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INTRAsystems wants to make entrance matting more accessible

INTRAsystems says it wants to make entrance matting more accessible, helping clients better understand the product category and increase confidence in mat installation.

On the whole, many flooring contractors’ experience with entrance matting will be of traditional, long-established products, that have changed very little over time. For example, tension-wire systems that are complicated to install, prone to issues onsite, and where mistakes are costly.
Add to this, the vast range of product information and options available on most manufacturer websites and it’s easy to see why entrance mats are given a wide berth.

For many projects, entrance matting is the last element of a flooring contract to be completed; it can often be overlooked, left to the last minute to order, or simply boarded out for someone else to deal with. The fact matting tends to be included in soft flooring packages, along with carpeting, as opposed to part of the hard flooring contracts required in most entrance lobbies, means flooring contractors have left site six weeks or so before matting needs to go down. However, as the saying goes: there’s a better way.

INTRAsystems says it’s been re-engineering and pioneering new products for the entrance matting sector for the past 35 years. ‘Our tongue-and-groove plank systems were designed to drastically improve installation and long-term performance and have been steadily gaining popularity. They’re now viewed as the gold standard by mat installers across the UK and worldwide.’

The company runs through the main features pertinent to installation in its own words:

Tension wires vs tongue-and-groove
There are two types of tension-wire systems: rigid and flexible. Both require specialist tools and considerable experience to cut onsite and install. Dealing with long sections and curved edges is particularly challenging. Wires run through the individual aluminium channels, under tension, to hold the product together. Cutting them in the wrong place, especially on a typical 400mm x 2.4m section, say, is both dangerous and almost impossible to re-thread and tension properly. It’s the last thing a contractor wants on a job.

By contrast, INTRA’s tongue-and-groove, plank systems are custom engineered to connect positively together across the vertical plane, much like the wooden flooring contractors are familiar with. Our carriers don’t need secret fixings but are rigid sections that effectively ‘float’ making the units very simple to fit.

Logistics and cutting
From handballing products off the delivery truck to minimising waste, small details make a big difference to how well a project runs. Issues such as large unwieldy panels and sliding rails can cause issues. Some matting products are comprised of single aluminium strips held together with PVC connectors that can be loose and slide awkwardly, which makes handling throughout the job challenging, particularly when the product needs to be kept aligned during cutting. INTRAsystems products are rigid with no moving parts and supplied cut to your desired lengths, all aspects that make them easy to both handle and cut.

To further simplify preparation, your matwell can be templated, and all sections supplied pre-cut and shaped to the exact requirements by our UK factory. Not only does this reduce time and effort onsite, but it also significantly reduces wastage. Alternatively, we can supply to any length and depth ready for a contractor to cut when required.

INTRA carriers are high-quality, thick aluminium extrusions that are much easier to work with than other, flimsier constructions. It’s also worth noting no special tools are required; just what most contractors already have available; a chop saw, jigsaw, and circular saw. There’s no need to invest in new gear.

Installation – like a jigsaw puzzle, only easier
Some contractors may not realise how easy it is to install INTRAsystems’ matting. Our experts do the groundwork, so every drawing and layout plan makes installation as easy as child play – satisfying even. Every element is provided and clearly labelled, so it’s literally like a jigsaw, you just put the plan together. Fast, accurate, no fitter certifications or special knowledge required.

Sometimes, it boils down to the actual person installing on-site, interpreting detailed or complicated instructions can be a headache. The team at INTRA carried out extensive user testing to ensure its installation ‘maps’ are user-friendly

Behaviour under pressure
Finally, we take a brief look at one of the key performance factors to consider when selecting the right entrance matting product. How the system will respond to the movement of heavy loads.
With tension-wire and some plank systems, the connection between sections within the matting isn’t as positive as the INTRA tongue-and-groove profile.

Over time this can grow loose and rattle, potentially causing issues with extremely heavy or unbalanced loads, for example fully loaded, motorised pump trucks in supermarkets. Under this type of pressure, mat sections will bow or start to work their way out of the mat well. Wheels get stuck and transported loads become unstable, creating health and safety risks.

By contrast, INTRAsystems matting products are intelligently engineered to respond adaptively, enabling better movement of heavy loads. Sections will undulate flexibly under pressure allowing weight to be transferred smoothly across, however well balanced or spread the load is.

‘Install better entrances with INTRAsystems’
So, next time an entrance matting project comes up, bring INTRAsystems onboard and let us advise you on the right product specification for the application, knowing you and your clients will be supported every step of the way. For those who still prefer to subcontract out their entrance matting, INTRA can recommend an excellent partner from our network of specialist mat installers across the UK and Ireland.

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