Carpet is one of the most beloved floor coverings in existence, but like any other popular product, it has also at times been the subject of inaccurate information. Below are five of the most common carpet myths, along with the facts to help clear up any misconceptions. 

Myth #1: Carpet is too difficult to maintain.

Fact: There are simple steps you can take to extend the longevity of your carpet. One of the most important things you can do is to vacuum high-traffic areas on a frequent basis. This will keep soil and other dirt particles from sinking and settling down below the surface the pile of the carpet. In addition, it is highly recommended that you get your carpet professionally cleaned every 12-18 months to preserve its appearance.

Myth #2: If you clean your carpet too often, you’ll ruin it.

Fact: Interestingly enough, the exact opposite is true – you can never clean it enough! Frequent cleaning will uphold its appearance and keep it looking new.

Myth #3: Carpet gives off harmful chemicals that can be hazardous to your health.

Fact: There’s a lot of talk about VOCs (Volatile Organic Compounds) in the flooring world right now, so it’s important to learn how to separate fact from fiction. Many people claim that the famous “new carpet smell” is actually just harmful chemicals such as formaldehyde being leaked into the air. This phenomenon is popularly known as “off-gassing,” and it has been the subject of countless ominous news headlines, some of which are embarrassingly inaccurate. Formaldehyde is not even used in the carpet manufacturing process at all today, and hasn’t been since 1978. Before then, a small amount of formaldehyde was used as a resin hardener, but even if you have pre-1978 carpet in your home, whatever might have been left of the chemical would have dissipated a long time ago. The truth is that carpet is one of the lowest emitters of VOCs in the household environment, ranking lower than wall paint in multiple tests. The EPA has conducted extensive research regarding this topic, but no evidence has been found that links carpet VOC emissions to adverse health effects.

Myth #4: Carpet aggravates your allergies.

Fact: Multiple EPA studies have thoroughly debunked this myth. If you suffer from airborne allergies, carpet can actually be one of your biggest allies. Research shows that carpet does an excellent job of trapping and immobilizing allergens, keeping them out of the air and out of your lungs. Now when you vacuum or sweep, those allergens can be stirred up, but their effects can be largely curtailed through the use of a HEPA air filter in your vacuum cleaner.

Myth #5: The thicker the carpet, the better.

Fact: Without a doubt, a thicker carpet will provide a softer, more cushiony feel underfoot, but that doesn’t translate into better durability. If you want a high-quality carpet that lasts a long time, you should focus on density, which is the amount of yarn per square inch. The more dense the carpet, the more resilient it will be regardless of its thickness.

With so much conflicting information out there, it can be difficult to separate fact from fiction when it comes to carpet. At McSwain Carpets & Floors, our flooring professionals have decades of experience in helping homeowners choose the right carpet for their building or remodeling projects. We pride ourselves on giving our clients accurate and thorough information regarding their carpeting choices, and we have extensive experience with all aspects of carpet selection and installation. So whether your project is carpet installation for a home in Cincinnati or an office building in Dayton, we are here to help. Contact us today to see how our flooring experts can help make your next project a success!