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D is for Draught Soiling

Draught marks shown under a radiator

Following on with last week’s theme of myth busting, this week we look at another potential for carpet damage, draught soiling.

What is Draught Soiling?


Draught soiling, also known as filtration soiling, is the appearance of unsightly marks and lines on your carpet. They are caused by dust and dirt in the air being pushed either along, or through, the carpet. Those particles then stick to the fibres of the carpet, causing discolouration.

Where can it occur?


Draught soiling can occur in both old and new homes and with wooden and concrete subfloors. Generally it will show up around the perimeter of the room but it can also appear in doorways, on stairs or where the underlay is joined as seen in the above image.

​What can be done about it?
  • Draught soiling across a room
    Preventing the marks from appearing where the underlay joins is the easiest.  When correctly installed all underlay joins should be taped to comply with BS 5325 (2001) – the British Standard released in 2001 that covers installing carpets – and where a property is known to suffer from draught soiling a Paperfelt underlay can be also installed under the primary underlay.
  • Draught soiling in a doorway
    Where the draught soiling occurs in a doorway the answer is harder, as there is no way of installing a carpet to prevent these marks.  The draught soiling here is caused as air moves from one room to another and is pushed down to the carpet where the dust and dirt sticks to the carpet fibres.  By leaving doors open, having a larger gap at the bottom of the door or installing draught excluders you can reduce the appearance of draught soiling drastically.
  • Draught soiling on stairs
    It can be extremely difficult to eliminate draught soiling on stairs as using a sealant often has poor success due to their natural movement.
  • Draught soiling around the perimeter
    Draught soiling around the perimeter of the room can occur due for several reasons.  The main cause is air coming up through a gap at the bottom of the skirting boards where they meet the floorboards. It can also be caused when the backing of the carpet is compromised by either too long gripper pins or a badly adjusted knee kicker (the tool carpet fitters use to stretch a carpet). 

At Grimley Flooring we believe we should do what we can to help reduce draught soiling which is why we always ensure that all new underlay is taped and that we supply the correct grippers for the carpet being installed to prevent the backing being compromised.  We also offer a skirting sealing service and can supply Paperfelt as required.

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