Commercial Carpet Tile Finds a Niche in Residential Flooring

Many consumers seem to be learning about the great value of carpet tiles. There is an ever-growing list of advantages presented by carpet tile.

Carpet Tile from Carpet ExpressPerformance. Originally designed for commercial applications, most carpet tile has excellent heavy-duty backing. These products are very durable and perform great under heavy traffic.

Carpet tile is the ultimate DIY product. There is no need for carpet pad, tack-strips, or stretching-in the carpet. There are no huge rolls to wrestle with, and if you stain or ruin an area, you can simply pull up one carpet square and replace it, rather than replacing an entire room.

Great prices. These high quality carpet tiles are sold around 75¢ a square foot. These products were originally sold for $1.50 to $3.00 a square foot. Here’s why: When manufacturers make large runs of carpet-tile, they have small quantities leftover. We buy up these leftovers and that translates into huge savings on high quality products for our customers. We also purchase carpet tiles with slight defects not suitable for a 1st quality commercial installation, but are just fine for residential use.

If you are in the market for new carpet, especially in a den or playroom, you should really check out our fantastic deals on commercial carpet tiles specials.

 

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Mannington Announces Resilient Price Increase

Mannington LogoMannington announced it will implement a 5% price increase on their “better” and “best” residential resilient sheet products, starting Nov. 29th.

“We continue to experience rising raw materials costs, especially as they relate to plasticizers and resins,” said Kim Holm, president, Mannington residential. “Due to reduced capacities, there has been a shortage of plasticizers, which has driven prices up dramatically. We are hopeful that these costs have peaked, but it will be some time before additional capacity comes on stream.”

Armstrong, Congoleum and Tarkett remain uncertain as to whether or not they will follow Mannington’s lead. David Sheehan, VP of resilient and laminate business, Mannington, expressed confidence in the market for vinyl.

“Vinyl is fairing the best of all categories. If the consumer is buying, they’re buying vinyl,” he said. “Raw materials, resin prices — the projection of their net impact is pretty significant. Going up is something we have to do and others will follow.”

Original Article found at Floor Covering Weekly
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How to Fix that Hollow Clicking Sound….

Laminate Underlayment

Laminate flooring is a wonderful product that can give you the look of natural oak or exotic wood at a much more affordable price. But one complaint about laminate flooring is the clicking or hollow sound it makes when you walk on it with hard sole shoes. This sound can be annoying, but there is a solution – use a good underlayment. Laminate underlayment is an important moisture barrier, but it is also a very important ingredient in producing a floor with a quality sound.

You have lots of choices in laminate underlayments. They range in price from about $.20 per square foot to about $.50 per square foot. They are usually 6 feet wide and 100 square feet per roll. Laminate pad is easy to install with an adhesive edge on one side that overlaps.

Choosing the correct pad is fairly easy. There is an obvious difference between the cheap pads and the best pads. Pads range from very light weight and flimsy, to a much heavier and sturdy construction. In most cases, a good pad underlayment is well worth a little extra expense. Our premium sound barrier, our most popular pad, is an excellent choice at $.40 per square foot.

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2009 Fall Flooring Sale

Our fall sale at Carpet Express was a tremendous success. Lots of customers and suppliers mixed business with pleasure as they joined us for Randy’s famous hot dogs and some fantastic deals. We served over 800 hot dogs with all the trimmings during this 3-day event. Good food and satisfied customers made this sale a fun time, despite all the rain.

The following are highlights of the many deals offered during the fall sale:

  • “CASH FOR CARPET” – we paid cash for your old carpet when you purchased new flooring and installation.
  • 121 pages of vinyl inventory to choose from starting at $0.29 per square foot.
  • Tremendous selection of hardwood flooring like Armstrong’s 5″ Northshore plank (tavern grade) at $1.59 per square foot.
  • Great deals on residential and commercial carpet (cuts at roll prices from most mills).
  • 15% off our already low priced area rugs. Plus an additional 10% off if you purchased hardwood flooring.
  • Laminate flooring at $0.79 per square foot.
  • Premium high-gloss laminate at $1.99 per square foot.
  • Great deals on ceramic tile which can be installed by the best installer in Dalton, Ga.
  • Bostitch nail gun FREE with the purchase of a pallet of Bostitch staples.
  • Installation deals from our FloorTek Installation company.

It was a great week for Carpet Express and we hope each and every customer enjoyed their shopping experience. Great deals and expert customer service is what we are all about.

Thanks for another successful Fall Sale!

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Surfaces 2009

It seemed to be business as usual at the Surfaces Convention this week. Mannington had moved from the main showroom to a prime spot in the Venetian hallways, and Armstrong had moved from the Hotel of Mandalay Bay to a nice spot just off the main hallway in the Venetian. The net effect of their booth moves and others were a plus for the convention.

The attendees were supposedly over 50% off from last year, however this was not evident to me. It is probably true that the decision makers were there. There’s no doubt that many areas upstairs in the main showroom seemed empty, however, there were many booths upstairs that always seemed very busy.

Downstairs the story was a bit different, with lots of small booths and a grid layout that kept even the most seasoned attendees a little bit lost. The traffic was very steady and very good. Our booth was downstairs, showing primarily residential sheet vinyl and hardwood flooring, and we were extremely pleased with the show.

The show definitely had a California slant for attendees. This would seem normal since Las Vegas is so much closer to the west coast versus the east. Besides west coast dealers, there seemed to be lots of attendees from Canada. This surprised me, but customers from anywhere are good to see. The Canadians seemed very interested in our programs and hopefully will do some business.

The Chinese were definitely there in force, but only seemed interested in selling, not buying. I priced several 12 mil, high-gloss laminate products, and always got a similar answer. The prices ran $.95 to $1.20 landed in Dalton, Georgia. They had no US warehouse, and basically no customer services. They spoke broken English, but I think they tried to explain they had good German manufacturing equipment and their locking systems did not infringe on anyone’s patent.

All in all, Surfaces is an excellent industry show. They have made a go of it without the support of Shaw or Mohawk. Our industry needs an annual show, and I wish these two industry giants would support it. I would also like to see Surfaces move to an east coast location like Orlando or Atlanta, but Las Vegas is fine. Las Vegas is always a fun place to visit, and I guess the powers that be think it is the best location, and maybe it is. A Las Vegas show is a whole lot better than no show at all.

If you missed Surfaces 2009, you missed a great show. I only hope next year will be bigger and better. We’ve got to work hard and work smart to get through this difficult year. Do your business a favor and don’t miss out next year.

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International Builder’s Show

International Builders' ShowWe’re having a very busy week at Carpet Express with five of our key salespeople at the International Builders’ Show in Las Vegas. We have shown at the IBS for the last 11 years, and it always proves to be an exciting time.

The Internation Builders’ Show rotates between Las Vegas, Dallas, Orlando, and Atlanta, with one big show every year about this time. The last two shows have been in Orlando, Florida, and we have been fortunate to find several very good and very large new customers. I hope this year in Las Vegas will be this successful. The builder show is also an excellent spot to visit with our existing customers from around the country, as well as meet lots of new customers and friends.

Business remains reasonably strong at Carpet Express, despite continued bad news in the financial and housing sectors. The country seems to have a positive attitude with our new president, which hopefully will translate into better business for all of us. Unfortunately, there are no quick fixes for our housing industry and we all are just going to have to work harder and smarter.

I’ll be back in Las Vegas at the Sands convention center for the Surfaces floor covering trade show in about 2 weeks. Mike and I attend this show every year, and it is really the best way to stay in touch with the entire floorcovering industry. Las Vegas is always a fun place to conduct business and see a show. You just have to be careful not to get caught up in all the hoop-lah.

Here’s to a better year for everyone in ’09, and good luck to president Obama!

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Ask the Experts: How much carpet do I need?

Question: How do I know how much carpet I need?

-Scott
Dalton, Georgia

Answer: You usually need abut 10% more carpet, and about 5% more pad, than the actual square footage you are covering. However, the following steps are absolutely necessary in order to purchase the correct amount of carpet and pad needed for your job.

First, make a simple drawing of all the areas to be covered. Include, for example, living room, den, halls, master-bedroom, 2nd and 3rd bedrooms, and closets. Then measure each room in feet and inches, and add to sketch. Now you are ready to insert the carpet into the rooms.

Be sure you know the width of your carpet. Also, remember it is usually best for carpet in adjoining rooms to run the same direction. All carpet within the same room must run the same direction.

Installation can be a bit tricky, but if you take your time and actually draw out the carpet to be cut, and place the cuts in the appropriate room, it will make more sense to beginners. Be sure to save the waste from one room to use in another room or closet. Also, try to keep seams out of door ways.

Always remember to check your square footage to be covered against the amount of carpet your installer or dealer says you need. If it’s more than 10-15% extra, this should be a HUGE RED FLAG.

If you have any questions, or need help with your measurements, feel free to contact us at (800) 922-5582. We’ll be glad to help.

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A Halloween Message

October is always a busy month at Carpet Express. Our annual golf tournamet, locally know as the Mike Jones Invitational, was a great success. About 50 Carpet Express employees and suppliers enjoyed a beautiful Thursday afternoon at Knob North Golf Course, testing our golfing skills. Don Martin of Beaulieu was low individual with a 69, while the team of Bin Lin (CFS), Brian Sloan (Mannington), Ken Julian (R.A. Siegel) and myself took top team honors. What a great American tradition to conduct business on the golf course on a Thursday afternoon.

Business remains a little soft, but we feel very fortunate at Carpet Express. Personal service, great prices, and a lot of hard work continue to be our game plan to get through these tough times. It seems we’re in a very over-built housing cycle that will take some time to correct. There is not a quick fix, and neither presidential candidate offers much hope. I hate to think it’s up to our federal government to get us back on track, but hopefully oil will continue to fall, credit will loosen, employment will stabilize, the stock market will go up, and home prices will rise. I know this is wishful thinking, but it is very important to keep a positive attitude.

At Carpet Express, we plan to finish this year strong. Our residential and commercial customer base continues to expand, and our Floor-Tek Installation is doing well. We strive to earn — and keep — the confidence of our customers. We are bullish on America and look forward to many more great years.

In closing, I can’t help but express my disappointment in not making the Halloween costume finals. My dramatization of the guy getting hit by Anthony Kim’s errant golf shot at the Tour Championship should have brought home the money.

Happy Halloween from Carpet Express

Happy Halloween from Carpet Express

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It was a very good sale…

Our annual FALL SALE was a tremendous success. We surpassed Mike’s original goal, and also beat his new, higher shoot-for-the-stars goal. This was accomplished through a lot of hard work, and a lot of loyal, repeat customers. Our buying power and relationship with the major flooring manufacturers in this country, as well as importers, continue to pay dividends. More and more retailers, wholesalers, and foreign importers are looking to Carpet Express as a major source for their floor covering needs. While this wholesale business is good, our main focus is still to service the individual retail-type account, and do it with everyday low prices and great service.

We know that when one person brags about Carpet Express that a chain reaction can occur within that person’s family and friends. We call this turning a $500 order into a $10,000 sale. And it works. It is amazing what low prices and great service can do to increase sales.

Our Fall Sale is over now, but great prices continue at Carpet Express. We know times are tough and getting the best deal is very important. At Carpet Express, you’ll not only get that great deal, but you’ll also get our experience and advice to help you choose the floor that’s right for you.

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What is Promotional Grade Carpet?

We’ve been asked many times over the years what is meant by promotional grade carpet. We thought it would be a good idea to explain exactly what it means here.

What is Promotional Grade Carpet?Promotional Grade carpet is a generic term used by carpet manufacturers to describe carpet sold at a substantial discount to its normal price. The carpet is sold through the mills’ promotional goods department and usually does not have a warranty. The carpet may or may not have defects, but you should be made aware of why the carpet is being sold through the promotional department.

Several reasons may cause both residential or commercial carpet to be sold as promotional goods:

  1. Dropped Style: When a style is dropped by a mill and most of the best colors are sold off, often the remaining rolls will be sold at a substantial discount through the promotional department.
  2. Off-Shade: This means the color does not match the sample swatch and therefore cannot be sold as a running line product. The carpet is then sold as off-goods through the promotional department. These off-shade rolls are sold as off-goods or promotional goods even though they have no defects. Off-shade carpet is usually a tremendous value.
  3. Side-Match: After carpet is dyed, a swatch is cut from both sides of the carpet to be sure they match. If the sides do not match, it is called a side-match problem, becuase placing opposite sides together at the seams will cause an obvious color variation. A bad side match will not be visible in smaller rooms where no seams are necessary.
  4. Streaks: There are many degrees of streaking, and many causes. Most streaks are caused by one strand of yarn having a different twist level than the rest. This may result in what is called chicken tracks. There may also be a high line or low line that was caused by a problem in tufting or shearing. Streaks may be very minor (A seconds), very noticeable (B seconds), or somewhere between. It is best to see streaked carept before you purchase it, or have your sales representative inspect the carpet for you. Small rooms, especially bedrooms with lots of furniture, will hide most streaks.
  5. Dye Spots: These spots can be a splothcy look to the carpet or small drops which may or may not be very noticeable. Like streaks, they just need to be looked at and evaluated. Slight spotting is not very noticeable and usually fine for small rooms.

Side-match problems, streaks, and dye spots are only visual defects and in no way hurt the life or performance of the carpet. However, there are other carpet defects which most consumers should avoid. These include loose jute or backing, delamination, wet carpet, and I’m sure there are others. These are structural defects that compromise the integrity of the carpet.

Promotional Goods cover a broad range of 1st quality carpet, carpet with slight visual defects, as well as carpet with major defects. At Carpet Express we are very open with our customers and try to represent the promotional carpet we sell completely and honestly. Your sales person at Carpet Express will ensure you know exactly what you are buying. Promotional carpet can be a tremendous value not only for rental property, but also for your home.

The primary business of Carpet Express is selling 1st quality, running line floor covering complete with Manufacturer’s Warranty.

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