New carpet is an appealing feature in a real estate investment, and carpet padding should never be overlooked when choosing and installing carpet. A carpet pad adds a layer of cushion to your floor and provides thermal insulation during cold weather. A carpet pad also extends the life of your carpet. When selecting the right carpet pad for your home, consider quality, cost and carpet compatibility factors.
Density of Padding
Choose a residential carpet padding with a 6- to 8-pound density rating. Carpet padding with a density lower than 6 pounds is generally used in commercial real estate or in apartments where carpet is replaced frequently. Padding with a 6-pound density provides softer cushioning than padding with an 8-pound density. Opt for an 8-pound density rating if you want the firmest, sturdiest and longest-lasting option, which is especially useful in high-traffic areas. High-density padding reduces the likelihood of wrinkling in your carpet and is generally the most expensive.
Thickness and Warranty
Select carpet padding that has a thickness that meets your carpet manufacturer’s specifications. Otherwise, you will void your carpet warranty. Most residential carpet pads have a thickness of 7/16-inch. Don’t choose a carpet pad that’s too thick, or you risk unsightly folds and wrinkles developing in and beneath the carpeted surface. Padding that’s too thick or too thin decreases the longevity of your carpet.
Consider foam padding, also known as urethane or polyurethane padding, if you want a lightweight, cost-effective option. Polyurethane padding has a higher density and lasts longer that urethane padding. Urethane padding compresses quickly and doesn’t hold up well in high-traffic areas. Urethane padding is usually recommended for properties where the life span of the carpet is less than three years.
Opt for synthetic carpet pads if you’re installing tight-weave or looped carpeting. Synthetic padding is durable and has a high-density rating. The rebounding nature of synthetic padding works well in high-traffic areas and keeps looped carpet styles from stretching and wrinkling. Many synthetic pads are designed to resist moisture, mold and mildew, making them the best option for concrete basement floors.
Pick rebond carpet padding if you want a viable, environmentally responsible option that is also cost-efficient. Rebond padding is made from recycled urethane foam and other materials and comes in a wide range of thicknesses and density ratings. Rebond padding is one of the most common padding styles and is available at most retail and discount carpet stores. Choose rebond carpet padding to get the most durable padding for the lowest price.
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