While choosing the flooring for the house can be quite a straightforward experience, choosing a stair flooring can be a bit difficult. There are several things to consider for the same like safety, aesthetics, expense, durability, maintenance etc.
One of the most important points to keep in mind is the degree of usage. Staircases tend to witness quite a bit of foot traffic and hence have a tendency to wear off faster. In fact the edges suffer the most and this leads to worn patches which looks quite shabby in the long run. Kids and pets too have a tendency to run up and down the stairs thereby putting additional strain on the steps and wearing them out.
The options which are generally considered for putting up on the staircases are wood and carpet. While each has its own pros and cons a comparison of some of the common features of both is given below:
- Safety: In terms of safety, carpets prove to be a better option than wood because wooden stairs tend to be slippery and also do not provide much of a cushion in instances of a fall. Hence in a house with seniors with mobility issues or age related problems, carpeting the floor of the stairways is better. Wooden stairs also pose the same problems for houses with the presence of kids who tend to climb steps with nonchalance and are thus likely to fall down at some point of time. Carpet is thus the better option for use on stairways where safety is concerned.
- Maintenance: Wooden flooring for staircases ensure a hassle free maintenance which can be done quite easily with just a mop and a broom or an occasional vacuuming. But carpets tend to attract and bind dust, dirt, allergens and dead skin particles to them. Thus they need to be regularly vacuumed with a vacuum cleaner equipped with a powerful motor so as to facilitate good suction. Carpets also stain very easily and once worn need to be replaced to keep from looking shabby.
- Insulation:Carpets are definitely better insulators than wood since they are able to:
- Keep the staircase flooring warm especially in cold winters and
- Muffle any sound that might emanate when someone uses the stairs.
- Cost: Wood flooring is definitely costlier than carpet flooring which makes for an excellent budget friendly option. But in the long run wood floors really justify the money spent on it since they are much more durable, have greater longevity and relatively maintenance free.
- Aesthetics: Wood flooring has its own classically elegant timeless charm which only increases with age. Carpet flooring, on the other hand, can be used to create a variety of designs and also help to maintain a constant flow in the theme and décor of the house.
Thus both have their own charm, their own advantages and are both aesthetically very beautiful. Both have their own practical uses and hassles and hence it depends on the choice of the user as to which flooring material to use for the stairs.