MatSupplies.com has a large selection of quality entrance mats, barrier mats, floor mats and dirt trappers that are specially designed to scrape dirt and absorb moisture. The right entrance mats keep dirt and soil from entering the building thereby reducing cleaning costs and maintenance. Absorbing mats also reduce the risk of slips and falls due to slippery wet floors.
The problem: high cleaning costs and liability concerns due to dirty entrances and slippery wet floors
The cause: dirt, dust and grime are tracked in by dirty and wet shoes
The solution: entrance matting that targets three zones:
- Zone 1: Scraping and drainage of water, dirt and debris
- Zone 2: Scraping of fine debris and absorbing
- Zone 3: Absorbing and drying
The benefits of entrance mats
The entrance is the building’s first impression.
As with any introduction – to people, places, or products – first impressions are critical. Entrances have to satisfy a variety of requirements including attractive design, high throughput rate (even during the busiest of times) and excellent functionality. Entrance mats come in a range of colours and patterns to match any interior and improve the overall aesthetics of the entrance giving it a professional, stylish and upscale appearance making every first impression a great one. Even in between cleanings, entrance mats should continue to look great after thousands of people have walked over them.
The benefits of entrance mats have been recognized by many sustainable and environmental building assessors, such as LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) and BREEAM (Building Research Establishment Environmental Assessment Method). A proper entrance matting system contributes to improving indoor air quality, acoustic performance, extending the useable life of interior flooring materials and reducing maintenance and cleaning costs. LEED therefore recommends a permanent entryway walk-off system of at least 10 feet long (up from 6 feet in previous versions of LEED) at all regularly used, exterior-to-interior entrances and entrances from covered parking garages.
Entrance mats reduce cleaning costs
70-80% of the dust, dirt and grime in public buildings is tracked in from the outside and spread throughout the floors (International Sanitary Supply Association). Over a 20-day period, 1000 people can walk in 9.6 kilograms (24 pounds) of dirt into a building (ISSA). Twelve times as much dirt is tracked in during wet weather conditions based on field tests conducted by BST Laboratory over an 11-month period. Large commercial buildings with heavy traffic areas can see as much as 5000 crossings a day. The benefits of a good entrance matting system are very measurable in annual savings of cleaning costs. The more dirt removed at the entrance, the less can become airborne inside the building. Entrance matting is the first line of defense in keeping dirt and debris from entering the building and can remove up to 85% of dirt.
Entrance mats contribute to improved indoor air quality
In building design, designers often overlook the benefits of designing entryways and managing buildings to remove tracked-in pollutants from shoes that improve air quality through reduction of air particles. Outside dirt can be a carrier of particulate matter such as dust, pollen, pesticides, bacteria, fungi, animal faeces and insect parts. Dirt particles are deposited on the floor, where they are ground into smaller particles as they are walked on. The smallest particles are suspended in the air, while the larger ones settle back on the floor, where they are ground again. These airborne particles are a large contributor to indoor air pollution which can cause breathing problems, allergies and aggravate asthma. Indoor air pollution is one of the top five environmental risks to public health as often indoor air is found to be up to 70 times more polluted than outdoor air; (Environmental Protection Agency) and most people spend 60-90% of their time indoors. (American Lung Association). Controlling the concentration of particulates through prevention and cleaning can help relieve symptoms and prevent disease.
Entrance mats protect and preserve interior flooring
Constant tracking of dirt into the building is also a prime factor in the wearing of interior floors and carpeting.
Dirt and soils have a texture that is similar to a razor which are ground into floors during walking, causing scraping on smooth flooring and as carpets are walked on, their fibres can be cut. Within the first 6 feet, 42 % of the floor’s finish or carpet nap will be removed after only 1500 people have entered thereby shortening the overall life span of interior flooring. Entrance mats are made with coarser fibres that are designed to preserve the floor by absorbing much of the initial abuse that would otherwise shorten the interior flooring or carpeting useable life to protect the investment.
Entrance mats help to prevent slips, trips and falls
Slips and falls are the leading cause of accidents in homes, hotels, restaurants, and public buildings. (70% occur on flat and level surfaces).
The four main causes of slip and trip accidents are:
• Slippery/wet surfaces caused by water and other fluids
• Slippery surfaces caused by dry or dusty floor contamination
• Obstructions both temporary and permanent
• Uneven surfaces and changes of level
In dry weather, entrance ways can accumulate dirt on the surface. Sand, bits of gravel and dirt are commonly called “boulder dust” because they act as miniature ball bearings when caught between a hard floor surface and a smooth shoe sole. The shoe loses traction and skids away causing the person to lose control and fall.
During bad weather conditions including rain, snow and sleet, interior flooring can quickly become slippery and interior carpet can become saturated thereby increasing the risk of slips and falls. Entrance mats play a role in reducing slips and falls due to wet floors by properly drying wet shoes and in keeping indoor and outdoor entrances accessible for people with mobility impairments such as walking aids and wheelchairs.
The entrance matting zones
Matting solutions that are successful in stopping dirt and preventing slips and falls, address three major zones:
Scraping Zone catches the first wave of heavy debris with up to 40% of dirt/moisture being removed from shoes.
Cleaning Zone scrapes fine debris and absorbs moisture in the indoor foyer area for up to 70%.
Drying Zone completes the drying process and virtually all dirt and moisture is removed from shoes.
In smaller entrances, it is not always possible to install a large entrance matting system. It is then advised to split the 3 zones into an outdoor or portico scraping zone and an interior cleaning and drying zone. For smaller areas, a higher quality entrance mat with a higher absorbing capacity is then recommened.
Finding the right mat
Looking to buy an entrance mat but not sure which mat is the right mat? We are here to help you choose the right mat for your environment that meets your needs.
MatSupplies.com has therefore developed the Mat Selector, an interactive mat selection tool, to simplify choosing the right mat. Within each category page, you can find a filter selection tool. Choose the characteristics that meet your requirements and let our filters do the rest!