The Nap (Pile) of the Carpet: Definition and Features

Nap is the shape of the knot ends connected to the warp wires, cut to certain lengths. It is located at the top of the carpet. It directly affects the texture, appearance, and softness of the carpet. Another name used for “nap” is “pile”. The most common nap types are cut pile, loop pile, cut and loop pile, velours pile, Saxony pile, twist frieze pile, frieze shag pile, tip shared pile and felt pile.

The innovations experienced in the carpet sector in recent years offer us more than the alternatives in traditional loop nap. As a result, in order to add a difference and interest to a room, we can make sure that the carpet we choose has a textured pattern, we can prefer small pieces of stone such as diamonds, or carpets that have been embossed using accessories such as small dots. On the other hand, it should be noted that the choice of a severely cut pile velvet Saksony or a Berber frieze carpet adds a warm look to the creation of different atmospheres.

When choosing textures and patterns, you should choose the carpet that is compatible with your furniture and curtains. On the other hand, textured carpets produced with different construction techniques and having different naps may have the ability to hide the staining that may occur on the carpet over time.

What is Nap Height? Why Nap is Important for Carpets?

The color, pattern, and quality of the carpet are of course the first characteristics to be looked at, but the nap height can inevitably be a deciding factor in the decision to buy because of its effects such as comfort and ease of use. What is nap height? What should be considered in the nap height when choosing a carpet?

  • What is Nap Height?

In summary, the nap height is the height of your carpet from the ground. The nap refers to the ropes you see on the surface of your rug, and the nap height refers to the height of these ropes. Carpets are divided into three roughly according to the nap height;

· Short nap carpets (6 mm and below)

· Medium nap carpets (6 mm to 12 mm)

· Long nap carpets (12 mm and above)

  • Short Nap Height Carpets

Short nap carpets generally have a firmer knit and a smoother surface. The most important advantage of short nap carpets is durability, and another is the practicality of cleaning. The dirt, pet hair, etc. will penetrate more difficult into this type of carpets, thus it is much easier to clean. These carpets are also lighter and provide ease of use.

The disadvantage of short pile carpets is the feeling it gives the user. Such carpets are not as soft as high pile products. It is less preferred for use at home because it gives a rough feel, especially when stepped on with bare feet. Due to its durability and hard feeling, it is often preferred in office and other places used with shoes.

  • Medium Nap Height Carpets

Medium nap height carpets, as the name suggests, accommodate the advantages of short and long nap carpets such as ease of use, cleanliness, and comfort. For this reason, it is the most preferred type by the users. If you want your carpet to be both soft and easy to clean, you can choose a carpet model with a nap height between 6 mm and 12 mm.

  • Long Nap Height Carpets

Long nap height carpets may be a suitable choice for the users whose priority is comfort on the carpet. When choosing these types of carpets, it should not be forgotten that it will not be easy to clean and will not offer practical usage because of the weight of the carpet.

Nap Analysis by Carpet Types

Axminster: Axminster, which is a cut pile carpet, is generally used with patterns. The quality of the carpet depends on the type and quantity of fibers used in its construction. The height of the nap is slightly shorter than that of shaggy carpets. Axminster is also available as wall-to-wall.

Wilton: In Wilton type carpets known as relief carpets, the fibers are woven continuously. This technique limits the number of colors on the counter. Wilton carpets, which are also available in a variety of designs, are mostly plain and flat. Parts and wall-to-wall variants are also available.

Tufting: Tufting carpets produced by forming stitches of the desired length with hundreds of needles passed through a pad made of jute or polypropylene, have various parts or wall to wall types.

Cord: Cord carpets are produced with a production technique similar to Wilton carpets. Artificial fibers are mostly used in the production of cord carpets. Hair Cord carpets made of animal feathers are very durable. Their nap height is average.

Indian Carpets: Indian carpets are hand made carpets produced in dirty white tones. In this carpet, the nap is formed by knitting and looping the carpet backing. Rugs and wall-to-wall options are available.

Felt Carpet: There is no nap in this type of carpet. It is produced by needle punching and entanglement of the fiber to the carpet base. In such carpets, the carpet backing is coated with acrylic resin. Among the fiber types used in its production are nylon, jute, and polypropylene. New production techniques such as welding, which eliminate the need for resin-based adhesives, are developing.

Carpet Nap Types and Their Features

  • Cut Pile Carpets

Cut pile (nap) carpets are produced from prefabricated fibers and yarns such as polypropylene, polyamide, polyester, acrylic, and wool. During the needling method, a soft and flexible surface is formed on the woven cloth by cutting with the knife at the moment the needle enters and leaves. The back surface of the woven material at a given nap height is coated with adhesive (latex, calcite), and then the textile base, also called the second base, is laminated and bonded. Cut pile carpets are also called tufting. Standard width: 400 cm, length 25 m. and 30 m. Cut Pile carpets have a weight between 2000 – 3000 gr.

  • Loop Pile Carpets

Loop-pile carpets are produced by using needle-punched polypropylene and polyamide yarns. The back surface of the woven product with a certain nap height processed by the needle entering and leaving the cloth is coated with adhesive (Latex, calcite mixture). The protection coating (such as the second base action back or textile base felt base) is then laminated and bonded. Curl carpets are also called loop pile. Example: straight curl, patterned curl, printed curl and so on. The standard width is 400 cm, length 25 m. and 30 m. The carpet nap is woven in rings and left just like that. Those whose rings are thick are called “barber curls”. Standard frieze carpets are generally regarded as the lowest quality products. However, they can be used in parts of your home that do not need a luxurious look and require high durability. Especially suitable for stair steps.

  • Cut and Loop Pile Carpets

Cut and loop pile carpets are produced as the formation of patterns on the same surface of a cut-end rope and an uncut-end rope. These types of ready-made yarns are mainly made of polyester, polypropylene and polyamide yarns. As the needles come in and out of the cloth, the cut and non-cut ends are woven at different nap heights. The difference in shaved surface and unshaved yarn tone gives the carpet a different look, the back surface of the woven product is coated with an adhesive (Latex, calcite mixture), then laminated with the protective coating (such as 2nd base action back or textile base). The tufted section has a high nap, where the low ground is uncut curl. The standard width is 400 cm, length 25 m. and 30 m. Cut and loop carpets are produced in weight between 2500 – 3000 gr. With its high cut Saxony dominating texture, low frieze pile islets create contrasting patterns. They look quite modern and assertive. They are ideal for bedrooms and lounges.

  • Velour Carpets

Usually very thick weaving thinner than single-ply yarn. Quality models should be velvety and smooth. The carpet is very easy to clean because the nap is kept short. It can be used especially in children’s rooms or anywhere you want. What is particularly sought in the carpet is the comfort that is felt. The velour carpet is a bright, soft structural velvet-like carpet with a finely cut edge and a smooth woven type, where the soft texture of the carpet is clustered with fine filament yarns. The velvety-textured carpet, produced by tight weaving of fine capillary fibers, is called velour carpet.

  • Saxony Carpets

The carpet fibers (pile, nap) are first woven in the form of rings, then cut straight and made upright. Saxony carpets are preferred in terms of durability and are widely used. It has a smooth and luxurious surface. You can use it anywhere in your home. Although this is the most popular style of carpet on the market, it has a tendency to show more footprints.

  • Twist Frieze Carpets

Like Saxony carpets, the nap is produced firstly in the form of rings and then cut. However, the nap is then slightly bent at a very small level, making the carpet surface rough. The main purpose here is to hide footprints. These carpets are produced with a very high thickness and are suitable for high traffic areas. Generally used in living rooms.

  • Frieze Shag Pile Carpets

It is woven in the same way as frieze carpets. However, the hairs are twisted too much to give a curly air. In addition, a softer texture is obtained by tapping loosely. In recent years it has become one of the most popular carpet textures in the world.

  • Tip Sheared Carpets

It consists of fine filament yarns. It is produced by shading the end-cut yarn and the uncut end yarn with an average nap thickness of 5 – 6 mm consisting of high and low needling on the same surface. In the production of the tip sheared carpets, generally polyester, polypropylene and polyamide yarns are used. Tip sheared carpets which are predominantly made of computerized machines are made of different weaving processes, creating carpets that provide self-pattern formation as a result of the movements of the needling machine. The appearance of the high-low texture with their all differences adds a beautiful look to the carpet, and there are extra colored carpets made by printing coloring on the carpet. The back surface of the woven product is coated with adhesive (latex, calcite mixture), then laminated with a protective coating (2nd base action back or textile base). The standard width used is 400 cm, the length is between 25 m and 30 m.

  • Felt Pile Carpets

In the production stage, the blended olefin (polypropylene) which comes in the form of fibers enters the needling by being spread on the surface of the machine at the same time. Wall-to-wall carpets with felt-coated back surfaces are not affected by cold and moisture coming from the floor, ensuring that the room temperature does not change and provides good heat insulation. Made of easy to clean yarn, can be wiped with a soapy cloth and can be intervened immediately in case of any spilling. You can wash it with the carpet washing machine.

Carpet Nap Evaluation by the Material Used

  • Wool Fiber Carpets

It is a natural fiber of superior quality and has long been used in the manufacture of carpets and rugs than all other fibers. In fact, the history of the weaving of wool carpets is BC. Dates back to 3,000; wool carpets and rugs have since been regarded as symbols of beauty and prestige.

When it comes to luxury and performance, no other fiber can compete with the wool. Wool fibers are easy to paint and rich in natural colors. The carpet cleaning process is easily applied for wool carpets and they have an extremely long life. Wool fibers are generally used in cut fluff and woven carpets. Wool carpets are less resistant to moisture than synthetic fiber carpets. Wool also does not have the stain and abrasion resistance of some man-made fibers, but still has a permanent quality. Many wool carpets and rugs are said to have “elegant aging” properties.

Wool carpets maintain their nap heights. They have an ultra-soft feeling when touched or stepped on. Wool is one of the most expensive natural fibers and is much more expensive than synthetic fiber carpets. It also constitutes a very small portion of all woven carpets sold in carpet shops.

  • Nylon Fiber Carpets

Nylon carpet fibers are more expensive than other synthetic carpet fibers and are the most widely used carpet fibers since the early 1960s. In terms of their overall performance characteristics, nylon fiber is the most versatile of all fibers and provides excellent flexibility, allowing a wide range of carpet styles to be created. Highly durable, stain and mold resistant and free from static electricity, nylon is a great choice for carpets of any density and application. The carpet made of nylon fiber is durable and flexible. Many new nylon yarns are also exceptionally soft.

Although not inherently stain-resistant, most nylon carpets undergo special treatments to protect against household debris and stain formation. The fiber resists the weight of heavy furniture and people, maintaining its nap height. Nylon carpets are dyed during the production of the fibers so that no color flow occurs after production. Nylon fiber is the material for the majority of all residential carpets.

  • Polyester Fiber Carpets

Although polyester fibers are not essentially as flexible as nylon, the carpets made of polyester fibers will perform well if they are made well. Polyester carpet provides exceptional softness and color clarity. Polyester fibers are easy to clean and naturally resistant to staining and fading.

Their resistance to crushing and their wide range of dynamic colors provide many advantages to polyester fiber carpets. Polyester fiber, which is cheaper than nylon or wool, creates a very attractive carpet. Polyester carpets are generally less expensive than nylon in weight. Polyester, which is generally used in soft-loop or barber-loop carpets, is a fiber used for making luxury products.

  • Polypropylene Fiber Carpets

Since 1980, the use of polypropylene carpet fibers has increased dramatically. Unlike other fiber types, the polyproline does not absorb water and therefore needs to be dyed (pigmented) with a solution to give color. Solution dyeing is a pigmentation process in which the color is actually introduced into the fiber when the fiber is formed and thus becomes unstoppable from the fiber. The color will not fade even when exposed to intense sunlight, bleaching agents, atmospheric pollutants or other harsh chemicals or elements.

Polypropylene carpets are resistant to moisture and mold and are easy to clean and maintain. However, since they are not as flexible as other fibers, polypropylene is often used in loop pile structures where less flexibility is required. Polypropylene fibers that control the commercial market with a large share are the cheapest of artificial fibers. Because it is very strong, it is both indoor and outdoor fiber and is widely used as an artificial turf.

  • Acrylic Fiber Carpets

Acrylic is the type of fiber that is closest to wool fibers among synthetic fibers. Because of its wool-like qualities, velvet and plush types are widely used in looped carpets. Acrylic fibers can give the look and feel of wool at a much lower price.

Acrylic fiber carpets with moisture and mold resistance are more advantageous than wool. Acrylic fiber carpet is resistant to crushing and stains and does not fade from sunlight.

Because acrylic fibers are highly prone to wear, they are not suitable for high traffic areas such as halls, living rooms, and stairs. For this reason, they become very good carpet material in the living room and guest rooms.

  • Silk Fiber Carpets

Silk is a self-glossy yarn that is resistant to tension. This type of yarn, which is very bright, makes designs appear in different shades when viewed from different angles. Extraordinary carpets can be woven with silk. It is also used to clarify designs in silk and wool carpets. Although precious and expensive silk carpets are usually woven on the basis of cotton warp, in some carpets the warp of the carpet can also be made of silk. Considering the sensitivity of the yarn, it is preferred to use silk carpets in flat and dry areas. Silk carpets also require more maintenance compared to wool carpets.

  • Jute Fiber Carpets

Jute carpets are very economical and can be knitted in beautiful models. The only problem with this material is that these carpets do not hold moisture very well.

The jute carpet, which you can use at the points where you constantly set foot, is highly resistant to abrasion. This means that you can use this carpet with peace of mind at the points where you constantly set foot for a long time.

Only if you have pets, the jute carpet does not absorb the odor, but it is well-liked by animals and is not a very good alternative in humid environments.

Best Carpets With Different Naps You Can Buy Online

  • Unique Loom Solo Solid Shag Collection Modern Plush Navy Blue Area Rug (5′ 0 x 8′ 0). This rug is water-resistant, mold, and mildew resistant, stain-resistant, and does not shed. (Price: $57.00)

  • Soft Plush High Pile Rugs Simple Style Modern Shaggy Motley Tie-dye Carpet Bedroom Mat Light Grey 4 x 5.3ft. 4cm high nectarine velvet pile gives a super soft feeling to the touch, which caused you to feel a little thin and lightweight. (Price: $42.99)

  • Maxy Home Adaline Medallion Soft Cut Pile Non-Slip 3’3″ x 5′ New Trend Area Rug, Grey Yellow. SIZE: 3’3″ x 5′ (39-inch x 60 inches) | COLORS: Base grey color, with shades of yellow, ivory. (Price: $34.29)

  • Safavieh MLP501G-8 Micro-Loop Collection MLP501G Handmade Grey and Ivory Premium Wool Area. Meticulously detailed artisan-crafted hand-tufted construction. (8′ x 10′) Rug, Light (Price: $43.99)

  • Floral Loop Pile Print Area Rug or Runner,Gray(2’6″ x3’10) (Price: $44.66)

  • Momeni Rugs Newport Collection, 100% Wool Hand-Tufted Loop Cut Contemporary Area Rug, 3’9″ x 5’9″, Multicolor. Cozy cottage styling mixed with the timeless patterns of William Morris. (Price: $73.99)

  • Koeckritz Rugs Runner 2.5’x9′ Daybreak – Hidden Trail – Custom Carpet Area Rug – 40 Oz. Tufted, Pinpoint Saxony – Nylon by Milliken (12 Colors to Choose from) (Price: $38.99)

  • Cedar 20×30 Inch Ultra Soft & Plush Frieze Twist Microfiber Bath Mat, Absorbent Bathroom Floor Rug, Burgundy (Price: $13.99)

  • Soft Flecked Frieze Beige Bound Carpet Area Rug – 5’x7’ (Price: $27.00)

  • YJ.GWL High Pile Velvet Bedroom Living Room Rug (47″ x 63″), Extra Soft & Easy Clean Large Shaggy Area Rugs, Plush Carpet for Kids Nursery Room Decor, Green (Price: $26.99)

Savaş Ateş

I'm a software engineer. I like history and reading about carpets. I like to play soccer too :)

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