Floor Mats Vs Floor Liners – Which is better?

The choice between vehicle floor mats and vehicle floor liners is largely dependent on the level of protection you as a motor vehicle owner wants for your car. Floor liners offer greater protection to your vehicle than floor mats.

What is a floor mats?

Floor mats are pieces of fabric material that are placed on different floors for a range of purposes. They cover sections of a floor and are of different types depending on their use. Among them are vehicle floor mats which are our focus in this article.

What is a floor liners?

Floor liners on the other hand are used in vehicles and are moulded to the contours of a specific vehicle floor. Unlike floor mats, floor liners are designed for wall-to-wall coverage of an entire vehicle.

Features of both floor mats and floor liners

To help determine which is better for vehicles, we need to look at the features and functions of both.

Protection you get from a mat and floor liner

Vehicle floor mats are intended to protect your vehicle floor from spills, dirt, and debris. They also prevent wear and tear on the floor of your vehicle.

Floor liners on the hand offer the greatest protection to the floor of your vehicle from possible damage because they contain spills exceptionally well besides helping to trap debris, and dirt.

Floor mats also use deep chambers embedded in the rubber to quickly absorb and retain fluids, unlike floor liners which do not contain this feature. For those people or vehicle owners who do not need as much protection, floor mats may be the better option.

They also offer protection during family trips that include children as passengers because children tend to spill liquids onto the floor of a vehicle.

Resale value

if a vehicle is brand new and you have small children, you will want to exercise even much greater caution to protect your vehicle and keep it looking as good as it did when it left the showroom. Doing this will allow you to keep the resale value of your vehicle high.

This is where floor liners come in. They will allow you freedom from worry about spills as you drive, especially on a bumpy road while keeping your mind settled about the future sale of your vehicle.

Road condition

If your journeys or trips are on largely smooth, well-tarmacked or concrete-made roads, and you do not have small children, floor liners may prove to be an unnecessary expense. Your best option will be floor mats.

If on the other hand you are the kind who frequently drives on dirt roads which are largely dusty, or in areas that tend to become muddy during the rainy seasons, vehicle floor liners will be the best option for you as they will offer you maximum protection from moisture.

Floor mat compared to floor liner durability

Most vehicles come with factory floor mats whose quality does not guarantee lengthy use. This is because they are made of a thin layer of lightweight carpet which is usually bonded to a thin layer of polymer material.

Usually, when these mats come as standard features or furnishings, they more often than not tend to become more worn out, stained and with dirt imbedded in them. In addition, the top layer of the mat tends to be scraped off or to wear off completely if the vehicle is driven by a female driver who wears high heeled shoes.

Most people needing car floor mats are either replacing the already existing factory mats or, they feel they need more protection.

Carpet liners are much more durable. They tend to last longer because they are made of very durable materials that have capacity to withstand any kind of debris tracked into them. If the soles of your shoes are often muddy, floor liners will serve you best.

Cleaning a floor mats compared to floor liners

Factory vehicle floor mats usually require intense cleaning during rainy seasons due to the tracking of mud into the vehicle, which serves to create faster wear and even tear of the mats.

The best alternative is to purchase new vehicle floor mats because they are always easy to clean. You can also easily remove the floor mats for cleaning unlike the floor liner which is fitted in a way that does not allow for removal.

The mats will usually be made of rubber or polyethylene, carpeting and even aluminium, allowing you a wide selection to choose from and at a cost you can appreciate. Cleaning floor liners is much more tedious.

Material used to make floor mat and floor liner

Floor mats are made of rubber or textile material such as carpet. Floor liners are usually made of polymers or synthetic rubber. Various manufacturers use different terminologies to refer to their construction.

The polymer material prevents water and all manner of spills from seeping through to the underlying surface. The mats have channels and ridges, and they lie flat on the ground. They can contain up to eight cups of liquid.


Floor liners are almost always custom-fitted for individual vehicles unlike floor mats which may or may not be custom-fitted.

Mats that are fitted have built-in buttonholes or cleats positioned to match the location of the pegs that the vehicle manufacturers install on underlying floor carpeting. The holes are snapped onto pegs, allowing a mat to stay in place without sliding around.

A fitted vehicle floor mat ensures safety by avoiding any possible interference with the accelerator or pedals. Other floor liners have nibbed backing which ensures the mat stays in place no matter the amount of movement by passengers or pets within the vehicle.

How affordable are floor mats compared to floor liners?

Vehicle floor mats are much cheaper in terms of affordability, and they come in a wide range of sizes and styles, allowing you to find mats that fit the contours of your vehicle.

Floor liners are more expensive because they take up a larger area and more material to manufacture them. The material is also very long lasting, resulting in higher purchase price.

Which one wins – a floor mat or floor liner?

If you desire to experience vehicle protection that is guaranteed for life, use both floor mats and floor liners for maximum safeguard of your vehicle from all elements. This will give you freedom and peace of mind no matter the road trips you take or the passengers you carry.