If you're one of those who are meticulous in choosing the perfect floor mat for your car, then you know that its purpose is more than improving aesthetics. Your passengers may see the floor mat as just another car accessory, but for you, the kind you use makes a big difference.
Car floor mats keep your carpet clean by soaking up water from your passengers' feet and yours, and they keep the grime and dirt out of the car. If you want to brighten up your cabin, choose the right color. If you're going to give your car's interior that premium appeal, choose the right material.
These factors make choosing the right floor mats for your car vital. And if you're on the lookout for a new set of car floor mats, here is a rundown of some of the types available on the market.
Weather can change abruptly without notice. It also somewhat determines how convenient your driving experience can be. You can be driving joyfully, but when heavy rains come in, it can destroy the whole mood. That's where all-weather mats fill in.
Most all-weather car floor mats are made of vinyl material and designed to be thick and have more resilience compared to other types, including rubber ones. As the name says, these mats are ideally suited to varying weather conditions, so there is no need to change the mat whether the day is predicted to be sunny, snowy, or rainy.
The effect of bad weather also does not have too many negative effects on all-weather car floor mats because they keep off the mud from the carpet and prevents slippage, especially around the car pedals.
Aesthetics is where carpet car floor mats shine. They are available in different patterns, fibers, trims, colors, and hues, which means there's a carpet mat out there to suit your car's interior or your personal preferences.
Moisture and dirt can be a considerable concern in keeping your car's interior spanking clean. Due to the synthetic fibers in carpet mats, debris is effectively trapped and held in place so cleanup is easy. Some carpet mats have fibers designed to absorb water, so they're valuable in muddy and wet conditions.
Unfortunately, it's the fibers in carpet mats that also make them easily stained. Compared to vinyl and rubber mats, they also don't hold up well to wear and tear. Carpet mats need more maintenance and upkeep, and cleaning using a vacuum can be tedious. Expect less traction, too.
If you're looking for a floor mat that will last a long time, rubber mats are the way to go. They're one of the longest-lasting and most durable mats you can get for your car. Most possibly, you may have gotten rubber mats for free when you bought your vehicle.
Slipping mats have been known to cause accidents by obstructing pedal use. Rubber mats have that secure grip, so slipping is very uncommon, making these safe. The textured surface is also suitable for retaining moisture, so they're useful in soaking up mud and water. This is also the reason rubber mats can get very dirty, very fast. But they're easy to clean with just soap and water.
Most rubber mats come in black, so they don't add aesthetic value to your car's interior. Choose high-quality ones explicitly fitted for your car's model.
If you want the ultimate personalization when it comes to your car's floor mats, nothing says it more than logo-printed or monogrammed ones. Monogramming has a rich history and tradition. Nobles and monarchs have been using monograms on their possessions and correspondences.
Having your initials printed, embossed, or embroidered on your floor mat makes your car unique. If monogrammed initials are not your thing, you can also opt for your favorite logo. It can be your favorite ball team's emblem or your school's insignia. The possibilities are endless.
Logo or monogrammed mats are usually made of carpet materials, so they inherit the pros and cons that come with it. The added logo or initials are what make them unique.
Rugged, tough, and durable, aluminum mats are the extreme expression of machismo in your car's interior. They are available in different patterns and colors to suit your taste and the car's aesthetics.
Aluminum car floor mats are most suited to SUVs, pickup trucks, and other off-road type vehicles because of their aggressive design. They're also durable, waterproof, and easy to clean.
If you own a sedan or a luxury vehicle, aluminum mats might not perfectly match your car's interior. It's better to go with carpet or natural fiber-based mats. Then again, it's your car. As long as it serves the purpose, then go with it!
No wonder why most luxury cars have natural fibers as floor matting material. It gives your vehicle that exquisite and sophisticated look while pampering your feet and your passengers, too.
Natural fiber mats have many advantages compared to those made of synthetic materials. They're very soft to touch and also gentle to your skin because they contain natural substances similar to those in our skin.
Unfortunately, natural fiber mats also stain easily like their carpet counterparts. They tend to be highly absorbent, so avoid spilling food or liquid over them. The stain should be quickly removed or cleaned, and else, it will stay there forever. Natural fiber mats also tend to be expensive.
Original mats are those that usually come with the car if you bought it brand new. Dealers typically package these mats with the cars they sell as a freebie or incentive. As such, genuine car mats are designed to fit the car floor perfectly, so you don't have to worry about the mat overlapping the pedals.
But since they are often given as part of the sales package, they are also mass-produced. This means quality may not be at the top of the manufacturers' minds. Unless, of course, you're buying a high-end or luxury car. Genuine car floor mats are usually made of carpet or fabric materials.
If you want to stick with the car's original accessories, but your genuine car mats have run their course, you can still buy them online as OEM, or you can ask the brand's dealer if they still have stock for the car model you have.
Universal mats are designed and made to fit any vehicle depending on the type and the pedal arrangement. What makes them attractive is that you don't have to worry about the mat not fitting your car's floor perfectly.
Universal mats are also typically cheaper than custom-fitted ones because they can be mass-produced. This makes these mats a great option if you don't have the budget but still would want to protect your car's floor.
Universal car floor mats are usually made of rubber or carpet materials. They can also be trimmed for a better fit or look.
Customized car floor mats are designed to fit the exact car model they are meant for. Often, they are patterned from the genuine car mats that come with brand new cars to ensure a perfect fit.
Because customized car mats are made for specific car brands and models, they are more expensive than universal ones. This can be a concern if the cost doesn't fit your budget.
Customized car mats, however, often look better than universal mats and they fit better, too. And since they are designed for the specific car make and model, there's no need to trim them.
Tailored car mats are available in different materials, designs, and patterns and are typically more durable than their universal counterparts.
This is not a car floor mat type because they are used in the trunk or boot area, but it serves the same basic purpose, and that is protecting the floor of your car from the daily wear and tear as well as spillage and staining.
Compared to your car's interior floor, the boot gets more regular abuse. If loaded or packed poorly, groceries can be a significant source of severe stains and spills. Also, the boot is also the main compartment for some of your dirtiest accessories such as garden tools, and sporting equipment.
To make cleaning the car's boot a breeze and prevent damage, line it up with rubber-, carpet-, or vinyl-based cargo liner.
For your car to look good, you need to make sure that both exterior and interior are aesthetically pleasing. Car floor mats are often unnoticed and are usually considered unnecessary accessories. But without them, it will be harder to clean your car's floor. Also, having the right car mat makes driving more enjoyable and safer.
Here are some tips when buying the right floor mat for your car.
Price should be the first thing to consider when buying a car mat. Keep in mind that you should not be spending any amount on mats that are higher than the maintenance of your vehicle.
Retailers and manufacturers of car mats can price their products unrealistically in the name of profit, so it's best to look around and compare before shelling out that hard-earned cash. If you take time to compare, you can find high-quality car floor mats at prices that you can easily afford. It should be a balance between quality and cost.
We have already discussed the materials available for you and some of their corresponding pros and cons. Depending on the supplier, car mats come in different materials, both hand- and machine-made.
You can choose the material based on your personal preferences or other determinants such as weather, comfort, or looks. Since car floor mats are removable, you can use certain material types and change them as you please. That is if you have the budget for more than one car floor mat.
For durability, you can go for rubber, vinyl, or aluminum. For looks, you have natural fibers and carpet.
One purpose of car mats is to prevent your feet or legs from slipping around when you are driving because it can lead to accidents when you wrongly let go or step on a pedal. Accidents can also happen inside the car with a slippery floor leading to unwanted hospital bills.
That's why you need to make sure that your car floor mat's surface is designed to prevent slipping. Rubber and vinyl mats are the best materials for this.
As mentioned, the car floor mat can affect your car's overall interior looks. You wouldn't want a dark-colored mat in a car with light-hued trimmings.
The material of the car mat is also essential if you want to retain that uniform look. The best looking ones for luxury sedans are made of natural fibers and carpet. If you have a rugged 4x4, go for rubber or aluminum.
You also want the car mat to cover as much floor surface as possible. This ensures that you don't get the car's carpet dirty or stained. Go for mats that are custom-fitted for the brand and make of your vehicle.
There are advantages and disadvantages to buying products online, car floor mats included. With online shopping, you don't need to leave the comforts of your home and go store-hopping to compare different brands and designs. You can also get the best prices when buying online.
But since you don't see or feel the actual product before you buy it, there's no telling if you'll like it when you see it physically. You can't depend on pictures because they can be manipulated. That's the time you look into the reviews. Reviews give you an idea of the product and the manufacturer or supplier.
With so many options around in terms of materials and design, buying a car floor mat can be quite confusing. Using this guide, you'll know what to buy at the price you can afford.