The Best Chair Mats for Laminate Floors
Laminate flooring is a hard surface floor that resembles wood. It resists scuffs and scratching, but laminate isn't damage-proof. You'll need to protect your floors from the casters on your office chair. Metal casters can indent or scratch the floor, while plastic casters pick up grit from the floor and act like sandpaper to scuff the laminate's finish. A chair mat will save your floor from damage and still allow your chair to move freely.
Avoid studded mats or mats with plastic grippers on the bottom. These chair mats are designed for carpeted surfaces and can scratch your laminate floors. Also, avoid mats with rubber backings, as they can stick to the floor or trap moisture that can cause the floor to warp. Choose smooth-bottomed mats that won't mar your floor.
A hardwood chair mat blends in with your laminate flooring and has a smooth surface that protects your floor and allows the chair to roll easily. But hardwood mats are more expensive than hard plastic mats. A hard plastic mat made of clear or smoked plastic provides protection for less money than a wooden mat. The smooth surface won't scratch the floor and your chair will easily roll across it.
A rectangular mat protects the area in front of your desk but won't protect the area under the desk. Choose a mat shaped to extend beneath your desk, so it covers the entire area where the chair wheels roll. Buy a mat with a tapered lip that will lie flat it something else bumps against it. Tapered mats are easier to sweep clean as well.
When you clean your floor, lift up the chair mat and clean under it. Dirt and grit trapped under the mat could scratch your laminate floors. If you mop the floor, allow it to dry completely before you replace the mat, since trapped moisture can cause your laminate flooring to lift or warp. To keep the mat looking good, sweep it regularly and periodically damp mop it to remove dirt and scuffs.
Cynthia Myers is the author of numerous novels and her nonfiction work has appeared in publications ranging from "Historic Traveler" to "Texas Highways" to "Medical Practice Management." She has a degree in economics from Sam Houston State University.
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