If you’re in the market for new carpeting, you’ve probably come across 651 carpets and Empire carpets. As two of the biggest names in flooring, these brands dominate the carpet industry.
But which one is better for your home?
In this complete guide, we’ll compare 651 carpets and Empire carpets on key factors like durability, texture, warranties, and more. Read on to learn the pros and cons of each brand, so you can decide which carpet best fits your lifestyle and budget.
A Brief Comparison Table
|Carpet Factor||651 Carpets||Empire Carpets|
|Durability||Very durable, made from nylon and polyester||Less durable, made from triexta|
|Warranty||Limited lifetime warranties||Lifetime stain and wear warranties|
|Texture/Style||Wide selection of textures including Berber, frieze, plush, and patterned||Focuses on plush and velvety soft saxony styles|
|Cost||Affordable, mid-range pricing from $1-6 per sq. ft. installed.||Luxury pricing from $3-8+ per sq. ft. installed.|
|Softness||Not as universally soft as Empire overall||Very plush and soft, great for bedrooms|
|Stain Resistance||Scotchgard protection resists stains||Stainmaster protection with lifetime warranty|
|Best For||High traffic areas, budget buyers, variety of textures||Low traffic areas, luxury softness, stain resistance|
Overview of 651 Carpets
First up in this carpet comparison is 651 carpets. As one of the largest carpet manufacturers in the world, 651 offers a wide selection of carpet styles and colors for residential and commercial spaces.
- Durable fibers like nylon hold up well to foot traffic
- Stain resistant treatments available
- Large variety of textures and patterns
- Competitively priced
- Recyclable through the company’s ReCover program
- Not as many ultra-soft styles
- Limited lifetime warranties
- Mixed reviews on durability from some customers
Overview of Empire Carpets
Empire is another major player in the flooring industry, with a focus on luxury carpets. If you want a super plush, soft carpet, Empire offers some of the plushest options around.
- Very soft, plush carpeting
- High-quality fibers like Triexta (SmartStrand)
- Stain and soil resistance treatments
- Lifetime stain and wear warranties
- Large selection of patterns and colors
- On the expensive side
- Fibers prone to matting
- Not as durable as competitors
- Mixed reviews on warranties
Now that you know the basics about each brand, let’s do a deep dive on how 651 and Empire stack up in terms of durability, warranties, cost, softness, and more.
Durability Showdown of 651 And Empire Carpet
One of the most important factors when shopping for carpets is durability. You want a carpet that will stand up to everyday wear and tear for years to come. This is where 651 and Empire have some key differences.
651 tends to use more durable synthetic fibers like nylon, olefin, and polyester. These hold up better under heavy foot traffic than the softer triexta fibers used in many Empire carpets. The trade-off is that Empire’s triexta carpets feel incredibly plush and luxurious.
For high traffic areas like stairs, halls, and family rooms, 651’s nylon carpets are a better bet for durability.
The fibers resist crushing, matting, and showing footprints better over time.
Empire’s triexta can flatten out and look worn down more quickly in high traffic areas.
However, for low to medium traffic bedrooms, Empire’s super soft carpets may perform just fine.
Since you’re not constantly walking over the carpet, the fibers don’t get crushed down and damaged as much.
Many customers note that 651 carpets last significantly longer, while Empire carpets feel softer and plusher at first. So if longevity is key, 651 seems to win out on overall durability. But Empire offers that ultra-luxurious feel that some homeowners love.
Comparing Carpet Warranties
Carpet warranties can give you peace of mind that the brand stands behind the quality of their product. 651 carpets and Empire carpets both offer warranties, but there are key differences.
651 carpets come with limited lifetime warranties. This covers defects in materials and craftsmanship, but only for the expected lifetime of the carpet. Since average carpet lifespan is around 7-15 years, 651’s warranties reflect that.
Empire carpets offers lifetime warranties against stains, soil, and wear. This sounds better at first glance. However, many customers report issues getting Empire to honor their warranties, especially after a few years when the carpet appears worn. Complaints ofLooped warranties not fully covering costs are common.
So while Empire’s lifetime warranties seem more appealing, 651’s limited lifetime warranties may actually provide more realistic coverage that better matches average carpet life expectancies. As with any warranty, read all the details carefully so you know what’s covered.
Availability of Carpet Textures and Styles
Beyond durability and warranties, you’ll want to consider the variety of carpets available from 651 and Empire. Texture and style preferences often come down to personal taste.
651 offers a wide range of textures like Berber, frieze, patterned, plush, saxony, and more. They have an extensive catalog of solid color and patterned designs. Styles range from casual Berbers to elegant patterned carpets.
Empire focuses more narrowly on luxurious soft carpets in saxony and plush styles. Their color palettes tend to have rich variations for a more upscale look. Textures lean toward velvety softness over performance.
So Empire provides more styles if you like that ultra-plush, elegant carpet look. 651 has a much wider range of textures and patterns at various price points. You can find a simple Berber carpet or a high-end patterned carpet to suit your needs.
Cost Comparison of Empire And 651 Carpets
Given the differences in fibers, construction, and features, how do 651 and Empire carpets compare cost-wise?
On average, Empire carpets fall on the luxury end of the price spectrum. The nylon and triexta carpets with dense, plush piles often range from $3-7 per square foot installed. Their top-of-the-line styles can be $8 per square foot or more.
651 carpets span a larger range depending on materials and quality.
Entry-level polyester or olefin options start around $1-3 per square foot installed.
Mid-range nylon carpets run $3-5 per square foot. And 651’s high-end soft carpets reach $6+ per square foot.
While Empire’s plush carpets come at a premium, they offer financing options that can make the investment more manageable.
651 also runs frequent promotions with rebates, pricing specials, and financing offers that can save money.
For budget buyers, 651 likely has better value options. But Empire provides posh softness for an added luxury feel in the home. The price reflects the quality of fibers and construction.
Softness Showdown: Who Makes The Plushest Carpet?
Carpet shoppers often ask: which is softer, 651 or Empire? With so many textures and fibers available, it depends on which specific carpets you compare. But in general, Empire takes the crown for the softest carpets overall.
The main reason is Empire’s focus on triexta (SmartStrand) carpet fibers. Developed to mimic wool’s softness, triexta has a silkier, more luxurious feel than many nylons. Empire weaves the triexta in dense, velvety constructions like saxony and plush.
651 does offer some triexta carpets, along with ultra-soft nylons. But their selection leans more toward durable, textured styles that hold up to family life. For the absolute softest carpet out there, Empire triexta’s plushness stands out. But some 651 nylons come close in cushy softness.
If you want carpeting for heavy living, 651 likely has better options. But for a heavenly soft spot to sink your toes into, Empire’s the winner. Try out samples of each brand to feel the textures in person.
Stain Resistance Comparison
Along with durability and texture, stain resistance is key to a long-lasting carpet. Spills and messes are inevitable, especially in homes with kids and pets. How do Empire and 651 carpets hold up when the inevitable stains occur?
Both brands offer stain-resistant treatments to help carpets stay clean. 651 applies Scotchgard, Shaw’s version of built-in stain protection. Empire carpets feature DuPont’s Stainmaster treatment.
Overall, customers find both treatments effective for repelling everyday food and beverage spills. Neither fully prevents stains, but they allow time to clean up minor accidents. Results depend heavily on carpet fiber and color, with lighter carpets showing more visible staining over time.
For best results, clean stains immediately as liquids can still penetrate and set over time. But both brands provide decent stain resistance for basic coverage, with Empire carpets having a slight edge for stain warranty coverage.
Carpet Fiber Face-Off: Nylon vs. Triexta
When comparing specific carpets from 651 and Empire, the biggest differences come down to fiber. Let’s look at how nylon and triexta match up.
- Very durable and resilient
- Easy to clean
- Resists stains, crushing, matting
- Not as soft as wool or triexta
- Luxuriously soft, mimics wool
- Durable but prone to matting
- Superior stain resistance
- Easy to clean
- More expensive than nylon
As you can see, nylon is the workhorse that stands up to heavy use. Triexta offers indulgent softness with great stain protection. Which is best for you depends on your budget and carpeting needs.
For high traffic areas, nylon is your best bet. But for low traffic spots where you want plush softness, triexta is unbeatable. Figure out your needs and then pick the appropriate fiber.
651 And Empire Carpet: Which Is Better For You?
Now for the big question: is 651 or Empire the better carpet brand overall? With so many factors to weigh, there’s no definitive “winner.” But here are some key things to consider:
Go with 651 if you want:
- Very durable, long-lasting carpet
- The widest selection of textures and styles
- Affordable, mid-range pricing
- Recyclable materials
Go with Empire if you want:
- Ultra plush, velvety soft carpeting
- Luxury style with more refined textures
- Superior stain and soil warranties
- Don’t mind paying more for quality
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
For maximum durability, look for carpets made from nylon fibers. Branded nylons like Stainmaster or Anso nylon are engineered for strength and resilience. Compare density, pile height, and construction to find the most durable nylon carpet for high-traffic areas.
Heavy-duty carpets with the highest durability use olefin fibers like Triexta and Solution Q Extreme. These are synthetics made to withstand heavy foot traffic for years. Check density, pile thickness, and construction quality to get a durable heavy-duty carpet.
January and February are the best months to get discounts on carpeting. Retailers offer deals to bring in business after the holidays. Shop winter sales events and clearance specials for the biggest savings on carpet installation.
The “best” carpet depends on your needs and budget. Prioritize key factors like traffic levels, softness, stain resistance, and cost. Compare carpet fiber types and read reviews of top brands. Once you know your must-haves, you can find the right carpet for your home. Always get quotes from 2-3 local retailers, as pricing can vary.
Think about your budget, traffic levels, softness preferences, and aesthetic goals. This will point you towards the brand that aligns with your needs.
If you’ve narrowed it down between a specific 651 carpet and Empire carpet, get samples of each. Look and feel the differences firsthand before deciding. And check warranties closely so you know exactly what’s covered.
With all of this in mind, you’re ready to start shopping for the perfect carpets! Find a retailer who carries both 651 and Empire so you can make an informed, side-by-side comparison before you buy.