The best doormat
At first glance, the humble doormat may appear to be little more than a last-minute decorative addition to a home's front porch. In reality, a quality doormat is one of the first lines of defense against dirt, pollen, germs, and other pollutants. Visitors and residents alike should take full advantage of a doormat's ability to remove unwanted debris from their footwear before entering the house. Customized doormats with special text or designs can also be welcoming to guests.
When shopping for the ideal doormat, it is important to consider such small details as overall size, doorway clearance, and visual appeal. Most doormats are designed to withstand a high volume of foot traffic, but some are better-suited for harsh weather conditions than others. Some can be used both indoors and outdoors, while others are intended strictly for exterior use.
We've compiled a shortlist of the best doormats on the market today. If you're looking for a new or replacement doormat, you'll want to keep reading this useful product analysis. At the top of our list is the Amagabeli Outside Doormat 24" x 36", which is a generously sized front-door mat with a low profile and exceptionally good debris removal.
Considerations when choosing doormats
Dimensions and profile
There is no standard size for doormats; although, most models are rectangular, with dimensions starting at 18" x 24". An oversized doormat would run a generous 24" x 36", large enough for multiple users. A quality doormat should be large enough to accommodate most footwear, including winter boots. Just as important as width and length is the mat's height. A doormat with a lower profile will not interfere with the storm door or main door's pathway. A higher profile can be better for debris removal and scraping.
Most doormat manufacturers use a variety of materials, including rubber, polyester, cotton, and engineered plastic. Rubber provides durability, water resistance, and a solid grip, but the synthetic and/or natural fibers provide the traction for scraping and the ability to retain dirt and debris. Some may find an all-plastic or "astroturf" doormat surface to be noisier than expected, while cotton blends often require more diligent maintenance to reduce the formation of mold and mildew.
A doormat often serves two separate but equal purposes for homeowners. It needs to be functional because visitors can easily track outside dirt, road debris, animal feces, and other health hazards into the main home if a doormat is not available. A doormat is also a decorative element that helps with the transition from outdoors to indoors. A doormat with a welcoming message or a pleasing visual design can create a more pleasant atmosphere.
While a typical doormat may appear to be a utilitarian section of outdoor flooring, it can also have some useful additional features. Some models incorporate a heavier texture for scraping feces, mud, and other challenging debris off of footwear. For winter use, some high-end doormats have heating elements to melt snow. Deep channeling to wick away rainwater is also a good feature during inclement weather.
The price of a doormat largely depends on its overall dimensions and construction materials. An inexpensive doormat made from coir or polyester can cost as little as $5 to $15; although, the quality and durability will be variable. The better doormats made from nylon or molded rubber should run anywhere from $25 to $100 for deluxe models with additional features.
Q. How much maintenance does an average doormat require?
A. The answer depends on the design and material of the doormat, but in general a good shaking every few days should remove most of the debris. However, to fully restore the doormat to like-new condition, it will require a deep scrubbing with soap and water or the use of a powerful shop vacuum.
Q. Why is using a doormat so important?
A. Many people do not realize just how many contaminants they pick up on their footwear every day. Tracking in dirt, pollen, mold, and other debris into someone's home can create a serious health hazard. Wiping or scraping off these unhealthy contaminants or removing footwear entirely is the right thing to do.
Doormats we recommend
Best of the best: Amagabeli's Outside Doormat, 24" x 36"
Our take: This oversized designer doormat is made primarily for outdoor/front porch use and gets shoes clean.
What we like: Doormat's dimensions will fit practically any standard front porch/doorway location. Stylish design efficiently removes debris from shoes and boots. Lower profile will not block most doors.
What we dislike: Tends to retain water; needs to be air-dried. Not ideal for high traffic locations.
Best bang for your buck: Fasmov's Indoor/Outdoor Entrance Doormat, 20" x 31.5"
Our take: For those who want to install affordable but durable doormats in high-traffic areas, the Fasmov is definitely worth considering, especially in bulk.
What we like: Captures dirt and sand well. Rated for high-traffic areas indoors. Low profile; will not block doorways. Safe around robotic vacuums.
What we dislike: Arrives in folded or rolled condition, and it's difficult to flatten out. Some unpleasant odors upon arrival. Mat surface is thin, not absorbent.
Our take: The GrassWorx doormat is ideal for homeowners with high outdoor traffic, indoor/outdoor pets, and frequent wet weather. It is also environmentally friendly.
What we like: Constructed from genuine Astroturf material. Plastic bristles can hold a large amount of dirt and debris. Compact design removes all types of sand, debris, and dirt easily.
What we dislike: Dimensions smaller than expected. Bristles can generate an unpleasant rustling sound. Removing all dirt and debris can be challenging.
Michael Pollick is a writer for BestReviews. BestReviews is a product review company with a singular mission: to help simplify your purchasing decisions and save you time and money. BestReviews never accepts free products from manufacturers and purchases every product it reviews with its own funds.
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