Rug Vs Carpet – Which One Should You Choose?

When making a choice between a rug and a carpet, you need to consider the aspect of practicability. Consider what is both sensible and suitable for your home without ignoring the needs of your family.

Difference between a rug and carpet

Below are some factors to consider.


Carpets cover an entire floor from one wall to the other. They are also attached to the floor which guarantees stability.

Rugs on the other hand are large cuts of carpet or large sections of floor coverings which do not cover an entire floor but only a section of it. Usually, they are not attached to the floor but are placed at the center of a room or under a bed.


Carpets are always much more preferable to rugs because they are excellent for insulation. They keep heat trapped in a room and provide greater warmth as compared to rugs.

For people living in cold to very cold climates or regions that experience winter seasons, it is advisable to settle for carpets rather than rugs. Do wall to wall carpeting to maximize on warmth.

Size of a rug and carpet

A carpet is any floor covering that is larger than 2 meters or 6.5 feet in length. A rug on the other hand measures up to 2 meters in length and covers less than 40 square feet.


More often than not, rugs require a non-slip net underneath to keep them in place, particularly if the floor is smooth or the rug is lightweight.

This increases the safety of users by largely eliminating chances of sliding and falling. Unfortunately, there still exists a chance of movement and this denies them complete stability.

Rugs can cause falls because they pose the danger of tripping over their edge when walking, especially for the elderly. Children too can trip over when playing. A rug may therefore not be a good option for you.

Carpets on the other hand provide excellent padding in cases of trips or even bumps. One is unlikely to be injured in case of a fall.

Cost of a rug vs carpet

Rugs are far cheaper than carpets, save for Persian and luxury rugs which tend to be quite expensive due to their fashionable nature. In addition, handwoven rugs are more expensive than machine made rugs because they are labor intensive.

Rug manufacturers decide the price based on how they were made. If your intention is to spend less on floor covering, then rugs are the better option for you. 


Rugs are super versatile as they come in all sizes, patterns, colours, shapes, and textures. Unlike carpets, rugs are great for creating zones in a home or office and they also create a cosy and unique ambience. They help to define and personalize a space.

How to install a carper vs rug

Rugs, unlike carpets do not need any installation, a factor that saves you time and money. This also makes them easy to change, move or rotate as desired. Carpets on the other hand are both time and money consuming in terms of installation. You will also need to spend more time and money in the future when time comes for you to change it. Professional removal and installation is a necessity for carpets.

Comfort offered by a carpet vs rug

In terms of comfort, both rugs and carpets are equally comfortable to the feet when compared to tiled and hardwood floors. Carpets and rugs made of wool are extremely comfortable as compared to carpets and rugs made from other materials such as synthetic fibre, nylon, acrylic, polyester, jute, hemp, and cotton.

There is an option of placing rugs on carpet, especially if you have a regular plain coloured carpet. Consider the rug colours that will blend in well with the colours of your carpet as you do not want your floor to have a clumsy or disorganized appearance.


If you have a noisy or loud family yet desire less echo and background noise, then a carpet is the better option for you. Its large surface area ensures effective sound absorption.


Another thing to consider in deciding between a rug and a carpet is the cushioning. Carpets provides greater and better cushioning compared to rugs because they are bouncier and have secure edges. This guarantees maximum safety for all users.


If you have a beautiful wooden or tiled floor that you desire to display or enjoy, then a rug is the better option for you as it will allow you to experience the best of both worlds. You will be able to zone off a certain portion of the floor, leaving you with uncovered portions of your beautiful bare floor to savour. All you need is to ensure a proper blend for harmony.

Using similar rugs also allows for uniformity in all your rooms which creates a sense of harmony throughout your home. However, if you desire only carpet, it is also easy to achieve harmony. All you need is to purchase the same exact carpet for all the rooms of your house.

On the other hand, if you desire both carpet and rug, harmonization can still be achieved by purchasing the same carpet for all your rooms and then purchasing similar rugs and placing them on the carpet.


When it comes to cleaning, rugs are always far much easier to clean than carpets. You can easily remove and take them for professional cleaning, or you can clean them yourself. They are also easier to dry. You can also use a simple hoover to draw out dust from them. For smaller rugs, you can take them outside and shake off all the dust they may have.

Carpets, just like rugs, are easy to hoover or vacuum clean when they do not need a deep cleaning. However, for much deeper cleaning, you will need a professional carpet cleaner. This will ensure that your carpet will stay in great condition for the longest time possible, especially because you change carpets less often.


Many homeowners prefer rugs to carpets because of their elegance and beauty which in many cases surpasses that of carpet. Nobody can deny the beauty of an Asian rug or the cosiness of a thick fluffy bamboo fibre rug. They add a fashionable edge to a room and give a warm and homely feel.


Rugs are the best option for people who are allergic to dust because they are much easier to clean and dry. Polypropylene or washable rugs are the best choice for such people. Carpets are known to accumulate dust in their fibres and padding, making them a health hazard for people with allergies.

Thickness of a carpet compared to a rug

Carpets are ideally thicker than rugs. The main reason for this is that they are intended to absorb the sound of steps when moving around.


Carpets are not recommended for use in areas with high humidity as they tend to trap moisture in the fibres causing mould and mildew to form. These in turn release mycotoxins into the atmosphere. Rugs are better because they deter formation of mould and mildew by allowing airflow underneath the fibres.


Both carpets and rugs are known to have relatively the same level of resistance to water, heat, fading of color and staining since most are made of the same fiber material. Most carpets, mats and rugs that are made of synthetic fiber are fairly water resistant as they contain water resistant material. However, those made of wool are not water resistant and tend to absorb water easily.

Durability of a rug compared to carpet

Durability will be different depending on the materials used in the construction or manufacture of both rug and carpet, and frequency of use. In general, both carpet and rug have nearly the same construction technique, same fiber materials and same usage.


Neutral colors are the best for wall to wall carpeting because they create a unified look. Rugs do not create a unified look like a carpet does, but they allow for varying of the color scheme and style of a room.

A rug is not a good option for people who prefer to walk around the house barefoot yet without experiencing the discomfort of treading on a cold hard floor. A carpet is a better choice for them. Families with crawling children may not prefer rugs either because a crawling child is sure to crawl onto the cold bare floor.

Small to standard rooms

Rugs are best for small to standard rooms as they make rooms of this size to feel bigger. They also make the cleaning of smaller rooms much easier. They are the best for anyone renting a space as the need to relocate can be sudden and unexpected. Rugs also allow you to personalize your house to your preference.

Large to very large rooms

Carpets are best for large to very large rooms as such rooms tend to become cold, especially if used by few people. You however have the option of placing rugs on them if you wish to. This is because ordinarily or most of the time, people use rugs as accessories and carpets as the main flooring of a room.