When does carpet underlay need to be replaced?
When your carpets have been affected by water damage there are certain situations when the underlay should always be replaced. If the water intrusion is from a burst sewage pipe or an overflowing river, there is a high chance of contamination. In theses situations it is not advisable to salvage the carpets or the underlay as there is still a possibility of contamination. When mould has been growing on the carpets and flooring the underlay will always be disposed of and replaced accordingly.
What is Carpet Underlay?
If you’ve ever had your carpets removed due to flooding, you may have seen the thick, soft rubbery-like layer of foam that sits underneath your carpet on top of the underlying floorboards. This underlay serves a variety of very useful purposes including:
- Providing cushioning and comfort for walking on the carpet
- Insulation and keeping the flooring warm from cold draughts
- Preventing the carpets from wearing and tearing due to friction on the floorboards
- Allowing sound insulation
- Providing insulation from too much heat radiating from the flooring upwards in warmer season
The carpet underlay is made from sponge, rubber, foam or crumb rubber that has been rolled into a flat shape and cut depending on the size of the carpeted area. Insuring that this layer is installed properly is critical for ensuring your carpet can be properly stretched and re-layed after water damage and it allows your carpets to last through the years. The thickness of carpet underlay varies too and your professional carpet layer will offer the best thickness depending on the area in your property where carpets are being layed. For example the thickness may be a little more than usual on staircases where carpet is being installed compared to a regular bedroom. The thickness varies depending on the materials the underlay is made from as well as the recommendation. It generally varies between 8mm – 12mm.
Different Types of Carpet Underlay
Just like carpets, underlay is available in a range of different materials and thicknesses depending on the requirements of your property. The main types of underlay are foam, felt, rubber and latex. The underlay should always be firm and still comfortable when walked upon. The type of underlay that has been installed at your property will depend on the daily use of your property and the type of carpet that has been supplied. The type of underlay will provide an added level of acoustic and thermal insulation and ensure that minor imperfections on the flooring beneath don’t effect the overall appearance and comfort of the carpet above.
What do I do if my carpets have been damaged by water?
In situations where your property has been affected by an accidental flooding incident it is advisable to call an emergency flood damage specialist immediately to prevent secondary damage and increased water saturation. In the cases of heavy flooding and severe damage the best response is a fast response, in order to prevent the water travelling to other areas of your property and causing further damage.