What’s under your feet (or how you get around) is as important as anything when it comes to the house. That’s why this fall, we collaborated with The Home Depot on an A-to-Z guide that will give you the confidence to make the flooring choices you’ll love. Read the manual from A to Z here.
If you’ve ever been to a living room dance so much that you’ve slipped across the floor on a rug, you know how, uh, risky it can be having nothing to secure it. Luckily, non-slip mats are on hand to ensure the floor under your feet stays cushioned – and firmly anchored in place – while you try out the final moves.
But you don’t have to cut a rug, figuratively speaking, for them to count. Non-slip mats are an essential part of building the most comfortable space possible and also serve as a layer for safety and protection. They prevent rugs from having wavy edges, moving around when vacuuming, or spreading across the floor when the dog rolls up. Home Depot transports them in a variety of materials, thicknesses and construction styles, each suitable for specific types of carpet that you might have.
The room dictates the mat
Perhaps the most important role of carpet rugs is to make sure that the rugs stay completely attached to one place. This is especially important in high traffic areas, where “grip” non-slip pads, such as those made of extra-durable rubber, are ideal. Grip carpet pads are also a solid choice in any indoor-outdoor setting, like a screened porch or veranda, as they repel moisture and are also useful when you want a rug to have a lower profile (think: anywhere a mat can prevent a door mat from opening).
Non-slip mat pads (those that combine cushioning with a gripping action) do exactly what they promise, adding an extra level of plush to your carpet. These rugs are best served in bedrooms, entertainment rooms, or anywhere people might find themselves sitting on the floor (such as a playground). They usually have a felt top that provides support for the mat itself – and your body when you tackle an online yoga class – and a grippy rubber bottom to grip on the floor. (If you can’t tell which side is which, the manufacturer’s instructions will usually clear it up.)
Either way, non-slip mats don’t just soften the shock of daily trampling on your floors. They help a mat retain its shape more effectively by reducing the friction induced by movement. Non-slip carpet pads can be used on any surface – tile, laminate, carpet, you name it – but if the flooring is smooth, like hardwood, make sure your carpet mat has power. sufficient grip by checking again that it is a “cushion -grip” and not just a “cushion” cushion.
Carpet pads can lead a long, happy life (as long as your carpet itself, if not longer) with a little maintenance. According to Carolyn Forte, Director of Appliances and Cleaning Products at Good Housekeeping, be sure to vacuum the cushion at least twice a year, and in addition to the carpet, be sure to check and treat any stains on the carpet if an accident occurs.
Size matters, but you can customize
Carpet cushions, especially those designed for area rugs, are often sold in standard sizes, but are infinitely simple to customize at home if the desired thickness and style of grip isn’t out of the box.
Measure the carpet itself, then subtract two inches from each side – this is an ideal size for your carpet. (You certainly don’t want a simple looking rug rug sticking out from the side of your old rug!) Cut the pad to fit using standard, sharp scissors, decide where exactly in the room the combination mat and cushion will go and unroll the cushion with the rubber side down (if felt and rubber). Just like that, you have a new built-in support network for your carpet that will keep your floors in pristine condition and trip and fall catastrophes at bay.