How to choose the best rug pad


Rug pads have many uses, including protection for your floors, increasing the longevity of your rug, stain prevention on flooring and soundproofing against heavy footsteps.

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Are rug pads worth it?

Rug pads are essential. However, there are things to consider when selecting the right rug pad for you. This is because pads have different functions and come in all different sizes, shapes and colors. 

Most importantly, however, rug pads come with other functions. If you use the right rug pad for you and your home, you will notice the difference. 

Before you choose, it’s a good idea to get familiar with what a rug pad is and, most importantly, how to select the right rug pad for you and your home.

What is a rug pad?


Rug pads act as a material layer that creates a barrier between your rug and the floor underneath. A rug pad is essentially a hard cushion between your carpet and the floor. 

The hard barrier not only protects your floor, but it protects you and your rug too. This is because the pad prevents the floor underneath from being damaged. It also prevents the rug from moving and becoming a trip hazard. 


The pad acts as a base for the carpet and reduces the amount of friction on the underside of rugs, preventing the possibility of wear and tear. This increases the longevity of your rugs and helps to avoid scratches on hardwood floors.

Aside from providing protection for both the rug itself and the floor, rug pads can help with soundproofing by providing extra padding under thin rugs. 

Choosing a rug pad

There are multiple options for people looking for padding for their rugs. However, the important thing is that you choose the correct padding for you and your home. This means that you need to understand the environmental variables that could cause your rug to wear down or become a hazard quicker than it usually would. In doing so, you’ll get the best padding for you and your home. When choosing a rug pad, it’s best to consult a rug pad buying guide to help you make the right choice. 

Pet rug pads 

Pet-proof padding is a smart option for homeowners who have pets. Pet padding is designed to protect your flooring rather than the rug itself. This means that if your pets have an accident, the urine will not go all the way through the rug or padding and seep into the floor, which can cause a very bad smell and staining. 

large area rug

This type of padding is best for a large area rug that is heavy enough to support itself. If you have hardwood floors or any flooring that is prone to absorbing pet urine and staining, pet-proof rug pads are a great option.

Cushioned rug pads 

Cushioned rug pads are the most common type of padding for area rugs. This is because of their versatile and multifunctional capability on small, medium or large area rugs. 

Padded rug pads are not great for pets. This is because it acts like a sponge and has been known to absorb urine and other nasty smells into its fibers. However, this type of rug pad prevents slipping and can be a great addition to marble or wooden floors. The ability of the sponge to compress means that over time the rug will weigh down the edges and prevent the rug from looking like it’s raised up onto a surface. This can take a few weeks to work, but this type of pad is generally excellent for any flooring.

Rubber rug pads

These types of rug pads have rubber applied to the bottom end of the pad. They provide a lot of extra traction for your rug on hardwood or marble floors. This is great for small and large rugs that can get a bit slippy. 

The top layer of these pads is also usually designed for grip and will hold almost any type of rug in place. This means that rugs won’t crumple up or become trip hazards quite as quickly as they might with other types of padding. If you have children who tend to run around, this type of padding keeps the rug level and safe for use. What’s more, this type of padding is generally very thick, meaning that it provides adequate cushioning underneath the rug for extra soundproofing and comfort.

Felt rug pads

For people who live in apartment buildings or in homes that produce a lot of echo, soundproofing and dulling your footsteps might be a top priority when it comes to rug pads. If that’s the case, you can look for rug pads made from felt. The fibers are highly adept at absorbing the shock and sound of footsteps to reduce the noise and impact on the floor underneath.

What size rug pad should I buy?

While rug pads are highly effective and worth having, they’re not designed to be visible. After you’ve spent time and money picking out stylish rugs for your home, the last thing you want is a rubber pad sticking out underneath the edges.

With that in mind, make sure you measure your rugs properly before buying a rug pad and buy slightly smaller than the area of the rug. In general, any type of pad material will work exactly as intended, with approximately an inch of difference in the size between the pad and the rug.

What you need to buy for choosing the best rug pads

NuLOOM Non-Slip Comfort Grip Rug Pad

NuLOOM Non-Slip Comfort Grip Rug Pad

This rug pad is ideal if slippage is your main concern and is available for extra small doorway rugs to large area rugs and in different dimensions and ratios from rectangular to oval. 

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon, Home Depot and Kohl’s


Carpenter Memory Foam Spillguard DuPont Barrier Rug Pad

Carpenter Memory Foam Spillguard DuPont Barrier Rug Pad

While this rug pad is not designed for preventing slippage, it is built to make your rugs even more comfortable underfoot. The barrier technology incorporated into the design also prevents any spills on your rugs from seeping through to the floor underneath.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon


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Lauren Farrell writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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