There are many different types of carpet padding available today in order to accommodate all the various types of carpet. Below are some basics. But don’t get overwhelmed – we are hear to help you select the right pad for your flooring.
“You must select the right carpet pad if you want your new carpet to last.. Learn what you need to know about choosing the best carpet padding for your home!”
For most residential carpets, a 7/16″ thickness is most common and either a 6-pound density or an 8-pound density will usually be selected. Looped Berber styles and commercial grade carpets require special pads of higher density and reduced thickness to prevent wrinkles and increase carpet longevity.
Don’t make the mistake of thinking that a thicker pad will be a better pad. If you chose a padding that is too thick it can cause wrinkles to develop in your carpet. In most homes 7/16″ is the thickest padding you would want to select to keep the carpet warranty in force.
Padding is also rated by its density. Some pads have a low density rating of 3 to 5 pounds and are typically used in apartments because it is less expensive and will be replaced more frequently. Looped Berber styles and commercial grade carpets require a special padding and you should call the manufacturer to get the correct padding requirements needed to keep from voiding your carpet warranty
Padding used in residential applications usually has a density rating of 6 to 8 pounds, but 10-pound density pads are also available. Some padding are rated in ounces instead of pounds. For example, 128 ounces is the equivalent of an 8-pound pad. Rubber pad densities are usually rated in ounces.
Some folks prefer the 6-pound density padding because it is softer underfoot. However, an 8-pound padding provides better support for your carpet and will generally make it wear better, especially in high traffic areas like stairs and hallways.
The higher the density rating the more firm the feel is underfoot. The higher the density rating, the firmer the padding will be. Firmer pads provide better the support for your carpet. Better support means a lower chance for wrinkles to form.
Types of Padding
This type of pad is most common in the residential setting. It is made from recycled materials, mainly from recycled urethane foam and is multi-colored. It is available everywhere, and in almost every thickness and density. Rebond is the most economical choice for your home, rental or office. The photo shows a 7/16″, 6-pound Rebond pad with a nylon mesh on the top which provides added strength and durability.
Not all rebond padding is of high grade or top quality. Every padding manufacturer offers several grades of rebond padding to their distributors. Retailers have a choice of which grade of Rebond padding to offer to their customers. The main difference will be the type of recycled materials used to manufacture the padding.
The higher the quality of recycled materials used, the better the Rebond pad will be. The price you pay for a good quality padding may be slightly higher than at the discount carpet store down the street, however you should never skimp when it comes to buying a good quality padding to go under your good quality carpet.
Foam padding (urethane)
This type of pad is often very inexpensive and lightweight. This type of padding will not tolerate much traffic. It will soon become completely flat as a pancake after a year or so and is not a good choice for a residential setting. This is often used in apartment settings where the carpet life span is less than 3 years.
Prime Urethane Foam
Not made of recycled materials, this type of pad is called prime or virgin urethane. It’s a better grade of foam pad (frothed foam) that could be a good choice for the home. It is made of very dense urethane (polyurethane). It is designed primarily for commercial applications, but is becoming more common in residential applications. The cost is more than a standard rebond and not a common choice among homeowners.
Wool or fiber pad, synthetic fiber pads
These types of natural wool or synthetic pads are used primarily for Berbers and commercial carpets. They are very dense, breathe well, and are not spongy at all. They are made from recycled or shredded fabrics or natural wool. They are designed to support and allow looped Berbers and commercial carpets to wear well in heavy traffic situations, and to prevent these types of carpets from stretching out and developing wrinkles. A synthetic fiber pad is also a great choice for basements with concrete floors as it breathes well, resists mold and mildew and has anti-microbial properties
Rubber Pad (waffle) or Rubber Slab (flat)
I seldom recommend using a rubber waffle pad in residential applications. Rebond pad is a much more economical choice and it does a great job at supporting your carpet as long the correct thickness and density is selected. Rubber slab padding is often used in commercial applications over concrete. Rubber padding density is usually rated in ounces.
Again, we will help you select the BEST padding for your application.
– Bert (310) 328-8600