As with so many of the improvement jobs we do around the home it’s often the unseen bits that make the difference and, sometimes these unseen jobs can mean the difference between just average and great.
One example of this from the flooring trade is the use of underlay for carpets.
How many of us really give much thought to the underlay we choose or to why we need it? And what’s underlay really for anyway? Surely it only needs to be a soft layer to go under the carpet, so there’s not much point in spending too much on it!
Well, actually underlay is very important and it’s very easy to get wrong. You’ve just paid your hard earned money for a good quality carpet to be supplied and fitted and I’m sure you’ve no intention to replace it again anytime soon …but you may have to if you buy the wrong underlay.
Before buying an underlay, you should first consider what the underlay is for. In short, why do we need it?
Below are five important reasons why…
1. Longevity – Floors are seldom even and quite often will have small ridges, especially where floorboards are laid. An underlay helps to smooth out any ridges and in doing so reduces the likelihood of wear marks in ridged areas. Ultimately, they offer protection against the inevitable wear and tear that comes with time and can keep your carpet looking good for much longer.
2. Insulation – Underlay is an extra layer of protection against draughts or cold flooring and can help reduce significant heat loss. In doing so it will keep your energy bills low and maintain heat in the room for longer. Using less energy to heat your house means you will be helping the environment, which is great addition.
3. Noise reduction – Depending on how thick the carpet underlay is will determine the amount of noise reduction it will give. However, any underlay will help to reduce the noise of heavy footsteps or movement of furniture to some extent. This could be a very important consideration if living in a flat, apartment or an attached property with quite thin walls. Just imagine how noisy stairs could be without underlay!
4. Minimal indentation – Heavy furniture can sometimes leave lasting marks on soft carpets, but with an underlay the chances of indentation marks are minimised, helping extend the life of your carpet even further.
5. Extra comfort – The extra layer of padding makes for an even more comfortable and cosy carpet underfoot. Even a soft carpet will only give slight cushioning underfoot, but the underlay in some ways acts as a shock absorber. This is particularly important in areas such as bedrooms where most of the time you are in bare feet
So choose a good carpet underlay – you won’t regret it!
Our Home Improve flooring panel of flooring experts can be contacted at…