Pad for Area Rugs
February 22, 2017
Posted by D. A. Burns
D. A. Burns clients often call with questions about a pad for their area rug. Recently, Karen R. from Bothell asked, “My rug feels pretty comfortable as it is. Do I really need a pad?”
For most rugs and in most settings a pad for your area rug is a good idea. Even the heaviest rug will allow fine particulate soil to sift through to the floor. The slight shift of the rug with normal foot traffic can cause abrasive damage to your floor and your rug. Thin rugs may “travel” and become either a nuisance or a hazard. A large, heavy rug in a lightly used room, however, may be fine without a pad.
There are many kinds of carpet pad (AKA: underlayment or cushion) for use under installed carpeting and all have their own strengths. However, only a few types of pad make for a good choice to use under your area rug. Since an area rug isn’t secured to the floor under tension like installed carpeting, it will flex more. This movement can cause the wrong pad, or a poor quality rug pad, to rapidly fail. Also, pad or cushion made for the wall-to-wall application is stapled or glued to the floor to avoid any non-slip issues. We’ve chosen to offer what we consider the best padding on the market for area rugs and offer four appropriate choices for different rug placement scenarios:
Over a hard-surface floor : DuraHold and WunderGrip.
Over an installed carpet : NoMuv and WunderLock.
DuraHold is made from recycled new carpet fiber, and is billed as being non-allergenic. It has enough cushion to protect the rug from foot impacts and increase comfort, will contain fine grit that works through a rug to keep it from damaging the floor, and has a back-coating to resist movement. It is washable and comes with a ten-year warranty. This is the best overall pad we’ve found for use with area rugs placed over hard-surface flooring.
WunderGrip is made from expanded vinyl foam mesh to provide non-slip properties. It will not degrade or discolor the flooring underneath like some look-alike products. It is appropriate for smaller rugs or where limiting the overall rug height is essential. It is washable and is warranted to maintain non-slip properties for twenty years. This is the best pad we’ve found of this non-slip type. Many others will dry out and crumble or get sticky and discolor hardwood floors.
NoMuv is a firm pad made from recycled new carpet fiber and has one “grippy” side and one “slippy” side. When placed over installed carpet, the slippy side allows the pile of the installed carpet to move without moving the rug and pad while the grippy side holds the rug in place. It is washable and comes with a ten-year warranty.
We’ve found that some wall-to-wall carpet will have such a deep nap or strong nap direction that an area rug can’t be used, no matter what kind of attempts are made to keep the rug in place. Still, NoMuv is the best product we’ve found for placement of your area rug over carpet.
WunderLock is a unique product. A thin white felt is coated with a dry adhesive that won’t transfer to the carpet. It works exceptionally well to hold small rugs in place and in some cases can be used under larger rugs. It can be placed and moved several times without losing its tack.
Some clients have used WunderLock on hard-surface floors if they have a rug that seems particularly difficult to keep in place. Our testing has shown that after many years in one place the adhesive will transfer to a hard surface. It doesn’t damage the floor, but will require some effort to remove.
We can custom cut a new pad to fit your rug and within our service area provide delivery and placement. Let us know if you have any questions or wish to place an order. 206.782.2268