A kitchen mat can provide safety and comfort in any kitchen, both commercial and residential. Cooking can get messy and floors can become wet and dangerous for everyone in the kitchen, especially with piping hot pots and pans on the stove. These waterproof floor mats are ideal for minimizing the chances of slips, trips and falls in the kitchen. There are many different types of kitchen floormats available ranging from interlocking kitchen mat tiles to single station mats, all available as drainage mats or as a comfort kitchen mat.
What is a Kitchen Mat For?
Kitchen floormats are generally used for non-slip and comfort purposes. They are often in the form of drainage mats with numerous holes scattered across its surface that offer excellent drainage capabilities to prevent moisture from pooling at the surface and causing accidents. Kitchens are areas that can get wet or greasy easily which is why it is important to safe guard your kitchen floors with a kitchen mat or other waterproof floor mats. Oftentimes, kitchens will be full of hot pots and pans and an accidental slips, trips or falls can put you in danger of serious burns or cuts. According to the Occupational Safety & Health Administration, to prevent dangerous slip and fall accidents from occurring, it is recommended to “keep floors clean and dry [and,] where wet processes are used, maintain drainage, and provide false floors, platforms, mats, or other dry standing places should be provided where practicable” (osha.gov). It is important to take these matters seriously because, not only can these types of accidents occur in commercial kitchens but, they can also occur in your very own home kitchen.
1. How Big is a Kitchen Mat?
Kitchen mats come in a variety of different sizes/shapes and, depending on how large the standing area of your kitchen is, should determine what size or form of kitchen mat you should purchase. There are molded to size mats available for a single person’s use but, there are also interlocking versions and custom cut rolls available to cover larger spaces. Also, since each of these kitchen floormats have different installation processes, it is important to know what type of flooring you would like before purchasing a kitchen mat. Whether you are looking for drainage mats or a comfort kitchen mat, there is a size available that is best suited for your kitchen needs.
1(a). Interlocking Kitchen Tiles
Interlocking tiles are one of the most customizable kitchen floormats available on the market. Its interlocking mechanism allows you to customize the size of your kitchen mat simply by adding or removing some tiles. You can use them as one station only mats or have them cover an entire kitchen floor. This convenient feature also makes for a quick and simple installation process. Simply take each kitchen mat tile and connect them by their puzzle-like edges and keep adding tiles until you have reached your desired size. These tiles do not require any adhesives to install; just connect the tiles together and you’re done! This makes the tiles easy to disassemble, move and/or clean. Additionally, the no-adhesive installation allows these kitchen floormats to be moved around the kitchen to wherever you are standing making them the most mobile form of matting available.
1(b). Custom Cut Rolls
A custom cut kitchen mat is generally used to cover larger spaces or if you need to cover wall-to-wall spaces. This makes custom cut rolls ideal for commercial restaurant kitchens where there is heavy foot traffic and more materials out and about being used. Because of this ideal application location, these kitchen floormats are meant to be adhered to the surface beneath. There are two methods of adhering custom cut rolls onto your kitchen floor: double-sided tape and glue. Double-sided tape is the preferred method since kitchen mats need to be cleaned often. We do not suggest using permanent glue to install flooring that is meant to be mobile.
1(c). Single Station Mats
A single station kitchen mat comes in pre-cut or in molded sizes. These rubber mats’ sizes range from small to large depending on how large your work/cook stations are and the environment you are working in residential or commercial. We offer mats as small as 2ftx3ft in size for the smallest workstations. Generally smaller sized mats are meant to be stationary and are generally used as a comfort kitchen mat.
2. What is the Best Kitchen Mat?
While both rubber and PVC kitchen mats provide sufficient non-slip qualities for your kitchen, rubber kitchen mats in particular can be used in more places/settings and will give you more benefits including drainage, comfort and enhanced non-slip qualities making it the best kitchen mat available over PVC. Kitchen floormats are available in various material types and with added designs to help improve the safety of your kitchen. Drainage mats are available with numerous holes covering the kitchen mat to prevent moisture from pooling and causing accidents that may end in serious injury. To further prevent slip and fall accidents, various surface patterns are added for enhanced traction. Rubber and other rubber variations provide excellent non-slip qualities. Synthetic rubber variations will offer added benefits including resistance to extreme temperatures, grease/oils and mild household chemical cleaners. PVC kitchen floormats are also another popular form of kitchen mat available. These mats are slightly thinner than their rubber counterpart; however, they do possess the same non-slip qualities and will help improve traction in the kitchen. A comfort kitchen mat is made out of a rubberized gel foam material which is a material created specifically for enhancing the comfort of whoever is standing on it. Rubber can also be used to make anti-fatigue mats, as well; however, the best material for a comfort kitchen mat is rubberized gel foam.
2(a). Rubber Kitchen Mats
A rubber kitchen mat is the most popular type in kitchen mats. What makes rubber the ideal material for kitchen floormats is its naturally high coefficient of friction which allows it to retain its grip even when coming into contact with moisture – which is why rubber mats are perfect for kitchens since spillage is a common occurrence. Rubber also provides sufficient padding between your feet and the hard floors underneath providing comfort qualities and protecting your lower back and leg joints.
2(b). PVC Kitchen Mats
PVC, or vinyl, is one of the cheaper waterproof floor mats available even cheaper than rubber. It provides excellent non-slip qualities as well as maximum chemical resistant properties that even synthetic rubbers cannot match. For instance, “PVC is resistant to weathering, chemical rotting, corrosion, shock and abrasion. It is therefore the preferred choice for many different long-life and outdoor products. In fact, medium and long-term applications account for 85 percent of PVC production in the building and construction sector”. PVC has become one of the leading materials in construction due to its strength and durability which make A PVC kitchen mat is ideal for highly traversed areas such as commercial kitchens and restaurants.
2(c). Foam Mats
Rubberized gel foam mats are another variation of rubber mat that are made specifically to be used as a comfort kitchen mat. Other variations of synthetic rubber are also available that provide comfort and non-slip qualities as well as other added benefits including the ability to withstand higher temperatures and common household chemical cleaners and grease/oil resistance. While not as durable as regular rubber mats, foam mats are softer and will provide more comfort. Foam comfort mats are generally thicker than regular rubber mats to offer more cushioning between your feet and the floor. They are available with thicknesses of 5/8 to 3/4 of an inch and are best placed where people are required to stand for extended periods of time such as in front of a stove.
3. Where Does a Kitchen Mat Go?
Kitchen mats are not made specifically for commercial kitchens and can be used in residential settings as well. The main different between these two different locations is the level of wear and tear a kitchen mat it that area will receive and how often they will need to be cleaned. Residential kitchen tends to see a lot less wear and tear and messes than commercial kitchens. Kitchen mats are generally heavy enough to be used without any adhesives and can be loose laid onto your kitchen floor. Another factor to take into consideration when deciding which chefs mat is best suited for your residential or commercial kitchen is the level of comfort desired. The thicker the mat the more cushioning it will provide between you and the hard surface underneath the mat.
3(a). Residential Kitchens
A residential kitchen does not need a heavy-duty chefs mat. Instead, a residential kitchen will most likely benefit more from a comfort or a drainage kitchen mat. Residential kitchens do not see nearly as much hustle and bustle as commercial kitchens and your movements will most likely be confined to a smaller area. For areas like this, a made-to-size chefs mat or anti-fatigue mat made of rubberized gel foam to provide you with sufficient traction and comfort while working in the kitchen. Residential kitchens are exposed to far less grease and oil spills meaning mats made of natural rubber variations will be able to provide sufficient anti-slip properties for a residential setting.
3(b). Commercial Kitchens
Commercial kitchen mats often experience heavy wear and tear because they are exposed to more action than residential kitchens. Commercial kitchens generally have a whole staff of employees working to help run things smoothly and more efficiently; however, this creates a busier work station with bigger messes. Due to this, they will need to be taken out every day at closing time to be cleaned or hosed off outside. Since commercial kitchen mats are meant to stay mobile, no adhesives are required to install these mats. The weight of the kitchen mat is very important in this situation because, if this is an everyday occurrence, lighter kitchen mats are preferred for better mobility and easy transportation.
How to Clean and Maintain Kitchen Mats
Cleaning and maintaining your kitchen mat have never been easier than with rubber or PVC mats. Since both rubber and PVC are moisture resistant, you may opt to hose them off or rinse them with a faucet if there are any stuck-on messes. For PVC, rubberized gel foam and other synthetic variations of rubber, you may use the methods mentioned above or, since they are mild to completely chemical resistant, you may use common household cleaners to clean them as well. For dry messes, simply take a dry rag or dry polyester mop to sweep off any unwanted dirt and debris. Thanks to both rubber and PVC’s durability and strength, you do not need to worry about damaging your kitchen floormats while cleaning them.
Finding a proper kitchen mat for your residential or commercial kitchen is a necessity for keeping your floors safe and clean while you cook. They are the perfect waterproof floor mats available for keeping both residential and commercial kitchen safe from any dangerous slips and falls. Whether you are looking for drainage mats or a comfort kitchen mat to add to your residential or commercial kitchen, there are customizable options available so you will not have to stress over finding the right size matting for your kitchen floor.