Berber carpets have been around for a long time and trace their history to North Africa. The name Berber comes from the Berber tribe of North Africa, who still weave Berber carpets. The Berber carpet became popular in North America in the 1980s and has grown.
In this post, I’ll discuss Berber carpets, the different styles, their durability, and the pros and cons. I know this will help you decide if a Berber carpet type is right for your home.
What is Berber Carpet?
The word Berber refers to the color and style of the carpet. Berber carpets are light in color with flecks of dark colors. Berber carpeting is woven in loop piles that remain uncut, thus taking a low and tightly woven look.
Berber Carpet Colors
Traditionally Berber carpets were made of neutral colors with specks of darker colors. The most common colors of Berber carpets are beige, taupe, and ivory. You’ll find naturally occurring colors for the darker specks of color, such as browns, tans, and rust. However, today, it is possible to get a Berber carpet in different colors and hues.
Berber Carpet Cost
Berber-style carpets are among the most affordable types of carpets compared to other home carpets. Compared to other types of carpets, Berber carpets are touted to offer better durability for the price you pay.
The lower price of Berber carpets is mostly because of the materials used. Berber carpets use olefin or polypropylene carpet fibers, which are cheap compared to other fibers such as nylon or wool.
Another reason for Berber carpets’ lower price is the construction style. Berber carpets use a looped style, which is cheaper than cut pile carpets such as frieze and Saxony carpets. All carpets are looped at first. However, to make cut pile carpets, the loops are cut. Because this step is eliminated in loop pile carpets, they are cheaper.
Berber Carpet Styles
Berber carpet is available in different styles you can choose from. The different styles include simple loops and multi-color loops. Patterned loop, cut and loop, patterned cut and loop, and cut pile, also known as California Berber.
Looped Berber styles involve looping the carpet’s fiber before fixing it into the backing. Looped Berber carpets are forgiving and do not show dirt and debris, compared to cut Berber. However, they are not great if you have active kids or pets.
Although Berber carpets mostly feature a looped style, California Berber or cut Berber has no loops. It is similar frieze carpet style and has a speckled-egg look with flecks of earthly-colored tones.
Pros of Berber Carpet
This is one of the major reasons why Berber carpets are popular. They are durable compared to most carpet styles because the carpet fibers are looped rather than cut. Like cut pile carpets, Berber is not prone to matting down, which makes them look great even with heavy usage. Berber carpets are great in many heavily trafficked places, such as hallways, stairs, and commercial areas.
Easy to Clean
Looped carpets are easier to clean because dirt, debris, and other spills tend to sit on the carpet’s surface. This is unlike cut pile carpets, where dirt and debris are trapped in the carpet fibers. Liquid spills will also take less scrubbing and cleaning to get them out. When using a vacuum, Berber carpets will hardly show vacuum marks. Because of the earthly color flecks, they can camouflage stains better.
Compared to other flooring options, Berber carpets are very affordable. Most are usually made of cheap carpet fibers like olefin/polypropylene. Because the manufacturer does not cut the loops, this also saves money that would be otherwise added to the total of the carpet.
However, Berber carpets come in wide different varieties. If you’re looking to spend money, wool Berber carpets are available. These are softer and more lavish than most types of Berber carpets. If you’re on a budget, olefin and PET polyester Berber carpets are a cheaper option to consider.
Cons of Berber Carpet
Compared to cut pile carpets, the loops of a Berber carpet give it a rough texture. However, this softness will also be influenced by the carpet material used. Wool fiber carpets are soft but too costly for most people. Polyester is a cheaper and softer alternative compared to nylon. Some manufacturers are also working on making Berber carpets softer, such as the Mohawk’s SmartStrand collection.
Hard to Repair
Aside from the texture of the Berber carpet, another downfall is they are harder to repair. A small snag on one of the loops of a Berber carpet can quickly become a bigger problem that will be costlier to fix. When using a vacuum with a beater bar or power head, if the power head gets hold of a loose strand, it could unravel it. For this reason, avoid such vacuum cleaners to turn off the beater bar to protect the carpet.
Is a Berber Carpet Right for You?
A Berber carpet is a solid flooring choice used in most home rooms and other areas such as hallways and stairs. It is affordable, which does not translate to low quality because its durability is very good. If you’ve not yet settled your mind on a Berber carpet, check out the different types of carpets for more varieties.