Carpet & Kids—Family-Friendly Flooring Choices and What To Look For

Posted on: 9 December 2016

Children are messy creatures. If they're not tracking in mud and dirt from the backyard, they're probably spilling juice out of their new "spill-proof" sippy cup. For these reasons and so many more, buying new carpet can seem like a lose-lose situation for new families who are torn between comfort and practicality. There are several key identifiers that potential carpet customers can look out for when buying their new flooring which can ensure their home remains completely child-friendly without skimping on the comfort factor.

Pile Density

When it comes to carpets, pile refers to the density of the fibres that make up the carpet. More densely piled carpet means that it will have a 'thicker' feel and be more resistant to tracking, which is the gradual wear of high-traffic zones on the carpet. When searching for your carpet, bend the carpet mat. If you can see the backing of the carpet through the fibres, the carpet is very likely going to be susceptible to tracking and high absorption of spills. Thicker carpet might set the budget back a little on the initial purchase, but it can provide a much more cost-effective option in the long run.

Carpet Type

There's no shortage of different materials that carpet can come in. Wool, polyester, polypropylene, and acrylic are all viable options for carpet material, but when it comes to kids and the mess that follows, nylon is the way to go. Nylon carpet will be significantly more resistant to tracking and general wear and tear, and it is also much more responsive to cleaning when properly maintained.

Carpet Maintenance

Like most things in the home, you'll get the most out of your carpet by keeping it properly maintained. The weekly vacuuming and general upkeep is important, but there's a handful of other tactics you can use to give your new carpet a long life. Investing in ScotchGuard, or a similar product, on your carpet can help it repel stains and spills and will often come with a lengthy warranty. Moving furniture around to alter walking paths in the home can help to spread the load on the carpet and reduce the appearance of tracking as well. On top of this, you can get specific advice from your carpet retailer on the exact cleaning regiment you should be putting your carpet through.

Colour Choice

It might be tempting to pick a trendy colour that makes your couch pop or that provides the perfect talking piece, but the name of the game with mess and carpet is a middle-tone colour. That means sticking to the vanilla end of the spectrum. Neutral colours will accent any blemishes much less and are less likely to fully absorb particularly difficult spillages. On top of being easier to maintain and keep clean, neutral-coloured carpet also leaves the option of changing household furniture in the future without keeping everything restricted to a specific colour palette.

Budget isn't always necessarily best when it comes to carpets. A well-informed decision and vigilant maintenance regiment are the pillars upon which a clean and long-lasting carpet can stand up to the toughest challenge of all—children.