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Is it true that an area rug (for wiping feet) which is lying on top of carpet will actually cause the carpet to wear out even faster?

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    Not in my observation, but I'll let someone do a long answer if there's any evidence other than my observation of the unworn sections of rug under area rugs on carpeted floors. I hate carpet anyway... – Ecnerwal May 12 '16 at 1:06
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If anything, I would expect the opposite problem: the area under the rug would wear less, and be noticeable when you take up the rug for that reason (if at all)!

Assuming the rug is color-fast, of course.

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