How to Know When It’s Time to Replace Your Carpet

Carpet is a durable, affordable flooring solution. It looks great and feels nice underfoot, but like everything else in life, it doesn’t last forever. With wear and tear over time, even if you take good care of it, carpet will need to be replaced eventually. 

So how do you know when it is time for a carpet replacement? These handy tips will help you determine if your comfy flooring has reached the end of its lifespan.

replace your carpet

How Long Does Carpet Last?

Generally, with proper care and cleaning, carpet in a home can last 10 to 15 years. The quality of the carpet and padding you start with will impact how long your carpet lasts, but even the highest grade carpets wear out eventually. Carpeting in high-traffic areas will wear out sooner. Having animals and small children at home canalso age a carpet more-quickly.

That said, you can’t simply use the carpet’s age as a meter stick for when to replace it (especially since so many of us don’t know how old our carpets are). Instead, keep an eye out for the warning signs below.

How to Tell If You Need New Carpet

When you notice your carpet looking worn, you could choose to put up with it—or consider a carpet replacement. Let’s take a look at how to tell if you need new carpet

Start by asking these questions.

1. Is your carpet matted down?

replace your carpet

Carpet, much like grass, loses its springiness over time as people walk on it. The more traffic it sees, the faster your carpet can lose its soft plushness. Similarly, the padding under the carpet can be flattened out over time, requiring replacement, just as your pillow might. 

Eventually, even high-quality vacuums and professional carpet cleaners won’t be able to restore your soft carpet to its original plushness. When your carpet is matted down, it’s time to consider a new carpet installation.

2. Is it permanently stained?

replace your carpet

Sometimes, there is only so much that can be done to keep carpet looking new.

Stains, discolorations, or fading that don’t disappear with carpet cleaning treatment are all signs that a carpet should be replaced. When carpet stains occur, they can spread out beneath the top layer of the carpet. If most of the spill seeps beneath the surface (see illustration), over time, it could reappear. 

While a professional carpet cleaning can typically help eradicate most stains, as your carpet ages, stains can set in more easily. You may find there are some spots that just refuse to fade away. 

Are you covering up stains with furniture and area rugs when cleaning fails to remove them? It may not matter how well you have cared for it over the years or how many times you’ve had it professionally cleaned. That’s a good indication you should consider replacing your carpeting.

If only one spot is stained or discolored, however, and the rest of the carpet in your home is looking good, you may be able to get away with a one-room carpet replacement, but note that it might be hard to exactly-match other rooms’ carpet installed at a prior date due to fading from the sun and differing dye-lots from the manufacturer.

3. Are you moving?

So you’re ready to move. In a competitive housing market, staging your home and prepping it for potential buyers can be crucial. From the basics of staging and decluttering, don’t forget to consider how your carpet will look to potential buyers. 

Dingy, dated carpeting can stand out like a sore thumb. Consider upgrading your carpet to help attract the right buyer and help get your home off the market faster. Putting in new carpet can be a  very cost-effective  way to update and breathe new life into a room. With new carpet, your home will look more fresh, new, and clean.

4. Does your carpet make the room smell?

While you might be able to put up with old-looking carpet, it’s a lot harder to love carpet that smells old or dirty. If you own a pet or haven’t cleaned your carpet in a while, you may notice a lingering smell. 

Most carpets, and the padding underneath them, absorb smells, dirt, and messes—and they can be really hard to fully extract. Professional carpet cleaning can help, but sometimes the smells and stains are just too much, too deep, or have been around too long for treatment. Sometimes, cleaning the carpet might even make the smell worse. 

In these cases, replacing the carpet (and potentially doing work on the subflooring) may be the only solution.

5. Are You Experiencing Allergy Symptoms?

Carpet fibers can attract dust, dirt, and pet dander— common allergens that might trigger reactions in sensitive family members. If you or someone in your household is experiencing more severe allergy symptoms unrelated to changes in the weather, your carpet may be to blame. 

Some people report experiencing fewer allergy symptoms after a carpet replacement, especially when a hypoallergenic carpet like Empire HOME Fresh is chosen. 

Time for a New Carpet Installation?

Do any of these signs sound familiar to you? If so, it could be time to make the move and get new carpet. Luckily, as flooring installations go, new carpet is one of the more economical options. Plus, it looks great, and carpet is inviting, warm, and comfortable.


If it’s time to make some renovations in your home, and flooring is first on your list, buy new flooring through Empire and schedule your FREE in-home estimate today!

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