Polycarbonate office chair mats are an exciting and environmentally friendly alternative to traditional PVC (vinyl) chair mats. Polycarbonate is a clear, rigid compound that offers a smooth rolling surface for desk chairs on both carpeted and hard floor surfaces.
This vinyl alternative is also a healthier alternative – Polycarbonate is odorless, BPA- and phthalate-free and takes less energy to produce. Furthermore, on hard and low-pile carpet surfaces, these polycarbonate chair mats have shown to last longer in a typical office setting over traditional PVC chair mats.
Another advantage of polycarbonate over vinyl is the clarity of the material. Although PVC mats are translucent and allow the flooring underneath the mat to show through, polycarbonate floor mats are closer to being transparent and thus appear more seamless with the existing floor.
Although polycarbonate mats boast greater rigidity there is one downside, however, of this chair mat material over vinyl. Polycarbonate desk mats do not flex or dimple like traditional PVC and therefore keep their shape making rolling easier. PVC mats are slightly more pliable. The issue arises most notably on thicker pile, plush carpet. This type of carpet compresses more so when weight is applied and, whereas a vinyl chair mat will flex to mold itself to the compressed carpet, the polycarbonate will remain rigid and, if enough pressure is applied the mat can crack since it is not designed to flex. Thus, it is recommended that polycarbonate mats be used on hard surface and lower pile carpets.
In summary, polycarbonate chair mats are a clear, rigid and Green alternative to traditional PVC chair mats and offer several benefits over vinyl.