Carpeted with Ignorance

How much thought have you ever put into carpet? Maybe this is something we should have done before we had new carpet installed in March, but we didn’t and now I fear we may be paying for it.

Wes and I noticed soon after returning from our trip to Israel that our carpet was not looking quite as nice as it used to. We thought it was odd, but figured I just had the vacuum on the wrong setting or something. After experimenting with several vacuum settings, it was undeniable: Our carpet was looking worn.

We thought maybe it was because it needed to be re-stretched (our vacuum was skipping like a wake-boarder over some spots) so we had our installer come back and take a look. He said the carpet was taut but that it did indeed look quite worn for carpet that’s barely even made it through one whole season change.

So, we called the company that sold us our carpet and they sent out a carpet inspector. He just left the house and I have to say that I wish we’d read up on carpet a little more. I also wish that the lady who sold us our carpet had thought to educate us, but that’s a different matter entirely.

The inspector (who was a cop at one time and thinks that Super Troopers is an awesome movie. Which it is. You’ve gotta love an ex-cop with a sense of humor) took one look at our stairs and told us that we had polyester carpet.

Oh. I wondered if that was supposed to mean something.

He proceeded to explain that different carpet materials have different properties. Apparently, our carpet is made from polyester and is excellent with stains. He said that our carpet is great for people with children because it’s hard to stain it and, if a stain does happen, it comes out really easily. He said that the down side to having polyester carpet is that it mats down easily. Meaning it looks tired and worn-out a couple months after installation.

I guess vinyl carpet holds up to wear really well but stains easily. We never ventured into wool territory but it probably has its very own set of pluses and minuses. Even the kind of vacuum you use is important to keep in mind when taking care of carpet. Our vacuum got a nod of approval from the inspector, and the Dyson vacuums inspired a tirade about how the brush bristles are too stiff and beat the snot out of long carpets. Huh.

Then, he shared with us a trick for removing candle wax from carpet. I guess all you need is a piece of white terry cloth and an iron and voila! Wax be gone!

Tirades and awesome advice aside, I wish we’d known all this before we chose our carpet. I think that, worn-down carpet aside, polyester carpet is best for us and our future stain-making children, but I wish we’d known what to expect. I just wonder whether this is all public knowledge that Wes and I missed out on or if it’s something few people know and then later come to find out about like we did.

This leads me back to my original question: How much thought have you ever put into carpet?

Also, have you all known about the wax-lifting trick all this time and been holding out on me? Seriously, where were all of you when I spilled that candle at my parent’s house and had to pick it out of the carpet with my nails for an hour? Speaking of which, where was that cop-turned-carpet-inspector? He was probably pulling me over for speeding, but he could have at least taught me that quick tip before handing back my license, don’t you think?

2 thoughts on “Carpeted with Ignorance

  1. Okay, so what’s the word on vacuums? Which are the best? I need one. So should I go bagged or bagless? You recently consulted with an expert, so now I turn to you.

    And I can’t count how many times I’ve had to pick dried candle wax out of a carpet. And yet, I’ve heard this trick with the iron before. I just always forgot it when I needed to remember…

  2. -Dane, You already know about my deep and abiding love of candles, having recently done the Casa de Mitchell tour, so the next time you spill a candle, call me or Wes and we’ll hook you up with the wax-removing solution.

    As far as vacuums go, the carpet inspector really likes ours. It’s bagless, which is so much more awesome because bags are annoying, expensive, and fill up too fast and then you have to struggle with getting them off the vacuum without spilling that grey linty stuff everywhere and if you squeeze the bag, because maybe you trip or something, crap flies everywhere and it’s truly awful. Bagless is the way to go.

    We have a Bissell Lift Off Revolution Turbo. It sounds like a space ship but does a fine job. We’ve used it every week for three years and it still does an amazing job. I particularly like it because the main enginey unit thing detatches, so I can vacuum the stairs without bringing the whole 5 ft. tall monstronsity with me.

    The carpet inspector said you want a vacuum with adjustable height settings (for carpet height.) The problem with Dysons is they have stiff bristles but no adjustability and they absolutely destroy deeper carpets. So, you want firm bristles, adjustable carpet height settings, and bagless. Happy hunting!

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