What Are The Best Types Of Rug Pads For Hardwood Flooring?

If you have hardwood flooring, it is important to add rug padding to help protect your flooring. Pads are essential after the installation of an area rug to help them remain in good condition for a long time while protecting the flooring at the same time. To maximize one’s rug pads, a property owner has to be careful which type of pad he or she chooses.
Not all types of rug pads can be used on a hardwood floor. Certain pads are known to smudge the finishing of the flooring. In order to know which pads are the best for hardwood floors, we will take a look at the different types of rug pads that are available in the market today.

Recommended Types of Rug Pads

  • 100% Felt Pads: These pads provide excellent cushioning for rugs. Felt pads do not have the grip of rubber and they are known to work best on larger rugs, which would provide extra anchorage for the pads. The material used often offers the best underfoot comfort as they are of high density. Another great quality of felt pads is that they are made from recycled materials, and so they serve as an eco-friendly option.
  • 100% Natural Rubber: These pads are made from rubber tree sap. They offer excellent grip to the flooring surface. They are a safer alternative to petro-based PVC and help to improve indoor air quality as well.
  • Felt/Rubber Hybrid Pad: These pads offer qualities from both rubber and felt pads. This means that they provide excellent cushioning under rugs and also have the gripping attributes of rubber.

Options that Need to be Re-Considered

  • Synthetic Latex: These pads are available at a low-price range, but they are best suited for short-term use. They are created from latex, which is blended with clay filters. When left on a hardwood floor for a long time, the clay dries out and leaves behind a pile of rubber flakes.
  • Polyvinyl-based (PVC): These pads are significantly more affordable and they are known to react with polyurethane finishes. If left on the floor for a long time, they can permanently discolor the floor. They are not recommended because most of them contain PVC composition, which is not analyzed for VOC emissions or non-toxic content.


The reality is that most pads in the market today are made from volatile organic compounds. If these types of pads are left under a rug for too long, they tend to leave residues behind and may cause permanent damage to the floor. It is important to select a quality rug pad to prevent potential rug problems in the future. Reasons for investing in a quality rug pad include:

  • Protection: A pad is designed to protect the surface of the floor from area rugs. Pads help to prevent any dye-transfer from the rug to the floor. Some rugs have an abrasive backing material that can damage the floor’s finishing if left unchecked.
  • Safety: Pads help to hold rags in place and prevent them from slipping.
  • Comfort: Adding a pad increases the cushioning of the rug giving a comfortable underfoot feel.
  • Rug preservation: Pads keep rugs stationary and flat and this prevents the rug’s fibers from being compressed or flattened.

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