10 Easy Ways to Care for Your Mat

by Jessica Tyner on May 13, 2013

It’s wise to invest in a high-performance floor mat to keep moisture and dirt from invading your business. A good floor mat removes water, soil, and other debris from shoes before it can be tracked onto an indoor surface.

A not-so-good floor mat will showcase its stains for the whole world to see.

In order for the longevity of a mat to be maximized, you shouldn’t just lay it on your floor and ignore it forever. Here are ten ways to care for your mat.

  1. Clean it based on the level of foot traffic it receives and the outdoor weather conditions, not according to a predetermined time schedule. While periodic cleaning may suffice in the dry summer months, it may need to be cleaned more frequently in the rainy and snowy seasons during the holidays.
  2. The easiest way to clean it is to simply shake it. Have one or two employees pick up the mat and take it outside, then shake it vigorously for a minute or so. They can also hang it on a horizontal pipe or line and beat on it with a tool or their hands.
  3. If the mat is exceptionally dirty, you can rinse it off using a power washer on a light to medium setting or a hose with a spray attachment. Hang it up to dry for about an hour. Your mat will look almost new after it dries.
  4. If the mat has gathered a large amount of dry soil, you can use a dual-motor vacuum with good results. Be sure to fasten a brush attachment that is adjusted as low as it can go. Backpack vacuums can work also, but more passes will be needed than with a conventional unit.
  5. If you own an extractor system, feel free to use it on your floor mats, especially when wet soils are present. However, you do not need to purchase an extracting system just to keep your mats clean.
  6. If your mat displays slat stains that are dry and crusty from rock salt being sprinkled on icy pavement, you should soak your mat in a solution of hot water and a neutral soap for about 30 minutes. Then vacuum (or extract) as necessary.An accurate depiction of a city employee spreading salt on sidewalks.
  7. For dry crusty salt stains, it is recommended that the mat be soaked in hot water with a neutral soap solution for half an hour and extracted as per wet soils above.
  8. Carpet spotting solutions are permitted if your mat displays a persistent stain that cannot be removed during regular cleaning. Since mats are solution dyed, they are color fast and won’t react to the ingredients in carpet spot removers.
  9. If your mats aren’t getting clean, it may be because of your equipment. Always be sure that vacuums are functioning properly. Ensure that the bags are being replaced regularly and that the brushes and belts are in good working order.
  10. In addition, monitor your employees to make sure they are using the vacuums correctly. Some people try to vacuum the mat as quickly as possible. Since this method often leaves dirt behind, it actually wastes time because the task must be done all over again.

You want your floor mat to work hard and look great for many years to come, so remember this adage: If you take care of your mat, then it will take care of you.

One more tip: it’s always a good idea to end  with a smile.

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