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Carpet Tiles

Carpet Tiles

This article takes you through the pros and cons of using carpet tiles as a floor covering. A buying guide, which you must definitely read if you are considering floor covering purchases.
Neil Valentine D'Silva
Carpet tiles have always been around, but for some reason, they are the last choice people make when thinking of covering up their floors. While it is true that they may not be the best kind of floor covering, they are not that bad either. There are some circumstances in which using them for your flooring would even count as a good choice. This is a buying guide on whether you should go for these or not.

The Pros
  • The first advantage would be the fact that they are small and easily manageable. They can be found in sizes of approximately 2 feet by 2 feet, more or less. This makes it easy to carry them from the store, bring them to your house and lay them on the floor.
  • They are also very convenient to install. You can do it yourself. There is no glue required, as they have an adhesive surface on the bottom, which sticks to any preexisting flooring. Simple instruments are needed such as a measuring tape, a straight line alignment tool, scissors, and knives.
  • They are very cheap too. The cheapest variety can start from as low as USD 1, but their prices can go too high, depending on their quality. However, it is true that it will be cheaper than a wall to wall carpet of similar quality.
  • You do not need to remove your existing floor, which you need to do when you are putting in several kinds of flooring. You can put these tiles on most kinds of existing flooring, including wood, linoleum, marble, granite, and even stone.
  • They typically last long, depending on the kind of usage they are subjected to.
  • There is a vast range of colors and varieties available, probably more than what is available in wall to wall carpets.
  • Being cheaper, they can be changed frequently. Uninstalling them from the floor of the house is not a big issue either.
The Cons
  • You must not expect them to look like wall to wall carpeting when they are installed. People will be able to make out the difference.
  • Depending on the skill of the installer, the seams between the different tiles could be visible. If the measurements are not done properly, then there could also be misalignment, which could become very visible at the junction of the floor and the wall.
  • Carpet tiles do not require gluing. However, over time and with lot of traffic on it, the ends of the tiles may begin to peel off. When this happens, re-gluing can fix the problem, but if dust is allowed to settle on the lower surface, then it might not get fixed again.
  • All of them may not be durable too. The fluffier ones wear out sooner and are unsuitable for use in offices. The thin ones are preferable, but then they might not be suitable to everyone's tastes.
  • All tiles will look jaded after a while, regardless of their price. They will lose the colors they had come with from the shop and they will even lose the quality of their upper surface.
The Verdict

These floor coverings should be used in areas where the amount of footfalls are low, such as in homes and in offices where there is not much movement of people. However, they should be avoided in areas where there could be a lot of movement. Also, they are a very good choice for modern apartments that have small rooms. Here, they will be easy to install and will also become good economical solutions. They are very good choices for children's rooms and bedrooms, because of the soft plush feel they provide on the feet. However, they would not be a good choice in the kitchen where there could be spills, which would be very difficult to clean.

If you are planning to change your apartment within the next five years, carpet tiles would be a very good choice because they will save money and last the period. For long-term options, go for something more durable.