carpet noise - crunch crunch crunch

Discussion in 'Carpet Q&A' started by madmax343, Oct 5, 2017.

  1. madmax343

    madmax343 Member


    About 4 months ago we purchased new carpet for our new house. It is a Mohawk Smartstrand 508 Driftwood. It was paired with a Scotchguard 7/16 7# carpet pad. After living with for a few months we have noticed that there is an excessive crunching noise coming from the carpet. I believe that it is the carpet backing flexing causing this noise. It is especially noticeable in smaller hallways, and in some areas there is no noise. To me it sounds like plastic walmart bags being folded into a ball ( or a similar crunching sound ). The company we purchased it from had an inspection done and they found there is no defect even though the inspector said "It's really loud over here". I am wondering if anyone has any suggestions on how to remove the noise from the carpet. I like to sneak up and and goose my wife, but with this carpet it isn't possible... she can hear me coming!
    We purchased about 160 sq yds, so we'd like to try to resolve this before coming up with another plan.
  2. Jim McClain

    Jim McClain Owner/Founder Administrator

    Well, that's why we're here to help in situations just like that. ;) Unfortunately, the only way to find out what's causing that noise is to pull back enough of the carpet to see. I would look for a corner close to a noisy area and pull it back. You can inspect the back of the carpet, the top of the cushion and, if need be, use a razorblade knife to slice the pad open to look under it. Take photos at every step and show the evidence to the person responsible for the installation or the product sale.

    Inspectors don't usually do any destructive testing, so they wouldn't be able to do that. Your installer should have volunteered to do that though.

    The carpet will have to be restretched to put it back.
  3. madmax343

    madmax343 Member

    I'm fairly certain it is caused by the carpet backing flexing. I have several pieces of leftover carpet and they are doing the same thing when they are bent or flexed. A hand press on the carpet can reproduce the noise as well. We choose the shortest pile height to hopefully get away with less footmarks, which it does a bit. This leaves less cushion between the backing I'm guessing
  4. Jim McClain

    Jim McClain Owner/Founder Administrator

    I don't know if it's written anywhere, but in my personal book, the thinner the carpet pile, the thinner the cushion (and more dense). You didn't provide the style name, so I don't know the actual thickness. But if it was a really short pile, I would have recommended a cushion about 3/8" thick and a minimum 8# density.

    Did you show the leftover carpet to the inspector and demonstrate the noise it makes when flexing?
  5. madmax343

    madmax343 Member

    Yes. I did show the inspector. Mohawk Smartstrand Color 508 Driftwood - Style Influence is the carpet type. There were three pile heights and we picked the shortest one. I would not say it is very dense.
    These are the only details I have.
    I'm just wondering if steaming the carpet would help relax the backing, or if there is something else I can do to speed up a break in process for the backing. I'm hoping it won't always be like this.
  6. Daris Mulkin

    Daris Mulkin The One and Only Charter Member I Support TFP Senior Member

    I ran into a close situation once where the fiber itself was making the crunching noise. Take a piece of the carpet if you have any and put it on a hard surface. Then push down on the yarn. The only way I could describe it was it sounded like walking on snow that was packing down. The mill person whom I was talking to knew immediately what it was and called it by name. This was many years ago and if I remember right it was called scorch. It was the driers were to hot and it scorched the yarn. If that is what it is then its a mill defect. If the store brought an inspector- probably his rep, I would get a independent inspection because now as far as the mill is concerned there is no problem. Let the inspectors fight it out. But in the same token have an installer pull back an area near where it is loudest and check the backing and the surface of the pad as that is also plastic.
    On an installation I had a sheet of newspaper get sucked under the carpet. Wouldn't you know it was beside the bed where they stepped on it every day. Tore it up and was I surprised.


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  7. Lance

    Lance Charter Member

    It could be scroop. That is when the carpet is overheated and makes a crunch noise when walked on. It can take a little time to show and often is heard in the traffic lanes first. The crunch sound can be repeated when walked on. It is a distinct feel/sound when walked on. I have run across it a handful of times over 20 years.
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    • Agree Agree x 1
  8. SteveG

    SteveG Pro Member

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  9. Incognito

    Incognito No more Mr. Nice Guy! I Support TFP Senior Member

    My advice is to turn the radio/stereo/TV up REALLY loud so your wife can't hear you when you're sneaking up on her.

    Of course this is just a temporary solution til someone can resolve the floorcovering concerns but first things first.
    • Funny Funny x 2
    • Like Like x 1
  10. Mike Antonetti

    Mike Antonetti I Support TFP Senior Member

    I got my wife this as a warning that gooses were imminent. Haven't done that in awhile or wrestling, that was fun!

    Attached Files:

  11. Darren Ramey

    Darren Ramey Charter Member

    In my experience pad is the usually the culprit. Sometimes the plastic on top isn't secured well enough and makes the plastic bag sound. Sometime there is chunks of wood in rebond that make popping noises when stepped on.
    • Like Like x 2
    • Agree Agree x 2
  12. Ridgeline7847

    Ridgeline7847 Flooring Store Owner

    There are many potential reasons, pulling back the carpet will be the best way in searching for the answer.
    I have had three different crunchy noise issues in the last couple years
    Here were the results we found.
    1- the moisture barrier on the pad was separating from the cushion. Loose plastic top caused the noises. (Replaced cushion problem solved)
    2- a carpets backing delaminated quickly leaving loose carpet backing on top of the moisture barrier causing the rustling noises against the pad (Replaced carpet problem solved)
    3-This carpet appeared never vacuumed in 4 years, under it looked like a sandy beach on top of the moisture barrier cushion causing the rustling noise. (Vacuumed the cushion off and the noises went away)
    • Agree Agree x 1
  13. Mike Antonetti

    Mike Antonetti I Support TFP Senior Member

    I agree, it's kind of a no brained with the plastic coating on the pad for a barrier. Obviously the formula needs to change. Kinda like my package of Hershey Nuggets chocolate the plastic package is extra loud, it's got to be done on purpose, marketing/psychological, annoying as hell when I continually reach into the bag, not necessary, I don't need to be reminded I'm eating more, trying to be subtle.

    I don't like the idea of the pad having the barrier for years I said it needs to be in the carpet backing. Went to a flooring store the other day that has many area rugs I wanted to look at, ended up asking the salesperson about the pet barrier carpet, she was unaware of it. I assumed all carpet stores carried it as I saw empty water displays in a few others. She said they had the pad barrier but if I knew what product it was they could get it. That's not my job, they ought to know that product far better than my inquiry.

    LifeGuard Carpet
    • Agree Agree x 1
  14. madmax343

    madmax343 Member

    It does seem to be the higher traffic areas with the problem. I will try to bring up the carpet and inspect the pad. The inspector tried to do this through a floor vent, but obviously not much area to see by doing that. I'm sure he didn't want to make a mess.
    The noise is driving me nuts now that it has been noticed.
    I will try to take video with sound to capture it.
  15. Mike Sliwinski

    Mike Sliwinski The Doctor Is In I Support TFP Senior Member

    IMHO an installers presence during inspection would have been the way to go, because we have the tools / skill to clean up the mess :)
    • Agree Agree x 1
    • Winner Winner x 1
  16. madmax343

    madmax343 Member

    You're probably right. This was my first run in with an inspection and I wasn't sure how it was going to go.

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