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Latex Research

The FLOOR COVERING DICTIONARY  gives following definition:

LATEX - A water emulsion of synthetic rubber, natural rubber, or other polymer. In carpet, latex is used for laminating secondary backings to tufted carpet, backcoating carpet and rugs, and for manufacturing formed cushion. Almost all carpet latex consists of styrene-butadiene synthetic rubber (SBR) compounded with large quantities of powder fillers. The latter are most often whiting, which is calcium carbonate. Latex is the raw material from which rubber is made.

If the carpet is Tufted and the latex is made with excessive amounts of non-elastic materials, it can effect faceyarns slipping and/or pulling, buckling, and delamination. There are four popular laboratory tests to be familiar with.

  • For Tuft bind the test is ASTM D13351. Standards from UM44d is 6.25 pound for loop-pile and 3.0 pounds for cut-pile average. However, this test often does not give a clear picture of the problem. Often after a carpet is stretch, the latex cracks releasing its hold on the yarns. Another test is without a ASTM protocol is called AVERAGE LATEX BUNDLE WRAP and AVERAGE LATEX PENETRATION testing. The FLOOR COVERING DICTIONARY gives this definition which can act as a standard.

LATEX PENETRATION - Yarn is removed from the primary and secondary backings and inspected under a micro-scope to determine how much latex penetrated the yarn bundle that exist beneath the primary backing. The results are stated as a percentage of latex penetration. A generally acceptable level is about 85% Latex penetration determines the tuft bind of the carpet.

  • The test for Delamination is ASTM 39361 and the standard is 2.5 pound average. Some experts consider this a low standard and it will often tell if the latex is defective.
  • The last recommendation for testing is DIMENSIONAL STABILITY and it does not have an ASTM number. However in this test, weights are attached to the carpet to make it stretch and measurements are taken afterwards to see how much it recoils and/or how much unrecovered extension there is. The standard for this test is the installation standards, either CRI104 or CRI105. If the carpet  goes over 1.5 percent in either direction, then it can not remain tight after its installation. Click here to see a report on this.