Types of fiber used in carpets
Basically, there are only two types of carpet fibers: Staple and Bulked Continuous Filament (BCF). The Indian Carpets are mostly made of Staple fibers such as wool, cotton, viscose, bamboo silk and Polyester while Nylon and Olefin are common examples of BCF, that are not so common in Indian carpets.
Staple yarns are produced by spinning and twisting the staple fibers together to form long threads and these threads are used in making lower face weight products and high-end carpets. As these yarns can be spun into any size, hence they provide more options and scope for styling and blending. Since these fibers are small in length, hence they tend to be softer and produce velvet plush that signify luxury and comfort.
The drawback of the staple yarn fibers is that it will lose strands (shredding) for a few days of installation and will take time before shredding stops and the carpet settles down. Therefore there are many times that consumers find that their vacuum cleaners are full of short strands when cleaning the newly installed carpets, eventually it reduces with time as the carpet settles. If the shedding continues for a prolonged time, please understand that the manufacturer has used yarn made of short fibers of less than 3-4 inches, while mostly for high quality carpets, yarn of fiber length about 4-8 inches is used to minimize the shedding.
But please do understand that shedding for a couple of weeks will not affect the carpet’s performance in the long term, nor will it affect its appearance as it is a normal phase where carpet is being used for the first time since it has been manufactured.
Bulk Continuous Filament (BCF) are actually long filaments of fiber that are piled together to form continuous bundles of fiber. A lot of consumers prefer carpets made from BCF because they do not shed filaments following carpet installation. If you rub your thumb on the pile surface of a carpet and there are no small fibers on the loose, then it is most probably made of BCF yarn. These fibers are very durable and have excellent performance characteristics including good resiliency, easy to clean and allows a variety of stain resistant treatments to be done on them. Nylon is the best example of BCF yarn used in carpet manufacturing.