smart strand carpeting, for real? please vote!

jessie21March 28, 2011

Please vote, smart strand or other carpeting?

the story:

I need to replace some carpeting and have seen all the hype about smart strand...and really have pretty much just believed it all.

I've shopped and seen Mohawk's version, karastan's version, and Lee's (Lees at carpet one). They are fine, although I can't say I'm crazy about color options.

My question regards quality vs. cost. I was always taught to look for a dense carpet and none of the smart strand ones seem very dense. Unlike most mohawk carpeting, karastan and Lee don't tell you the density, but I can see for myself that the backing is pretty easily seen when separating the strands. Other carpeting can be found that is much denser at a more reasonable cost.

Will smart strand really stay looking newer longer than a good quality nylon? How could it when it isn't that dense? We really want something that will last and since we are dog owners, really need stain protection (of course we'll get the better pad, with moisture barrier).

For those of you who actually like carpeting, what would you do? Smart strand or other?

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Forgive me but I was in wholesale carpeting for many yrs. There simply is no easy way to determine how a carpet is going to look down the road. I worked for Mohawk and have installed Smartstrand in all of my rentals. They perform very well. All fiber is a trade off of pro and cons. Density isn't always a good indicator of 'wear'. You can have a dense cpt in a saxony and it will look 'worn' cause your walking on the tips of the yarn. Much of the smartstrand is more of a frieze style which is looser. You walk on the sides of the yarn and the fact that the yarn is "loose' makes any stain or whatever less visible. Cause you can see the backing doesn't mean the cpt won't perform well. You should be more interested in the twist of the yarn, face wt (to some degree) and does the cpt carry an apperance or texture retention warranty?

    Bookmark   March 28, 2011 at 4:41PM
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Density means very little. Twist as boxer say is what counts. A high density carpet is only a recipe for wear. The carpet cannot lay on its side, squats down and the color (reflection) changes appearance and looks matted. I can tell you that smartstrand makes carpets in more looks that are not friezes than any other type. I can also tell you that I really didnt buy into the hype at first, but we have sold it for 3 years. Customers that bought smartstrand at the same time as other non smartstrand are raving about the smartstrand from the few that we get to see. I have a claim right now on a carpet that is 12 month old....and we installed a smartstrand in a higher traffic area 1 year before the 12 month old piece. The customer says..I want this carpet replaced with a product that wears like my older carpet. The older carpet was smartstrand. It was a very non dense product installed in a dining room. It had dining room chairs on it and had a very defined traffic walkway. The carpet looked brand new. I was amazed and that was the last straw. I immediately called a meeting at our store and shared it with my staff. Those are the facts and I no longer feel it is hype. But forget the density thing as that is the old school thought before the twist was able to be heat set like it is today. High Density in residential today? I run from it personally. Good Luck.

    Bookmark   March 28, 2011 at 10:50PM
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boxers, nothing to forgive! Your input is valuable to me. The fact that the smart strand has performed well in your rentals says a lot and does ease my mind about it. Unfortunately, neither the Karastan nor the Lee states the twist. Is the twist usually good on smart strand, or do I need to dig deeper to find out what it is?

Floortech, your statement "that was the last straw" cracked me up...thanks for sharing that story. These really are the kinds of things I need to hear. And yes, the density thing is definitely OLD school....I remember my mom (who passed away last year) saying that ages tend to internalize that sort of thing, it becomes the truth and it's hard to shake the idea. Thanks for your helpful input!

    Bookmark   March 29, 2011 at 7:46AM
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Most Smartstrand has both an appearance retention and a texture retention warranty. Those most likely are high twist yarns. People get all caught up in numbers then try to come up with some 'formula' of what it all means. When I worked for Mohawk we routinely didn't publish our 'specs' and I doubt that has changed very much. I used to kid that only real estate agents and Sears sold carpet by 'face weight'. When a customer would ask me how many oz is a specific cpt I'd ask how many pounds did you need? Of course I was sacracastic but things haven't changed all that much. BTW I worked for Lees when it was an actual mill and not a name bought by Carpet One.

    Bookmark   March 29, 2011 at 5:54PM
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