Everything You Need To Know About Shrinking Carpets and Why They Occur

Everything You Need To Know About Shrinking Carpets and Why They Occur
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So you’ve just paid out a lot of money to have your already expensive carpet cleaned, only to find that it’s shrunk away from the walls. Now, not only is it an eyesore but more than likely it’s unrepairable and therefore needs to be replaced.

On a professional level we’ve seen plenty of shrunken carpets and usually, the property owner is left not being able to get hold of the company who caused the problem, Because of this, they’re left both stressed and anxious not knowing what to do. This is why they often call us. In order to avoid this phenomenon from happening, you need to know what causes it.

Firstly, the good news is that not every carpet type is prone to shrinking and generally there are only two main types. These are

  • Axministers
  • Wiltons

Genuine Axminister carpets are pretty expensive to purchase compared to other carpets which is what makes this problem even worse. It consists of a wool faced fibre (the bit we love to walk on) and a jute backing. Although it’s relatively hard to shrink an Axminister, when the jute backing becomes wet, it can start to shrink.

Wiltons are a different kettle of fish. There are several types and the good quality Wiltons (the ones with wool fibre and a jute backing) are (like Axministers) very hard to shrink, Conversely the cheaper variety (often known as Belgian Wiltons) are made with a polypropylene fibre. The problem is that polypropylene doesn’t hold on to as much water as wool. As such any excess water soaks straight through to the backing quickly, thus causing it to shrink.

So how do you know if you own a Belgian Wilton?

Look on the underside of your carpet to see if firstly a pattern is visible and secondly, duplicated on the backing. If it is there’s a strong possibility it’s a Belgian Wilton. This isn’t always 100% accurate so it’s advisable to get the carpet cleaning company to check.

Why they shrink

In essence, the main reason for a carpet shrinks is usually down to poor cleaning. This might mean a company using underpowered tools (eg, not being able to suck out sufficient water) or through bad cleaning practices where a technician will apply either too much pre-spray or too much water before the first clean. The physical reason why carpets shrink is down to the jute backing becoming wet, then swelling up and expanding. This causes stress on the structure of the carpet causing it to shrink.

How can this be avoided?

Just because you have a Belgian Wilton or an Axminister doesn’t mean to say it shouldn’t ever be cleaned. On the contrary it just needs to be approached with caution by a company who really knows what they’re doing. This is where we come in.

At Carpet Cleaning Kings we’ve been in the industry for many years and therefore have the skills, the experience and the tools to make good shrinking carpets and ones with other issues. Why not contact us today on 1300 7000 75 and put us to the test. Trust us when we say, you’ll be glad that you did.

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