Karastan Smartstrand or Karastan Wear Dated nylon???

gd2gardenOctober 27, 2011

We're putting carpeting in bedrooms and living room. We have narrowed it down to The Great Indoors and a local Cappet One retailer. I have tried to research Smartstrand carpet and see lots of information on this carpet's stain features. However, I'm concerned about its durability and long term wear qualities. The salesman mentioned a Karastan Wear Dated nylon and suggested that it would be a better long term option for durability. We are looking at a frieze style of carpet. Any opinions from carpet professionals or consumers that have used the Smartstrand product. We are getting the Karastan upgraded, 8 pound pad with the moisture barrier. Karastan Smartstrand is $4.28 sf and Karastan Wear Dated nylon is $3.96 sf which includes install, upgraded pad and moving furniture. Any help would be appreciated.

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Wow..I never like to recommend a box store. But, Lowes now has a Smartstrand color wall. The sell intelligent style for 2.88 sq ft. It is really the same product. They will install it for 99 dollars also. We are removing our Smartstrand displays as we just can not compete with it. I have been told it is killing many Karastan sales. Just something to think about. Good Luck

    Bookmark   October 28, 2011 at 1:21AM
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Floortech, thank you for your reply. It is funny you should mention Lowes because we went there today without even knowing they sold Smartstrand. Their installed price for Mohawk Smartstand was $3.60 with a 10lb pad they have on sale right now. The style we were looking at with Lowes is called Starfall. I called them tonight to check the specs and they said it is 45oz face weight, 5.5 twist and 1714 density. If the density number he gave us is correct, is that too low? We want to pick a carpet that will last a while. Thank you so much for your advice. It is much appreciated.

    Bookmark   October 28, 2011 at 11:05PM
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In all honesty, smartstrand really performs well..I have seen it perform in high traffic areas for several years without any signs of wear. It is truly amazing. We are upset with Mohawk (who owns Karastan by the way) as they struck some crazy deal selling the stuff to lowes for about half of what the retailer buys it at. This is very uncommon as usually retailers purchase their products semi close to what Lowes pays for custom. So retailers are throwing the racks away left and right. I would buy now from Lowes before some type of internal change takes place because Mohawk needs the retailers....so something will give. Smartstrand is an excellant product!

    Bookmark   October 29, 2011 at 12:26AM
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We ended up ordering a Mohawk Smartstrand with an upgraded 10lb pad with moisture barrier feature from Lowes. Long story short, the carpet is installed, but it has not gone well. When Lowe's installers were here both my husband and I asked if they were going to tape the joints on the carpet pad. We could see that the old carpet padding they removed did have taped joints. First, they told us that the new carpet padding didn't need to be taped and then later one of the guys left and came back with a roll of duct tape to tape the joints. When they were finished installing all of the carpet my husband asked them if they got all of the padding joints taped and they said yes.

We had to call Lowes after walking on the carpet in our bare feet we felt a hard object under one spot of the carpet and an area in the master bedroom where the pad felt hard and raised.

The installers came back out and found a rock under the carpet in one room and a section of carpet padding in the master bedroom that is harder/stiffer than the other portion of padding. While pulling the carpet up to address these problems we also found out that the installers did not tape the padding joints in these rooms. Lowes agrees that this should have been done to retain the moisture block features of the upgraded pad we bought and has reassured us that duct tape is perfectly fine to tape the joints.

Lowes has ordered a new section of pad for the master bedroom and is going to have the installers come back to pull up all the carpet to ensure the padding joints are taped. Yes, what a major inconvenience to us! On top of that, last night I noticed another section of bad padding when I was walking in a spare bedroom in bare feet. You can literally feel the padding joint with your bare feet because one side of the pad feels soft and the other side feels more stiff like thick cardboard. So I guess I'll be calling Lowes again today to tell them to bring more padding with them when they come to fix all of our problems.

The Smartstrand carpet itself is nice and we are happy with it, but the Lowe's installers lied to our face about not needing to tape the joints on the upgraded pad and worse yet, didn't do it for all the rooms after they told us they did. On top of this problem it appears we have a quality issue with at least a portion of our carpet padding. The whole ordeal couldn't get much worse! In hindsight, I wish we had gone with a different carpet retailer.

    Bookmark   January 10, 2012 at 7:52AM
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Lowe's employees from their Install dept came out to our house yesterday to take a look at the pad problem. They pulled up the carpet in the master bedroom and took samples of the carpet pad. They agreed that it was quite noticeable where some of the carpet pad was too soft and some was very dense and hard.

One of the Lowe's employees called me today and said the rep for the Shaw carpet pad was astounded when he saw the samples taken from our house. It sounds like both rolls of pad (the softer and harder pads) were not right and something more in the middle should be right. He said Lowes is going to replace all of the pad in our house.

After we looked at the Mohawk Smartcushion info on the web we called Lowes back and asked if they would replace the pad with this product instead. I hate to have more Shaw padding ordered and take the chance of it having a quality issue again. The Lowe's Install employee said he would have to speak with a manager and get back to me on that since their may be a price difference. Given the install problems and pad problems we have had on this job I think Lowes should step up and substitute the Mohawk pad. It will be interesting to see how they handle it.

    Bookmark   January 11, 2012 at 1:26PM
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I would think you would want the smartcushion pad anyway. I believe it is less expensive than the Shaw pad AND it will extend your Mohawk warranty in a way the Shaw pad will not.


Personally, I thought the Mohawk pad felt better. I am also going to buy smartstrand from Lowes with smartcushion.

I appreciate knowing about your experience regarding taping the cushions. I will watch for that in our home. thanks!

    Bookmark   January 13, 2012 at 6:14PM
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If you want to be a real weenie (like me) you may want to download and read this, and INSIST that the installers follow it to the letter.


Cushion installation - Install cushion in the longest continuous lengths possible with consideration to traffic patterns and carpet seam placement. It is required that cushion seams be at a right angle (90�) to carpet seams or offset at least six inches (150 mm). Butt cushion seams net without compression, leaving no gaps. Do not tape or staple cushion seams for double glue down installations. Install separate carpet cushion in the longest continuous lengths possible, with cushion seams placed at right angles to carpet seams, or offset at least six inches (150 mm) to one side. Trim cushion flush with the inside contour of the tack strip and securely fastened to the substrate using staples or nonflammable cushion adhesive at all seams and around the perimeter of each room. With the exception of fiber cushions, secure seams with appropriate vinyl-coated cloth cushion tape per the carpet cushion manufacturer's recommendations.

    Bookmark   January 13, 2012 at 6:27PM
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MasonSc, thank you for your comments. We're having our pad replaced soon and they are supposed to be sending their best crew to do it. Hopefully the second time is the charm!

    Bookmark   January 25, 2012 at 3:34PM
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I'm having carpet and padding installed right now and wonder if I'm getting the correct padding. We were told the Karastan "Relax" is equal (or better) to the Smart Cushion. Unfortunately, it's firmer than expected, making the new carpet feel less plush. Any suggestions?

    Bookmark   January 15, 2013 at 11:50AM
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If I'm not mistaken, "KaraStep Reserve" is Karastan's Smart Cushion equivalent so you might want to ask about the Reserve or the KaraStep Refine cushion. Both have visco-memory foam rebond, which gives it that softer feel. I think Refine is less dense, so it might feel softer to you than the Reserve. The Relax cushion does not contain the memory foam-- so that's why it doesn't feel plush to you.

Hope that helps!

    Bookmark   January 17, 2013 at 11:30AM
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I am looking a at a Karastan, Bedford Estates product that is a Smartstrand Silk. What does that mean? it it a cut and loop with a patterned diamond look to it. Is this a good carpet? It seems to be rather thin compared to all the other carpets. Will this wear well? It cost is $58 psy.

I am also looking at a Shaw ANSOnylon Magic at last IV that is very plush and only $27psy.
So which is the better choice?
I live in a condo with concrete slab. My current carpet is bulider's grade and looking bad. Plus i notice when i vacuum with my shark my vacuum is pulling the firbers from the current carpet. Will with be a problem with new carpet?

    Bookmark   January 30, 2015 at 1:15PM
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i am buying new carpet for family room and cant decide between shaw anso nylon or smart strand fresh sensations. i want stain protection but really want to make sure the longterm durability is top notch. smart strand "fresh sensations" just seems so soft it cant withstand heavy traffic without crushing sooner than later. dealers i talk to either rave about smart stand or dont sell it because they dont like it or mohawk. My style of choice is a "berber"/low pile look ......not considering cut pile as we dont want rug to show tracks. does anyone have any feedback to offer that would help? i dont know who to trust!

    Bookmark   February 14, 2015 at 3:38PM
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