The right carpet benefits your home and improves your lifestyle in more ways than just comfort. It buffers loud noises (ahem, kids and pets), helps insulate living spaces, adds style to rooms and a cohesive look to our homes, and can even offer safety benefits in spots that could be slippery such as stairs.

Unfortunately, nothing lasts forever – and carpet is no exception. It will wear out – even when vacuumed regularly and deep cleaned every 4 to 6 months.

But aside from wanting to replace your carpeting to fit the latest color palette, how do you know when it’s time to make a change?

Knowing When to Replace Carpet

There are some obvious (and less obvious) signs to help you make that decision.

  • Appearance
  • Age vs. expected lifespan
  • Smell
  • Air quality concerns

Let’s dive in, so you know exactly when to replace carpets.

How does your carpet look?

How a carpet looks is one of the more obvious indicators that it’s time to trade in your carpeting for something newer. Carpet that’s matted down, shows notable wear in high-traffic patterns, has colors that have faded from sun exposure, and has significant tears or stains that no longer come up with professional cleaning is generally nearing the end of its utility.

You’ll also want to look for uneven spots or wrinkles in the carpet and listen for carpet that makes a crinkling sound when you walk across it. This often means that your carpet padding needs to be replaced.

Comparing age vs. expected lifespan

Lifespan is another useful factor to consider. Modern residential carpets that are well maintained with regular vacuuming and cleaned periodically may last up to 15 years depending on what it’s exposed to.

However, active Colorado lifestyles that include kids, pets, and all of the fun outdoor pursuits we enjoy can shorten that expected lifespan, so you’ll also want to consider the age of your carpet.

Note: commercial carpeting, while designed to offer greater durability, typically skews a little lower to 7 years due to the wear and tear associated with much higher foot traffic than most residential carpets.

Does it smell?

Carpets that haven’t reached the end of their utility shouldn’t have a noticeable smell. Unusual odors can answer to the unspoken question of when to replace carpet.

If you find that the carpet in your Northern Colorado home has a musty or mildewy smell that doesn’t go away after cleaning it and letting it dry, odds are good that it’s time to update your flooring.

Carpeting that’s been wet for 72 hours or more can become a haven for mold spores. When the carpeting and the carpet padding itself has been saturated for an extended period of time, you’ll want to replace both the carpet and the pad for health reasons.

Do you have air quality concerns?

On a somewhat related note, if you or your family member starts to experience inexplicable allergies or sensitivities to your home environment, your carpet may be to blame.

Older carpets can harbor dust mites, seasonal pollens, mold, and pet dander, all of which get stirred up whenever we walk across it. If your family struggles with allergies, you can minimize the respiratory effects by choosing a new carpet made of synthetic fibers like nylon and polyester, which can help repel allergens better than natural materials like wool.

In general, carpets that were installed more than 20 years ago should be replaced to immediately improve indoor air quality. 

Is it time to say goodbye?

Regularly exposed to environmental challenges all year long – from dust to tracked-in snow, mud, pet hair, and everything in between – carpets in Northern Colorado demand performance.

At Element Flooring and Design Center, we’re happy to help those of you in the Loveland and Fort Collins area determine whether your carpeting is a good candidate for a deep clean or refresh – or even, a replacement.

Contact us today
to discuss durable carpet options that will accommodate the way you like to live while expressing your personal sense of style.