Aluminium floor mats: 4 hidden installation costs
How to keep your costs down when using this notoriously expensive mat.
If you are designing, constructing or managing a building, you might be considering using aluminium floor mats somewhere in your entranceway. The most common area to use aluminium is the doorway, but it is sometimes used in other common areas.
Aluminium mats are popular – especially with architects – because of their classy look. They look smart and reflect the light nicely, which is great for taking photos. There are, however, some problems with aluminium matting, which we have discussed in this article.
Something else you might want to consider is that aluminium matting tends to have more hidden costs associated with it. When compared with other mat materials, aluminium takes more work to install.
Here are some of the hidden costs you could experience with aluminium matting:
Aluminium mats need a perfectly level floor
Aluminium mats, unlike carpet-surfaced mats, need a perfectly level floor to sit on. An aluminium mat will almost always be set into a mat recess, so the levelling needs to be done before it is installed.
Self-levelling concrete costs more than standard cement, so this is an area that some people get an unwelcome surprise.
Aluminium door mats are more prone to damage
Being more solid than carpet or rubber, aluminium matting bends out of shape more easily. If a small piece of rubber was sticking up out the floor, it would be a trip hazard. If, however, a piece of aluminium is loose, it could be much more dangerous.
As well as creating a safety hazard, misshapen aluminium damage attracts more damage. People, wheels and doors constantly passing over its surface fast track the wear and tear, reducing the lifespan of the mat.
Aluminium entrance matting is more difficult to cut
Installing an entrance mat is not a particularly difficult task, but it does take some practise to be able to do it perfectly the first time. Aluminium matting makes the job slightly more difficult because it can’t be quickly trimmed on-site if it’s a little too big.
To cut an aluminium mat, you need to use a plunge saw with a specialised aluminium blade, so it’s best left to the professionals. Aluminium can injure you and your customers if it is not cut correctly, whereas others are safer and easier to deal with. Find out how to cut mats of other materials here.
Aluminium mats do not absorb water
Perhaps the biggest cost associated with aluminium matting is its inability to hold or contain any water. One of the main purposes of an entrance mat is to clean and dry feet as they step over it, but an aluminium mat can only get you halfway there.
Not only is water damage an expensive problem, but it can be very dangerous too. Used in wet areas, aluminium mats quickly become slippery. Slips, trips and falls are a costly but avoidable business expense. So, don’t ever use aluminium mats in wet areas.
How to reduce the cost of your aluminium mat installation
To keep costs to a minimum, our main piece of advice is to choose a different mat material. Materials such as coir, rubber and polypropylene are much easier to install as well as maintain.
If you really do want to use an aluminium mat, though, here are some ways you might be able to avoid your hidden costs:
Invest in professional installation
Here at Matshop, we offer free installation service with any of our products. If you have bought your mat from somewhere else, though, they may not be able or willing to do this for you.
If your supplier can’t install it for you, it is well worth hiring a professional to do it instead. Although it seems like an initial up-front cost, it is nothing compared to the maintenance, injury claims and property damage that a poorly fitted aluminium mat can cause.
Up your maintenance game
We have spoken before about extending the life of your entrance mat, but it is even more important when your mat contains aluminium. Check the edges of your mat on a weekly – if not daily – basis to make sure any bending is dealt with quickly.
The only way to confidently remove edge-bending is to use mat edging. This is more commonly used with carpet-surfaced mats, but there’s no reason why ramped edges won’t work well with aluminium entrance mats too.
Choose a hybrid aluminium mat
The best aluminium mats have at least some areas of absorbent material on their surface. Although it doesn’t compare to the absorbency of a fully carpet-surfaced mat, it does absorb some of the liquid on wet shoes.
Our aluminium architectural scraper entrance mat for high traffic with carpet infill offers the best of both worlds. Its predominantly carpet surface removes water from shoes while still having the shiny aesthetic that is loved by architects.
Use alongside an absorbent mat
Keeping your floors dry is important for health and safety as well as to give a good first impression. If you don’t want a hybrid mat, considering placing another mat after your aluminium one is a smart idea.
Using a combination of inside and outside doormats is ideal for keeping floors as clean and dry as possible. In the same way, an aluminium mat works best when supported by an absorbent mat that will remove the water first. Just make sure your absorbent mat is undercover!
Installing aluminium matting can cost more
If, after reading this article, you still want to go for aluminium matting – go for it. Who are we to tell you what to do! Our best advice is to pick aluminium entrance matting with some level of absorbency, like our one here.
As always, we offer free measuring and installation services with this product. If you would like to know more about the aluminium scraper or any other mats in our collection, feel free to reach out to the matxperts in the chat below. Or, call us on 1300 628 746.