Glass chair mats have quickly become the preferred choice in workspaces – both in offices and work-from-home setups.
Due to their perceived affordability and availability, plastic chair mats are the standard accessory in many workspaces. However, they are often ineffective and antiquated.
Both plastic and glass office chair mats serve as a protective layer between chairs and the floor surfaces beneath them. They create a smooth surface for the chair to roll over, making it easier for individuals to move around – as well as shielding hard floor surfaces from scratches or scuffs.
What are Glass Chair Mats?
Glass chair floor mats are an innovative alternative to traditional plastic mats, offering a more durable and aesthetically pleasing solution for protecting floors from office chairs.
Crafted from tempered glass, these mats offer a hard, smooth surface for easy movement – while preserving the integrity of the underlying floor types - whether it's a hardwood floor, a tile floor, or a pile carpet.
There are many reasons to choose a glass chair mat over a plastic one. In this post, we want to explain this in detail. Let’s dive in.
The Drawbacks of Plastic Chair Mats
Plastic chair mats work great initially. But they tend to have a short lifespan.
The typical plastic desk chair mat is not meant to withstand 40+ hours of pressure every week – and typically cracks, curls, or dimples under the weight and movement of office chairs within a few weeks or months.
The first sign of a plastic chair mat failing is ruts. The constant pressure on the wheels of the desk chair will create a permanent indent on the mat – making it difficult to move around.
The surface can also become scratched, which can restrict movement and create a tripping hazard. Additionally, plastic mats usually have issues with slipping or shifting on hard floor surfaces, requiring frequent readjustment.
Despite their initial affordability, plastic chair mats often need replacement every few months - whereas a glass mat can last for a lifetime.
I have been using a plastic mat under my computer chair for many years. Last month it cracked, and I needed to replace it. BUT... it has been driving me crazy for several years because the chair won't stay in one place: the indentations from body-weight-on-wheels. I bought one of your glass mats. FINALLY I can roll smoothly and not sink into ruts !
— Tex S. (Verified Customer) | Rectangular Glass Chair Mat
Plastic chair mats are initially transparent or translucent. But over time, they tend to take on a yellowish tint due to exposure to light and the environment. The surface of the mat is also prone to scratches, scuffs, and holes from regular use – which takes a toll on the overall look of your workspace.
In a workplace – whether it’s in an office or at home – there should always be a clear devotion to quality.
Think about it: If a client or partner walked into your workspace and sees cheap, degrading furnishings – what does this say about you?
Plastic chair mats serve a practical purpose in many office setups, but they can also pose certain health risks.
Some plastic mats are made with chemicals such as Bisphenol A (BPA) and phthalates, which are often used to increase flexibility and durability. However, these substances have been linked to various health issues.
BPA is an endocrine disruptor and can potentially interfere with the body's hormones, while certain phthalates have been associated with reproductive and developmental problems.
Additionally, plastic mats can release volatile organic compounds (VOCs) into the air, especially when new, contributing to indoor air pollution, which can cause headaches, dizziness, and respiratory problems in sensitive individuals.
The Advantages of Glass Chair Floor Mats
Glass chair mats (made from tempered glass) are renowned for durability.
Unlike a plastic mat, a tempered glass chair mat will not crack or dimple under the consistent pressure of office chairs. The durable properties of tempered glass make these types of chair mats a one-time investment that rarely requires replacement (if ever).
Even with heavy use, a quality glass chair mat can last for decades, making it a cost-effective choice in the long run to protect your hardwood floor or pile carpet.
A glass chair mat adds a sense of elegance and sophistication to any workspace.
Unlike plastic mats, which can turn yellow or become damaged over time, glass mats maintain a clear, sleek appearance that enhances the overall aesthetic of the office. The shiny surface can also reflect light, adding a sense of spaciousness and brightness to the room.
When clients or partners see polished glass chair mats in your office, it shows that you value the quality of your workspace and provide the very best to your employees. First impressions are everything in business – and this is a great way to provide a good one!
And, if you’re working from home, consider how important a better work space environment is for your overall health, mental outlook and productivity.
Ergonomic Benefits of Glass Chair Mats
Glass chair office mats provide a smooth and flat surface for easy desk chair movement - reducing strain on the back and joints. The durable material safely supports proper posture and reduces the risk of musculoskeletal issues associated with prolonged sitting.
The stability of tempered glass floor mats also prevents the chair from creating ruts (which almost always happens with plastic mats), allowing for smart ergonomic positioning. In additon, we patented a beveled edge to prevent the jarring roll off of the quarter inch glass, which helps to prevent any strain on the body.
Health Benefits of Glass Chair Mats
Glass chair mats provide several key health benefits, primarily due to their non-toxic and hypoallergenic construction.
Unlike most plastic chair mats, glass does not contain chemicals such as BPA or phthalates, eliminating the risk of exposure to these substances in your workspace.
Glass also doesn’t release volatile organic compounds (VOCs) into the indoor environment, which can lead to symptoms like headaches, dizziness, or respiratory problems. Moreover, glass is resistant to microbes and does not harbor dust mites or other allergens, making it a safe choice for those with allergies.
Opting for glass chair mats contributes more to a healthy indoor environment than many assume.
Choosing the Right Glass Chair Mat
Glass chair mats are available in a variety of shapes and sizes.
At Clearly Innovative, we offer three categories:
Take some time to assess your desk space and surrounding area to determine which shape fits best. Generally, rectangular and tabbed mats fit well behind a desk or under a table – and square mats are great for open spaces.
As for sizes, there's a range to choose from. You can find small mats suitable for compact workspaces or larger ones for spacious offices.
The rectangular shape comes in sizes:
Square glass chair mats come in:
Tabbed chair mats are usually pretty universal – with a general size of 48”x52”.
We strongly recommend glass chair office mats with a 1” beveled edge for easy rolling on and off the mat. All of the glass chair mats we offer have this patented special feature.
Read this post for more tips on choosing the best glass chair mat.
Over to You
Investing in glass chair mats over a cheap plastic mat offers many benefits that go beyond functionality. Most importantly, glass chair mats are super durable and have a longer lifespan compared to plastic mats – which typically need to be replaced once or twice a year.
The upfront cost of glass chair mats is higher, but they will last a lifetime – making glass a highly cost-effective choice.
Are you looking to upgrade your office setup?
Browse our selection of glass chair mats and other accessories.
Our representatives will be happy to point you in the right direction.