When was the last time your door mats were given a good clean? A week ago? A month ago? Or maybe longer? Door mats are our first line of defence for keeping our floors clean and dry, yet many of them get neglected, making them less effective at doing their job.
Putting time aside to clean door mats may feel like a hassle, but having a clean and effective mat will help keep your flooring and other mats looking spotless by keeping dirt and grime away. So, a clean door mat means time and money saved in the long run!
For most door mats, regular dry vacuuming will remove most of the dirt and dust embedded in the fibres. However, it's good to give the mats a deep clean every so often to help remove stubborn dirt marks and stains. The correct way to deep clean depends on the type of mat you have:
Rubber Backed Matting – The most common type of indoor door mat, which features a plush synthetic pile on top of a vinyl or rubber-backed base. Some of these mats are machine washable (check the label), and others can be cleaned using carpet cleaner or mild detergent and water. Always patch test to ensure no discolouration and that the mat is fully dry before use.
Cotton and Microfiber Mats - The easiest type of mats to clean, Cotton and Microfiber mats are highly absorbent and can hold up to seven times their weight in water. They can be easily cleaned in a washing machine and air-dried. Microfiber mats are also soft and gentle, making them suitable for delicate surfaces like hardwood floors.
Coir Matting – This traditional type of matting is made from husks of coconut shells, making them very durable, hard-wearing and absorbent. They can be more difficult to clean, and strong detergents should be avoided, as they can cause discolouration or leave marks.
You can also use a dry cleaning powder product to help restore the colour. First, give the matting a good clean with a vacuum cleaner. Then, sprinkle the cleaning powder (a mixture of cornstarch and baking soda works, too) over the mat. Leave it for 30 minutes, then vacuum it one last time.
If spills or stains happen on either type of matting, the key is time. The faster the mat is cleaned, the less likely the chance of a permanent stain.
Traditional coir door matting is unsuitable for use in the washing machine as it is made up of tough, bristly fibres and should be hand-cleaned only. Some types of rubber-backed matting can be used in the washing machine, however, sizes larger than 60cm x 90cm (Approximately 2ft x 3ft) will be too large for most domestic washing machines. Either way, we advise checking with the manufacturer or retailer to be certain.
If you're worried that your doormat isn't suitable for machine washing, don't risk it. Instead, stick to regular vacuuming for loose dirt and dust, while a damp cloth or hose-down can be used for more stubborn marks.
The cleaning frequency for your door mats depends on several points, including the time of year, the amount of foot traffic on the mat, and the surrounding environment. Generally, we recommend a quick vacuum every week and a deep clean every month (or sooner if it's outdoors or in a high-traffic area where it’s very wet and muddy).
We hope you have found this guide to be useful. If you have any questions about door mat care, maintenance, or any other enquiries, please contact our friendly team, and we will be happy to help.
Alternatively, see our full range of Entrance Mats if you want to replace your existing mat with a fresh, new version.
Richard O'Connor is a Director at First Mats. He has deep knowledge in areas like Manufacturing, Warehousing, Marine, and Health & Safety. Richard's insights have been featured in well-known publications such as Bloomberg Business, The Sun, and Reader's Digest. His blend of industry expertise and passion for sharing makes him a sought-after voice in his fields.