You want to buy that plush, soft, luxurious carpet you saw at the store, but something is stopping you. How are you going to keep it clean? We all know that the thicker the carpet, the more opportunity there is for dirt to fall through the cracks. What you need is a vacuum designed for plush carpet. In this article, you will find everything you need to know about the best vacuums for high pile carpets and how to find them.
- What is high pile carpet?
- Features to look for in a vacuum for high pile carpet
- Top Five Best Vacuums Cleaners for Thick Pile Carpets 2018—Reviews
- Is high pile carpet right for you?
- The top high pile carpet Brands
- Why are high pile carpets so hard to vacuum?
- Your step-by-step guide to thick carpet cleaning
- Additional tips and tricks for plush carpet cleaning
- Final Words
What is high pile carpet?
But first, what is a high pile carpet? Pile refers to the height of the loops of fabric that make up the carpet. The piles are the part of the carpet that you step on. High pile carpets tend to be thicker and plusher than their short pile counterparts. In high pile carpets the fibers are also usually looser, since it is harder to tightly wind the fabric on itself.
The most famous of the high pile carpets is shag. However, if shag carpets are not your thing, you do not have to commit to that level of high pile. Instead, you might want to think of high pile as ultra plush carpet. If doesn’t have to be shaggy, it just has to feel luxurious.
Is your carpet or rug considered high pile?
If you already have rugs or carpets in your home, you may be wondering if they are considered high pile. You know you have high pile carpeting if the pile—height—of the fibers are over ½ inch.
For your information, here are the pile heights for both low and medium pile carpets. Low pile carpets have height of at most ¼ inch. These carpets can be seen in play rooms, dining rooms, and outside. They are super easy to clean. Medium pile carpets, on the other hand, are at most ½ inch high and make up the majority of carpets that are found in a home.
If you are in the process of purchasing carpet, then pile height and type should be information that is provided. However, if you already have carpet in your home, you can get out the tape measure. Or you can do the feel test.
If when you step on your carpet or rug, your foot sinks in a significant amount, then you likely have a high pile product. If your foot sinks in only slightly, you have a medium pile. And, if your foot does not sink in your carpet at all, you likely have a low pile carpet.
Pile vs. material
One thing to keep in mind when purchasing carpet is that pile is different than material. The carpet material you purchase is not mutually exclusive with the pile. In fact, different pile heights can come with any carpet material. So, here are the carpet materials to keep in mind.
Wool: Wool is the most traditional carpet material. It is usually made from the hair of a sheep, goat, or similar animal. Wool is one of the softest carpet materials but is also one of the most expensive and hard to clean. However, with the bad comes the good. High pile wool creates an ultra plush carpet.
Leather: Leather is probably the most unusual carpet material. You will usually have to order it special to get a high pile carpet made from it. Yet, the one thing that leather carpet has going for it is its easily cleaned surface. Leather—as everyone knows—does not handle water well, but you can use a leather cleaning for other types of spills. Because it is a rare material, high pile leather carpet will be significantly more expensive than the other materials.
Synthetic: Synthetic is the most inexpensive carpet material on the market. Most people have synthetic carpet in their home. You can get carpet made from a wide variety of synthetic materials, including polyester, polypropylene (also called olefin), or triexta. Each of these synthetic materials have advantages and disadvantages. But, they are all affordable, and will still make an ultra plush high pile carpet.
Features to look for in a vacuum for high pile carpet
If you answered all of the questions we list above and still want to take the plunge and buy a high pile carpet, good for you. After purchasing the luxurious carpet of your dreams, you will need to find the most efficient vacuum cleaner for thick pile carpet. When looking for vacuums, here are some important features to be on the look for.
The vacuum is specifically designed for soft carpet
This will be the easiest way to find a vacuum that will work correctly on high pile carpets. But, even if a vacuum does not say it was specifically designed for high pile carpet that does not mean that it won’t work for you. Here are a few other things to keep in mind when looking for vacuums for high pile carpets.
The heavier the vacuum, the more it will sink into the high pile of your carpet. While not always the case, it is usually better to get a lightweight vacuum for high pile carpet.
Some vacuums allow you to control their suction levels. This is a great feature that will ensure your beautiful high piles do not get damaged as you vacuum your carpet.
Some vacuums allow you to chose the height of the suction head. This is important for high pile carpets because if you can raise your vacuum higher, it will move smoother on the carpet’s surface. This solves the air flow problem that vacuums can have with high pile carpets.
HEPA filters are not necessarily just important for high pile carpets. However, they are something you will want to look for in any vacuum. HEPA stands for “high efficiency particulate air.” This type of filter goes through a rigorous testing process and must be able to trap at least 99.97 of particles .3 microns. Essentially, it is a super high-powered filtration system.
Top Five Best Vacuums for High Pile Carpets 2018—Comparison table
#1 Editor’s Choice
Sonicfresh Fragrance Pods, Digitally Controlled Motor, 35 ft. Power Cord
Dusting Brush, Crevice Tool, Extension Wand
Combination Tool, Crevice Tool
8 5.05 lbs.
Ultra-Flexible Hose, Cleaning Wand, Upholstery Brush, Crevice Tool
Top Five Best Vacuums Cleaners for Thick Pile Carpets 2018—Reviews
#1 Soniclean Soft Carpet Upright Vacuum Cleaner
If you want the ultimate in high pile carpet cleaning, then Soniclean’s Soft Carpet Upright Vacuum Cleaner is the product for you. It was built in conjunction with Mohawk Industries—one of the largest carpet manufacturers in the United States—so it is recommended for high pile carpets like Karastan, Caress, and Air.o SoftSpring.
The way that Soniclean’s Soft Carpet Upright Vacuum Cleaner is made is perfect for cleaning high pile carpets. It only weighs 10.5 lbs., so it is the perfect lightweight vacuum for high pile carpet. It also lays completely flat to fit under any furniture, has a special brush roll with ultra-soft bristles designed to clean high pile specifically, and uses sonic cleaning technology. This is the only vacuum on the market to use this technology, which employs a sonic bar on the bottom of the product to free up even the deepest dirt in your high pile carpet.
#2 Eureka AS2113A AirSpeed ONE Bagless Upright Vacuum
Eureka’s AS2113A AirSpeed ONE Bagless Upright Vacuum is only 8lbs, which makes it easy to move across dense high pile carpet fibers. It also has a stretch hose and wand that provide 10.5 feet of reach, so you may not have to move the vacuum much on your high pile carpet.
Like the Kenmore Elite 81714, the AirSpeed ONE comes with pet cleaning options. It has a PET Power Paw that cleans pet hair well from furniture and your high pile carpet, which makes it a perfect vacuum for pet hair and thick carpet. Plus, this vacuum has five different height settings. So, cleaning your high pile carpet, especially if you have pets, will be a breeze.
#3 Oreck LW100 Magnesium SP Bagged Upright Vacuum
Oreck’s LW100 Magnesium Upright Vacuum is another lightweight vacuum for high pile carpet option at only 11.6 lbs. It uses a HEPA filter in the inner bag, so you know that it will catch 99.97% of the particles from your carpet. It has high and low speed (suction) options so you can many different types of floors including high pile carpets.The vacuum does not have any pet cleaning attachments. It also comes with a bag, so you will need to know how to use a bagged vacuum cleaner. However, its large wheels and lightweight nature make it a good choice for people with multiple different types of floors, including, of course, ultra plush carpet.
#4 Dyson Cyclone V10 Motorhead Lightweight Cordless Stick Vacuum Cleaner
Dyson is an extremely respected name in the vacuum cleaner world for a reason. Their Cyclone V10 Motorhead Lightweight Cordless Stick Vacuum is a great choice for people with high pile carpets. It is cordless and a stick variety of vacuums, so you don’t have to worry about dragging it over the carpet. Plus, it has Dyson’s digital motor V10, which is proven to work on even the plushest of carpets.
If you want a versatile vacuum that transforms quickly from stick to handheld, then Dyson’s high pile carpet vacuum cleaner is the one for you. It can help you clean all aspects of your home to perfection.
#5 ProTeam ProForce 1500XP Bagged Upright Vacuum Cleaner
ProTeam’s ProForce 1500XP Bagged Upright Vacuum Cleaner is marketed at professional carpet cleaners, so you know it will get the job done. It has a HEPA filtration system and employs a dual-motor set-up so that your suction will be perfect for every job.
ProTeam claims that their vacuum is the perfect choice for high pile carpets, and we agree. It’s rubber wheels allow for smooth maneuvering on your carpet. Plus, it has an ultra-flexible hose and cleaning wand which are long enough to reach all parts of you ultra plush carpet.
Is high pile carpet right for you?
Before making this important decision, you should ask yourself a few questions.
1. Why are your purchasing the carpet?
When deciding on the length of pile, you need to ask yourself why you are purchasing the carpet. If you want carpet that will provide both warmth and comfort to your home, or maybe you just want a carpet with a luxurious feel, then high pile may be the right choice for you. If, on the other hand, you want a carpet that will be more utilitarian, then a low pile carpet might be best.
2. Where are you planning on putting the carpet or rug?
Because they are harder to keep clean, you probably don’t want to put a high pile carpet in an entryway or high-traffic location. First, you don’t the soft, plush nature of this type of carpet in an area where you may be tracking in dirt and mud. The higher piles trap dirt easier than low pile carpet. But, if you are planning on buying a carpet for a bedroom, then high pile may be the way to go.
3. Do you want a flat carpet?
Ironically, high pile carpets are less likely to flatten out than their low pile cousins. If you hate the look of flattened carpets and walking trails, then you may want to consider purchasing a high pile carpet.
4. Do you or a family member have allergies or asthma?
In addition to trapping dirt, high pile carpets can also hold onto allergens. These carpets are also harder to clean—more on this below—so they could possibly trigger you or a family member’s allergies. Allergic reactions have been linked to asthma attacks, so if you or someone you know has asthma, it is probably better to stick with the low pile carpets.
5. Do you want a carpet that’s easy to clean?
High pile carpets are not easy to clean. It is hard to find the correct vacuum cleaner for plush carpet, because most will not work properly with the high piles. They are also very prone to hiding dirt in their thick layers, which can be a pain to clean out properly. It is definitely worth it to have an ultra plush carpet in your home, but you have to be willing to do the work.
The top high pile carpet Brands
Ultra plush carpet has become popular in the last couple of years despite some of the drawbacks. When planning on purchasing a high pile carpet, you need to consider not only buying a vacuum for plush carpet, but also where you plan on purchasing the carpet or rug in the first place.
Because they are gaining in popularity, many of the top carpet manufacturers are now making their own ultra plush carpets. Examples of the top companies making high pile carpets include
Shaw Flooring makes a wide variety of flooring products, including hardwood, laminate, vinyl, tile, stone, and carpet. Of their carpet, almost all options of material and pile are available. If you want a Shaw high pile carpet, we recommend their Caress line.
Mohawk Industries also creates hard floors and carpet products. In addition to some of their more creative and useful products like the SmartStrand Forever Clean Carpet is their plush line, called Karastan
Why are high pile carpets so hard to vacuum?
As we’ve mentioned numerous times throughout this article already, high pile carpets are hard to clean. There are many reasons for this problem. Obviously, the higher piles can trap more dirt in between the fibers, which can be hard to get out. Stains too can be hard to remove because they soak down the whole long fiber and can be hard to reach.
Cleaning itself is a problem for high pile carpets because most traditional vacuums can not handle this type of carpet. They tend to stick to the carpet fibers because the dense nature of high pile carpet causes problems with traditional vacuum’s intakes. This means that the air cannot circulate properly, which causes the vacuum to be almost impossible to move on the carpet. Also, if the suction is not correct on the vacuum it can damage those long piles on your carpet by pulling them out of the carpet backing.
Your step-by-step guide to thick carpet cleaning
Vacuuming your high pile carpet is just the first step to keeping it clean. You don’t have to hire professional carpet cleaners to make your carpet look like new—although, this would be an easier option.
Here is a step-by-step guide for cleaning your high pile carpet. This method will be more intense than just a quick vacuum, but it can help return the color and height of your high pile carpet.
- Vacuum the entire area first with a product designed to clean high pile carpet.
- Put some detergent or laundry soap in a bucket with warm water.
- Soak a bristle brush in the solution and apply in a circular motion to the carpet.
- Use a dry cloth to wipe down the carpet. Keep using new dry towels so that they absorb the dirt and water from the carpet more efficiently.
- Once the carpet is drier and the dry towels are coming away clean, use a dry brush to comb and lift the piles. A carpet rack is perfect for this job.
- Dry the carpet completely. If you are cleaning a rug, then hanging it somewhere clean outside could speed the process. If you are cleaning an entire installed carpet, you will want to place a fan in the room to increase air circulation.
- Enjoy your newly clean high pile carpet.
Additional tips and tricks for plush carpet cleaning
Because cleaning high pile carpet can be tricky, there are a few tips and tricks that can make this process easier.
- Use the vacuums dusting or furniture attachment. These tools are narrower than the standard suction head, which make cleaning between the rows of the carpet easier.
- Long hoses are your friend, since they allow you to clean the carpet without having to move the vacuum cleaner around on it.
- Clean the areas of the ultra plush carpet that see a lot of use more diligently than your do the less used parts.
- The material used to make the carpet matters for cleaning. For example, wool and other natural material-based carpets should be cleaned with a long bristle. Carpet made from synthetic materials, on the other hand, should be treated with an antistatic agent before cleaning to aid the process. Always look up the specific cleaning methods for your carpet material.
High pile carpeting can be an amazing addition to a home. It is an ultra plush carpet that can provide warmth and comfort to any room. However, high pile carpet comes with some drawbacks. To get the most out of it and keep it looking clean and sparkling, you need to choose the best vacuum for high pile carpeting. Lucky for you this article provided all of the information you need to go and purchase a great vacuum. Now, all you need to do is to go out and do it today.