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Carpet |ˈkärpit| noun
a floor or stair covering made from thick woven fabric, typically shaped to fit a particular room: the house has wall-to-wall carpets throughout | the floor was covered with carpet.
verb (carpets, carpeting, carpeted) [with obj.]
1 cover (a floor or stairs) with a carpet: the stairs were carpeted in a lovely shade of red.
ORIGIN Middle English (denoting a thick fabric used as a cover for a table or bed): from Old French carpite or medieval Latin carpita, from obsolete Italian carpita ‘woolen bedspread,’ based on Latin carpere ‘pluck, pull to pieces.’

A carpet is a textile floor covering consisting of an upper layer of "pile" attached to a backing. The pile is generally either made from wool or a manmade fibre such as polypropylene, nylon or polyester and usually consists of twisted tufts which are often heat-treated to maintain their structure.

Carpet is commonly made in widths of 12 feet (3.7 m) and 15 feet (4.6 m) in the USA. Where necessary different widths can be seamed together with a seaming iron and seam tape (formerly it was sewn together) and it is fixed to a floor over a cushioned underlay (pad) using nails, tack strips (also known as gripper rods), adhesives, or occasionally decorative metal stair rods, thus distinguishing it from rugs or mats, which are loose-laid floor coverings. For environmental reasons, the use of wool, natural bindings, natural padding, and formaldehyde-free glues is becoming more common. These options are almost always at a premium cost, though with no sacrifice to performance.

Carpeting which covers an entire room area is loosely referred to as 'wall-to-wall', but carpet can be installed over any portion thereof with use of appropriate transition moldings where the carpet meets other types of floor coverings. Carpeting is more than just a single item; it is, in fact, a system comprising the carpet itself, the carpet backing (often made of latex), the cushioning underlay, and a method of installation.

Carpet tiles are also available, typically 20 inches square. These are usually only used in commercial settings and are affixed using a special pressure-sensitive glue, which holds them into place while allowing easy removal (in an office environment, for example) or to allow rearrangement in order to spread wear.

Fitted carpet, also wall-to-wall carpet or carpeting, is a carpet intended to cover a floor entirely. Carpet over 4 meters in length is usually installed with the use of a "power stretcher" (tubed or tubeless).

Fitted carpets were originally woven to the dimensions of the specific area they were covering. They were later made in smaller strips, around the time stair carpet became popular, and woven at the site of the job by the carpet fitter. These carpets were then held in place with individually nailed tacks driven through the carpet around the perimeter and occasionally small rings in the carpet which were folded over.

The introduction of "smoothedge" also known as "tack strip", "tackless strip", or "gripper strip" simplified the installation of wall-to-wall carpeting, increasing the neatness of the finish at the wall. Because gripper strips are essentially the same thickness as underlay, using gripper strips yields a level edge, whereas tacking gives an uneven edge.

Gripper strip is a strip of wood bevelled on one edge with many small tacks protruding through from the bottom. It is placed around the perimeter of the area to be carpeted, with the bevelled edge side nearest the wall and held in place with nails (timber floors) or glue (concrete floor). The carpet fits over it (held on the tacks) and is wedged into the narrow gully left between the wall and bevelled side giving a smooth edge. Gripper strips allow stretching of the carpet during installation, greatly improving the appearance of the installation. Stretching can be performed with the use of a power stretcher or a manual knee-kicker.

Gluing without underlay or gripper is simpler as the carpet is cut to the wall by the fitter and glued underneath.


Flooring |ˈflôriNG| noun
the boards or other material of which a floor is made.

Floor |flôr| noun
1 the lower surface of a room, on which one may walk: the showroom floor.
ORIGIN Old English flōr, of Germanic origin; related to Dutch vloer and German Flur.

Commercial |kəˈmərSHəl| (abbr.: comm.) adjective
1 concerned with or engaged in commerce: a commercial agreement.
2 making or intended to make a profit: commercial products.
• having profit, rather than artistic or other value, as a primary aim: their work is too commercial.

Industrial |inˈdəstrēəl| adjective
of, relating to, or characterized by industry: a small industrial town.
• designed or suitable for use in industry: industrial carpeting.
ORIGIN late 15th cent.: from industry + -al; in later use influenced by French industriel.


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