April 13th, 2017

Is my carpet really shrinking? I never would have guessed it, but it seems to be shrinking more and more each month…can this really happen? Anything can happen right? Let’s discuss it…

Textiles (ie: carpet) is manufactured from petroleum and natural based products. Most anything made today in some form will change over time…carpet is no different. So the answer is YES, carpet can change from in time and shrink. Mostly this will occur with natural fibers such as wool carpet. Wool as we all know is super sensitive to heat and humidity changes over time. Wool has a 96% moisture retention rate and does not like to release humidity…it’s like a super sponge! So what happens over time is the carpet will shrink due to the abosorbtion of high humidity. Also, heat plays a huge factor in the shrink factor of wool carpeting. Once wool reached a temperature above 100 degrees with high humidity it’s like two times the shrinkage factor. Once this starts to occur, your best option is to begin to remove the humidity and heat from your home. There are several ways in which this can be done. Follow these instructions:

  1. Remove humidifiers that may be running

  2. Circulate as much air as possible – ceiling fans, floor fans etc…

  3. Turn the AC on between 65-68 degrees to dehumidify the air – cool air removes humidity

You can follow these instructions on rainy days where humidity levels rise. Be sure to keep the temperature between 65-68 degrees. Once achieve, just keep the room at set temperatrure until humidity is gone. At this point, your probably asking yourself “why do I care if my carpet shrinks”…it’s a good question to ask! In some cases, most probably would not care until the repair bill comes in. Did I mention, that you have to move all the furniture out of each room so the carpet can be properly stretched back into place…what a pain in the butt! Also, how much was your investment for the carpet you purchased? You would be surprised what some carpet cost these days…especially good wool carpet. Your petroleum based carpet is not so much a worry, meaning a synthetic or natural blended carpet. Due to the nature of synthetic plastics such as nylon, polyester or olefin, they just dont retain moisture like your natural fibers do. In other words, not near as much maintenance invloved here…whoo hoo! At the end of the day, these are circumstances that occur over time, but now you have an answer to a possible reason why your carpet may be shrinking. Even then, the problem is manageable and easily remedied with a qualified carpet professonal. Many older homes have higher humidity levels due to poor insulation and temperatures fluctuate more…this is normal, but can be corrected over time with a budget. Also, homes that are pier and beam have carpet shrinking problems as well. This is due to porous wood that soaks up humidity and the carpet absorbs the humidity causing shrinkage. This is dealt with in the same fashion as other humidity problems…cool air and dehumidification.

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