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Know Your Carpet: Berber for Active Families

We’ve been a family-owned business in the Denver area for 40 years now, so we know a thing or two about what your carpet goes through as a result of your busy Colorado lifestyle. Mud, snow, road salt, pollen, dog hair, dried leaves, and a thousand other contaminants are coming into your house on a regular basis, putting a real strain on your flooring.

That’s why we recommend Berber carpet for houses with active families like yours. Berber is durable, stain-resistant, wear-resistant, eco-friendly, and easy to maintain. It comes in a huge variety of colors and materials, so you can pick a carpet that exactly matches your style, and it’s comfortable and fashionable enough for any living room or family room.

What is Berber Carpet?

All carpet types fall into three main categories: closed-loop carpet, cut-pile carpet, and cut-and-loop carpet. Essentially, carpet yarns are woven through the carpet backing to create a loop. If that loop is cut, a cut-pile carpet style is created, where the carpet appears to be made up of individual strands. If the loops are left intact, the carpet looks more like rows of loops. Cut-and-loop is a mixture of the two.

Berber carpet is a form of closed-loop or level-loop carpet (which simply means that the loops are all the same length). Closed-loop carpets tend to be more durable than cut-pile carpets, simple because the cut ends of the yarn aren’t exposed to wear and traffic. The loops are also structurally stronger, so they don’t give as much under pressure or show dents from the long-term weight of furniture.

Berber takes that durability a step further. Most closed-loop carpets, under close examination, are made up of rows of parallel loops in straight lines. Berber carpet, on the other hand, is made of loops that are crossed and layered on top of each other to create a dense network of overlapping yarns.

Berber’s uniquely dense structure means there are no gaps between rows of loops where dust and other particulates can become trapped. Dirt stays on top, where it can be easily vacuumed away. Liquids aren’t able to penetrate the carpet as easily, preventing staining and discoloration. And the sturdiness of the fibers means that furniture — and feet — are much less likely to leave a mark.

Should You Use Berber in Every Room?

To be honest, probably not. If Berber carpet has one downside, it’s that it’s not as soft as a cut-pile carpet. If you use the right carpet padding underneath your Berber carpet — which is just as important as the carpet itself — then it will be just as comfortable as any other style. It just won’t have the same feeling under bare feet as the long, plush yarns of a cut-pile style.

Really, we recommend Berber carpet for every room but the master bedroom. The master bedroom is the room where you spend the least time, and the time you do spend there is likely to be barefoot. You’re probably not eating or playing on the floor and you don’t move furniture around, so durability is less of a concern.

For everywhere else in the house, Berber is one of our favorite choices. It’s soft enough for kids and pets to play on in bedrooms and playrooms, durable enough for hallways and staircases, and attractive and modern enough for living rooms. Berber carpet truly can do it all.

Taking Care of Berber Carpet

Berber is the most durable style of carpet available, but like any other carpet, you’ll get a lot more life out of it if you take proper care of it.

First, think about stain resistance. You can get Berber carpets and rugs in natural fibers like wool and cotton, but the porous fibers will absorb liquids like a sponge. Instead, we recommend nylon for maximum durability or triexta for the perfect mix of durability and softness. If you’re carpeting a rental property or finished basement and budget is a concern, consider a PET (polyester) carpet.

You’ll also want to look into the factory stain resistance. You can always spray your carpets with something like Scotchgard or mix it in with cleaning liquids, but the best stain resistance is applied before the carpet is even made, coating every side of every fiber.

Vacuum your carpets at least once a week at a minimum. If you wear shoes in the house, have pets or kids, or come in and out a lot (like if you enjoy gardening or have a workshop in the garage), you should probably vacuum two to three times a week. It’s more work, but your carpets will last much longer as a result.

Make sure you’re using the right kind of vacuum cleaner. Many vacuums have a rotating brush on the front, sometimes known as a “beater bar,” that’s designed to help the vacuum clean hard surfaces. Berber carpet is unlikely to fray, but if a loop has come loose, it can get tangled in the beater bar and cause more damage. Turn that setting off or use a vacuum that doesn’t have one.

Finally, some people are concerned about closed-loop carpets and pets. You don’t need to worry yourself about your pets snagging their claws in the carpets as they run — the loops are too small and dense for that — but we have found that some cats seem to enjoy using Berber carpets as a scratching post. Cats can pull loops free with their claws, causing damage to your flooring, so if you have especially rambunctious cats, Berber might not be the best option.

A Carpet for Every Style

Berber has become extremely popular in recent years, and manufacturers have taken notice. You can get Berber carpet in a huge variety of styles, colors, and even textures and patterns to match any decor or furniture you want in your home. It’s versatile, durable, and affordable — especially when you shop at Sloane’s!
We offer high-end brands at discount prices, right here in Denver! Come in and talk to our experienced sales staff, and we’ll help you find exactly the right carpet to fit your needs.