Is wood or carpet better in a bedroom?

bedroom with carpet in wisconsin

It’s the age-old wood versus carpet debate: which flooring is better in a bedroom? The choice between wood flooring and carpet in a bedroom is a story with two sides—with both sides being right. Both flooring and carpet are perfect for the bedroom, but this breakdown can help homeowners make the right choice for their home.

Durable Pet-friendly Easy-to-clean Allergy-friendly
Hardwood Yes Yes, though pet urine can damage hardwoods Yes, only requires regular sweep and vacuum Yes
Carpet Yes Yes, pet stains should be cleaned immediately to prevent stains Yes, only requires regular vacuum and annual carpet clean Yes, though it does require a regular vacuuming and a vacuum with HEPA filter

Variety of Styles & Colors

Both wood floors and carpets come in a variety of colors and styles and can fit with any décor. Hardwoods are known to add warmth to a bedroom, while carpets are known for being warm underfoot. If warmth is part of the decision, a soft area rug can be paired with a wood floor for the ultimate combination of warmth and beauty.

Wood floors come in wide and narrow planks that are finished in a variety of colors. Some wood floors are installed and stained in-home. Prefinished wood floors are stained and finished prior to installation, eliminating the dust and fumes that come with the finishing process.

Carpets come in high-, medium- and low-pile varieties. High-pile carpets tend to feel soft and cozy, while low-pile carpets are more durable and easier to clean. There are carpet varieties in all size of loops; a local flooring professional can recommend carpets that fit the home and bedroom. Every carpet weave and fiber come in a variety of colors, textures, and styles that make a statement or blend with a neutral décor.

Durability & Cleaning

Wood floors and carpets are extremely durable and wear well for years to come. This is an area where wood floors do have a slight edge because wood floors can be sanded down and refinished multiple times (depending on the flooring thickness).

Wood floors require little maintenance over the life over the floors. These floors only require a regular sweep and dry mop, making them fairly easy to clean. Vacuums can clean wood floors too, though some research should be done before purchasing. Some vacuum cleaners can be abrasive on wood floors, which is why wood floor manufacturers do give out lists of recommended vacuums for wood cleaning. These approved vacuum cleaners can be used without any worry of voiding a new floor’s warranty.

Carpet floors are also easy-to-clean, needing only a regular vacuum and an annual or biannual carpet clean. Typically, carpets need to be cleaned every 12-18 months (though it may be sooner, as these carpet cleaning tips suggest). In addition to keeping carpets clean, a regular carpet cleaning is also typically required as part of the floor warranty.

Pet-Friendly

Carpet and wood floors are pet-friendly, though both bedroom floors come with a consideration. Wood floors make fur clean-up easy, but may be damaged by pet urine, which may be a problem during house-training. Fortunately, there are ways to prevent damage. Most importantly, any pet accidents should be cleaned up immediately (use these tips for pet accident clean-up). In addition, pet gates can be utilized to keep pets out of bedrooms. During house training, pets should also be taken out regularly to prevent accidents on the wood floor.

Carpets are soft for pets to lay on, but they can be damaged by pet claws. During house training, pet accidents should be immediately cleaned up to prevent stains (these tips for pet accident clean-up can help). A regular carpet deep clean can also eliminate stains and odors from a pet accident. A regular vacuum removes pet fur and dander from the bedroom.

Allergies

A kitchen may be the heart of the home, but the bedroom is the source of (hopefully) eight hours of slumber. All that downtime is why an allergy-friendly flooring is a must in the bedroom. Surprisingly, both floors are allergy-friendly.

Wood is the popular choice for households with allergies because, like most hard floors, it is easy to clean and remove allergens. Carpet is allergy-friendly for the same reason, plus some carpet manufacturers take the concept a step further with a hypoallergenic carpet product (ask a local flooring pro to see an allergy-friendly carpet).

Noise

Noise may not be a top consideration for bedroom flooring, but it may be important—especially in a home with pets, music, and busyness. In this category, carpet is the clear leader because it is able to insulate and absorb sound. If wood is preferred, there are other ways to keep the noise level to a minimum (especially with an area rug).

Affordability

Carpet is typically more affordable than wood flooring, though there are floors that look like wood that may fit within the budget. If installation costs push wood flooring out of reach for a bedroom floor, there are wood products that can be installed as a do-it-yourself flooring project (including engineered wood flooring). Both bedroom flooring options may require an underlayment; always ask a local flooring expert about the underlayment so it can be included in the budget.

Concrete slab

If the bedroom is in a basement, there is another consideration: moisture. Moisture seeps through a basement slab which can damage wood flooring; there are floors that look like wood that can stand up to the moisture of a basement. Carpet is immune from this problem and cozy enough to make friends and family forget that the bedroom is the basement.

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