What is the best carpet for stairs?

Date: January 13, 2022

Are you considering carpet for your stairs but aren't sure which type of carpet to go with? This article is for you.

What is the best carpet to put on Stairs?

Have you considered carpeting your stairs but are unsure? 

Do you already have a carpet but want to replace it and unsure what to buy?

A question like this is asked frequently. Obviously, stairs are the most commonly used area of the home, so they get the most wear and tear.  It is essential to purchase a carpet that can be used on stairs. A carpet's construction and fibres are the most important factors influencing its aesthetic appeal. 

You need to think about the texture of the carpet for stairs, density, style, and ensure it is good enough to withstand the traffic that will be going up and down it, stain resistance is a great aspect, especially if you have teenagers that like to take drinks and food upstairs!

Stair carpet

Why Carpet Stairs?

First, let's take a closer look at what carpets on stairways do. Carpets on stairs are placed for a number of reasons, including:

Stair Safety

The slip and fall risk on hard surfaces such as wooden stairs is much greater, so carpeted stairs are a more secure alternative. It may be wiser to look for carpets and high-quality underlay on stairs if you have older people or young children prone to injuries at home.

Noise reduction

Having carpet on stairs is a great way to reduce a lot of noise generated while people are going up and down them. Carpet minimizes sound levels all around the house. You should get a quality subfloor. When foot pressure is exerted over hardwood, stone, or laminate stairs, they are naturally quite noisy. Hence, it is best to use stair carpets. 

Berber Carpet 8


The floor covering on the stairs will make your room feel warmer as well. When walking on it, you will feel soft and comfortable.

Since you've decided to get a new carpet for stairways, which is your preferred type?

Which are the things you should look for when choosing a carpet?


Your stairs normally get a lot of use so when choosing carpet you need to ensure your stair carpet is durable, a good quality carpet and possibly good for stain resistance depending on your home use. If you have children and pets you will know that you will need the most durable carpets in your home, so the carpet material you pick is important.

Carpet Fibre

The fibre of the carpet is the first thing to consider. Stainmaster or Anso nylon fibre is recommended. Fibres of this type are resilient and do not tangle as easily as polyesters or olefins.

Additionally, you should also consider solution-dyed nylon fabrics because they are also more stain- and fade-resistant thanks to the dye flowing through the entire fibre. 

cute bulldog puppy sitting on the stairs inside a 2021 09 04 13 45 11 utc


  • Wool is durable and strong. It is more expensive than other carpet materials.
  • Polypropylene, although less durable than wool, it is relatively inexpensive and stain-resistant.
  • Sustainable carpet fibres from Sisal make for a more environmentally sound carpet.

Construction of carpets

Your next consideration should be the carpet's construction.

Cut piles and loop piles are the two main types. Often, the most popular carpets today feature a combination of the two, commonly known as LCLs (loop-cut loops). Denser and tighter carpets hold up better.

Thickness of carpet

You should choose a carpet that is not too thick but is comfortable to walk on, so your stairs are more comfortable.

An overly thick carpet can also cause slips and falls in addition to creating a bump on the walk. Aim for carpets less than 1/2" thick.


To maintain the quality of your stair carpet, make sure that the carpet underlay is of high quality. Keeping the carpet underlay quality allows your carpet to withstand constant foot traffic.

  • Using an underlay no thicker than 7/16" and no less dense than 6 pounds is best.
  • Using a thick underlay such as 1/2" shortens the tread and can cause accidents.
  • You would be wise to upgrade to a heavier underlay, such as one of 32 ounce synthetic felt, if you have the means.

If your stair carpet has a good firm carpet pad, you can keep it looking new for a longer period of time.

young girl at home climbing stairs 2021 10 21 17 48 35 utc

Pile Type and Length or Style

By bending the carpet sample nearly 90 degrees, you can get an idea of how it will appear on your stairs. It is possible that the carpet on stairs will have large gaps between the rows, making it unsuitable. A cut pile carpet or some loop pile carpet covering would work well on stairs   

With loop pile carpets, claws and nails can easily be caught by cats and dogs. Our recommendation is to choose a cut pile carpets if you have pets. If you have stairs, a low pile carpet can be more effective than a deep pile carpet.

Carpet Colour

Think about the natural light that comes into your stairway, if you have little natural light and choose a dark carpet, it will make your stairs look dingy. You can brighten up the area with light colours to help lift the room.

Picture it in your mind

When a right carpet is installed on stairs, it must be bent to fit the contours of each step. If the stair carpeting is installed correctly, the backing should not be visible since the pile of the carpet runs in a particular direction.

Although cheaper carpets may offer insufficient coverage, their appearance may change if they are bent for staircases. You can opt for a stair runner if you have hardwood steps or synthetic nylon carpet in case of stains.

Best carpet for stairs
Best carpet for stairs

What’s Your House Style?

Loop Pile Carpets

If you're looking for a textured and rustic feel to your pad, loop pile carpets come in flat weave, level loop or multi-level loop pile. Their hard-wearing properties make them a great choice for high-traffic areas as they are made from uncut loops.

Wool Carpets

Wool carpets are natural and sustainable, making them an eco-friendly choice for stairs. They are durable and stain-resistant, but they can be more expensive than other types of carpets.

Velvet Carpets

Because of their smoother cut pile, velvet carpets have a softer, more luxurious appearance. Many patterned stair carpet like striped carpets are velvety in appearance.

Saxony Carpets

The king of carpets is a Saxony Carpet. It's the perfect carpet for anyone looking for a luxurious and soft floor covering. Since their deep pile is difficult to clean, they're better suited to bedroom stairs. Although they look fantastic, they can be difficult to hoover and may require to be cleaned on a higher setting.

Berber Carpet 9
Young Girl At Home Climbing Stairs

Twist Carpets

An alternative style for those who want a rustic look, Twist Carpets. It has a rough textured finish and is woven from twisted fibres. In either plain or heathered patterns, these rugs are durable and functional for homes with a large number of guests. 

Striped Carpets

Striped carpets are popular at the moment when it comes to stair carpet ideas being searched on the web. These are mainly used as stair carpets and on a landing area. You could go for neutral coloured carpets or a bold bright colour to really stand out. They add a great feature to your home and can really brighten up the area.

Stair Runners

Have you considered stair runners? A carpet runner can look really classy in your home, giving a period type look wether your home is new build or a period property, it still looks good. Offering the best of both worlds, you really can have your cake and eat it too with this option. One of the many advantages is that you don't have to choose between carpet and the bare look of wood, you can have both!

Stair Rods

These can be used for aesthetics but are also helpful to keep the carpet in place. They can add an elegant touch to stair carpets and their are many designs to choose from.

Saxony Carpets

Factors to Consider When Choosing a Carpet for Stairs

When choosing a carpet for stairs, here are some factors to consider:

  • Durability: Stairs are a high-traffic area, so you need a carpet that can withstand wear and tear.
  • Safety: Look for a carpet with a slip-resistant backing or consider adding a stair runner for extra safety.
  • Style: Choose a carpet that complements your home décor and personal style.
  • Maintenance: Consider the level of maintenance required for each type of carpet.
Ink on Carpet
Ink on Carpet

Tips for Cleaning and Maintaining Carpets on Stairs

To keep your stair carpets looking their best, follow these tips:
  • Vacuum regularly to remove dirt and dust
  • Spot-clean spills and stains immediately to prevent them from setting
  • Use a carpet shampooer or hire a professional carpet cleaner every 6-12 months
  • Consider using carpet protectors to prevent wear and tear
  • Install a stair runner for added protection and style

Stair Carpet Trends

If you're looking for inspiration for your stair carpet, here are some current trends:

  • Geometric patterns
  • Bold colors
  • Textured carpets
  • Stair runners
  • Natural fibers

If you are still unsure which carpet would be best for your home and stairs, then please give us a call at Floor Coverings Local on 0800 920 2092