Moisture, no matter where it comes from, a spilled glass of soda, dog or cat urine, or broken plumbing, is a big headache. Liquid will absorb into all three layers of flooring: carpet, padding, and subfloor.
Carpet retailers will usually suggest you pony up a little more money and purchase moisture barrier padding, especially if you have small children, pets, or if your carpet is going to be laid on a concrete subfloor. Their selling angle is that it will make it easier for you to clean up an accident IF you have this type of padding under your carpet, and it will prevent moisture from seeping up out the concrete and into your carpet. The barrier will prevent any liquid spilled on the carpet from penetrating any further. It’s a great theory. It’s a great selling point.
But does it really work?
But are you really buying what you think you are buying?
You think you are buying some extra protection from spills and accidents. But does it always work in the way that you hope? Or are you throwing hard-earned money under the rug? In many cases you will find this type of padding only makes things worse.
What if there is a crack in the padding’s barrier? Or maybe the installer didn’t completely seal every seam in the padding properly. Hey, it’s one of the reasons you’re spending the extra money, right?
What if, forbid the thought, a plumbing pipe ruptures?
But what if your basement already has a moisture issue?
All this is because YOU THOUGHT your carpet retailer was selling you a better product that would lessen your headaches. In my opinion moisture barrier padding is over-hyped. For as many problems that moisture barrier padding may solve, it may also create twice as many. My suggestion (as a certified master water-damage restorer with more than 17 years of experience) is to spend that extra money on a higher grade of carpet, or a nice dinner at your favorite restaurant, or a night at the movies! Anything other than “throwing that money under a rug” by purchasing moisture barrier padding!