When it comes to talking about floor mats for your car, truck, van, or SUV, I think that they can probably be categorized into two basic types:
- Floor mats or floor liners for the interior front and rear floors
- Cargo mats or cargo liners for the back bed of a van or SUV
My head says that they both serve a single basic purpose or function - to keep the floor of the vehicle protected from spills, moisture, and winter muck. And, I suppose, keeping the feet and clothing of the passengers clean and dry as well!
In addition to protecting the floors, it's nice if they are also super easy to remove and clean. Especially compared to the standard floors and carpets provided by the manufacturer. Most car mats today are custom fitted for each make and model, so they go in and come out easily. Cleaning today's floor mats / liners is a quick dump, brush off, or hosing off. In a matter of minutes, the gunk is gone, the mats are back in the car, and you're off to your next destination!
Floor liners or floor mats go on the inside floors of the vehicle. They keep our shoes, boots, and pants out of the winter crud that we drag into the car. They also contain spills so that they don't run all over the floor. In the old days, the floors stayed wet and soggy all winter, which was never fun. With the raised lips and grooves of today's floor liners, the mess stays contained and we stay dry!
The cargo liners or mats are found in the rear compartments of SUVs, Vans, Crossovers, and Wagons. These are so great for keeping our gear, bags, groceries, plants, tools, etc. where they belong, upright, and off of the vehicle bed. Or for keeping liquids, dirt, sand, or mud from sliding down into the seats or hidden compartments. The cargo liners really need added strength and durability to stand up to the heavy loads and shapes of things getting tossed back there. You'll find most of these liners made of heavy-duty materials to protect the cargo floor from scratches, dents, drips, drools, spills, and such.
Either way, both the floor and cargo liners keep the interior of our rides clean, dry, and tidy. They are both easy to install, remove, and clean. For those of us who live in the Midwest or any snowy climate, you know how wet and muddy the inside can get. So drop a little extra change and pick up a good set of floor mats and floor liners - and keep that mess away, and your car, van, SUV, or truck looking its best all year long!