In Australia, carpet products designed for residential use normally carry labels created under the Australian Carpet Classification Scheme (ACCS). The ACCS, which is operated by the Carpet Institute of Australia (CIA), helps consumers to understand the properties of carpets, and how well they stack up from an environmental perspective.
ACCS Residential Guide label
People buying carpet for their houses should look for the Residential Guide label, which is blue and yellow (as shown). Some carpets may also include a black and gold 'Commercial Guide' label, but this is generally only relevant for carpets intended for commercial use. The Residential Guide label features several elements, the most important of which is a star rating. This rating ultimately gives the carpet a score out of six stars for its durability and ability to retain its appearance. As a rule of thumb, the more stars a carpet achieves, the better it is in terms of these two core properties.
- 1 star – Light duty
- 2 stars – Medium duty
- 3 stars – Heavy duty (lower to mid range)
- 4 stars – Heavy duty (mid to higher range)
- 5 stars – Extra heavy duty (lower to mid range)
- 6 stars – Extra heavy duty (mid to higher range)
This rating is attained through a complex set of calculations and assessments, taking into account such qualities and properties as surface pile mass, volume density, tuft density, dynamic loading, static loading, propensity for soiling, abrasion resistance and discretionary evaluation. Other elements on this label include:
- The Australian Carpet Mark, which is a registered certification mark that only appears on ACCS labeled carpets
- A registration number to allow for more specific reference to the carpet and its properties, if necessary
- A stair icon, which indicates whether or not the carpet is suitable for use on stairs.
ACCS Environmental Certification Scheme
Another label added to carpets in Australia is the green Environmentally Certified label (or ECS label). This label was developed to comply with the Green Building Council of Australia's stringent product certification guidelines. To qualify for an ECS label, a carpet must first meet basic minimum standards in terms of VOC emissions, acoustic performance and thermal insulation. Beyond this, there are four levels of certification, each of which requires different performance criteria to be met. These are as follows:
For further information or technical details about any of the carpet certification labels, visit the Carpet Institute of Australia.