Sunday, May 2, 2010

Stop Damage to Carpeted Stairs

Carpets can take a beating, but certain areas wear out faster. If your stairs are carpeted, they are going to wear out much faster than the rest of floor.

A carpet stair tread is a piece of fabric designed to be placed on a wooden stair to protect the wood from excessive wear and to provide additional traction. They differ from runners although both perform basically the same purpose. The runner however is a continuous piece of carpet that wraps up and over each stair step. The stair tread sits on an individual step. Each tread is a separate piece. The normal tread has less width than the step so that the wood of the step shows on each end.

Polished wooden stairways were common in older homes. The first stair treads were developed to protect the stair way on a temporary basis. These pieces of carpet were placed on the steps during cleaning or times of heavy traffic. They could also be used to protect the stairs during periods of inclement weather. When conditions were back to normal, the treads could be removed and the polished surface below was displayed again.

There are still some types of carpet stair threads that are backed with heavy vinyl. They can be placed on the stair and the non-slip vinyl holds them in place. They will not slide when stepped on, but can be picked up easily when they are not wanted or needed.

Most carpet stair threads today are designed to be permanently attached in the same manner as regular carpet. There are special carpet tacks designed to be used to fasten the carpet thread to the step. The permanent carpet threads no longer serve as merely a protection function. They become part of the overall decorating theme of the staircase and the home itself. Temporary stair treads are not overly concerned with color or style. They are more concerned with toughness and durability. The permanent ones come in a variety equal to floor carpeting.

One problem of carpet stair treads is cleaning. It is hard to drag a vacuum cleaner up a flight of stairs and often the vacuum cleaner head will be too wide to maneuver on the step. There are several products designed for cleaning carpet treads. Most of these are either hand held vacuum cleaners or attachments to a larger upright or canister vacuum cleaner. If you have treads on your stairs, it is important to make sure you have a good cleaning tool. Cleaning and upkeep on the carpet stair tread is as important here as on any other type of carpet.

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