What Causes Carpet To Wrinkle And Stretch?

Jan 25, 2022 | Carpet Cleaning, Carpet Repair

red couch with natural wood tables

Does your carpet seem to be loose or have waves or wrinkles in certain areas? Well, the term for this is “buckling” but we have good news. There are simple solutions to fix it!


But before we talk about solutions for carpet rippling, let’s better understand how to prevent it from happening in the first place. 


5 Main Causes Of Carpet Rippling


Here are 5 common (and avoidable) causes of wrinkles in your carpet. 




If you live in a humid climate, you may experience more carpet buckling—especially during the summer months. When moisture from the air soaks into your floors, it makes your carpet expand and wrinkle. It’s possible for the carpet to flatten out on its own eventually, but more often than not, the rippling is permanent. Running your air conditioning during the summer months and not leaving windows or doors open can help. 


Moisture can also enter your carpet through flooding, or steam cleaning if not done properly. That’s why it’s always best to have your carpets professionally cleaned rather than rent a machine and attempt it yourself. If you do experience flooding, immediately pull the carpet back from the carpet pad to let it dry out.


Poor Carpet Installation


Carpet should be stored at the same climate as the environment where it will be installed. If not (like moving from a cold warehouse to a warm home), the carpet should be given proper time to acclimate in the home prior to installation. 


Issues can also arise with the installation itself. Wall to wall carpet must be installed tightly with tack strips along the edges. Stretching should also be done during the installation process to reduce the chance of wrinkling. 


If your carpet is buckling, it could be due to improper installation. Professional carpet repair specialists will be able to correct these mistakes for you and secure your carpet to the ground properly. 


Incorrect Carpet Padding


Proper carpet padding is crucial when it comes to how your carpet lays on the floor. If carpet padding isn’t strong, thick, or dense enough to support the carpet above it, your carpet can move around too easily. This unwanted flexibility can cause carpet wrinkling.


Manufacturer Defects


Most carpet has one backing that the carpet fibers are attached to and another backing underneath. This second backing holds everything together. Sometimes this underneath backing detaches from the front backing when the latex adhesive connecting the two layers breaks down. The top layer of the carpet can then move around freely and is more prone to buckling. 


This manufacturing defect should be discussed with your carpet provider and replacement carpet should be installed if necessary.


Heavy Items


When you drag heavy items like furniture across your floors, they can catch and tug on your carpet, making it stretch. We recommend the lift and carry method instead of dragging to prevent carpet rippling. 


The Solution For Wrinkled Carpet


The good news is, there’s a solution for carpet wrinkling brought on by any of the causes listed above. 


Carpet stretching is a process in which carpet is tightened and reattached—solving carpet buckling issues and preventing further problems in the future. This is an effective method that must be done by professionals before carpet rippling leads to permanent damage, like severe creasing that can’t be reversed.


Chem-Dry of OKC/Edmond Carpet Repair is Oklahoma City’s number one carpet repair specialist. Contact us today to learn more about our carpet stretching service in the Edmond, OK area!

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