We recommend going no thicker than 11mm for the stairs as anything over this will be very difficult to fit – read our guide on how to fit stairs carpet for more info. 9mm is the optimum thickness, however it can depend on the density of the underlay.
Popular manufacturers make underlay of around 11mm-12mm and this is ideal. However, thick underlay on the stairs can make it challenging to fit the underlay, so you must compromise on the comfort slightly. A 9mm underlay would be far easier to fit on the stairs rather than something as much as 12mm.
A 7mm standard quality foam underlay would be considered a budget price option, whereas a high density 8mm to 12mm would be regarded as a good option to give great support to your new carpet.
The main purpose of carpet underlay is to enhance underfoot comfort and improve insulation. Therefore, as a general rule of thumb – the thicker it is, the better.
In short, 9mm is generally best for high traffic areas such as stairs and 11mm is best for comfort areas.
Generally speaking 7mm is about as thin as you want to go unless you have a specialist need for something thinner, but 8-12mm is the band most manufacturers produce carpet underlay with 9-11mm being the most popular products.
But if you're looking for something a little softer and more sumptuous, be sure to opt for a thicker product. 10mm works well for stairways and extra thick carpets. However, in most cases, we recommend a 12mm underlay – as this tends to have the best properties overall.
The combination of thickness and density is all important as a thick underlay with a low density may not perform well. Typically the thicker the underlay the better quality it will need to be - 9- 7mm is the most common domestic thickness with 11mm often used for luxury installations.
The best type of underlay for carpet is PU foam. It is the best option due its many advantages over alternative types of underlay such as its strong heat insulation abilities and the soft underfoot it provides.
The Extra Step Heavy Duty 6mm is fantastic value for an extremely durable underlay which is guaranteed to prolong the life of any carpet in even the most high traffic areas. As well as being one of the most heavy duty products on the market, it also boasts good sound reduction and heat insulation properties.
Super 8mm Carpet Underlay PU Foam
Super is a good quality PU Foam 8mm Underlay will provide your carpets with a soft feeling underfoot and a good base level protection for your carpet. It will also provide high sound reduction, thermal and comfort properties.
We would recommend an underlay of 3 – 5mm for laminate flooring. It should be at least 3mm thick to provide comfort and ground levelling properties. But, it should be no more than 5mm thick. If it's any thicker, you could experience problems with the laminate's locking system.
PU foam is lightweight and easy to fit in most rooms. Sponge rubber is denser and heavier, which makes it slightly more difficult to fit and handle in certain places, such as the stairs.
A general rule of thumb for most residential carpet applications is to choose cushion no more than 7/16 inch thick and no less than 1/4 inch with 6 pounds per cubic feet density.
At 12mm thick, this is the thickest underlay you can buy for use with carpets. The extra thickness is designed to provide a lovely, comfort feel throughout your home.
Most residential carpet requires a pad that is between 3/8 of an inch and 7/16 of inch thick with a minimum 6-pound density rating. However, low-profile carpets, such as berber, should not use padding that is thicker than 7/16 of an inch (3/8 of an inch is commonly recommended).
Carpet underlay is an excellent insulation tool for your home. Because it is an extra layer between your carpet and the subfloor it acts as a new insulative layer. This then leads to a reduction in heat loss which in turn will mean you can save money on your heating and energy bills.
Excellent sound and thermal properties
Boasting a generous 3.1 tog rating, it provides excellent warmth for the home and may even help to cut down your energy costs. Cloud 9 cumulus underlay also benefits from 43db sound insulation and will successfully dull any noise made by walking across the room.
Super Gold is the best insulating laminate underlay. It is the thickest product (5mm) you can use so it also has the highest tog rating. As well as being insulating it also features a plastic vapour barrier which protects against humidity and it has a noise reduction rating of 22db.
How long do carpet underlays last? When buying carpet underlay, customers are often told that it will last up to 25 years – with crumb rubber being one of the most durable types available. It's important to note that underlay in a room that receives a lot of foot traffic daily won't last as long.
Carpet padding is always the best money you can spend in a carpet store! Put it this way, if you were to spend $3 more per yard on carpet, you may or may not be able to tell the difference. However, take that same $3 and spend it on an upgraded pad and it will make all the difference in the world.
Underlayment is manufactured and meant to be used as only a single layer to allow your floor to be balanced and float properly. If you install any additional underlayment, the base for your flooring will end up being too soft and could jeopardize the integrity of the locking system.
Laminate flooring should be between 6-12mm thick. If you find thicker than 12mm, it's an inaccurate measurement–possibly including attached padding. If you want the highest-quality, hardwood feel, you'll want 10 or 12mm.
Warmth and thickness – 5mm is the thickest you can go for laminate which means this product will provide the ultimate cushioning and warmth. Noise reduction – the rating of 22db allows this product to greatly reduce the sound of impact noise in your home.