Empty house with carpet installed all over the floor

Why Do Most American Homes and Apartments Have Carpets? [Answered]

Apart from adding comfort and style to your house, carpet improves the quality of indoor air and allergies to a great extent. While most people believe that tile or hardwood floors are better for those suffering from seasonal allergies to pet dander and dust, it is not true. 

So, why are American homes carpeted? In the past, wealthy people in America tend to have carpets because of dust and mold issues. However, poor people carpet their homes so that they can have insulated floors. Also, carpets are helpful when it comes to saving people with mobility issues or the elderly from falling out.

Evolution of carpets in America

It was around the 1500s that carpet production was fully grown in Europe. So, when Europeans came to America, they brought with them everything related to carpet making. During those days, handwoven carpets were produced. However, they faced competition from the products that were less expensive and imported from the Middle East and Europe. 

The carpet was an integral part of early American homes. That’s because the quality of wood used on the floors was poor. It remained the same until varnished wooden floors were introduced in 1870. Until 1950, most carpets consist of woven wool, which was quite expensive at that time. 

While most people wanted to carpet their homes, it was limited only to the wealthiest Americans. However, the introduction of synthetic fibers during the 1950s changed the carpet industry forever. High-quality carpets were produced by using new materials that were better compared to the woolen, woven carpets. 

In general, turfed carpets tend to cost half the price of woolen carpets or even less. The sheer drop in carpet prices allowed people to use them as floor coverings. More durable carpets were produced from new variants of nylon in the 1950s.

The nylon carpets last longer and were inexpensive for working-class families as well. The hub of carpet production was shifted during the early 1950s to the Southeast from the Northeast. Favored by lower overhead and cheap labor more carpet factories opened up in many cities and towns later.

Why do Americans prefer carpets in their homes?

Here are some of the major reasons why Americans love to have carpets in their homes.

1. Carpets are comfortable

Nobody likes to lay on a hardwood floor while reading books or watching their favorite shows on TV. Very few people love the cold sensation that a tile or hardwood floor tends to provide. Also, no one like to have cold feet. And, that’s the reason why carpet stands out from other flooring materials.

2. Carpets are easy to clean

To clean carpets, you need a vacuum cleaner. So, when you spill something and need to get clean it, a vacuum does the job well. However, if the stains are a bit deep, you can use spot cleaners. There is no denying that cleaning a carpet doesn’t involve much effort. 

3. Carpets can impact utility bills

Another important consideration that makes American people choose carpet is that it behaves like an insulator. Carpets act as an insulator that keeps homes warmer during the winter months. Also, they help the home retain coolness when the weather is hot. With all that insulation in place, it can translate into hefty savings both on your cooling and heating bills. 

4. Carpets are peaceful and quiet

If you lived in a 2-story building you should be aware of the hard-surface flooring that tends to go loud even on the softest footfalls. Carpets indeed behave as thermal insulators that can help you save a lot. Also, it acts as a sonic insulator. Carpet doesn’t transmit sound unlike hard-surface materials. As such, you will find the house quieter after installing the carpet compared to before.

5. Even pets like carpet

Many people believe that it is easy to keep the carpet clean if the homeowner doesn’t have pets. So, people with pets tend to choose hardwood floors. However, pets don’t like hardwood floors for certain reasons. You may have observed that pets seldom lay on the floor for a long time and you can find them sitting over something like mats or rugs. 

Are there reasons for carpeting apartments?

When it comes to carpeting apartments, there are several reasons why people do that. Because carpet can absorb sound, many homeowners believe that it can save them from tenants that have troubled walking habits such as stomping and shuffling. Besides, the presence of kids makes the noise more distinct as they run and play around the apartment.

Moreover, the same can be said about pets that have aggravated noise levels. Carpeting the apartment can mitigate the risk of complaints from the neighborhood effectively. While carpeting is a matter of choice, noise standards in society have to be addressed. 

Regulations on noise pollution are a legal framework that’s protected by the Environment Protection Agency laws. To curb noise, the Noise Control Act surfaced in 1972. However, the existing laws are adopted to curb noise coming from construction sites. Still, courts can order a person to reduce the noise level in their home.

What are the benefits of carpeting homes and apartments?

The advantages of carpeting homes and apartments are many and that’s the reason why most Americans have them installed in their homes.

1. Style and appearance

Carpets display a sign of wealth and they have been around for hundreds of years starting from the kings. With plenty of colors, designs, cuts, and patterns to choose from, there is a carpet for everyone. Besides, carpet adds ambiance to homes and improves overall appearance. 

2. Cost savings

When it comes to the installation and maintenance of surface flooring, carpeting is the best solution in terms of cost. The cleaning supplies that one needs to clear hardwood floor or tile are a lot more compared to what they have spent on supplies needed to clean carpet.

3. Safety and sustainability 

Fall and slip incidents occur less with carpets compared to tile or floor surfaces. Even if someone falls, the results aren’t traumatic. Moreover, with improvements in technology, carpets are recycled into new ones or other items. 

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