Best chair mat for hardwood floors

Decor

If your chair mat for your hardwood floor arrives in a particularly curled or creased manner after shipping, you can place it out directly in the hot sun to allow heat to smooth it out. If you live in cold climates, you can try using a hairdryer.

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Which chair mat for hardwood floors is best?

Hardwood flooring has continued to grow in popularity over the last several years. It’s no wonder either, as hardwood flooring services both fashion and function thanks to its natural (or faux natural) beauty and the ease with which you can clean messes from its surface. However, they are easier to damage, especially from rough-wheeled office chairs that constantly move across the surface. 

The best chair mat for protecting your hardwood floors is the Gorilla Grip Premium Polycarbonate Chair Mat for Hard Floors. This best-of-the-best chair mat exceeds expectations across the board from its durability to its transparency and can be purchased in one of two sizes and with or without edge lip.

What to know before you buy a chair mat for hardwood floors

Materials

Chair mats for hardwood floors tend to be constructed of either vinyl/PVC, polycarbonate or tempered glass.

  • Vinyl/PVC: The most inexpensive and widely used material in chair mats, with both materials being essentially the same. They tend to move around the easiest on hardwood without some kind of pre-built or personally installed anti-slip device but otherwise are good options.
  • Polycarbonate: While more expensive than Vinyl/PVC, polycarbonate is far more durable and long-lasting as well as being transparent for allowing the natural beauty of your hardwood floor to shine through.
  • Tempered glass: Tempered glass chair mats are thick, large, heavy slabs of glass that don’t move around on your floor, are the most transparent material you can find and most include warranties on the chance they break or crack. They also cost far more money than any other material.

What to look for in a quality chair mat for hardwood floors

Outer lip

Some chair mats for hardwood floors have options to include a lip around the edge of the mat, which is typically meant to prevent your chair from accidentally sliding off the mat and damaging the hardwood underneath. Some don’t like the outer lip as it constitutes a tripping risk and can also be a bit sharp in rare cases.

Initial smell

Usually only a concern for plastic chair mats and especially for plastic mats which are not BPA-free. Very few plastic chair mats which have this initial smell last much longer than a day or two though if they are opened in a small space, it could last longer. If your new chair mat has some user reviews that point out a smell, you’re concerned it might have one. It’s best to open it in a large indoor or any exterior space to allow the smell to dissipate before placing it in its intended room.

How much you can expect to spend on a chair mat for hardwood floors

Chair mats for hardwood floors vary in price depending on the material used in their construction and their size, with most entry-level chair mats for hardwood floors costing around $35. Stronger or larger chair mats for hardwood floors usually don’t cost more than $10-$15 more though some can double in price to reach roughly $70. Few chair mats for hardwood floors cost more than $70, except for tempered glass chair mats, which can cost several hundred dollars.

Chair mat for hardwood floors FAQ

My chair mat keeps moving underneath me. How can I get it to stay in place?

There are several methods to keep your chair mat from moving around your hardwood floor. One of the better methods is to add a thin layer of glue all over the bottom of the chair mat, which is then allowed to dry before the chair mat is returned. This adds traction to the chair mat. Another option you can try is to attach the double-sided tape to the corners or edges of the chair mat to keep it still though you generally need to replace the tape every so often.

How should I clean my chair mat for hardwood floors?

The best method of cleaning your chair mat for hardwood floors is to simply wipe it clean with soap and water-soaked cloth before thoroughly drying the surface and especially drying any water that sneaked under the edge of the mat. You could also mop it, but water will still get under the edges that you’ll need to dry to prevent mildew.

What’s the best chair mat for hardwood floors to buy?

Top chair mat for hardwood floors 

Gorilla Grip Premium Polycarbonate Chair Mat for Hard Floors

Gorilla Grip Premium Polycarbonate Chair Mat for Hard Floors

What you need to know: This is a nearly invisible chair mat for protecting your hardwood floor without attracting unwanted attention.

What you’ll love: The durability of this chair mat is high enough to last for years and comes in two sizes to best fit your office.

What you should consider: These chair mats don’t ship flat, which can possibly cause some lasting imperfections.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Top chair mat for hardwood floors for the money

AiBOB Office Chair Mat for Hardwood Floors

AiBOB Office Chair Mat for Hardwood Floors

What you need to know: This is a good quality chair mat for hardwood floors that can save you a little bit of money.

What you’ll love: The plastic of this chair mat is smooth enough for chairs to move across easily but textured enough to prevent unwanted movement.

What you should consider: This chair mat for hardwood floors ships rolled up, which can cause some damage.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Worth checking out

Amazon Basics Polycarbonate Chair Mat with Lip for Hardwood Floors

Amazon Basics Polycarbonate Chair Mat with Lip for Hardwood Floors

What you need to know: This is a middle-of-the-pack option for chair mats for hardwood floors in both quality and price.

What you’ll love: Multiple versions of this chair mat are available in terms of sizes and with or without an edge lip.

What you should consider: Amazon ships this chair mat wound tightly enough that opening the package will cause the mat to burst forth suddenly.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

 

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Jordan Woika writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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