Please see below for a guide on common carpet care issues and tips on how to keep your carpets maintained and looking as good as new.
Like shading, this occurs when the pile or nap of the carpet changes direction and thus reflects light at different angles showing the effects of shading which can become permanent. It is also described as ‘watermarking’. This can happen to every carpet construction, be it Axminster, Wilton, Tufted, Hand Woven, Persian, Chinese, Indian, or even Coir Matting. Like shading it can be more apparent on plain carpet because heavy patterns can disguise the effect. It can occur quite quickly after installation.
A tremendous amount of research has been carried out over many years by many institutes to determine the cause of this phenomenon but none of it has proved conclusive. There is no commonly known manufacturing process which can cause or cure this phenomenon and therefore it is not a manufacturing fault. For further information please check with individual manufacturers recommendations
When a carpet is subjected to a heavy point load, such as under the legs of furniture, it is unreasonable to expect the carpet not to indent. Usually, the longer the load is in place, the longer will be the time for the pile to recover. In the case of very heavy loads in place for a considerable time, the recovery time can be very considerable.
It must be remembered that it is not only the pile of the carpet that becomes indented. The underlay will also indent and the backing of the carpet may also distort into the indentation in the underlay. Some underlay’s will recover well and some less well depending upon their composition, thickness, density etc.
The use of cups below furniture legs can spread the load and the net result is a larger area of less deeply indented carpet.
The ability of a carpet to recover from a heavy static loads can be measured in the laboratory, using the test method described in BS4939 and many manufacturers will have data on this aspect of carpet performance. In this test the carpet is loaded for 24 hours and the degree of recovery is measured after 1 hour and 24 hours. Since there are so many different underlay’s however, it is very rare for the recovery from a heavy static load to be evaluated on carpet and underlay.
Often normal maintenance (vacuum cleaning with a rotating brush machine) will speed up recovery but in the case of serious indentations the use of an iron and damp cloth or a steam iron together with a blunt darning needle to carefully tease up the pile can be beneficial. Care must be taken not to over wet the carpet of course.
Flattening will occur as a result of traffic which eventually flattens the pile particularly in the main areas of use.
All pile fabrics will flatten to greater or lesser degree dependent on the amount of traffic to which it is subjected and the construction (tuft density/pile fibre/height/weight) of the product concerned.
Soiling is usually the result of some local condition to which the carpet has been subjected to, or maintenance or lack of maintenance programme. There is nothing we as manufacturers can do to prevent soiling in use. There are several types of soiling which are quite common:
Liquids such as soft drinks, cordials or any drink which contains sugar, particularly hot drinks, is likely to leave a stain. In such instances, professional help should be sought.
if incorrectly applied, can leave a sticky soap residue in the fibre which can result in the soiling reappearing quite rapidly.
Dust which is carried on draughts can soil carpets in various ways, apart from the obvious soiled edges, at gaping skirting boards for instance. Dark lines appearing on surface might suggest airborne dust vacuum-drawn through poorly fitted floorboards. Sometimes the shape of floorboards can be seen quite clearly.
Airborne dust sometimes shows itself as spots on the carpet, this is due to the air carried on a draught under the carpet escaping through minute holes both in the underlay and the carpet, leaving dust deposited on the pile much like a filter action. In such installations, the use of a lining paper is essential as a preventative measure.
It is the responsibility of the retailer to advise the consumer when the carpet is measured of any poorly fitting doors, skirting boards or floorboards. It is the consumers responsibility to ensure any remedial work to seal draughts before the carpet is fitted. If a resulting complaint is to be avoided.