Archive for January, 2014

Carpet Pilling: Common Causes and Solutions

Thursday, January 30th, 2014

Carpet pilling is a condition directly related to carpet shedding. Sometimes the vacuum cleaner cannot keep up with the amount of fluff coming from the pile. The brushes are unable to completely pull the fuzz from the carpet pile. The fluff collects on the surface of the carpet. With walking, the fuzz rolls up into little balls called pills. Soon the carpet looks like an old sweater.

If the vacuum isn’t working properly to remove shedding, your carpet will pill. Check to make sure the belt is on correctly. Is the vacuum bag more than half full? Empty it. Is the brush set at the right height? Proper height adjustment allows the brushes to remove the fuzz without overly beating the pile.

If the vacuum is working efficiently and the carpet is pilling, call your retailer. He may need to call for a carpet inspector to determine the cause of the pilling. Sometimes an unused piece of scrap can be sent to a testing laboratory to see if it’s made correctly.

If the carpet is okay, the pills can be removed by (more…)

Carpet Buying: Is There a “Footprint Free” Carpet?

Tuesday, January 28th, 2014

footprint free carpet | carpet expert Glenn Revere

What happens when you pay for a horse but get a mule? Or in this case, you thought you bought a “footprint free” carpet but as soon as it was installed you knew you had been taken?

I was recently hired by a woman who was in this situation. She explained that she had asked her salesperson for a carpet that doesn’t show footprints. The salesperson showed her a sample of a carpet that the salesperson said would not show footprints or traffic patterns. My client bought the carpet. The day it was installed she saw that it certainly showed footprints. She called the store the next day. The store had just gone out of business! The doors were closed!

My client spent months tracking down the store owner. She finally found him. He arranged for the carpet mill to send an inspector to (more…)

Carpet Shedding: How Much Shedding is Normal?

Thursday, January 23rd, 2014

Shedding is common to all new carpet, especially cut-pile carpet. Some fuzz is produced by the shearing process and remains in the pile. Both continuous filament and staple yarns shed fuzz and fluff when new. You must vacuum out this excess fiber. It takes anywhere from two weeks to three months to remove most of the fuzz. It may appear that a lot of fiber is disappearing into the vacuum bag, but compared to the overall weight of the carpet face yarn, it isn’t much at all.

One advantage of carpet made with continuous filament yarn is that once the initial fuzz is gone, the fabric stops shedding entirely. Staple yarns always shed, at least a little. Cheaper plush carpets sometimes are made with short staple-spun yarns that can shed a lot throughout the life of the carpet. Sometimes shedding is not normal. If the filaments that are spun together (more…)

Flooring Inspection Safari: Do You Have Squeaky Floors?

Tuesday, January 21st, 2014

squeaky floors

Floating floors (those not nailed or glued down) can make noise when walked upon. You might hear squeaking, snapping, popping, or crackling sounds. Sometimes the sounds are throughout the installation. Sometimes the sounds are in localized areas. They might be apparent all year long. Or the noises might occur only during certain seasons. Manufacturers often automatically turn down a claim for a noisy floor. One major manufacturer states in its warranty that squeaky floors, whether laminate or engineered wood, are not manufacturing related. I recently looked at a laminate flooring installation that is a perfect example of why manufacturers take this position.

A high-quality laminate had been installed over a concrete subfloor, replacing the existing carpet. The installers had not checked the subfloor for unevenness. They placed a thin high density cushion over the concrete. Then they installed the floating laminate flooring. The homeowner noticed squeaking shortly thereafter.

Here’s what I discovered during my inspection: (more…)

Flooring Inspection: Discoloration of New Engineered Wood Flooring

Thursday, January 16th, 2014

discolored hardwood flooring | Glenn Revere

Engineered wood flooring is a sturdy, long-wearing product. It is basically a thin veneer of real wood glued over a plywood base. The product generally comes factory-finished with a top coat wear layer. The cross-ply base gives the engineered wood floor more stability than a solid wood floor. It allows installation in areas not suitable for a solid wood product. Engineered wood also costs less than solid wood.

Engineered wood floors are popular today. Like any product, they can have problems. These problems can be related to manufacturing, installation or maintenance. As a certified flooring inspector, I see them all.

Recently, I inspected a new, professionally installed glued-down (over concrete) engineered floor with a natural maple veneer top sheet. The wood veneer was (more…)

Carpet Defects and Carpet Warranty Coverage

Tuesday, January 14th, 2014

modern living room

When purchasing carpet, we often don’t read the fine print. The good news is, for first-quality carpets, all manufacturing defects are covered by a one-year warranty that covers correction or replacement (but usually not labor).

And, here’s a word to the wise: Since you never know what will happen to your carpet, always put away some leftover carpet to save for repairs. Burns and tears are easy to repair if fabric is available. Don’t let the installers take all the scrap! (more…)

What’s the Best Way to Clean Carpet?

Thursday, January 9th, 2014

empty living room

Q: What’s the best way to clean carpet?

A truck mounted hot water extraction system, also known as steam cleaning, is probably the best way to clean carpet. As I wrote about earlier, most major carpet producers require regular extraction cleaning if you want to keep your carpet warranties in effect.

The vacuums in these units are so strong that over 90 percent of the water (and the suspended soils) is removed during cleaning. Some cleaners use a drying agent in the rinse water and high-speed carpet fans to increase drying times. When carpets dry quickly, there is less chance that (more…)

Emergency Carpet Care: Carpet Stain Removal Tips

Tuesday, January 7th, 2014

Your dog threw up on your carpet. What do you do now? While no carpet is stain proof, all of today’s synthetic carpet fibers are stain resistant. Here’s what to do to keep a spot from becoming a permanent stain.

If your carpet warranty includes spotting instructions, now is the time to find them. Many warranties include instructions for removing specific types of spots. Follow the instructions exactly. If you can’t find the paperwork, try going to the manufacturer’s website. These instructions are often found online.

If you didn’t purchase the carpet in your home or don’t know who made it, try the following: (more…)