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Fiber Selection


The esthetics and performance of carpet is similar to the fabric in your clothing.
The type of fiber used, the construction of the cloth, and the color all play a role in the styling, cost, and performance of that garment.

All carpet yarn is manufactured from a Staple or Continuous Filament (BCF) fiber.

Staple fiber is a series of short, 6 to 7 inches in length, strings spun together to form one continuous filament. Several of these are twisted together to form a strand of yarn.

BCF fiber is a continuous filament manufactured as one long string. These are twisted and heatset together to form a strand of yarn.

Both of these processes create yarns that produce carpet products with distinctly different looks and characteristics.

A Description of Common Carpet Fibers

= Nylon =

The most frequently used carpet fiber, highly desirable due to its exceptional durability, versatility, and reasonable pricing. It can be dyed in an endless variety of colors and made into numerous styles and textures. Nylon is commonly used in residential and commercial applications.

= Branded Nylon =

Brand name fiber such as DuPont Stainmaster®, Solutia WearDated®,and Honeywell Anso® usually indicates additional yarn testing and/or additional soil and stain treatments have been added.

= Triexta =

This fiber is known as SMARTSTRAND when marketed by Mohawk. This fiber is even stronger than PET polyester, and has better colorfastness and cleanability features than PET. PTT is as colorfast as solution dyed nylon. This fiber is extremely soft, and yet behaves better than staple nylon, especially in a shag construction. If you have kids and pets, and are going to be in the home more than 10 years, PTT is a good choice; especially the 3GT Sorona Dupont Polymer offered in some Mohawk carpets. By the way, PTT is just one step away chemically from 4GT polymer that is used to make tough auto parts. Triexta will indeed be a fiber for the future.

= Polyester =

Used in residential and a few commercial applications, polyester has good color clarity, colorfastness, and resistance to water-soluble stains. All of Mohawk's polyester yarn comes from our state-of-the-art plastic bottle recycling facility. This "food-grade" PET Polyester fiber is considered to be better quality than "carpet-grade" polyester fiber.

= Polypropylene =

Also known as Olefin, this fiber resists fading, generates low levels of static electricity, is favorably priced, and can be engineered in outdoor applications. Due to its manufacturing process, polypropylene inherently resists stains. When used in specific carpet constructions, this yarn will perform as well as most resilient fibers.

= Wool =

The most expensive of the fibers listed here, it is a natural fiber with moderate soil and stain resistance. Durable, luxurious "hand", reduced visible soil due to fine, light-scattering characteristics.

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Fiber Performance in Carpet

 

Nylon
(filament)
Nylon
(staple)
Olefin
(filament)
Polyester
(staple)
Wool
(staple)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Durability

Excellent

Excellent

Excellent

Excellent

Good

Resilience

Excellent

Excellent

Fair

Fair

Excellent

Stain Resistant*

Very Good

Very Good

Excellent

Very Good

Very Good

Soil Resistant**

Very Good

Very Good

Fair

Good

Very Good

Cleaning

Very Good

Very Good

Very Good

Good

Very Good

Available Colors

Excellent

Excellent

Fair

Very Good

Fair

Pilling & Fuzzing

Excellent

Fair

Very Good

Fair

Fair

Resistance to Household Cleaners

Very Good

Very Good

Excellent

Very Good

Good

 

*  assuming nylon is treated with a stain resistant chemical.

**  assuming treatment with a soil resistant chemical.


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Fiber Types and Characteristics

 

Fiber Type

Definition

Characteristics

 

 

 

Nylon

s        Fiber-forming substance of any long-chain, synthetic polyamide having recurring amide groups as an integral part of the polymer chain.

s        First used in 1959 in carpet.

s        Offered as BCF or staple.

s        Used in residential and commercial applications.

s        Produced as a solution-dyed fiber or white yarn to-be-dyed.

s        Accounts for 65% of all face fibers in carpet.

s        Durable, resilient

s        Abrasion-resistant.

s        Versatile in coloration possibilities

s        Favorably priced.

s        Must be treated to be stain and soil resistant.

Polyester

s        Made from terephthalic acid and ethylene glycol.

s        Offered primarily as a staple product, although some BCF in being produced.

s        Used in residential and commercial applications.

s        100% of Mohawk's Polyester is PET Polyester, manufactured from recycled plastic bottles.

s        Color clarity

s        Colorfastness

s        Resistant to water-soluble stains.

s        Noted for luxurious "hand".

Polypropylene

   (Olefin)

s        Fiber-forming substance of any long-chain synthetic polymer composed of at least 85%, by weight, of ethylene, propylene, or other olefin units.

s        Offered primarily as BCF with some staple product available.

s        Primarily sold as solution-dyed or pre-dyed fiber.

s        Can be engineered for outdoor applications.

s        Resists fading.

s        Inherently stain resistant.

s        Limited color selection.

s        Generates low levels of static electricity.

s        Chemical, moisture, and stain resistant.

s        Favorably priced.

Wool

s        Natural fiber.

s        Offered as staple yarn.

s        Luxurious "hand"

s        Durable

s        Inherent resilient property

s        Scaly character of fiber scatters light and reduces visible soil.

s        Largely self-extinguishing when burned.  Will char rather than melt and drip



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