Matwell mats are commonly used as entrance mats to big stores, industrial sites and business buildings but that doesn’t mean they can’t be used for home as well. In fact, they look tidy and stylish and can replace loose-lay mats easily. Matwell mats improve safety as they do not move and thus reduce the risk of your mat slipping on the surface of your floor when stepped on.
In a nutshell, matwells are a designated space in front of your door on the inside that will hold your chosen mat. Installing the matwell mat properly creates a flush finish with the surrounding floor. They can be robust and stylish entrance mats for your entrance.
Differences between matwell mats and loose-lay lats
- Matwell mats are fixed in place so they don’t move and do not require a strong grip to stay in place
- Flush with surrounding floors, they look smart
- They reduce the risk of trips
- Suitable for wheeled traffic (except for coir matting)
- Raised edges can create a risk of tripping and falling
- Easy to replace and adjust or move
- Can be used outside or in addition to matwells
- More cost effective compared to matwells but may need replacing more often
Popular matwell mats
Like all other mats, matwell versions come with different colours, sizes, textures and depth. There are two types, however, that are the most popular ones – coir and matwell tiles.
Coir matwell mats
One of the most popular choices, coir matwell mats have withstood the test of time. They have been the preferred matting for many business buildings, historic buildings and many others. Coir mats have dense bristles and a high absorbency level. This means they catch most of the dirt and debris that may get inside your building from shoes and stop water from being dragged in and creating slip and fall hazards.
When buying your coir matting it is advised to buy it with a pile three centimetres longer than you need to account for any variances in the matwell itself. You can always trim it later if it is too long for the matwell.
Benefits of coir matwells
- Suitable for matwell depths of 17mm to 23mm
- Comes in a variety of colours to suit your tastes and decor
- Popular choice for homes, pubs, restaurants, business buildings, etc.
- High water absorbency due to the density of the bristles
Cons to coir matwells
- Not suitable for wheeled traffic
Matwell tiles are the second most popular choice after coir. Tiles have a lower profile and can accommodate wheeled traffic as a result. Matwell tiles interlock, making them easy to install and maintain as you can easily change a tile that is worn out without changing the rest of the mat.
It is a great choice for office buildings, supermarkets and other public spaces that may have wheeled traffic. The mats are still a good choice for home use, especially if you need easy access for wheelchairs or pushchairs. A downside to this type of mat, however, is that it does not have the scraping quality that the coir mats can provide but it is still highly absorbent so it will keep water at the building’s threshold.
Another feature of matwell tiles is that you can choose if you want an open or closed system. The open system leaves holes between the tiles so dirt can fall under the matting. Depending on your preference for how to clean the mats you can consider which of the two systems will be more convenient for you.
Benefits of matwell tiles
- Suitable for matwells 16mm to 18mm deep, as it has a lower profile than coir matting
- Interlocking system that is easy to install and maintain
- Suitable for busy areas that may have wheeled traffic
- Open and closed options available
Cons of matwell tiles
- Does not scrape dirt as effectively as coir matting
Installing or replacing your matwell mat is an easy way to freshen up your doorway. You can either do it yourself when it is a replacement or call a professional to install a new one. To have a matwell installed there are a few things you need to do first:
- Measure carefully the space you want the matwell to go in. When measuring for the mat make sure to buy it with a pile at least three cm longer to allow for any adjustments or variations of the matwell later. You can easily trim later with a sharp blade when fitting it.
- Before cutting your mat make sure you have marked the measurements correctly. You may want to flip the mat for the cutting – just make sure you also transfer the measurements correctly on the reverse before cutting. You will need a strong blade, especially when it comes to trimming coir matting as it will have tangles that you will have to cut through, as well.
- Before fitting the mat, clean the area to get it ready for the mat. If your mat is thinner and it is fitted more loosely than it should be you can use an underlay to bring it flush with the surrounding floor.
- Vacuum your newly installed matwell mat to remove any loose fibres or debris.
That is it! Now it is time to enjoy your new matwell.