Need help deciding which pile height is right for you? Use this guide to determine what pile height means and how it affects a rug. We want you to have as much information as possible when trying to decide which rug to purchase.
What is pile height? Pile height is simply the length of a rug's pile. The length is measured using a small ruler or measuring device going from the top surface of the backing to the very top of the pile. The backing itself should not be included in this measurement. Pile is simply the soft surface that rises from the backing.
Does pile height make a difference? Indeed! Pile height has many ways of affecting a rug from cushioning to maintenance and durability. Please note that length of pile is not a factor when considering the quality of a rug. Individual preference should determine the choice of getting a shorter or longer pile height.
Benefits of Shorter Pile (1/2 inch or less): Generally speaking, rugs with shorter piles tend to last a bit longer since they are less likely to be yanked or caught on objects. Households with children often opt for shorter piles for this very reason. Additionally, short pile rugs can be vacuumed more thoroughly than longer piles since it's easier to get to the base of the rug without ruining it.
Benefits of Longer Pile (1/2 inch and up): Long pile rugs are usually considered more luxurious because the additional fabric makes them softer on the feet. This added cushioning does make it a bit more difficult to clean deeply. Although they are sometimes not as durable as rugs with a shorter pile, if given proper care, they can easily last for ages.