Hospitality Carpet Specs 101 - Material Selection

Types of Yarn Content for Hospitality Carpet - Wool vs. Solution Dyed Nylon

We constantly receive questions of where and why, regarding material specification in hospitality and high-traffic carpet. Let's focus on the two main material selection options:

Solution Dyed Nylon (SDN) and Wool / Nylon Blend.

There are other materials of course in the carpet fiber world, but none worth mentioning when discussing Hospitality Carpet.

Solution Dyed Nylon provides outstanding fade resistance, especially when areas are exposed to sunlight. SDN also has excellent colorfastness, which means there is no color leaking from cleaning, heat, or moisture. Also, when cleaning carpet produced with solution dyed nylon, you can use harsh chemicals to remove the stain, and the colors still will not fade.

80% wool and 20% nylon is a blend that combines excellent durability and appearance retention for high foot traffic space. Wool is also a natural flame retardant, unlike nylon (wool is self extinguishing). When it comes to color vibrance, wool easily wins. The color absorption characteristics of wool create a rich clear pattern. Wool also inhibits the build-up of static and neutralizes indoor air pollutants. Another plus when specifying wool is the immense color range. There are usually hundreds of more color options when using wool rather than 100% solution dyed nylon. And last but not least, wool is considered biodegradable, and environmentally friendly.

Now, as for where to specify these 2 materials, here is a good list to go by, assuming the budget is approved:

  • Ballrooms = 80/20 or 100% SDN are applicable

  • Dining Areas = 100% SDN for stain treatments

  • Casinos = 80/20, especially for fire ratings

  • Convention Centers = 80/20, for beauty and longevity

  • Country Clubs = 80/20, but maybe 100% SDN in dining areas

  • Cruise Ships = 80/20, especially for fire ratings

  • Hotel or Condo Corridors = 80/20 or 100% SDN (depends on sunlight exposure)

  • Restaurants = 100% SDN for stains and the use of harsh chemicals to clean

  • Theaters = 80/20 or 100% SDN, depending on frequency of spillage and stain treatments.

Now as for which machinery uses which materials, many hospitality design firms often think that Axminster Carpet construction is only produced using 80/20 blend. However, that is untrue, as Axminster can produce carpet using 100% SDN. The term Axminster refers to the type of construction (woven), not actual materials.

For more questions or concerns, feel free to contact Royal American Carpets anytime.