A complete list of usage areas and their minimum use
high traffic areas, a cushion back or carpet pad should be
classification is available from the Carpet and Rug Institute,
PO Box 2048, Dalton, GA 30722
Off-gassing of harmful chemicals from carpet installations
Carpet pattern can mask or camouflage traffic patterns,
into the interior is a serious health concern. To minimize
spots, and soil, so that its appearance will be maintained
off-gassing that adversely affects indoor air quality, all
for a longer period of time. Pattern performance is:
carpet materials, including carpet fibers, backing, cushion,
and adhesives, shall meet or exceed the Carpet and Rug
Random pattern design = excellent
Institute's "Green Label" criteria and contain recycled,
Geometric Pattern = good
renewable, and/or reusable materials as much as
Tweed = marginal
practicable. Preferred materials for carpet backing and
Solid Color = Poor
cushioning are those containing natural fibers, polyolefin,
polyvinyl butryal (PVB), polypropylene, polyurethane, or
Stains will be the most noticeable when using colors that
contrast with soil, dust and spills. Therefore, light and
dark colors at the extreme ends of the color spectrum do
Carpets that use recovered materials shall be specified (see
not perform as well as colors that are in the medium
section 3.2, Special Design Considerations) and care should
be taken to specify carpet that can be recycled in the
future. However, when specifying a carpet that complies
Cushioning carpet adds a shock absorber to the carpet
with RCRA Section 6002 and Executive Order 13101, care
and reduces the crushing of the yarn. This prevents a loss
must be taken to verify it also meets all the criteria for its
of appearance from creating contrast in the traffic areas,
intended use and level of foot traffic.
thereby allowing the carpet to provide longer service. It
also provides ergonomic benefits by absorbing impact
The amount of foot traffic and soiling should be considered
resulting in less stress on the lower legs and feet of the
when selecting carpet. The CRI has developed test criteria
for rating carpet in each of three classifications: severe
traffic, heavy traffic, and moderate traffic. A selection of
Since 80 percent of the soil in the building comes in the
carpet for a lower foot traffic level than anticipated is
entrance areas of the building, it is important to catch the
soil at the entry. There are different systems available,
including special carpet tiles and entry mats available on
Severe traffic level Extreme foot traffic and soiling.
GSA Federal Supply Contracts.
Examples are corridors, entrance areas, lobbies, office
circulation, food service areas, etc.
Wall Covering. Use wall coverings that will maintain
Heavy traffic level Heavy to medium heavy foot traffic and
acceptable appearance in the location used for a
soiling. Examples are private offices, living quarters, open
minimum of 10 years. Preferred wall coverings include
plan office cubicles and workstations.
those that use natural fibers, polyester, polyethylene, and
low-VOC spray-applied polychromatic finishes.
Moderate traffic level Moderate foot traffic. Examples are
sleeping areas, conference rooms and consultation areas.
Commercial grade carpet should be specified for these areas.
92 F A C I L I T I E S S T A N D A R D S
Revised March 2005 PBS-P100