Floor mats and liners help keep your truck's interior looking clean while adding a superior layer of protection for the carpet. When choosing your floor liner, think about the climate and weather you will encounter. Custom truck floor mats are available in slush mats, carpeted floor mats, Husky floor liners and many other styles and colors.
The three main applications for interior floor protection include floor mats, slush mats, and floor liners. While each of these has its own unique advantages, let’s begin with material construction. Depending on your vehicle, climate, and line of work, the material construction of your floor coverings will make or break their effectiveness. Each has its own levels of style and protection to offer. The most common types of materials are vinyl, carpet, and thermoplastic compositions.
To know which right for you, you first need to look at what it’s protecting your floor from. For example, if your work puts you outside in the elements, often providing you with dripping wet, mud caked boots, you wouldn’t rely on a set of OEM carpeted floor mats for maximum interior protection. The same could be said for anyone who lives in a climate with constant snow, slush, and ice. In these situations, a set of custom, all-weather slush mats would be the ideal choice. Given their unbreakable thermoplastic construction and great coverage, slush mats are made for harsh climates and messy work environments.
Carpet Floor Mats
As carpeted floor mats were mentioned earlier, let’s take a moment to look at their special advantages. While carpeted floor mats may not be able to stand up to the harshest environments (unless they use a carpet and vinyl combination), they do offer amazing style. From OEM replacement mats to custom styled floor mats, carpet floor coverings are the perfect way to enhance your interior. Though they may not stand up to unforgiving weather, carpeted floor mats are more than suitable for your vehicle’s everyday wear and tear.
Vinyl Floor Mats
Last, but certainly not least, are vinyl floor coverings. The use of vinyl material spans a broad range of floor protection, mostly due to its flexibility and endurance. When combined with nylon carpeting, vinyl adds exceptional protection against liquids and ice. It can also be combined with Vyram, an extremely sturdy rubber material. Using this combination, floor mats can be made that are fully capable of handling mud and harsh liquids. Some are even qualified for all-weather use, though these may not perform as well as thermoplastic against harmful liquids and impacts.
Custom Fit vs. Universal
Once you’ve settled on a material, all that remains is style and application. We’ll begin with application. Floor mats are available in both universal and custom applications, whereas floor liners come only in custom fitments. It’s important to keep in mind that one is not necessarily better than the other. Whether you choose a universal or custom fit, mat or liner, depends greatly on your vehicle’s needs, as well as your budget.
Construction and Materials
The easiest way to determine the construction you need is to ask yourself how much you use your vehicle. If you only use your vehicle for normal trips, live in a reasonable climate, and have an inside job, a set of carpeted floor mats would be the optimal choice. If you live somewhere with unforgiving weather, have an extremely demanding outside job, or find yourself spending a great deal of time in your vehicle, a set of thermoplastic floor liners is the way to go. When you require more protection that carpet can offer, but don’t need such intense floor defense as thermoplastic delivers, you can’t go wrong with vinyl.
Universal floor mats are an incredibly affordable way to add carpeted style and average floor protection to any vehicle. These floor mats are a great choice if you need a replacement set, or if your vehicle stays relatively clean. However, though they are easy on the wallet, and do offer moderate protection, they are deficient in a few areas. First, universal mats are just that — universal. They cannot protect your entire floor, and are not meant to. They lack the full coverage that only a custom fitment can bring. Second, the coverage that they do offer, as has been said, is moderate. These mats will not stand up to the abuse of harsh weather, toxic chemicals, or deeply caked mud. For style, universal mats can deliver, but for greater floor protection, a custom design is necessary.
Both custom floor mats and floor liners deliver amazing coverage. The main difference is how they guard your factory carpet. Most custom floor mats make use of vinyl or another material to strengthen their solidity. While they may not be able to handle everything a floor liner or slush mat can, their durability should not be underestimated. They are fully capable of handing spills, mud, and debris of almost any nature. For most normal standards, a set of custom floor mats is more than sufficient.
All Weather Mats
Now we come to custom slush mats and floor liners. These are made for one purpose — to protect your carpeting from anything. You might be thinking that’s a bit dramatic, but it is common for floor liners and slush mats to be so durable that even battery acid and harsh impacts won’t damage them. Some even include a lifetime warranty against breaks, cracks and tears. Their custom designs mean that no area of your floor is left exposed, and most are contoured to contain all mud, liquid, and debris while keeping your shoes out of the mess. While custom fitted mats and liners do cost more than universal applications, the difference in lasting durability and coverage pays for itself.
As for style, the last point of interest, it simply comes down to personal preference. If you’re set on keeping your vehicle’s OEM styling, then a dark, carpeted set of floor mats is an exceptional choice. For a more modern interior appearance, you may wish to go with a ribbed, highly contoured set of floor liners. Slush mats come in a variety of styles, and some even make use of nylon carpeting. Though they may not deliver pure factory style, most sets are quite appealing and will easily match your vehicle.