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What are the Different Types of Carpet Pad?

By Harriette Halepis
Updated May 16, 2024
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There are three different types of carpet pads on the market. These three types include fiber, sponge, and foam rubber. Choosing the right carpet pad for a home or office project can be difficult, though understanding the basic principles behind each type of carpet pad can help. Not only will the wrong carpet cushion create an uncomfortable surface, but the wrong cushion can also have an adverse effect on your carpet.

Foam carpet pads are usually made from foam scraps. These scraps are often taken from car seats and other recycled foam products. Rubber padding is anti-microbial, and it is mostly used in industrial spaces. Fiber carpeting can be made from either recycled fibers or from natural fibers.

To separate one type of carpet pad from another, it's important to consider the thickness and weight of the actual pad. This can be determined by thinking about the type of traffic that a carpet is bound to get. High traffic areas such as stairs and hallways require a thinner carpet pad that is dense. Lower traffic areas can withstand a thicker carpet cushion, since these areas will not be subject to intense wear and tear.

As a general rule of thumb, expensive rugs should be matched with high-quality carpet pads. Installing a quality carpet cushion is a great way to ensure that a newly carpeted space will remain luxurious for years to come. Still, it's best to check with the rug manufacturer in regards to the right kind of carpet padding.

Some carpets simply don't mesh well with thicker carpet pads. Often, wide-loomed carpets will unravel or rip if the carpet pad underneath the rug is too thick. Carpets that respond well to thicker carpet pads include cut pile and cut and loop rugs. These rugs can withstand a thicker carpet cushion, and adding a thicker cushion to these rugs will result in a comfortably carpeted area.

Not only do carpet pads allow for extra comfort, they also serve two practical purposes. When a carpet pad is installed, cold air and noise are minimized. Cold air tends to seep through flooring causing unwanted drafts, while noise tends to float from one room to another due to poor insulation. Installing a proper carpet cushion can prevent both of these things from occurring.

The cost of carpet padding largely depends upon location. In addition, carpet padding will range in price depending upon the width chosen. In most instances, thicker padding is more expensive. Thus, many companies may urge consumers to purchase thick carpet padding, though this isn't always in the best interest of the consumer.

HomeQuestionsAnswered is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
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