Should You Buy a Wool Carpet? (5 Considerations)
When considering a new carpet purchase, there are multiple fibers to choose from.
The four major fibers used in carpet today are polyester, nylon, polypropylene, and wool.
Each fiber type offers different attributes and benefits depending on your style preference, usage, and budget. Wool has been the standard in floor covering for centuries and it can be a bigger investment in your home compared to synthetic floor coverings.
Below is a list of attributes to help you determine if wool carpet is best for you!
The wool from sheep features the natural waxy oil called lanolin which makes the fibers stronger and naturally soil and dirt resistant.
Wool provides excellent performance with its natural elasticity that resists crushing. The structure of wool fiber is naturally coiled, which gives it a built-in resiliency. Synthetic fibers only get this through artificial means which can potentially be lost over time.
This helps give a wool carpet longevity that can outlast synthetic fiber carpets. This is why wool carpets are able to maintain such a good appearance over many years with proper maintenance.
Its long term durability helps to offset its initial cost.
One of the great things about wool carpeting is that it is an eco-friendly flooring option. A natural fiber from sheep, wool is a renewable sustainable resource as well as biodegradable.
Wool carpeting also has a greener manufacturing process, using less energy to make compared to synthetic carpeting fibers such as nylon or polypropylene.
Wool carpeting will continue to help the environment even after it’s installed, as wool is an excellent insulator and will cut down your energy bill, helping you to become more carbon efficient.
The downside to a wool carpet is the initial cost. Wool carpet costs vary according to the source of the wool and construction of the carpet (tufted, wilton, woven, etc).
New Zealand wool is an example of a premium wool as it’s the purest wool in the world. It can be dyed a multitude of colors, illustrated by the sheep in this advertisement.
Wool from poorly bred sheep or harsh conditions is often yellow rather than white, and can only be dyed dark colors. Wools of New Zealand is an example of a premium wool carpet that meets strict performance and quality criteria. You will find their logo on many of our samples in our showroom.
Carpet Time Tip:
We strongly advise customers to acquire a CFA on wool carpets as dye lots can vary drastically with natural fiber carpets.
Wool carpeting is manufactured from short lengths of wool that vary from 3 to 5 inches in length. As a result, along any length of wool yarn there are going to be loose fibers resulting in initial shedding.
This shedding manifests itself as little clumps of fiber resembling cotton candy. The wool carpet is not defective, coming apart, or being vacuumed away. It can look like a lot but, in actuality, the amount of fiber lost in this manner is minimal.
This is the nature of wool carpet and after exposure to foot traffic and regular maintenance, shedding will minimize. It may be a nuisance and something you want to consider.
Frequent vacuuming is the single most important care you can give your wool carpet.
Most carpet soiling is caused by dry materials like dirt, dust, and soil. Frequent vacuuming removes these dry particles before they can become embedded in your carpet. Pay attention to heavily trafficked areas and vacuum thoroughly weekly.
If spills occur, be sure to clean them immediately as the wool will soak it up. Water-based spills on wool are an easy clean up when quickly rinsed with clean warm water and thoroughly air-dried. Oily or greasy spills however are harder to clean. Of course, any carpet can be difficult to clean when these types of spills occur.
As we mentioned before, it’s very easy to dye a wool carpet and has the ability to hold its color for a long time. However, that can become an issue if you spill wine which can stain your wool carpet.
When it’s time for a full carpet cleaning, DIY methods with rental equipment are not recommended. It’s best to hire a professional carpet cleaner who has experience in cleaning wool carpets.
Carpet Time Tip:
Choose the right suction only vacuum for your wool carpet to prevent fuzzing. The vacuum beater bar or brush should be properly adjusted so that the brush barely touches the face of your wool carpet.
Damage to the carpet fibers can occur if the brushes of the vacuum are set too low. Wool manufacturers will not accept claims when such vacuums are used.
Ready to find your wool carpet?
Due to Covid-19, Carpet Time is now open by appointment only for visits to our showroom. To make an appointment, please call or email us at email@example.com with details of your project and when you wish to visit.