Dude! Can I surf the waves in your area rug?
August 17, 2008 5:50 PM   Subscribe

What are your personal experiences with products or methods to keep your area rugs from moving around on your carpet?

I have a 5'x8' area rug in my living room. It's sitting on short-nap carpeting, right in main area where the sofa, chairs and television are, so it gets a good amount of traffic. It's pretty thin and rubber-backed and lays down pretty well, but quickly develops "waves." I've looked at the various adhesive rug pads out there that are supposed to keep this from happening, so I know pretty much what's out there, but I want to know your personal experiences with any of these products. Or, is there some magical product or method that works better than the rug pads, but might not be as obvious?

Also: this is a rented apartment, so suggestions to remove the carpet or do anything permanent are not going to work.

posted by Fuzzy Skinner to Home & Garden (5 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
My mom had this exact problem with her rugs. I hate to tell you this, but after trying about a half-dozen different kind of adhesive/rubber pads, not to mention that odd weight-distribution scheme involving hiding tiles underneath and setting a coffee table on them, she ended up just giving up on having one.
posted by jinjo at 6:16 PM on August 17, 2008

Have you tried Lok-Lift's "Rug Gripper" tape? I'm persnickety as heck about household stuff, and I'm totally satisfied with it as a fix for the problem you describe. Previously, our area rug had shifted position slightly every time someone stepped on it, but it looks very tidy now and holds up to foot traffic quite well.
posted by Janey Complainy at 7:34 PM on August 17, 2008

Response by poster: Thanks for the input, jinjo. I'm kind of afraid that if I do use something under it, it will still wrinkle, but then be harder to straighten up. It pulls back into place pretty easily right now, so when it bugs me enough, a quick tug gets it back in line.

Janey Complainy, I'll look into that. I haven't tried anything at all yet. Thought I would get recommendations here first before I start buying random stuff. Maybe that brand is the one that jinjo's mom didn't try. :) It looks like my local Sheets 'n' Shit (er, Linens 'n' Things) has it in stock, so I'll give it a shot.
posted by Fuzzy Skinner at 10:31 PM on August 17, 2008

I don't think you want to use sticky-back carpet if it's going to be laying on carpet itself.
posted by rhizome at 10:31 PM on August 17, 2008

I liked the non-stick pads with the spongy feel and waffle wave. They look like giant sheets of drawer liners used in kitchen cabinets. I got them from Target. They worked pretty well in keeping down the waves and stopping the rug from slipping underfoot. They did, however, allow migration of a few inches over time, so every time I vacuumed the rug, I'd lift the rug and pull a corner to get it re-centered. That was easy to do.

IMO, avoid rug-sized pads with adhesive. The edges of the rug will lift and allow the adhesive to pick up dirt. The edges of the pad end up looking filthy black. Also, these pads left adhesive marks on my wooden floor after I got rid of the rug and mat.
posted by hhc5 at 2:53 PM on August 18, 2008

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