Bliss by Beaulieu; Mohawk -- any thoughts?

NCnewbie2012September 4, 2012

Will be building soon and have started to scope out carpeting choices. We need to carpet the master bedroom plus 2 other first-floor bedrooms that will be used as home office areas. An upstairs bonus room will be used as a guest room.

Took our first spin through the recommended showroom today. Our builder's allowance is $19/sq. yd. installed. We knew before going in that we'd probably have to go over the allowance, and we were correct. The selections that came in right at the $19 price point were pretty awful. We are willing to go higher, but certainly not double. Left there having seen a Mohawk Smartstrand for the master ($34) and Bliss by Beaulieu ($30) for everything else.

Have read mixed reviews of both online. Any shared wisdom/recommendations would be appreciated.

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I personally think Smartstrand (Triexta) is the best fiber that exists. But, you have not indicated a style name for either Mohawk or Beaulieu, rather a fiber type and/or a whole product line. So there is very little to go on in your request.

    Bookmark   September 4, 2012 at 10:27PM
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Finding carpet is a pretty horrible and confusing process. Here is what I've learned about the two:

What carpet you get should depend on what type of wear and staining you typically experience in your house.

For instance, Triexta (the stuff SmartStrand is made of) will stand up to water-based stains and bleach better than nylon, but is more susceptible to oil and grease stains. This has to do with the chemical nature of the fibers. So, if food stains are an issue for you, Triexta might not be a good choice, but if your teenager is clumsy with his acne cream you might not want nylon.

Carpets usually get some kind of stain resistant coating that helps them in this area but since moat carpets get this, I think it's a moot point.

As far as wear, crush and abrasive wear resistance is what you need to consider, especially in high traffic areas. Often people say carpet doesn't 'wear out' it 'uglies out' which means it gets matted and scratched up by dirt being ground into it making it looking like wet dog fur.

Nylon is generally considered the hardiest of fibers with the best crush resistance and is tried and true because it has been around for so long.

Triexta is a relatively new fiber that gets a lot of flack because it is chemically similar to a very crappy fiber: polyester, which had terrible crush resistance and is largely no longer used. The thing is, Triexta is supposed to be new and improved with better durability because of its structure (something to do with kinked strands or whatever which help keep its shape.) Still, there is a lot of trepidation about Triexta because it hasn't been time tested like nylon.

Of course, wear is also down to how the carpet is designed: how densely the fibers are packed together; how twisted the fibers are; how short the pile is, and whether you're buying bulked continuous fiber (longer strands for less shedding.) More dense, more twist, shorter pile, BCF = better wear. Getting the appropriate carpet padding in the right thickness will also mean less wear. The saying generally goes: If you're trying to save money, skimp on the carpet but get good pad. And, vacuum the hell out of it at least weekly or that dirt will act like sandpaper on your carpet every time you walk on it.

As far as professional carpet cleaning goes (which you need to do it every 12 or 18 months to maintain your warranty) more people know how to clean nylon than they do Triexta. I've read that there is some debate over whether we should clean Triexta like polyester or something altogether different. Some cleaners do not know what they're doing and clean it like nylon, which is bad because Triexta requires different detergents. Using the wrong one means residue and makes the carpet feel nasty. As an aside, you may have heard you can clean Triexta using only hot water extraction, but that is not true of oily stains since they bond to the fiber.

Oh and speaking of warranties, they're all ridiculous. I invite you to read all the terms and exclusions listed in them and tell me whether you think carpet sales people aren't con artists. Don't buy a carpet based on warranty, because it's likely only applicable during a blue moon when a virgin's tear makes a rare Norwegian truffle bloom.

There's also some impractical, luxury points to consider, like hand-feel.

In my opinion, Triexta feels nicer to touch. I have touched a lot of different nylons and I think it's softer and less abrasive. Of course, I've read some reviewers who say you shouldn't touch it or walk on it barefoot because the oils in your skin stick to it and attract dirt. Make of that what you will, it sounds like an exaggeration to me.

Style and color is also important to some. Nylon wins there because it's been produced longer and has more variety. That doesn't mean to say that your perfect Triexta carpet isn't out there, but if you want an unusual color or pattern they might not make it yet.

Disclaimer: I picked carpet months ago so small details may be incorrect but the general gist of things should be true. We ended up with nylon because we needed our carpet to last. The current carpet we have has been here since the 80s and looks like roadkill -- that's how cheap we are! But we believe in quality so we picked carpet that was $5~6 per square foot so hopefully it'll hold up until we're dead.

    Bookmark   September 7, 2012 at 6:41AM
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The above post is wrong in many ways..jist or no jist. A few statements arent bad..but you have to through the whole thing out. Especially the triexta thing..but that wasnt even the question. Bliss is a name given by beaulieu for a collection of styles and fibers. Some are good..some arent. If it is a polyester for 30 bucks a yard, it is probably not what you want. Remember, a traffic pattern in a bedroom is more defined than normally any room in the house barring the hallway. So the wrong carpet in a bedroom sets you up for disappointment. The smartstrand will work well for you and my stores are not into selling smartstrand, but I have seen the I will never knock it. We put smartstrand through some unbiased testing vs. R2x and came up with our own theories on it. The above post is wrong concerning the staining characteristics of triexta fiber. If it were a Shaw or Mohawk product that you were looking to purchase, I could be much more opinionated with the topics you need to know about. Beaulieu is just not a big player in our region and we only carry about 10 styles of their products vs hundreds of Shaw and scores of Mohawk. Sorry.

    Bookmark   September 7, 2012 at 10:28PM
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Here are further specifics on the products I'm referring to:

Mohawk SmartStrand product (Sorona Triexta) -- Style: Sheraton Cay for the master bedroom. Here's a link:

Reviews looked pretty positive but also saw some scary comments about SmartStrand Silk being very difficult to vacuum. I called Mohawk. They acknowledged this drawback but said this style isn't from the Silk line. It priced out at $34 installed over an 8 lb., 7/16 rebond pad.

For the bedrooms/offices, the style is Crafted from the Bliss line made by Beaulieu. Spec sheet lists Softsense solution dyed P.E.T. filament, 4.57 twist per inch. This priced at $30 installed, same pad as above. Could not find this product on the manufacturer website.

This supplier does carry Mohawk and Shaw. If someone could advise a nylon style that doesn't show too many footprints or vacuum tracks, I'd be very appreciative. Also, I could use some suggestions for the 2 bedrooms that will be used as home offices. Should I go for a nylon berber style, perhaps? I'm hesitant to go Triexta because it's a relatively new product.

The whole thing is giving me a headache. I didn't think we'd get this all settled on one visit, but I'd like to go back to the store a better-informed customer.

    Bookmark   September 8, 2012 at 7:05PM
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Last post for me on this as you are beginning to over think it adn that's not good for anyone. Let me tell you, that flooring is my life. I am passionate about it and have actually changed the way companies sell flooring in my part of the state. Not that that means anything, but I apply common sense to everything in this business. Triexta is the real deal...I dont like to sell because Lowes sells some products for what I buy them for. But you should lose the fear of it as I have seen it perform. Nothing does any better. The PET product is garbage. Overprice big handed junk at 30 bucks a yard. A 15 dollar nylon will outperform a 50 buck PET. Triexta is not a polyester. Buy a nylon or smartstrand that you like in your budget and forget this decision cause you made a good one. We sold a twist frieze triexta in a dining room of a lady that is used practically liek an office. At the same time we sold a plyester twisted Shaw (Frieze) PET in living room steps and hall. the triexta had wood chairs and a dining room table on it. It is where her kid used the computer. It was one year old. Same price per yard at the PET. The pet in two years time looked like it was 20 years old. The triexta was 3 years old and looked like the day we installed it. I was amazed. It was all I ever need to see. You can think this damned thing as much as you want...but I saw it 1st hand in a high trafficked home. Silk was brought out by Mohawk to calm the dealers vs the Lowes offerings. They were given some products via contract that just punished dealers with their pricing on it. It wasnt the exact same products, but close enough to make it about impossiblle for dealers. Racks were being found in dumpsters all over the country. So Mohawk introduced Smartstrand Ultra and Silk..which box stores do not have. I say supposedly the same characteristic of wear and stain proof..but softer. Certain Vacs struggle with any of these softies..including nylon softies and pet softies. Silk is big bucks. We just got our display of it on Tuesday last week. Do not fear any nylon BCF or triexta product. End of story on this. You can trust this post with your life as you are getting it straight. If I were buying in my region it would be a Shaw Nylon because they are a superior manufacturer because of service around here. Mohawk cant get it together to save themselves and Beaulieu just cant penetrate THIS MARKET FOR SQUAT as the dealers find them a distant 3rd across the board in styling, service, and representation. That is as important to a good dealer as the products themselves. Warranties are only as good as the dealer that sold it to you. We apply the pressure to the manufacturer when something doesent perform as we feel it should. Remeber Triexta is the real deal although I hate seeing it sold in my store because if they shop me on it, it gets tough. Nylon is (BCF NYLON) is very safe. Forget the olefin (polypropylene) or polyesters (PET). Just my opinion of course. Good Luck. PS in my opinion a nylon berber is a tough product but you do sacrifice the plushness. HGTV products by Shaw (not available in all Shaw stores) makes two line ups of Nylon berbers at a great price point. A couple of great shaw Nylons (plush) that were recently introduced at tremendous price points are Courageous, Thunderstruck, and Fusion Value 500...Your store may have never heard of them though as these products are deckboard only products. None of these are friezes though. Remember BCF Nylon or Triexta and rest easily...There you go..enjoy your floors...good luck.

    Bookmark   September 9, 2012 at 12:51AM
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I'd appreciate it if you'd refute or correct which parts are wrong. I have saved some links saved from my research.

Here is an article about the triexta and staining:

"It is true that "Triexta" has superior WATER BASED stain resistance, and that even stains that contain dyes may be easier to remove, but there is no evidence that this product is any less oil loving than "PET" (polyester). For that reason, you may need to use preconditioning agents designed to break the oil bonding that occurs with such fibers before you can successfully clean this carpet, or any other oil loving carpet such as "PET" (polyester)."

"Regardless of the debates about resiliency and the need for after market carpet protection, it is clear that both "triexta" and "polyester" are more oil loving than nylon, and will require products and procedures that more readily can break the oil bonds that inevitably will occur if this carpet is neglected and/or subjected to abuse."

"Oil Absorption
Triexta is oleophilic, and performs similarly to polyester PET and olefin. Although additional long-term testing is required, it appears to respond well to removal of oily spots and soils (petroleum, animal, vegetable) using dry solvent spotters and cleaning additives (e.g., propylene glycol)."

And here's another thread full of carpet cleaners talking about cleaning triexta:

You can search that forum and others to find more about triexta from the people who clean it, not sell it. I have heard that it is a super stain resisting miracle fiber from everyone who sells it. There was also that rhino test that was very impressive, but I'm not sure a rhino should be used as a litmus test since a rhino would never drop an entire bowl of mac 'n cheese on the carpet. If I didn't eat on my carpet I'd consider it (in 5+ years when it's more reviewed,) but our dining area is carpeted.

Here is an all in one article regarding all of the fibers but this is the link to the polyester page (P.E.T.)

As for track marks, berber is good but it's not recommended for cats. It's true in our case because ours likes to sharpen her nails on it. Do you have pets? Shag or a pattern could help cover track marks, or even a low cut pile but it won't feel as nice to walk on if you're looking for plush carpet.

The carpet store we shopped at was huge and let us throw all the carpet on the floor with little floormat sized pads underneath and walk/drag our feet on them. I think that's the best way to see if it's going to track or not. I know not all stores do that but you could visit one just to see?

    Bookmark   September 9, 2012 at 4:03AM
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Thanks for all the shared wisdom here. I need to study these posts in detail before returning to the store. Hopefully we'll leave there without a headache and with a satisfactory purchase!

    Bookmark   September 9, 2012 at 11:01AM
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LambOfTartary, your research is impressive, but I would say that oil and grease are very difficult to clean no matter what the carpet fiber is. I work in the industry and if someone asked me about oil/grease between nylon/triexta, I would tell them the difference is likely to be minimal.

    Bookmark   September 11, 2012 at 1:48PM
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NCnewbie2012 - don't stress too much. SmartStrand would be my recommendation, the durability and cleanability being the main factors.

As far as vacuuming, just go slow, low speed. SmartStrand is a VERY soft and thick carpet perfect for Masters and offices. A SmartStrand pattern/texture would be a good choice for office to.

    Bookmark   October 8, 2012 at 11:12AM
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It's an interesting topic! I get excited when I think about the idea of finding bliss. To me, bliss is something that we really enjoy doing. I mean really, really enjoy doing. I like to eat and I like to watch dancing on TV, but it's not my bliss. Bliss is much more and it impacts our life in a profound way. Relax, and find your bliss. It could be free, or quite cheap to do so. :)

Here is a link that might be useful: Finding Bliss

    Bookmark   July 10, 2014 at 2:51AM
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