What Pile Height for Your Living Room Rug?

What Pile Height for Your Living Room Rug

Need a new rug for your living room? Do you want to know what pile height for your living room rug is best? When you find the right rug for your room the pile height is one of the most important things you should think about. Discover the world of rug pile heights in this section with me. It will help you choose the best one for your living room.

Understand What Is Pile Height?

The pile height of a rug is the distance between the fibers tips and the bottom of the rug. It is an important part of how the rug looks, feels and works in your space. So you should know about the different pile heights and its intended use so you can choose the right rug for your living room. 

Different Pile Heights for Rugs

There are different heights of pile which you need to explore to get an exact match for your living room.

  1. Low Pile Height (6.35): Rugs with a low pile are made with shorter fibers and are more resilient and simpler to clean. They work well in your living room which sees a lot of foot activity.
  2. Middle Pile Height: 6.35 mm – 12.7 mm pile rugs provide a happy medium between softness and low maintenance. They work great in many varieties of living rooms.
  3. High Pile (12.7 mm to 19.05 mm): High pile rugs are plush, luxurious and bring warmth to your living area. They are harder on maintaining up but they contribute for a nicer setting.
  4. Multi-level Pile (more than 2 pile heights):These rugs have a unique feel and visual appeal due to their many pile heights but they may be challenging to clean.
  5. Shag (more than 25.4 mm): They are known as shag and are ideal for creating an inviting and cozy vibe in the living room. It is obvious that they need more care generally.
  6. Flatweave (no-pile): These rugs are strong and simple to clean which make them ideal for areas with frequent use. They have a track record for lasting a long time.

Rug pile height chart

Pile Height (Length of Fibers) Pile Thickness (Density)
Short (e.g., 0.2 – 0.4 inches) Low Density 
Medium (e.g., 0.5 – 1.0 inches) Medium Density 
Long (e.g., 1.0+ inches) High density 

A Few Things to Ponder About

Think about how often you intend to clean the rug, the space decor and the level of foot activity you expect before opting on a pile height for your living room carpet. 

Usage and location: A low or medium pile rug may be more appropriate for a bustling living room while a high pile rug or shag rug may add a touch of luxury to the space like in bedrooms.

Aesthetics: Carpets with shorter piles have a more formal look and feel while carpets with larger heaps may create a more homey atmosphere. Select a pile height that works well with the rest of your decor, Don’t ignore it as you you select ceiling fan color for your living room and cushions for your sofa, it is as important.

Maintenance: Longer piles may trap more dirt and debris, making cleaning harder. Choose shorter piles that are simpler to vacuum and clean and less sensitive to collect dirt.

Allergies:If you or your family have allergies, lesser pile heights are healthier since they trap fewer particles like dust mites and pet fur.

Budget:Pile height affects expenses for material. Luxury textures and longer pile heights cost higher. Your budget should match your expectations and desires.

Pets:Consider your pets’ requirements and behaviours. Longer piles might store more pet hair and scents but are more comfy for pets. Washing shorter piles is simpler in animal-filled residences.

How to Measure Pile Height?

The steps listed below can calculate pile height:

  1. Use a ruler or tape measure.
  2. Position it vertically on the rug, starting from the base.
  3. Extend it to the tip of the fibers.
  4. Record the measurement in inches or centimeters.
  5. Measure in multiple spots for accuracy.

Pros of Selecting the Right Pile of Rug:

  • unique or interesting appearance.
  • comfortable to walk or sit on.
  • better insulation and warmth for a room.
  • High pile rugs can reduce noise levels in a space.
  • cozy ambiance.
  • hide minor imperfections in the floor.

Cons of Not Selecting the Right Pile of Rug:

  • Aesthetic Disruption
  • High pile rugs in high-traffic areas can wear out quickly
  • Cleaning Challenges
  • Longer piles can trap more allergens and dust
  • Tripping Hazard
  • Furniture Stability
  • challenging to move or reposition

Pile Thickness

The number of fibers makes up the pile width. The thickness is how big each thread in the rug pile is. It impacts how well it holds up over time and how resistant rug fibers are to being crushed or matted and typically measured in ounces or grams per square meter.

Carpet pile height vs. pile thickness

Carpet pile height and thickness share similarities yet varied. 

  • Pile height is the carpet fibers’ length from backing to tip, whereas pile thickness is its density and compactness.
  • Pile height affects carpet look but Pile thickness impacts carpet longevity and wear.

However, I can provide you with some general examples of pile height and density for different types of carpet:

Rug Pile Types Pile height  Pile width(density 
Low-Pile Carpet 0.25 inches 30 ounces per square yard
Medium-Pile Carpet 0.5 inches 40 ounces per square yard
Shag Carpet 1.5 inches 60 ounces per square yard
Berber Carpet 0.375 inches 35 ounces per square yard
Cut Pile Carpet 0.75 inches 45 ounces per square yard
Saxony Carpet 0.75 inches 50 ounces per square yard
Frieze Carpet 1 inch 55 ounces per square yard
Plush Carpet 0.5 inches 50 ounces per square yard
Outdoor Carpet 0.2 inches 30 ounces per square yard

Wrapping up:

Deciding on the right pile height for your living room rug can make a big difference in how your room looks and how it works. Take your time and think about what you are looking for in a rug for living room before you buy it and remember to install proper lightning specially recessed lights in living room for a perfect glow.


1. What Carpet Pile Height Is Best?

The best carpet pile height depends on your preferences; low piles are practical, while high piles offer luxury and comfort. 0.5-1 inches pile height is considered ideal. 

2. What Is A Pile Of Carpet Called?

The pile of a carpet is defined by its “pile height,” which relates to the length of its fibers.

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