Michelin EdgeLiner Blog
We hate the phrase "floor mats." It conjures up images of small, carpeted tiles that the dealer gave you when you complained about the price of your car. They're basically a tiny swatch of material that doesn’t do much to protect your vehicle's carpet, and they get really ugly really fast.
We believe in the power of floor liners, not floor mats. With that in mind, here are five things you need to know about floor protection for your truck before you decide to invest in liners:
1) Floor Liners Are NOT Floor Mats
People tend to use "floor mat" and "floor liner" interchangeably, but they are as different as night and day. A floor liner is a custom-fit, computer-measured product that covers every contour and shape of your floor.
A liner should not only contain spills and dirt, it should keep you and your clothes out of the mess. It should have channels deep enough to hold a lot of liquid and dirt, and walls high enough for it to act as a bowl. It should stay firmly in place and not slip. A great liner will be easy to remove, rinse clean with a hose, and go back into your car looking brand new. It will hold its shape through wear and tear, cold winters, and scorching hot summers. If you read reviews of a particular liner that doesn't do all of that, you're basically paying for a glorified floor mat.
2) Floor Liners Are Sexy
You read that correctly. Custom floor liners are not just utilitarian accessories that keep your floor clean. The good ones actually add to the style of your interior. Carpet can be bland, but a floor liner has design elements - like angles and lines - that simply look really cool. They clean easily, so a large, visible portion of your vehicle is always shiny and new. Sexy, right?
3) Material Matters
There are some really great custom floor liners on the market, and they are all pretty much made the same way and with the same material: a stiff sheet of plastic that is heated and formed over a mold of your vehicle's floor. This has been the standard for many years, but it has limitations. The material gets thin when heated and it loses its shape over time. It can only be formed to make a channel about 5 milimeters deep, and the walls warp if they go too high.
Michelin EdgeLiner uses a unique resin that acts and feels more like rubber. Its heavier, more flexible, and it allows us to build massive channels between 3 and 4 times deeper than our competition. Our injection molding process gives us the ability to build structural pieces to support more height and better shape retention over time.
4) What Are "Nibs", And Why Do I Want Them?
There are two ways to secure a floor liner to your floor pan in order to prevent slipping and movement: hooks and nibs. The hook (or post) that may have come attached to your carpet is there to attach to a floor mat or liner. This mechanical fastener is a sure way to keep your liners in place, and has become standard on many vehicles. You usually just push the hook through a small hole in the liner, and then cover the hole with a cap.
Nibs are tiny, sharp teeth built into the bottom of a floor liner. These teeth grip into your original carpet and add resistance to keep your feet from pushing the floor liner around. The more aggressive the nib pattern on the bottom of your liner, the better t it will stay in place.
Not to brag, but EdgeLiner uses both hooks and nibs to give you the best slip protection around.
5) Floor Liners Are Not Cheap (but quality rarely is)
If you've been shopping online for this type of protection, you know it doesn't come cheap. Prices range from $59 for a basic, semi-custom liner to over $300 for complete sets of heavy-duty, high-end products. The answer lies in your own personal budget, and in the value of true protection. You'll want to research which mats and materials perform the best over time, so this becomes a once-per-vehicle investment.
That said, this is not the area to cut corners. A mat that gets ugly too quickly or loses its shape will defeat the purpose of having these in your truck.