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When A Warranty Claims Something the Carpet Can’t Live Up To

What happens when stain proof doesn’t really mean stain proof? Stain Proof is just one of the many claims carpet warranties toss out in the hopes of grabbing your attention. Pet proof, kid proof, heck, even bullet proof … these are all claims that are tossed out there. The problem is, most of us believe these claims. Unfortunately, not every warranty claim lives up to its promise.

I’ve been in this business long enough to have seen some pretty outrageous warranty claims. Over the years, thankfully, the average consumer has gotten wiser. However, some warranty claims persist, in the hopes of nabbing some unsuspecting consumer who was simply looking for a carpet to last for many years.

Here are some common warranty claims and how the public has wised up:

Wear Warranty:

Let’s start with the famous “Wear Warranty”. This warranty states that over a given period of time (for example, 7 years), your carpet won’t wear away into oblivion like dandelion spores. Note: this says nothing about what your carpet will look like. It just protects you against the event that your carpet changes from a solid to some sort of vapor. What happened was, the carpets still retained the properties of a “carpet”, but they looked horrible. Consumers were fed up, which forced manufacturers to create a better quality, tighter woven, and tighter twisted carpet.

Of course, with this better product, came a new host of warranty claims, such as “Texture Retention” and “No Matte, No Crush”. Luckily, these warranties are for better than warranties in the past. In our opinion, this type of warranty is one you should look for when shopping for a carpet.

Next up is the well-known “stain warranty”. Surely you’ve heard of this one. Dupont and their “Stainmaster” advertising campaign probably rings a bell. These warranties range from 5 – 20 years, or even more, but they can be extremely deceiving. For example, if you stain your carpet with acid, ink, or other harsh liquids, you’re out of luck. These items are usually part of the fine-print exclusions.

Also, the longer warranties are usually attached to Olefin fiber carpets. Olefin fiber carpets are petroleum-based, meaning they have a hard time resisting oil stains and oil-based stains (like tar). If you want to learn more about these warranties, check out our Carpet Warranties & Ratings section.

So, is there any warranty worth getting? Absolutely. First, accept the fact that you’re going to get 7 to 10 years of life out of your carpet. That’s a pretty good investment, don’t you think? Even if your carpet is holding up well after 10 years, statistics show that you’ll change your carpets out of sheer color boredom. So, how can you become an educated shopper? Use your warranties as a guide to the quality of the carpet. A 5-year warranty means you’ll likely only get 3 years out of your carpet. A 25-year warranty means you’ll likely be able to keep your carpet for that average 7 – 10 years.

Carpets can be a hassle to shop for so do your homework prior to getting started. That way you won’t be fooled by trickery and fancy wording.

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