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Flooring and Carpeting/Mohawk everstrand substituted for smartstrand


We just finished having our home re-carpeted and repainted as a result of a water leak.  About half the work was paid by our condominium association (I am the president) and we paid the other half ourselves.  Most of the work was good quality although slow.  In doing our tile (excellent work) the contractor suggested that we find a tile that we liked, provide them the Mfgr+SKU and they would quote.  We did this and it worked out well.  When they suggested the same on carpeting, we had no qualms when they suggested the same.  My wife went out and came back with the choice of either Intelligent 1150 or Aladdin Optiback Truly Tender III, both by Mohawk, both PTT fiber in BCF and both with a 20 year wear warranty or better.  After they installed (which took several months) My antenna went up after they installed when they would not provide us with the SKU of the carpet or warranty information specific to the carpet. Finally, 75 or so days after installation, we were told that we had Mohawk Aladdin Distinctive Decor made from  Everstrand PET staple polyester fiber which had a 5 year warranty. (Mohawk's minimum published warranty on Everstrand is 10 years except for this style.)  Several times we were told in e-mails that our carpet was delayed in delivery because it was a "premium" carpet.  I doubt that any premium carpet has a 5 year warranty.

Immediately on install, we began to have problems with fluff forming on the carpet which continues today (about 5 months) but has we are now getting pilling (lightly attached fluff) and partial loose strands of pile which are firmly attached at one end but extend about 5/8" above the surface of the pile.  These will have to be trimmed.  There are two of us who mostly walk on the carpet most often in tennis shoes or stocking feet.  No pets.

The loose pile strands that will need to be trimmed are concentrated in front of the couch that we use to watch television.  We get up and down several times an evening and often twist slightly as we are turning to either the right or the left.
This seems to be pulling the strands loose.  We are also getting some soiling in this area but even the stairs and landing do not seem to be soiling yet.

In discussing which type of carpet to put down, we offered to pay extra above that which was included in the insurance estimate to get the carpet that we wanted.  I was not knowledgeable enough to spot the difference when we got the carpet that we got (looked pretty good till we walked on it)and did not realize how big a problem we had till we got the actual warranty information.  Mohawk provides a 60 day exchange or replacement warranty which, because of the delay, we missed.  In addition, we have not yet received proper invoicing from the contractor that provides the information that Mohawk requires to put the warranty in force.

I am almost 73 my wife is younger but not young.  We had hoped that this carpet would last up for the rest of our time in this house.  I don't think that this is going to happen.

I feel that we are the victims of "bait and switch" and am contemplating legal action.  

My questions are:

  1. Is the carpet that we were supplied likely to give us         similar performance to that which we ordered, particularly in terms of wear and finish?

  2. Can you give some idea of the price difference at wholesale between the two?

  3.  Is this a substitution that you would have recommended.

I have to make this decision this week and, if possible, need a prompt reply.

In answer to your questions:
1. No, the carpet you were supplied will not give you the same performance as what you had originally picked. Besides the fact that the warranties on what you picked out was 20 years and what you received was 5 years (which means you will not see the same performance), the carpet that is installed is tufted with a staple yarn. The other carpets were BCF or bulk continuous filament. Staple yarn is made of random cut lengths. It can either be from a natural source (wool, cotton) or be man made (to look like wool). BCF is made of a continuous length yarns. What does this mean to you? Well, in carpet, the primary backing holds the yarn together. In staple yarn carpet, not all of the yarn is caught by the backing. The shorter yarn filaments are loose and shed. While manufacturer's state that the shedding period should be brief and that it should last no more than two weeks. I have found that it lasts much longer, that will depend on the vacuuming and traffic and that, like wool, after the initial voluminous shedding, there will always be some. Because of this, most manufacturers will not want you to vacuum a staple yarn product with a vacuum using beater bar brush because that will just keep the carpet shedding. So if you have a vacuum with a rotating beater brush it must be set so the brush makes no contact with the pile. If you cannot adjust the brush then you need to buy a new vacuum. Without using a brush it may be harder to pick up lint, etc. Also due to the increased shedding with staple fibers, those with allergies or who are susceptible to breathing problems may find problems with staples fibers.
 Getting back to the warranties, this does not mean that staple cannot have a 20 year warranty, it just means that yours doesn't. However, if I had to choose between a 20 year staple and a 20 year BCF, I d go with the BCF. Always. However, the BCF will cost more per yard. One reason is that staple looks bulkier so they have to use less yarn to compare with the same look as the BCF. Another reason of lower cost is that staple is often produced in-house (meaning at the manufacturer's site) while BCF is usually purchased from outside (meaning that the carpet manufacturer buys the yarn from a fiber producer, such as DuPont).
Also BCF will have higher resistance to pulling (especially with pets). Some say that "staple fiber has certain advantages that make it preferable to BCF in some instances, that staple is more uniform than BCF, that it is a good option for solid colors". In my 49 years of carpet, I have not found this to be true. All that being said, staple can be a good choice for someone that wants more bulk for less money and understands the characteristics of the yarn.
  With regard to the fibers, both the original products you selected and what you have are polyesters, with the PTT being better in terms of resiliency and durability. In terms of wear, I have seen very few carpets actually "wear". Wear is the abrasive, measurable loss of carpet fiber. Very few carpets actually "wear" out. Manufacturers know this and that's why they tout "wear warranties". Carpets will however, "ugly out", meaning irreversible pile compression/crushing, matting and/or loss of definition. By the way, these problems do not fall under the "wear" warranty.
2. I do not sell carpet. I only inspect carpet. I am not a salesman and I have no pricing information. I can tell you by looking at two samples which is the better carpet and why and then it is up to you to decide if it is worth whatever money you are spending.
3. As an independent certified inspector I do not specifically recommend any brand names in order to maintain my impartiality. But I will give you some general guidelines:  Select a carpet with the lowest pile you can stand (aesthetically) and the tightest twist you can afford. Next, and almost always,  the tighter the twist the denser the pile becomes. Why? Because as it is more tightly twisted there becomes a need to provide more coverage, otherwise you will see the backing. Also, when shopping also look for earth tones and multicolors or flecks  as these will tend not to show soil as rapidly as solid and non earth tones such as blue or gray. Lastly, look for carpets with no mat and/or no change in texture warranties. These are far more beneficial than "wear" warranties.  
Good luck.

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R Adams


Certified Installer 1966-1976, Certified Carpet Cleaning Instructor 1976-1985, Certified Commercial and Residential Floor Inspector since 1985 is available to answer questions on problems with carpet or other flooring, and carpet cleaning. I can guide you as to whether you may have a valid claim against a manufacturer/installer/dealer/cleaning company.


Floor covering Installer 1966-1976 Carpet Cleaning Instructor 1976-1985 Floor Covering Inspector 1985- present

Floor Covering Inspector Training School; FCITS Floor Covering Inspection Technical Services; FITS Certified Claims Inspectors Association; CCIA

Hartford Courant

B.S. Chemistry 1971 A.S. Physical Science 1969 Armstrong Certified Installer 1972 3M Certified Carpet Cleaning Specialist 1976 FCITS Certified in Carpet and Hard Surface, Commercial and Residential

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