Everything you need to know about rug pads

Rug pads provide protection for your rugs, increase the comfort of walking on them, and keep your rugs in place. The best rug pad should feel good underfoot while protecting the rug above it from damage due to compression or water damage.

Rugs add color and comfort to a floor. High traffic areas can add life to a room if you have dogs or children running in and out of the house. But what about slippage? A rug will slide on hardwood floors and scrunch up at corners. Rug pads ensure that rugs don’t move at all.

Everything you need to know about rug pads, Zazzy Home

Rug pads can be made out of cork, natural rubber, latex rubber, jute rope, or jute backing. Each material has its own properties that determine whether it’s appropriate for a certain room, type of flooring surface, and location in the home. Natural materials are breathable and suitable for most rooms, with modern carpeting, jute, cork, and latex are all good choices. Rubber is the best choice for high-traffic areas due to its durability.

Your rug pad should be slightly bigger than your rug in every dimension by about an additional 3 inches all around. This allows you to cut off any excess if necessary once it’s under your furniture (for instance, the corners of the pad will stick out beyond your furniture legs). Note that if you have unusual dimensions for a rug, it may be better to get custom-sized pads since standard sizes don’t always work well with non-standard rugs.

When selecting a pad for your home, ensure that it has nonskid backing material, which can help prevent slipping accidents around any delicate flooring surfaces. For example, if you have a hardwood floor, it is advised to get one with nonslip material on the top side (the side that will contact your rug). This type of pad will help prevent movement and slipping accidents when your family member walks across the rug or if items are dragged near its edges.

The most popular types of rug pads for residential use are:

Rubber Pads: Rubber is a popular choice due to its durability and dependability. It has a very strong grip, so it can handle high traffic areas while keeping your rugs from moving. Its dense composition also provides cushioning underfoot.

However, rug pads made from rubber, ,can be very heavy and difficult to cut through,, which means they may not be the best option for you if you are looking to move or remove your pad often.

Everything you need to know about rug pads, Zazzy Home

Cork Pads: Cork pads are made from natural cork tree bark. The material is very soft, durable, and absorbent, which makes it a popular choice for many homeowners. It’s ideal if you have hardwood floors as their cushioning properties provide that extra support needed by some people with sensitive feet. In addition, this type of pad can be machine washed and air-dried quickly after absorbing spills on the rug below it.

Jute/Backing Pads: If you’re looking for something environmentally friendly, then jute backing pads may be your best bet – they are 100 percent biodegradable. On the downside, they do not offer much cushioning. Another downside is they can be difficult to cut through and may require a bit more effort on your part, especially if you have pets or children climbing on them frequently.

Natural Rubber Pads: Natural rubber pads are very durable and provide maximum protection from compression, moisture damage,, and matting, making them a popular choice for many consumers. They’re also a great option if you’re looking to cut back on packaging waste as they’re generally sold without the plastic casing that most other types of rug pads ship with.

What flooring surface will I need my pad for?

Cork pads are best used on hardwood floors as their cushioning properties provide the extra support needed by some people with sensitive feet. They also do a great job of protecting wood from scratches.

Jute/Backing pads are best used on floors that are in pristine condition without any kind of damage (they can be used on hardwood floors, but they don’t provide enough cushioning for most people). If you’re looking to protect the surface below your rug, this is not ideal because it’s difficult to cut through and doesn’t always stay together well when cut.

Rubber pads are very durable and can handle high traffic areas while preventing rugs from moving or slipping. The material also protects the floor underneath it very well, especially if there is no surface damage present in the area where it will be placed. However, this type of pad does not provide much cushioning, ,so it’s not a good choice for wood floors or otherwise sensitive feet.

What features should I look for when buying a rug pad?

When a rug pad is placed on a floor, it will immediately affect its comfort level. It does this because the pad acts as insulation from the cold floor and/or furnishing that may be placed on top of it. In addition to providing softness, a good rug pad also ensures the durability of your rugs and carpets by preventing them from sliding around or developing wrinkles.

The correct size for any area rug will ensure that both sides are covered with no edges left exposed. In addition, an ideal rug pad should have advanced moisture protection in order to avoid problems caused by exposure to humidity which can lead to mold growth in the pile fibers underneath. Moisture resistance also ensures pet urine odors do not seep through vents from the pad’s bottom to the flooring surface below.

A rug pad should be durable enough to hold up in high traffic areas yet soft enough in order to provide comfort underfoot even in moderate use areas. A good-quality rug pad will also reduce noise caused by footfalls and absorb sound when dropped objects are placed on top of it.

The main factors affecting how well a rug pad will perform

The main thing which will affect how your rug pads work is the weight of the rug and the texture of the floor. Make sure you choose a heavy pad to provide adequate cushioning for your area rug and thick enough to protect the floor underneath it.

Consider an area rug pad with a nonslip bottom and rubberized or felt fibers. These types will not only add padding but actually grip onto hard surfaces, such as wood or tile floors, preventing slipping and sliding.

If your area rug is particularly heavy or might be placed on carpet, look for one with an additional layer of rubber (or another gripping material) beneath the fiber top layer in order to keep it from moving when laid down. Also, ensure that your area rug is not placed on a slippery surface because this will negate the pad’s ability to help prevent sliding.

Area rugs come in different weights and textures. This can make it difficult to know which one you should choose for your home. Here are some things to keep in mind when selecting a space-saving rug pad

Weights of Rugs – For most carpets, use a rug pad that weighs at least as much as your area rug or heavier. The weight of an area rug matters more than its size because carpet thickness varies from room to room within a single house, so the carpet beneath an area rug might be thin in some places and thick in others. You will need a thicker, denser rug pad to make up the difference.

Tightly Woven Rugs – Some rugs are tightly woven with a jute or cotton backing on them; these types of rugs tend to stay put on their own and may not require additional help from a rug pad. Thinner, flatter-style area rug pads will work for this type of rug.

Rug pile height – If your area rug is plush and very thick, it might be too thick to use with a regular style pad underneath it. Get a felt-type fiber pad instead and place it over the carpet underneath the area rug to prevent indentations and movement underfoot. This works great if you have hardwood or tile floors that damage easily when stepped on with high heels.

If your area rug is plush and very thick, it might be too thick to use with a regular style pad underneath it. Get a felt-type fiber pad instead and place it over the carpet underneath the area rug to prevent indentation and movement underfoot.

What are the alternatives to using rug pads?

If you want to have a rug that doesn’t cause you to slip over but doesn’t want to use rug pads to keep it in place, then you have a few options other than using rug pads. For example, you can weigh down the corners of your rugs with other heavy items; you could use tape (which would be temporary) or tacks that will need to be hammered into the carpet for a permanent solution.

Most rugs are best secured by tacking around their edges. You should place about three tacks every 12-inches (30cm). If there is more weight on the back of the rug rather than its front, then you might want to secure it with four tacks at each corner. Take care not to puncture any wires or cables that lay along your floors if they cannot take hammering yet another element onto them.

Everything you need to know about rug pads, Zazzy Home

Of, if you don’t really want to put nails into your nice wooden floor, an area rug with a nonslip back is one option, but these rugs tend to be thin and not very attractive. Another option would be to use plastic rug grippers, but you’ll need to make sure they are the right size for your rug.

Are area rug pads necessary?

Yes. Rug pads are essential for most high-traffic areas, especially where children or pets are present. They ensure that rugs don’t move at all on the surface of hardwood floors due to friction.

Also, consider using a felt underlayment underneath an area rug in dining rooms or near doorways; these surfaces tend to be more prone to scratching (even though scratches can also appear anywhere).

It’s advisable not to put any kind of furniture on top of an area rug because it could transfer oils onto the fabric, thus creating permanent stains even after cleaning.

Many manufacturers make nonslip rubberized fabric available rug pads; this variety comes in different thicknesses. They’re economical, easy to clean and provide excellent slip resistance. However, the most common mistake people make with area rugs is not purchasing the proper size. The rug should completely cover the floor on all sides of the furniture resting upon it, but there also needs to be an adequate gap around any walls that are parallel to the rug’s edges (1/2″ gap on each side). To ensure that your rug will fit properly, take a tape measure and determine how many feet wide by how many feet long you need.


The use of a rug pad is essential for keeping your floor safe and sound. The right rug pads can also help protect against potential accidents, such as slips or falls.

Rug pads help protect your floor by creating an extra layer between your floor and your rug. Since rugs usually do not come with a rubberized backing, additionally, the use of a rug pad will ensure that no damage comes to your floor underneath.

This can be caused by moisture or changes in temperature throughout the seasons. Additionally, whatever type of material is used for the construction of your floor should also be kept in mind when considering which rug pad works best for your needs.


Claire is a blogger, writer, and designer with a passion for making the most out of any space. She's worked in interior design and maintenance for over a decade, and has learned how to make the most of even the smallest room. Claire shares her expertise, where she offers tips and tricks for creating beautiful, functional spaces on any budget. When she's not blogging or designing, Claire enjoys spending time with her family and friends.

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