Posted by in Fuzz Buzz Flooring on 6/7/2013

One of the most important things to understand about carpet is that most carpets are made of one of four primary fibers: wool, nylon, polypropylene (also called olefin) and wool blends. These fibers are fine, thread-like materials that are made into a yarn and then woven or tufted into the carpet textiles that you see everywhere. Understanding the differences between these main types of fibers is key to knowing which kind of carpet is right for you.

The most popular choice for residential carpet is wool. Wool carpet is naturally durable and long-lasting, thanks to the unique protein structures of the sheep hair that makes up the fibers. Wool carpeting is an environmentally-friendly choice that is non-allergenic and its natural properties provide inherent fire resistance, air purification and moisture control, creating an exceptionally safe and healthy indoor environment. The options for color, pattern, and texture are limitless with wool.

Another popular fiber is Nylon, which was first introduced in 1938 by the prolific materials science company DuPont. A petrochemical synthetic fiber made from carbon, nitrogen, oxygen and hydrogen, nylon has excellent soil-resistant properties, especially when a special stain-resisting treatment has been applied. After professional cleaning, nylon carpet can look like new even years down the road, thanks to the unique properties of treated nylon fibers. Many carpet customers go for a blend of wool and nylon, usually composed of roughly 80 percent of the former and 20 percent of the latter. Wool blends tend to offer the best of both worlds – the superior strength of wool and the superior stain resistance of treated nylon. Other blends may also include polyester or acrylic materials.

Popular since the 1950s, polypropylene or olefin yarns have become the fastest-growing material on the Chicago carpet scene in recent years. These fibers offer good resistance to moisture, stains, and color fading. Polypropylene also represents an exceptional value for commercial or residential carpeting, costing much less than wool in most cases. The yarns are made in a wide variety of deniers, allowing a broad selection of aesthetic options.

To learn more about the various types of carpet available at our Chicago carpet and flooring showroom, call 773-935-9314, or stop by our showroom at 3071 N. Lincoln Ave.

Home Carpet One is the largest Chicago carpet and flooring retailer, family owned and operated since 1970. Unlike most big box stores, Home Carpet One offers a wide selection of quality products, but also a friendly and knowledgeable staff of flooring gurus who are determined to help you find the perfect flooring option for your home. When choosing the perfect carpet, knowledge is power. If you don’t know what you’re looking for (or even what you’re looking at), our 10,000 square-foot Chicago carpet and flooring showroom may seem like a vast labyrinth of flooring options; fortunately, our staff members are trained to teach you what you need to know, and ask you what they need to know, to help you find the best flooring materials for your space.


Tags: carpet , fibers , wool , nylon , polypropylene , olefin , wool , residential , commercial , environmentally-friendly , eco-friendly , patterns , textures

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