What are Carpet Remnants and Where Do They Really Come From?
The term remnant might imply left-over scraps, but contrary to widespread misconceptions, remnants are not the surplus materials from broadloom deemed unworthy by a duped customer. Although some malicious entities practice the art of reselling customer carpet rejects, the idea that remnants are throwaway pieces is outright false.
So where do they come from then? Well, it’s simple. A large establishment that deals with massive rolls of carpet normally has a set length, usually 20 feet or less depending on a host of factors like space requirements and customer preferences, below which the roll is deemed unfit for ordinary sale. The remaining pieces are rolled up and set aside for sale as remnants at a cushioned price. This proves a simpler sales strategy as opposed to waiting for potential buyers to purchase the leftover roll bit by bit.
Alternatively, the rolls in question can be bought altogether from a supplier; which is normally the case with the smaller stores that have few or no rolls at all within their product list. Carpet manufacturers themselves do away with short rolls just as the large stores do, however they sell them in bulk to retailers who are required to meet a certain minimum buying threshold which can be as high as 50 remnants at a go.
The Upside to Purchasing Carpet Remnants
First of all, the remnants are usually a way cheaper alternative than going for the original carpet itself. This is arguably the best part of buying remnants as you are bound to save a significant amount of money. On the dealer’s end, it affords a profitable way to discard end rolls.
Another plus with remnants is that purchase is like taking a walk in the park. You won’t have to go through time-consuming processes such as special-order specifications and waiting when sizing down from a bigger roll canvas. All you need to do is just make a selection and you’re all done, you walk out with your remnant just as quickly as you came in. This convenience has made this option the go-to route for weekend project material.
The biggest problem with remnants is obviously their limited selection scope. The color choice, size, and style or pattern is up to the parent source material meaning that you have very little say on the search parameters. Therefore, getting exactly what you’re looking for might take quite some time as you may have to sample a number of stores hoping to stumble upon your heart’s desire.
Size proves a particularly tough criterion to meet although a few stores are willing to shape bigger remnants to match your spacing measurements depending on how sale-able the remnant is after taking out the purchased portion. If say you are on the hunt for a 12’ x 10’ remnant but the retailer has on offer a 12’ x 20’ piece, then the store could be persuaded into a half-price sale as the remaining half is still very much sale-able.
What You Don’t Know Can’t Hurt You. Or Can It?
You are basically buying blind when shopping for remnants as the pieces almost always cannot be traced back to the source. On the rare event that lady luck is smiling your way, then the staff might be familiar with the leftover piece and can narrow it to down to a sample of the parent roll.
As is the norm however, the opposite is the case. The salesperson will be clueless with regards to the type of carpet it came from or the kind of fiber in its composition, which is understandable given the bulk of remnant purchases made by the supplier every so often. Thus, it is hard to distinguish polyester, nylon, or synthetic fibers among other material components even for the most experienced professional.
To get as close as possible to what you’re looking for, it is therefore important that you deal with a salesperson that is trustworthy. One who can paint at least a rough sketch of the carpet’s quality even if he/she can’t put a finger on the exact specifications.
A remnant doesn’t come with a warranty, something the retailer vividly points out in the receipts in no uncertain terms. The wordings might just read “carpet remnant” or the term sold “as is” or something along that line will feature during purchase and normally even the carpet type isn’t even outlined.
If you require a remnant for the short term or for a low traffic area, then a no-warranty deal shouldn’t be too much of a problem. However, if it’s intended for the opposite of those two purposes, then a warranty is important as it ensures that’ll you get your full money’s worth.
Purchasing remnants is a delicate balancing act. This is seen with the no-warranty consequences on one side of the scale and the cost-effectiveness on the other. In the long run, which matters most is solely up to you. Word of advice however: carpet remnants are not a pricey investment to begin with. So, the fear of losses somewhere down the line if it becomes defective is a non-issue really as the loses are quite frankly, peanuts. So, if you can find one that fits your billing, then, by all means, buy it. You can save a few bucks at the end of the day which is always a plus in my book.