Selecting the Right Cushion
The cushion that sits between your baseboards and the visible carpet is an unseen but essential part of your carpet system experience. It’s well worth the time to ensure you’re picking the best option. A firm and resilient carpet cushion forms the foundation for your carpet. The right cushion acts as a shock absorber to increase comfort and extend the durability of your carpet. It also improves acoustics and provides increased insulation, making a room quieter and warmer.
When selecting cushion, check the carpet manufacturer’s requirements for thickness and density. A general rule of thumb for most residential carpet applications is to choose cushion no more than 7/16 inch thick and no less than 1/4 inch with 6 pounds per cubic feet density. If the carpet is a berber or a low-profile carpet, choose a cushion no more than 3/8 inch thick with 8 pounds density.
The type and thickness of cushion you need varies based on your traffic levels and patterns. For example, bedrooms, dens, lounge areas, and other rooms with light or moderate traffic can use thicker and softer cushion. Living rooms, family rooms, hallways, stairs, and other heavy-traffic areas require thinner, firmer cushion.
The wrong carpet cushion can negatively affect the carpet in several ways, including diminished appearance, wrinkling, buckling, separation of the carpet seams, and breakdown of the carpet structure itself. Improper cushion selection also may void warranties from the carpet manufacturer.