Comparing Nylon and Wool Carpets

When looking for new carpeting, wool and nylon type carpets are two popular choices. You’ll want to compare the advantages and disadvantages of each type to find which is right for you. Here are a few comparison points to take into consideration:

Fiber Source

The major difference between nylon and wool carpet is the fiber source. Nylon is a synthetic, man-made fiber created from chemicals. Wool carpets are constructed from natural fibers from the coats of sheep. Protein-based wool fibers lock in dye for superior color and the fibers are free of toxins and chemicals (unless they’re added later).


When investing in new carpet, you want to select a type that will look good while standing up to daily wear and tear for the next decade or longer. Wool carpet fibers are extremely strong and durable but they need to be protected from direct sunlight because ultraviolet rays will cause gradual fiber degradation. Nylon carpet fiber is also very durable and special dyes can make it resistant to sun damage from UV rays.

Mildew and Static

Low humidity can cause static to build up in wool carpets, but when it gets wet it is susceptible to mold and mildew growth. Nylon fibers are nonporous and generally mold and mildew resistant. Plus, most nylon carpets are treated with an antistatic treatment.

Cleaning and Care

Both wool and nylon carpets clean well with regular vacuuming. Wool carpets should be cleaned with a dry foam since steam cleaning could saturate the fibers to create an ideal environment for mold and mildew growth. Nonporous nylon resists spills and stains and has a very high tolerance for moisture absorbency and cleaning chemicals.

Stain Resistance

Nylon carpet is very absorbent so it is usually treated to help prevent spills from setting in and staining the fibers. The overlapping structure found in wool fibers repels liquids and dirt from the innermost part of the fiber and holds the dirt or spilled liquid near the surface, giving you the best opportunity for cleaning.

Your choice of wool or nylon carpet should be determined by your specific needs, personal preference, and allocated flooring budget (wool carpets can cost up to twice as much as nylon carpets). Do your research and then come to Flack’s to shop, see, and feel our huge selection of wool and nylon carpets and rugs for yourself!