Used under your carpet and rugs, it once was called padding. Now the story of cushion can be told. While we never see it and seldom think of it once it’s installed, cushion, as it is more appropriately called these days, actually has a variety of valuable functions.


Today’s cushion serves two purposes. One is fashion oriented; the other has to do with protecting your floor fashion investment.


First, it is cushion, far more than your carpet, that determines how your carpet and rugs will feel when you walk on them. Plus, the correct cushion helps maintain your carpet’s original appearance over  the long haul. (It also increases air flow between  your floor and carpet or rugs for better, more efficient vacuuming.)

Cushion functions as a shock absorber, taking the pounding of everyday foot traffic. This helps your carpet feel better, look better and last longer. While technological advancements have brought us to a point where carpet these days rarely wears out, cushion’s job is to help prevent carpet from what is called “uglying out,” that is, losing its shape and resiliency.


These days, better-quality cushion also provides features run-of-the-mill padding never dreamed of, like blocking moisture and providing thermal and sound insulation between floors.


In terms of comfort, which comes first,  your cushion selection is largely a matter of personal preference; for example softer, more luxurious cushion in the living room and master bedroom or a firmer feel in a family or child’s room. Selecting the wrong cushion might actually void your warranty. You can’t go wrong if you buy the best for the life of your carpet.


Ultimately, you should base your decision on four things: personal comfort, performance that’s matched to your carpet, functionality for your lifestyle needs and, of course, a warranty that’s just right for you.