The following article was published in the Spring edition of The Professional Painter and Decorator magazine.
Temporary Carpet protection films
I am sure many people are now aware that temporary carpet protection films are now widely used during decorating and refurbishment. Protecting carpets and floors during painting and refurbishment is vital, so when using these types of products, you have to be sure to buy and use the correct temporary protection film. The last thing you want is to have adhesive residue or difficulties in removing the film after use.
Having worked for nearly 30 years in selling and promoting temporary protection films from some of the biggest manufacturers around, I have seen in the last few years’ carpet and hard floor protection products become big business. There are actually only a handful of manufacturers around who have the ability to produce temporary carpet protection film, and yet the internet is full of suppliers. But what do you choose and where from ??
We all expect to buy a product and then use it on any type of carpet and expect it to work….. The list of do’s and don’ts’ that come with some suppliers products (if we do take the time to read them) can be quiet long. I am pleased to say the product I promote has just a couple of restrictions, rather than a great long list. To add further confusion, some films is much thinner; on others it does not stick very well, and as far as I am concerned a very important part is , what type of adhesive have they used? I am sure many of us don’t think that such things matter, but I believe they do.
For me, I need something that stays down on the floor, comes up easily without ripping, and does not leave any glue behind.
If the adhesive is not good, it just won’t stay down so it’s a balance between making sure it sticks, but not too strong that it won’t remove easily and cleanly. Today many carpet protection films have a total thickness of between 45-48 micron, which is absolutely fine for many jobs, although you can get more robust films for heavy duty work if you need them.
Decorating can sometimes take a while, so you need a product which can remain in place for up to several weeks. However, many of the water adhesive type’s state they only last for up to couple of weeks and then you then have to replace them. That’s a costly exercise. But you can save money by using a product that can last several weeks and this is where choosing the correct comes in to its own.
When you want to protect a carpet, even wool –my firm belief is to use a solvent-type of adhesive. It will last several times longer than the water based products, therefore saving you time, money and the effort of having to re-apply the film, and if you buy from the right supplier, it will not necessarily cost you any more money.
Also, don’t be tempted to use the same film on a hard floor covering as you do on the carpet, each of these surfaces needs their own type of protection film and what sticks to hard flooring won’t necessarily stick to carpet and much worse the other way around !
I think that when using a carpet protection film, you need to make sure to buy a quality product from a re-seller who offers you products from accredited ISO manufacturers. In my 30 years’ I have always been happy to tell people whose product they are buying, and today, I am happy promote, Soprad srl, who are one of the largest privately owned manufacturers of temporary surface protection films. Soprad offer temporary carpet film and hard floor film, and I am happy to act as their UK agent, as they offer a range of quality products. All the products are available usually ex stock through our distributors. Standard roll sizes today seem to be 600mm x100 metre, but our UK based converters can offer bespoke widths and shorter roll lengths. You can see wildly varying prices around, and I have seen people pay £50 -£60 and more for material, which seems to me incredibly overpriced. It’s possible to buy a good quality solvent adhesive carpet protection product like the ones from Soprad, for over half that amount, and a roll 600mm x 100 metre would cost a little as little as £25.
So when you are next thinking of buying a carpet or hard floor protection films, take a look at what’s on offer, choose correctly, get the right advice, you won’t go far wrong.