4 Questions to Ask When Considering an Area Rug Pad

There are many reasons why adding a pad underneath your area rug can be beneficial, with the top three reasons being protection, safety, and comfort. A rug pad from Ayoub Carpet Service will help protect your rug from premature wear and tear and, depending on the pad, also protect the flooring underneath from spills and accidents. Most people have experienced almost slipping – or actually slipping – on an unsecured rug or mat, as it can be dangerous to leave area rugs without a slip-resistant pad underneath. Lastly, pads add an extra layer of cushion between your rug and the flooring underneath.

Rug pad for your area rug

Why Choosing the Right Pad Is So Important

Choosing the right pad for your rug may seem like an easy task, but due to the wide variety of rug padding options, it can be more difficult than expected. There are many factors you must consider when choosing a rug pad, such as the size of your rug, the amount of protection needed, and where the rug is located in your home. Selecting the wrong type of pad for your area rug and the flooring underneath can have negative results. Some pads can stick to the floor, disintegrate, and can even create a chemical reaction called “off-gassing” with your area rug, resulting in toxins in the air and discoloration in your area rug.

1. Does the Size of an Area Rug Dictate What Pad to Use?

There are specific pads that work well with certain types of rugs. One of the main factors to consider when selecting a pad is the size of your rug. If your rug is over 4 x 6 feet and is an oriental, custom, or carpet, the best pad would be ¼-inch thick, heavy enough to anchor the rug in place, but thin enough to not cause a hill in the rug (which could be a potential safety hazard).

For area rugs smaller than 4 x 6 feet, low profile pads are best. All area rugs have the habit of shuffling around when walked on, and smaller rugs are even more likely to shift. Many smaller rugs, and even runners, are also located in front of doorways, making a thin pad the best option. Although a low-profile pad may not provide the cushion and comfort of a ¼-inch pad, it is essential for smaller area rugs in order to provide safety and door clearance.

 2. Are All Rug Pads Safe and Durable?

When choosing a rug pad, it is also important to consider durability. There are many different materials that manufacturers use to make rug pads, and some materials are more durable than others. The better pads to consider are made out of felt and rubber. Some manufacturers even offer eco-friendly pad options that are made out of 100% recycled materials.

Durability falls into the protection category. When a pad is not durable, it may quickly disintegrate underneath your area rug, causing damage to the hard-surface flooring underneath. Toxic rug pads are typically made with PVC and are manufactured overseas where they may not be held to the same safety standards as those made in the United States. Most experts recommend a natural felt and rubber pad because these materials are non-toxic and will not outgas; so they are safe to use on all types of floors and finishes.

3. Are All Rug Pads Leakproof?

Because an area rug can be found in a wide variety of locations within the home, based on style, preference, flooring, and layout, rug pad manufacturers have produced several different types of pads in order to create a pad solution for all rugs. As covered above, there are pads for different-sized rugs as well as pads made with various materials. The same applies to being leakproof. It is safe to say that no pad is 100% leakproof, but instead, we say they are leak-resistant.

Deciding whether or not your rug needs a leak-resistant pad depends on one main factor: the location of your rug in the home. If your rug is located in a high-traffic area, such as in the dining room or living room, it is best to choose a pad that is leak-resistant. This way, it helps prevent any spills or pet accidents from leaking through into the flooring underneath.

4. Are Rug Pads for Tapestries and Flat Weaves?

Area rugs are varied and can be made with heavier fibers or with very light fibers, almost like a knitted blanket. For these lighter area rugs, typically flat weaves, tapestries, or needle points, a pad with a slip-resistant bottom and a rough surface with alternating grooves is the best option. The slip-resistant bottom allows for safety, while the rough surface and alternating grooves keep lighter rugs anchored in place. Because the lighter rugs tend to have no cushion to them whatsoever, selecting a ¼-inch pad would help add some walking and standing comfort to your area rug.

Call Today for a Quote

With over 70 years of expert rug care experience, the original Ayoub Carpet Service has the solution for all of your rug pad needs. Contact us at (703) 255-6000 to get a quote and determine the best rug padding option for you. Located in Chantilly, VA, and Falls Church, VA, we proudly service the Northern Virginia area, DC, and parts of Maryland. 

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Phone: (703) 255-6000

3856 Dulles S Ct
Chantilly, VA 20151

Mon-Fri, 8 a.m. - 5 p.m.
Sat, 9 a.m. - 2 p.m.


Phone: (703) 533-9233

312-A S Washington St
Falls Church, VA 22046

Mon-Fri, 8 a.m. - 5 p.m.
Sat, 9 a.m. - 2 p.m.