Why Does my Rug Shed (And Other Rug Problems)

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19 Mar 2018

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You've gone through the steps of choosing the right size rug for your room, and you've picked a style that you love. You've never been happier with an area rug! But alas, it's starting to shed.


Rug shedding can be frustrating, especially as it happens more in the first few months after buying it. But don't worry too much. Shedding is normal. And if you've purchased a high-quality rug, chances are that the shedding will stop over time. In the meantime, there are steps you can take to help improve the appearance of your rug and minimize shedding. 


Why do rugs shed?


Rug shedding is a common problem for area rugs. But this doesn't mean there's anything wrong with your rug! Shedding is natural and will vary depending on make and material. Wool rugs are especially prone to shedding.


So, what is shedding? Shedding happens when stray fibers are not tightly bound to the backing or to each other. Eventually, as people walk on the rug, they will work their way loose. How much this happens is going to depend entirely on the quality of the material and the manner in which it was made. A low quality wool made by machine will inevitably shed more than a hand woven rug made with high quality wool or natural fibers.


rug, rug shedding, area rug


Looking for a rug with the least shedding? Go with a high quality hand-woven or hand-knotted rug. In most cases your rug will shed the most in the first 6 months, and then over time it will lessen or stop.


Read More: What are Rugs Made of How to Choose the Best Material for You


Area Rug Cleaning Guide


How to minimize shedding


Some shedding is inevitable, but there are some things you can do to help or prevent it:


  • Vacuuming lightly and regularly will help. Just make sure you go with the grain of the pile instead of against it. Be sure to not use the beater bar. Gentleness is key.
  • A high quality rug pad can also help with shedding. A rug pad absorbs some of the impact from walking and will help to reduce shedding.
  • Placing your rug in a low traffic area of your home will lessen shedding.


Other problems you might come across


You might find that your rug is constantly shifting and moving in your room. This can affect the appearance of the room and can be a walking hazard.


Solution: Use a rug pad! This will keep your rug from slipping and tripping people.


You might find that your rug has wear and tear only in certain places where there is high foot traffic.


Solution: Rotate your rugs! By rotating your rugs every so often you'll ensure that the wear of the rug is evenly distributed, thereby extending the longevity of the rug.


How to maintain your rugs


The best and most preventative way to maintain your area rug Invest in a good-quality rug! This will depend on your budget and it's wise to choose your battles. It might not be the best idea to invest in a high-end rug in a room with kids, pets, and the possibility of spills.


But in general, investing in a well-constructed rug made of high-end materials will ensure that your rug will look beautiful for longer.


rug, rug shedding, area rug


Read More: How Much Does an Area Rug Cost?


Regardless of how high-end you go, quality is key. After that, the best way to maintain your rugs is to vacuum regularly, spot clean when necessary, and take your rugs to a professional rug cleaner occasionally.


Design Tip:


Another great option for extending the longevity of your rugs is to change them from season to season. From a design standpoint changing your rugs allows you to introduce an airier, lighter rug in the spring and summer, giving you an open and summery feel. While in the winter opting for something with more depth.


From a maintenance standpoint, it extends the longevity of both rugs and gives you the time to take the rug that isn't in use to a professional cleaner.




It's important to take care of the home decor that you choose to invest in. While shedding is normal, there are steps you can take to extend the longevity of your area rugs, it's just a matter of regular maintenance.


And know that shedding, while frustrating at times, is a normal part of the life cycle of a rug and will eventually fade over time.


Ready to start choosing your area rug? Come into one of our showrooms and talk to a design consultant! They are happy to help you on your design journey. Meet our designers!  


Area Rug Cleaning Guide

Author: Guest Author