I want low VOC carpet to replace my old carpeting. What are the best -- and least toxic -- conventional choices?

Asked by liz purtell
Mesa, AZ

Wool seems too scratchy for my family. Any better low VOC choices among conventional brands/types? Also, what about padding?


William Janhonen

Answered by William Janhonen

Norwalk, CT

WSJ Enterprises

August 9, 2010

There are as many low VOC carpet choices as leaves on a tree.

However, Mohawk has a low VOC carpet that you should consider. Go to their website and see the new SmartStrand carpet with DuPont Sorona renewably sourced polymer. Mohawk lined a rhino cage with their SmartStrand carpet and let "Rikko" do what rhinos do for two weeks. Watch a great video about this here.

I have seen this carpet at the Green Building Conference in Raleigh, NC. 

  • I was amazed at how soft the carpet is.
  • The fiber is made with Bio-PDO which is produced from corn sugar.
  • The superior stain resistance (see the video) is engineered into the carpet fiber and will never wear out or wash off. It is nontoxic, and they can provide padding that complements the carpet.
  • Mohawk is also a leader in reducing environmental impact by recycling 3 BILLION plastic water bottles each year to produce fiber strands.

They are worth a look while you plow through the myriad choices available.

For more information:

David Rodriguez recommends SmartStrand and three other CRI Green Label carpets in this Q&A "I need to find low-toxic carpet for my rental apartment. What are some reliable brands?"

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