Carpet Stretching

Carpet, like other textile products (such as a pair of jeans or a t-shirt), is known to stretch. You can spot a carpet that needs a re-stretch by the visual looseness and ‘bagginess’ of the carpet. It will look more relaxed than when it was first installed. Other tell-tale signs are what can be described as ‘waves’ in the carpet. These ripples and wrinkles are created when the stretched carpet bunches in one area due to traffic across the floor. It is important to have your carpet re-stretched as soon as you notice these symptoms as constant traffic over these carpet ‘waves’ will lead to the flooring wearing down unevenly in these areas causing permanent damage.

Re-stretching carpet is considered a regular part of carpet maintenance, similar to vacuuming and steam cleaning if appropriate for the fibre type. Carpet re-stretching may need to be carried out as soon as 2 years from when your carpet was installed. Carpet requiring re-stretching outside of this period is not an installation fault, rather a characteristic of the flooring.

There are a number of variables involved that lead to carpet stretching faster in some homes than others. The four most common reasons are:
  • Temperature and humidity are one of the major contributors to carpet buckling. The moisture in a humid environment will cause the carpet to swell and stretch.
  • Excessive wear due to traffic, particularly if wheelchairs, walkers, kid’s tricycles etc. are moving across the floor.
  • Sliding heavy furniture across carpet can create ripples or separate the carpet from the smooth-edge (nailed tacks) around the perimeter of the room that holds the carpet in place. We recommend that you lift furniture rather than slide it, to avoid damage.
  • Improper selection of carpet underlay can have an impact on the carpet wearing and stretching. Having no underlay or underlay that is very thin, may not provide enough grip for the traffic moving across the carpet leading to increased movement and stretching.