Carpet Problems and Solutions: Carpet High Lines

carpet high lines | Glenn Revere

Carpeting is made using one of two methods: tufting or weaving. Almost all of the residential carpet sold today is made by tufting. Tufting machines are basically giant sewing machines. Instead of a single needle, 800-1,000 computer controlled needles stitch carpet yarns across a backing material to form the carpet. The needles are set to control the height of the carpet pile. Sometimes a single needle stitches a row of yarn that is too long. Cut pile carpets are carefully sheared after tufting in order to assure a smooth, even pile surface. Even so, a high row or high line can show up after a carpet is installed. If the high row is bent over and buried in the carpet pile, the line may take days or weeks to appear after the carpet has been repeatedly vacuumed. Tufting high lines always run lengthwise.

Recently, I was commissioned to inspect a newly installed carpet. The stated complaint was: faint line, loose high tufts. This could describe several different types of problems.

When I arrived at the home, the owner showed me to the family room. She pointed out a line of high yarns running the length of the room from wall to wall, almost in the center of the room. She stated the same carpet was installed in the master bedroom, but she did not notice the line in that room.

I gently tugged on various high tufts to make sure they were properly attached to the carpet backing. Once I was sure the yarns were not pulling out, I explained the condition to the homeowner. I told her I could easily hand shear the high tufts, correct the problem, and save her the headache of a re-installation.

I sheared a small portion of the line to her satisfaction. Then I sheared the remainder and closed the complaint, saving a replacement headache. Sometimes things are easy!


Who is Glenn Revere?

Glenn Revere has been a carpet expert since 1973. He’s a certified flooring inspector and the author of All About Carpets, the only book written to protect and inform you about your carpet choices, from carpet buying and carpet warranties to carpet care and maintenance. You can find him on FacebookGoogle+ and Twitter.


Photo: Glenn Revere

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