interior renovating materials are installed, cleaned or removed. Always ventilate with fresh air (open door and/or windows, use exhaust fans, etc.).
  • Vacuum the old carpet before removal, and vacuum the floor after the old carpet and cushion have been removed.
  • If adhesives are used, request those that have low chemical emissions.
  • People who are allergy-prone should consider avoiding the area or leaving the premises during removal and/or installation.
  • Look for the CCI Indoor Air Quality (GREEN LABEL) Carpet Testing Program label on carpet samples in retail stores. The label indicates that the carpet meets the strict requirements of the CCI’s Indoor Air Quality Testing Program.