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Answers to My Carpet Buying Quiz



1. Do you know which padding to use for your home? 

Which padding is the best deal?

  • Rebond -  Best bang for your buck! Most commonly used in homes.

  • Foam -   Not usually a good choice, not very dense.

  • Rubber -  Too expensive! Mainly used in commercial settings.

  • Synthetic fiber - Best for Berber styles on concrete

  • Recycled fabrics -  Best for Berber styles on wood floors

Learn more Selecting the Right Carpet Pad, Padding, Cushion


2. Here are some common features padding may have for an extra charge. Do you know what benefits they provide? Which of these features do you think are worth paying extra for? 

  • Moisture barrier                                 Does not solve the pet accident issue

  • Odor eating                                        This will not eliminate urine odors

  • Anti-microbial                                    If you have a moisture problem, fix it.

  • None of the above                            These special features are not required, make little difference, if any, and are expensive. 



3. Do you know what padding Density to choose? 

  • 4 pound                                                Not dense enough, warranty void

  • 5 pound                                                Not dense enough, warranty void

  • 6 pound                                                Minimum density req. for most carpets, not for Berber

  • 7 pound                                                Who makes a 7 pound pad? not a common density. 

  • 8 pound                                                Nice upgrade for all styles, great on stairs,  Req. for all Berber

  • 10 pound                                           


4. Do you know what thickness of pad is required?

  • ¼"                                                 Correct for all Berber and commercial grade carpets

  • 3/8"                                               Some Berbers and commercial grade carpets

  • 7/16"                                             CRI maximum thickness for residential applications

  • ½"                                                 Too thick, warranty void


5. Do you know about carpet fibers? Which fiber is most resilient?

  • Nylon                                   Best for high traffic applications, most resilient, most durable.

  • Olefin or polypropylene         Used mainly in looped Berbers and commercial carpets

  • Polyester or P.E.T.               Matting and crushing common

  • Nylon / polyester blend         Matting and crushing common

  • Sorona                                 A new product, made from corn polymer. Cleans easily but not as resilient as nylon

Learn more Carpet Fibers | How to select the right carpet fiber


6. There are different ways to make carpet.  Would you choose a continuous filament fiber or go with a staple fiber?

  • Continuous filament

  • Staple fiber

Continuous filament is the smart way to go. Carpets made with a staple fiber (short lengths of fiber) are prone to shedding and fuzzing. That means you would be vacuuming up bag after bag of carpet fibers. It is not fun, and it makes your carpet look horrible. Shedding and fuzzing can continue up to one year after installation. 


Carpet Care and Maintenance

How you care for your carpet will determine how long it will last. 


7. How many people live in your home?



8. How many days per week do you vacuum on average?

7 & 8,  Rule of thumb, vacuum as many times per week as you have people living in your home. 


9. Do you have a good vacuum with a beater bar?

  • Yes                A beater bar is required by most carpet warranties. 

  • No


10. How often do you have your carpet professionally cleaned?

  • Never

  • Every 6 months

  • Once a year

  • Every other year     is required to keep your warranty in effect

  • Every three years



11. Do you keep all the receipts for the professional cleanings?

  • Yes     you must retain proof, required to keep your warranty in effect

  • No


12. Do you know what the following carpet definitions / conditions mean? Which of these conditions are covered by the manufacturer's warranty? 

  • Appearance retention

  • Crushing

  • Fading or color loss

  • Footprints or indentations

  • Matting

  • Shading

  • Shedding

  • Filtration soiling

  • Wrinkles

  • Yellowing

NONE of the above

Even though you may or may not know what these terms mean, in most cases, none of these common carpet problems are covered by the typical manufacturer’s warranty. Read your carpet warranty to find out what is covered and for how long.


13. Have you visited the website of "The Carpet and Rug Institute"? (www.carpet-rug.org)

  • Yes            A great place to learn about carpet characteristics like allergies, air quality, installation procedures and more. 

  • No


14. Are you familiar with the requirements set forth in "The Carpet & Rug Institute's Standard 105 for Residential Installation"?

  • Yes             Your carpet must be installed to this standard. Required to keep your warranty in effect

  • No


15. Do you know which manufacturer's warranties apply to your particular carpet?

  • Yes        It is your responsibility to know what your carpet warranty covers.  Get it and read it!

  • No



16. If some of your carpet is found to be defective and you file a valid claim with the carpet manufacturer, what do you think will typically happen next?

  • They will refund my money 100%.

  • They will refund a percentage of my money.

  • They will replace all my carpet with another carpet of my choice.

  • They will remove all of the old carpet and install new carpet of the exact same type and style.

  • They will remove the defective carpet areas only and install new carpet of the same type and style.

  • They will issue a pro-rated credit to your retailer equal to the cost of the carpet material only, for the affected area only, the credit is good only toward new carpet from the same manufacturer. They will not pay to remove your old carpet, nor will they pay to have your replacement carpet installed.

  • They will pay to have the carpet repaired if possible.


Carpet Installation


17. What is the best day to have your new carpet delivered to your home:

  • The day it is to be installed

  • The day before - 24 hours prior, stored in a heated area above 65 degrees, warranty requirement

  • The week before


18. What is the best climate to have your carpet installed

  • On a warm day with the doors open

  • On a cool day with the doors closed

  • Any day with the heater on (above 65*F) before and during installation


19. What should do you do before the carpet installer begins to install your new carpet?

  • Move all small breakables and valuables into a safe and secure area

  • Make arrangements for kids and pets to be out of the work areas

  • Check to make sure the installer will use a power-stretcher

  • Take photographs or a video of the entire area in case you need to prove damages in court

  • Make sure the installer has brought the right carpet style, quality and color

  • Have the installer roll out the carpet so you can check the carpet for obvious defects.

  • Make sure you have the original carpet sample so you can compare it with the carpet delivered

All of the above. It pays to have your eyes and ears open and be aware of what is going on in your home at all times. 


20. What do you do after the carpet installer is finished installing your carpet?

  • Call all your friends to come over and see the new carpet!

  • Inspect the carpet installation completely. Withhold final payment until you are completely satisfied.

  • Pick up all the carpet scraps and vacuum the carpet well.

  • Show the installer where you want all the carpet and pad waste to go.

  • Find out how long the carpet seams will look so obvious. 

The installer is to remove all scraps, haul them away, vacuum and finish job completely before you make the final payment. Carpet seams that look bad today, will look just as bad in a week or two. Don't let the installer convince you that the carpet seams will look better once the carpet has had time to settle in. Fix all problems right now, before you make final payment or withhold until you are completely satisfied. 

Print out my Free Carpet Installation Inspection Checklist


So how did you do?  


Did you learn something? I have made this quiz an informative aspect of my website because I want you to learn what you need to know about buying carpet. There is so much more information you need to know before you spend a dime on carpet. 


The important thing right now is that you do your homework before you buy carpet. If you learned something by taking this short quiz, then it should be a wake-up call for you. The questions on this quiz are the easy ones. It gets harder to make the right choices. Carpet scams are everywhere.


Most people really think they know enough to buy carpet wisely, but few really do. Some people put their trust in the hands of carpet salespeople. This is a common mistake. I get emails all the time from consumers who took the advice of a salesperson only to get burned. 


Carpet is a major purchase! Don't take chances. If you make just one simple mistake in your carpet purchase, you stand to lose hundreds of dollars or worse. You must choose a carpet that meets your needs and lifestyle. Your home must be measured accurately, you must use the correct pad, you must have your carpet installed correctly, you must follow your carpet warranty requirements and you need to get a Good deal for the whole job. 




About The Carpet Professor:

Looking to buy new carpeting but feeling overwhelmed by all the choices, options and potential scams? The Carpet Professor's website is a free unbiased carpet information resource and buying guide for consumers. Alan Fletcher is a retired 30-year industry expert and consumer advocate. He maintains a special hand-picked list of locally-owned carpet and flooring stores to recommend to his readers.


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