The Concept of Carpet Pile and Its Types

Carpets add a touch of artistic appeal to your home decor and create an inviting feel. But, besides seeking for design, color, and material while choosing the best carpet for your home, another most important thing is carpet pile height. 

A carpet’s pile is one of its most important terms in the Rugs and Carpet World. Well, it can make a significant difference in the appearance and feel of your carpet. However, many of you are still confused about what pile carpeting is and what types of carpet piles are there? So, this guide is for you that covers an overview of pile carpeting and its different types.

First, let’s understand the concept of “Carpet Pile.”

What is Carpet Pile?

We all know that a carpet is made up of fibers (whether natural or synthetic), and the height, as well as looseness or tightness of these fibers, influences how we feel when we step, walk, sit, or lie on them. And this is where the term “pile” comes to play. 

The pile is the surface layer of the carpet. In other words, Pile simply describes the fabric loops of the carpets as well as their height and density. The carpet pile height indicates the thickness of the carpet from its surface to its backing.

Carpet Pile Types

In terms of carpet pile height, the rugs and carpets are typically classified as low pile carpet, high pile carpet, and medium-pile carpet. Let’s discuss them in detail.

Low Pile Carpet

Low Pile Carpet

The carpets with shorter fibers and tighter loops are known as low pile carpets (under 1/4 inch). These carpets are relatively flat in appearance and feel. The best part is that they don’t catch much dirt or debris or pet hair due to their flatness. As a result, they can withstand heavy foot traffic without losing their original appearance. 

Pros of Low Pile Carpet

  • Very durable and last longer.
  • They are easy to clean and maintain as you can vacuum the carpets thoroughly without worrying about the damage to the carpet fibers.
  • Since the low pile carpets trap much fewer allergens, they are the best choice for respiratory and allergy sufferers.
  • The best part is that if you are among those who love to move furniture frequently, the low pile carpets are an excellent choice. These carpets allow free movement of furniture on them due to their smooth surface and reduced surface area.
  • They are typically less expensive than the high pile carpets. 

Cons Of Low Pile Carpet

  • Reduced aesthetics, warmth, coziness, and comfort.

Bottom Line- Low-pile carpet is the best choice for high-traffic areas and rooms, like living room, kitchen, or play-room where dirt, pet hair, or other messes are the issue. 

Medium Pile Carpet

Medium Pile Carpet

The medium pile carpet falls somewhere in between the low pile carpet and the high pile carpet (1/4 inch to 1/2 inch). It is just the right combination with just enough height to give it a shag appearance and enough density to make it easy to clean. 

This type of carpet is softer than the low pile carpet. And since the carpet fibers are not so dense like the high pile carpets, there are less chances of dirt getting trapped in them. 

Pros of Medium Pile Carpet

  • Suitable for medium foot-traffic level
  • Relatively softer than the low pile carpets
  • Ideal for the allergic person
  • Easy to clean and maintain
  • Durable
  • Affordable 

Cons of Medium Pile Carpet

  • More prone to accumulate dirt, debris, and hair than low pile carpets

Bottom Line- Medium Pile Carpets feel softer and best choice for medium foot-traffic areas, including living room, kitchen, or bedroom, and are easy to clean.

High-Pile Carpet

High Pile Carpet

The high pile carpets include long-fibers construction (ranging from ½ inch to ¾ inch ), and thus they create a plush and fluffy feel and appearance. These types of carpets add a touch of warmth, comfort, and luxury. But beyond these pluses, they are practically the magnets for dirt and debris due to the long threads construction. Therefore cleaning and maintaining them is typically difficult. 

Pros of High Pile Carpets

  • Looks attractive and luxurious.
  • High pile carpet provides extra cushioning underfoot.
  • They stay fluffy without flattening over time.
  • Since they have longer fibers, they can hold heat better than low pile carpet. Therefore, you can sit on them for a longer duration.

Cons of High Pile Carpets

  • Difficult to clean
  • These types of carpets are more likely to hold impressions left by furniture and foot traffic.

Bottom Line- High Pile Carpets are incredibly softer with a plush and loose appearance. They are quite expensive due to the luxurious touch and are ideal for low-traffic areas only like office, reading/working room, guest room, or bedroom. 

Read Next: How to Clean Carpets and Rugs Without Vacuum?

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