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The Dirt on Entrance Mats

October 24, 2011

hotel entrance mattingOver three-quarters of the dust, dirt, and contaminants in a building come through the door on people’s feet, damaging carpets, floors, and adding to the cost of maintenance. It’s been estimated that one square yard of carpet can accumulate a pound or more of dirt in just a week. In most buildings, the cost of maintaining the floors is the single largest cost of cleaning. Removing a single pound of dirt from a building can cost more than $600! An effective matting program not only helps protect the occupants of a building but also protects your bottom line.

The key issue with mats is their performance life. A high-performance mat made with a permanent bi-level construction can have a performance life of many years. Mats without a rubber-reinforced permanent bi-level construction have a 90- to 180-day performance life. To function effectively, low performance mats need to be replaced more frequently, increasing cost and causing disposal issues.

A key criteria in the LEED® program (a voluntary, consensus-based national standard for developing high-performance, sustainable buildings and a registered trademark of the US Green Building Council) is the control of contaminants entering a building. LEED credits may be achieved by specifying and using the proper matting systems inside and outside of all entryways. It is also important to use proper matting between adjoining areas in a property.

Four Things An Entrance Mat Should Do:

  1. Stop Soil and Water at the Door. Surprisingly, not all mats are designed to do this. Look for mats that provide a combination of scraping and wiping to stop the maximum amount of contaminants.
  2. Store Soil and Water for Removal. Look for mats that are designed for maximum storage of soil and water and their easy removal when the mat is cleaned.
  3. Minimize Tracking of Soil and Water. Mats with a permanent rubber reinforced, bi-level construction provide an upper surface for walking and a lower area to store soil and water for later removal.
  4. Provide a Safe Surface. Slip-resistant mats minimize movement on the floor under traffic. Look for mats with a “water dam” border that contains moisture below the traffic level to help prevent slip and fall incidents. Rubber-backed mats provide better slip resistance than low performance, vinyl-backed mats.

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Source: The Andersen Company