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What to put under furniture legs to protect your carpet

A homeowner adding pads to the bottom of a piece of furniture to protect flooring

Large or heavy items of furniture can take their toll on your carpets, crushing the pile and causing rapid wear and tear. But there are steps you can take to protect your floor coverings. In this post, we provide simple but effective tips to help you prevent your furnishings from damaging your carpets. We also offer pointers on how to protect other popular types of flooring, namely hardwood and vinyl.

How to protect carpet from heavy furniture

Here are some of the actions you can take to stop heavy furniture from spoiling your carpets. They’re especially important if you have thick pile carpets in your home as this style of flooring is particularly prone to showing signs of damage from chairs, tables and so on.

  1. Move your furniture every month – Shifting your heavy items of furniture every month or so will help to prevent dents from developing in your carpet. It’s best to move furniture at least one or two inches away from any current dents. Of course, it’s important to be extremely careful when moving the furniture so that you do not injure yourself or tear the carpet along the way. Try to lift rather than drag furniture and get help if the item is too heavy or cumbersome to relocate by yourself.

  2. Place rugs under your furniture – Positioning a rug under your furniture will more evenly distribute the weight and therefore minimise any dents. An added benefit of using rugs is that it reduces wear and tear caused by foot traffic, so it’s especially worthwhile doing this in busy areas of your home where people are walking back and forth a lot.

  3. Use furniture coasters – You’ll no doubt have heard of furniture protectors that you can place on top of your chairs, sofas and so on to help preserve them from the damage caused by regular use. But did you know that you can also get protectors that go underneath your furnishings to protect your flooring? For example, you can purchase special furniture coasters that simply slide under your furniture legs. These flat disks are designed to distribute the weight of the furniture over a larger area, helping to preserve the pile and prevent damage. Furniture coasters are easy to use and come in various materials, including flexible rubber. Some have spikes that sink into the carpet to help keep them in place.

  4. Vacuum your carpet regularly – If you see a dent in your carpet, run the vacuum cleaner over it. Applying suction over the affected area will reduce the appearance of damage. Most vacuums have high, medium and low suction settings. Typically, high suction gives the best results when trying to restore height to the pile.

What do you put under furniture to protect hardwood floors?

Of course, it’s not just carpets that can be damaged by heavy furniture. If you have hardwood floors in your home, you’ll have to watch out for these as well. Heavy tables, bookcases and so on can dent and scratch these floors when being moved or when in place for long periods of time. However, with a little care, you can prevent this damage.

A tried and tested method of protecting hardwood floors is to attach furniture pads to the base or feet of your furniture. These pads can be made from a range of materials but felt and rubber are common examples. They are designed to provide a soft barrier between floors and furniture, preventing scratches and other blemishes. Be sure to check your furniture pads on a frequent basis as they wear quickly and may need to be replaced. They can also easily slide out of position, so may need adjusting from time to time. This is particularly the case with dining chairs and other items that you may move around a lot.

If you use rolling chairs, for example in a home office, you might want to think about placing mats or rugs underneath them. The castors on these chairs can cause serious damage to wooden flooring over time. Obviously, because the wheels rotate, you can’t attach pads to them. A rug or mat is a good alternative. It helps to cushion and spread the weight of the wheels, protecting your floors.

How to protect vinyl flooring from heavy furniture

Vinyl floors are also susceptible to scratches and dents caused by heavy furniture. The preventative measures you can use for this type of flooring are essentially the same as you would use for wooden floors - in other words furniture pads, and if you use rolling chairs, strategically placed rugs.

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