Inside your home stuff

Here’s a thread for exchanging questions, answers, thoughts and ideas about stuff inside your home.

Practical tips and suggestions welcome, Ikea jokes allowed.

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I need to replace carpeting in our one room that has it, and I’d like to ask: anyone know about brands of carpeting, and maybe stores that carry them, that don’t contain toxic chemicals and such? And maybe brands and/or sellers that claim to be that way but are actually kinda scammy?

I mean, I don’t know just how toxic carpeting usually is, but some must be less so than others.

Or am I just being paranoid?

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EVIL
“I’ve been expecting you.”

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I’m not sure… but doing some googling on the topic of environmentally friendly carpeting, it seems like there is some things to be concerned with…

You could always try the big box stores to see what environmental option they have… Or maybe even buying direct from a manufacturer?

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Maybe, always a good rule of thumb to stick with natural fibers like wool, hemp, jute, cotton, etc. Look for natural rubber/latex backing.

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:thinking:

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If this is still something you’re working on, my first question is: are you 100% set on carpeting?
If so, would area rugs be an option?
I have ideas, and you’re def not being paranoid, but it’s helpful to know what you’re going for or open to.

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Yeeeah, it’s a space that kinda needs carpeting. The surface under it is bad news.

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And a follow-up question, @milliefink: do you know what is under the current carpeting?

Some places were built with carpet in mind, and thus only have basic sub-flooring installed. But sometimes you get lucky and there is a real floor underneath. Might need work, but that’s a lot better and cheaper than other options.

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Ah, we were typing at the same time.

What do you mean by “bad news”? It’s in bad shape, it’s rotted, or it’s got water damage or something that is fixable?

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It’s a “lower level” (in a tril-level, so not a basement), so there’s unfinished cement. Theres always been carpeting. I’d be tempted to work with its surface or maybe put in some kind of tiling or wood composite, but thanks especially to our northern climate, other household members want the warmer feel of carpeting. And the current carpeting is very light colored, staines, and in need of replacement.

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Got it. Then definitely what @ClutchLinkey was saying: any chance one or two large area rugs could work? Not sure how the current wall-to-wall is attached to that concrete.

You’ll need thick pads, both for the cold and the concrete (which is part of the cold equation!), whichever way you cover the floor.

We had a similar problem – 30yo white plush carpeting that had withstood a family growing up, and only plywood underflooring – so in the 2 bedrooms I replaced with simple low-pile 100% NZ wool carpet. Not all that expensive, surprisingly, and much safer from a chemical off-gassing POV.

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Got it.
If you are open to alternatives to carpeting, Marmoleum might be an option. With a foam underlayment (it comes in rolls, creates a thermal break) and the cork backing on the marmoleum click-flooring, it’s a lot warmer than tile or just wood on concrete. And then with area rugs where you might want them, might work.
I’m kind of anti-carpet due to air quality issues. You probably know, but they typically weigh 3x as much when removed from a house as when installed. So despite all the vacuuming… :nauseated_face:

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Thanks, and to @chgoliz, much to chew on. I’ll keep yall informed as I uh, chew up the carpeting! :nauseated_face: indeed.

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peanut butter eating GIF

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Thanks, intriguing stuff, and I suppose it’s no surprise that it’s very expensive. Eep!

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Yeah, there is always an up-sell on “sustainable”.

The guidelines are true enough and can be used to find cheaper alternatives.

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A couple other things to consider: if you do opt for carpets, you might allay some of the indoor air quality issues by choosing a less pricey carpet and using the extra money to improve ventilation in the room.
The off-gassing is the main concern aside from the carpet becoming a stockpile of allergens as noted above. That can be minimized by choosing a low-pile variety, but even those get heavy.
So to minimize off-gassing, use a low-VOC adhesive, ventilate the room by opening windows the first week or so after installation, and have a ventilation fan running when the space is closed.
I’m still team Marmoleum, but I understand that might not work for you :wink:

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Not exactly inside the home, but anyway, I’m hearing suddenly about people using an “insurance broker.”

Anyone here use one? Why is that any better than just insuring your house and car with one of the familiar names/companies?

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I haven’t used one, but they basically just do the legwork for you, finding the policy that best meets your needs.
I think if I had more complex property insurance needs, like rentals, I might consider using one. But for now I’m just a simple case, so it seems pretty straightforward to do comparisons myself.

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