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Everything You Need to Know About Carpet Padding

A big part of the carpet buying and installation process that often gets forgotten, but is critical to several aspects of your carpet’s lifespan and quality, is padding. It might seem simple enough on the surface – padding is padding, right? But in reality, there is a lot to consider when you dive into the world of carpet padding and set yourself on the path of choosing the right one for your project. What does the right padding effect, really? Here’s a deeper look into everything the right (or wrong) padding could impact.


This is probably the most evident benefit, but much of the foot-feel of your carpet comes from the padding you choose. A high-quality pad increases the comfort underfoot and helps absorb shock, making it easier on your joints and easier on the carpet’s underside.

Carpet Brand

Your carpet’s brand may impact your choice of carpet pad. Some brands and carpet manufacturers have specific recommendations for what padding works best with the carpet specifications. Some paddings work better with different types of carpet as well, but we’ll touch on that a little later.


The carpet padding you choose, believe it or not, can have a serious impact on the lifespan of your carpet. Improper padding inhibits the carpet’s ability to absorb impact. Without proper impact absorption, your carpet wears and tears much more quickly. Without the padding to provide support and structure to the carpet, you’re setting yourself up for needing to repurchase carpet years before you might have otherwise.


We mentioned earlier that specific manufacturers might require specific padding. Part of the equation that makes this determination is the way the padding fits with the carpet. As a general rule of thumb, the carpet cushion council recommends a maximum thickness of 1/2″ for cut-pile carpets – this will be where most residential carpet falls. If you’re having a shorter-pile carpet like berber or commercial carpet installed, the maximum recommendation is 3/8″ or less.

Peace and Quiet

An unexpected benefit, but a benefit nonetheless, well-padded carpet can help absorb sound as well as impact, making your home the haven of peace and quiet you deserve.

When you buy carpet, you’re making a big investment in your home’s comfort and style for the foreseeable future. Good carpet, well-installed, with the proper padding, will be with your home for years and years to come, so taking all the decisions involved seriously serves you well. Understanding the role that carpet padding plays in that decision-making process will help you get more out of your purchase for a longer time – and homeowners everywhere can agree on that kind of value! If you’re ready to make your carpet purchase, but don’t know exactly where to start, we’ve got you covered.