The quality carpet and flooring specialist

The Quality Carpet & Flooring Specialist

Choosing Your Carpets: Wool vs. Man-Made
What’s the better carpet: wool or manmade? This is a question we’re asked nearly everyday at Charles Wilson Carpets & Flooring.  The answer? Well, both types of carpet have their advantages. Your lifestyle will influence which is best for you…
Why choose wool carpets?
Wool carpets are fantastic for keeping their appearance; the natural kink in the wool acts like a spring. You are bouncing along the top of the springs when you walk on it (bit like a mattress). Yes, they can compress and flatten down over time but good quality wools revive if vacuumed regularly.

Wool is also flame resistant, good for trapping and holding dust (and easily released into your vacuum when you clean). It’s a natural, renewable resource and a good insulator.
So wool is good for you if:
- your carpet needs to look nice and to last for a long time
- you have high traffic areas that may flatten down
- you have  children with allergies to man-made fibres
- you care about environmental sustainability
- your home needs a flooring to give it warmth 

Maybe man-made carpets are for you?
Man-made carpets come into their own with their mix of new fibres such as polypropylene. Their first and major advantage to most people is the cost – they are less expensive than wool carpets.
The key to man-made is to look for a good density (i.e. not too floppy a pile where there is lots of room for it to flatten down). They are beautifully soft to touch and some of the longer piles feeling luxurious without a heavy cost. But it is their cleanability that usually attracts people to man-made carpets. Less absorbent than wool, their fibres are very good at coping with wet spills. Often you can use a mild bleach solution to remove staining.

 To sum up, man-made is good for you if:
- you have a busy family home, may be where accidents such as spilt drinks are likely
- you want to keep the costs down
- you don't need your carpet for a very long time (it won’t wear out easily but it can look a bit tired over the longer term)
- you want a soft feel flooring 

The final decision
Generally, all you need to do is decide how long you want your carpet to last, the type of use and wear/accidents it may have to cope with and your budget.
If you would like to discuss this further, please call in to our shop and chat with one of our team. We’re here to help.
Wrinkles and Rucks!
Ever noticed your poor carpet might be looking a little older than its years, with a few wrinkles and baggy patches here and there?

It’s true - carpets can stretch over time. Generally, though, this should not be the case and it is most likely down to a few fitting issues. This is especially true if especially if your carpet is a recent purchase.

What causes a crumpled carpet?

There are several issues that can cause this “Nora Batty” crumpled look:

Poorly placed grippers (the hook like bits that hold your carpet in place), too far or too close from the skirting can mean it won’t stay hooked on or sit flat
Wrong type of gripper – too long a hook or too short means the carpet won’t stay stretched properly
Poor choice in underlay, there are lots of different types that to do different jobs to support your carpet
Poorly laid underlay i.e. edges not taped together – can allow carpets to pucker up and move around underneath
Poorly stretched carpet – fitters have tools to pull the carpet tight on the grippers, not enough and it will ruck and too much and it can buckle the carpet and it won’t sit right
Poor seaming – if the tape used to join the carpet is too weak or not heated correctly joins can come apart or start to fray

Occasionally, a new carpet can go a bit baggy and it is not a fitting fault. If a carpet has been laid in colder weather it can “grow” once in situ, (this can happen with vinyls too). This is because the glue and backing of the flooring start to warm up and relax once they are in a heated environment. This can create ‘wrinkles’. If you see it in your carpet, please don't worry. Just ask your retailer to arrange for their fitter to pop back and give it a bit more of a stretch.

Avoiding wrinkles... in your carpet!

When buying your lovely new carpet:
  • do ask the qualifications and experience of the person who is likely to fit it, a good quality carpet can still look cheap if fitted badly
  • make sure your sales person goes through the underlay options so you get both the right feel underfoot but the right support for your carpet (it helps it look better for longer)
  • if you get a crumple or saggy look to your carpet DON’T LEAVE IT – old or new carpet it will cause wear issue if it is isn’t fixedTake a look at Richard Renouf’s humorous article in Interior’s Monthly to explain how “loose” is no use!
If you have any questions… or a carpet with wrinkles and rucks, pop in and have a chat with the friendly experts at Charles Wilson Carpets.
Christmas Carpet Care
Are you planning to entertain this Christmas?
With extra people, parties and inevitable spills, this can be a tough time for your carpets!
Here are our top five tips to keep your carpets looking good before, during and after the festive season:
1. Use a barrier
No – not to keep guests out! Use a doormat or a rug in doorways with outdoor access. This helps to prevent spreading outside dirt into your home. It also helps to protect this area of flooring from the extra wear that it inevitably needs to cope with.
Whilst you’re entertaining, you may access your garden from areas usually only used during the summer, such as patio doors. (For example you may let children or dogs into the garden to play… or you may need to fetch extra supplies from your shed or garage.) These areas also need protective barriers – especially during winter.
Remember to clean rugs and doormats too, (including the underside).
2. Spillages & Stains 
  • Always treat spillages immediately.
  • Any excess solids should be taken up with a blunt knife. 
  • Always blot or dab with a dry, clean cloth -rather than rub. (Rubbing can cause carpet pile to untwist or flatten.) Definitely avoid brushing or scrubbing. 

Our top tip: always have a clean, absorbent cloth ready to use. You never know when it will come in handy!
3. Shoes 
Asking your guests to remove their shoes really does help protect your carpet. This is the easiest festive tip!
4. Pine Protection! 
If you have a real Christmas tree, place it on a mat or piece of spare carpet. This will protect your floor from pine needles, soil and water.
5. Your Carpet Isn’t Just For Christmas! 
These tips are great for helping your carpet to cope with the festive season – but why not look after your flooring all year? Keep your carpets looking good and working hard for as long as possible!
“We like our homes to look as good as possible at Christmas – for ourselves and for visitors,” says Mark Wilson of Charles Wilson Carpets. “These tips will help your carpet to cope with Christmas.  If you would like further advice – or need mats, rugs or carpets, pop in to our store or give us a call. We’re here to help.”
Gripping Success
You wouldn’t build a house with shaky foundations, would you?
Well, your carpet’s gripper has the same effect as your home’s foundation, offering stability, durability and the right look to your flooring. No-one wants a wonky carpet that’s coming away from the wall!
As reported by Richard Renouf in last month’s Interiors Monthly, using the right gripper – and fitting it correctly – is vital to the performance and long-term aesthetics of your carpet.
Undoubtedly, if the gripper is wrong, or if it is fitted poorly, then the finished carpet fitting will suffer. The carpet may come loose, ruck and fray. For many people, it’s a case of ‘out of sight, out of mind’ however the gripper is a crucial part of carpet fitting.

Three Steps to Gripping Success
Firstly, it’s vital  to position the gripper correctly. If it’s too far from the skirting boards, the carpet can come loose from the angled front edge, leading to rucking. The ideal gap is two thirds of the thickness of the carpet – ideally no more than 6mm-8mm. This ensures that the carpet is held securely.

Secondly, gripper pins hold the tension in the carpet and must be placed and fitted carefully. Hammer them home too hard and they become flattened and unable to do their job.
Finally, Renouf recommends that there should be at least two fixings in every piece of gripper. This prevents the gripper from turning or flexing, distorting the carpet. Different types of nails are used fro various types of floors, however in some cases, staples or glue offer a better solution.
Our best advice? For complete peace of mind, trust the qualified, experienced fitters at Charles Wilson Carpets. Our team is fully trained and will adapt the gripper materials and techniques according to your flooring and property. We’re here to help.