When it comes to home décor, area rugs have their way of bringing that exquisite, plush, sometimes, vintage feel to your apartment. Searching for the perfect rug can be very daunting. And when you finally pick a carpet of your choice: you discover that it sheds like crazy. These fibers make up the surface of the carpet which you step on.
This problem, however, is peculiar to most of the newly installed rugs as it is normal for some rugs especially wool rugs to shed it’s fibers. Carpet shedding is a common phenomenon in newer carpets. You may be curious to know just how long do rugs shed for?
In actual fact, it depends – some rugs may shed their nap for only a few months and for others it can take up to a year before shedding will stop. When rugs shed they leave clumps of fibers all over the place. These fibers may stick to fabrics and can be easily picked up by infants and little kids in the households.
Using a carpet broom or a vacuum doesn’t really help reduce the amount of shedding but only fill your vacuum canister with these tiny fibers without making a dent in the shedding.
But Why Do Rugs Shed?
There are basically three factors that contributes to shedding of area rugs:
The kind of material that make up the fibers.
The method used to produce the rug
The pile height
Materials Of The Fibers
All carpet fibers are made of either natural or synthetic materials and they are broadly classified along these lines. The quality of the material used to spawn the nap of the rug is a common cause of shedding.
Although no one fiber is perfect as each kind of carpet fiber have their characteristic strength and weaknesses.
Natural fibers: Rugs that are made of fibers that are obtained from organic (plant and animal) sources in nature are often known as natural fiber rugs. The materials are collected and processed into fibers. Of these natural fibers most of them are used in making area rugs like jute, sisal, silk, coir and seagrass. As a matter of fact only a few are used in producing wall-to-wall carpeting (broadloom) like wool. Shedding is very common among natural fiber rugs especially wool and jute rugs. Natural fiber rugs make a significant percentage of rugs in the market with wool rugs mostly being the rug of choice for homeowners and interior decorators alike.
All wool yarns shed. Good wool fibers will shed less than the not so good ones. In as much as wool rugs are a good investment for long lasting rug, one thing to keep in mind is that quality of wool matters and can save you a lot of headaches of shedding in the future. So now you know wool rugs shed and you might have your eyes on a beautiful Cotton rug and you might be wondering – ‘do cotton rugs shed?’. The basic truth is that all natural fiber rugs shed including cotton rug which are also made of natural fibers.
Which wool rugs shed less?
When selecting a non-shedding wool rug for your floor, you need to consider wool rugs whose fibers are finer and longest because they will shed less instead of the shorter, breakable fibers which are more likely to shed for a longer time. I would suggest a blended wool rug – like 70% wool 30 percent nylon. Blending natural fibers and synthetic fibers enhances the quality of the rugs by combining good characteristics from individual fiber. Because nylon fiber rugs are the non-shed king among carpets, a blend of wool and nylon will eliminate the problem of shedding in wool rugs.
SUMMIT SE-I7MD-ROGN 101 New Turquoise Area Rug Modern Abstract
Feraghan/New City Traditional Isfahan Wool Persian Area Rug, 13′ x 16′
Synthetic fibers: Synthetic fibers are made by humans with chemical materials not found free in nature as opposed to natural fibers. These chemicals are them processed into synthetic fibers which are used to produce the yarn of synthetic carpets. Nylon, polyester, triexter, polypropylene are common examples of synthetic materials that make up synthetic carpets in the market. Unlike natural fiber rugs synthetic rugs hardly shed their yarn.
Non-shedding Synthetic rugs
Mohawk Home Aurora Burbank Blossom Floral Printed Area Rug, 5’x8′
Nourison Celestial Area Rug, 7’10” x 10’6″
Method Of Manufacture
All area rugs and broadloom carpets are made in two ways. They may either be Hand made or Machine made. The likelihood that a rug would shed will also depend on these.
Handmade rugs can are fashioned using two common techniques by hand; hand knotting and hand tufting
Hand knotted rugs: A hand knotted rug is a rug made by hand on a specialized loom. They are also known as oriental rugs. The process of making a hand knotted rug takes a lot of time and effort for the weaver to produce.
In hand knotted rugs the fibers are knotted to the backing of the backing which secures the yarn tightly to it, in this way shedding is eliminated. If at all shedding occur it will only be for the finishing first few months of installation.
As a matter of fact process taken to produce those intricate and complex patterns can take 6-8 months to put finishing touches to the rugs. The result of this a a long-lasting and high quality non shed rug that can be used for more than a hundred years and can be passed for generations.
A hand knotted rug won’t shed as much as a hand tufted rug because the fibers are knotted to the backing of the rug rather than punched as in hand tufted rugs. As matter of fact hand-knotted rugs does not shed. Because of this an oriental rug can be vacuumed vigorously without worrying about shedding.
Non-shed Hand Knotted Rugs
YILONG CARPET 6’x9′ Hand Knotted Persian Silk Carpet Classic Oriental Nain Medallion Area Rugs
Safavieh Maharaja Collection MHJ423A Hand Knotted Grey and Ivory Viscose Area Rug (8′ x 10′)
Safavieh Mirage Collection MIR234E Hand-Knotted Beige Wool Area Rug (9′ x 12′)
Hand tufted rugs: Although a hand tufted rug is a hand made rug, it is not solely made by hand as the weaver uses a pistol-like tool to punch strands of wool into a canvas that is stretched on a frame with the help of a handheld tool. By using this technique the fibers are loosely held to the backing which make it prone to shedding.
A hand tufted rug usually takes less time to make compared to hand knotted rugs and can take a comparatively longer time to stop shedding and most times the entire life of the rug. It is no surprise why hand tufted rugs are way cheaper than hand knotted.
Flat woven rug: As the name implies flat weave rugs are hand woven rugs that are intentionally woven flat so that they won’t have a pile. This only makes sense as carpets with very low profile a less likely to shed their nap. They are also known as “flatweaves” or “hand woven rug” . A flat weave rug will shed less than a low profile carpet and much less than a those with high pile. It can sometimes be difficult to tell the difference between a machine made flat weave rug from the ones made by hand but a few things to note about them is:
They are usually flat with little or no pile and slippery.
Flatweaves are light weight and flat often requiring an extra cushion underneath.
The rug is thought to be reversible, as the patterns the same on both sides.
Non-shedding Flatweave Rugs
nuLOOM Handmade Flat Weave Striped Trellis Cotton Fringe Area Rug
Safavieh Montauk Collection MTK753A Handmade Flatweave Silver Cotton Area Rug (5′ x 8′)
So when you go out to shop for a new carpet or rug for your floor and opt for a non shedding hand made rug it is best to go with a hand knotted rug. If you choose a wool rug I’d suggests a wool rug blended with nylon. Although hand knotted rugs are pricier than it’s hand tufted counterpart, they won’t shed their fibers, they can last for years and not shed their fibers. They make deep cleaning stress free because you can eaily remove dirty embeded in the fibers without clogging your vacuum canister with fibers. And because of this hand-knotted rugs can be cleaned vigorously unlike hand tufted rugs.
The Pile Height
The rugs you will come across in your search for the perfect area rug that don’t shed often come in two forms. Their nap may have a low pile or a high pile.
High pile carpets have naps with long fibers and are generally high profile. Now, rugs with shaggy or high pile height are more susceptible to shedding when subjected to vigorous vacuum cleaning than those with low pile. Dirt are less likely to embed themselves in low pile rugs and they are less likely to shed their fibers for a long time. Nylon base carpet fibers like most synthetic are generally known to resilient to wear for this reason they are known for their ability not to shed their fibers. If you are shopping for a carpet with pile, nylon carpets like other synthetic carpets are your best bet when it comes to non shed rugs.
Non-shedding low pile rug
Ottohome Collection Contemporary Bordered Design Non-Slip Rubber Backing Area