Many homeowners think that you can save money by purchasing carpet with thicker pile in order to eliminate any need to purchase cushioning. In reality, adding a cushion will likely result in longer useful life than slightly heavier carpet without cushioning can provide.

Including separate cushioning can turn out to be the buyer’s most economical choice in the long run. Wear resistance tests have demonstrated that a variety of cushion types actually made the wear resistance of carpet better.

Additional tests to determine loss of pile height, which makes a carpet appear worn, showed that carpets without any cushioning exhibited nearly a 20% loss in thickness. Carpets with cushioning, however, may suffer only 5-10% reduction in pile height. Therefore, a new carpet installation that includes cushion, can be actually be more economical, since most of those without any form of cushion, will probably need to be replaced earlier. It’s also interesting to note that the fibers of a carpet that has been installed without any cushion, will probably become compacted faster, and end up losing its “new” look more quickly.

Cushioning will make a carpet appear richer and luxurious

The most widely accepted benefits of carpet cushion are that it will make the new carpet feel better and look better for a longer period of time. Luxury is a subjective characteristic that cannot be measured, and is more in the eye of the beholder than anything else. Nevertheless, carpet cushion does deliver additional resiliency and resistance to pressure, which in turn can contribute a feeling of luxury to a carpet.

The effect that cushion can offer in reducing the appearance of carpet wear, is really the result of less loss of thickness. Therefore, since carpets that have separate cushion will remain thicker, they should also appear to be more luxurious over a greater time period.

Check with your flooring retailer and ask about carpet cushion in addition to carpet styles, types and colors. It is what you don’t see that can make a difference in your investment.