Wool Rug Odor

Posted on: January 12th, 2013

One source of wool rug odor is from the Latex that is used to hold the backing materials (fabric Scrim) to the face yarns on Hand-Tufted Rugs from India. Sometimes there is an odd smell when a Hand Tufted Rug is new but more often by the time the rug is 5 years old the owner will start to notice an unusual odor that has been described as smelling like mashed potatoes, old gym socks, or burned rubber. Hand Tufted Rugs are popular and inexpensive. The name Hand Tufted is misleading to an unknowing buyer. Hand Knotted Rugs v. Hand Tufted Rugs could not be farther apart in terms of construction, beauty, value, clean-ability and life expectancy. Hand Tufted Rugs from India are made with low quality materials. The Rugs are basically throw away rugs. The rugs are made by attaching a canvas to a frame and using a “gun” to punched low grade wool into a canvas. Latex is used as the adhesive between the backing materials and the canvas holding the wool yarns. Unfortunately, these rugs have several inherent problems. Latex deteriorates with age becoming brittle, dry and crumbly. The Latex used on these rugs is mixed with different additives which negatively affect the adhesiveness. One additive is a filler similar to the gravel in a concrete mix; marble dust is also added to latex as an extender but it has no adhesive qualities. Increased use of extenders reduces the adhesive power of the latex and over time results in the separation of the backings from the hand-tufted rug. The filler looks like powder or sand. When the latex begins to breakdown it leaves a powdery residue on the floor beneath the rug. Hand Tufted Rugs from India often have a blue dyed or green dyed secondary backing. These dyes can bleed during washing. Additionally, there is a design stenciled with red dye on the primary canvas that can bleed and wick up to the face dye. Because of the bleeding and latex issues it is more difficult to correct urine contamination on Hand Tufted Rugs from India. They are commonly sold at Pottery Barn. Buyer Beware. You most likely will throw these rugs away when they are 5-7 years old as the odor can not be corrected. blog-india-tufted-blueedited HAND TUFTED RUG FROM INDIA

Tags: , , , , ,

Our Location

Contact Us

Business Hours

  • M-F, 9 - 5
  • Rug Drop-off & Pick-Up by Appointment Only


  • Call Us!