Dycem VS Peel-off Mats

You may have heard of “tacky mats”, “sticky mats”, “walk-off mats”, and “disposable clean room mats”, these terms all refer to the same type of product – peel-off mats. Peel-off mats are disposable contamination control products consisting of thin sheets of ‘tacky’ plastic. When the top sheet becomes fully saturated, it is ‘peeled’, revealing a clean sheet underneath. 

Scientific testing shows that peel-off mats are only 27% effective when preventing foot and wheel-borne contamination. There are several key factors to consider when comparing peel-off mats with Dycem’s reusable contamination control flooring and mats… 


The average size of a peel-off mat is usually no larger than 3 feet (1 meter). This does not allow a surface area that is large enough to effectively decontaminate shoes and wheels. Dycem recommends that you need six footfalls, and three full wheel rotations to achieve full decontamination. The usual placement of only one 3-foot peel-off mat at the entrance of a critical area can be hazardous as personnel can accidentally step around or over the mat, resulting in little to no contamination removal. 

Dycem’s flooring and mats are customizable, allowing us to create an unavoidable barrier, ensuring maximum protection every time.

Dycem Vs Peel-Off Mats
Dycem Vs Peel-Off Mats


To address the issue of size, peel-off mats are ganged together. Ganging together at least 10 peel-off mats and peeling them twice per 8-hour shift is necessary to prevent 80% of contamination from entering critical areas (Source Mcon). However, this option is both expensive and labor intensive, as well as generating huge amounts of waste. Although this may be a solution to the issue of size, ganging does not address the core issue of peel-off mats: materials, labor, storage, and disposal costs.  

 Additionally, when peel-off mats are ganged together, contamination may collect in the gaps between each mat. Dycem is a seamless solution, up to 99.9% effective, and has built-in antimicrobial protection.  

Particle Build Up

Peel-off sticky mats lose effectiveness with repeated steps in the same area due to contamination build-up which can be transferred back onto footwear. This issue is unavoidable due to the small size of the mats. Contaminants can adhere from the mat, onto footwear and spread to other areas, increasing the risk of contamination in critical environments. Research shows that Dycem mats, designed to remove particles, remove an additional 99% of particles compared to peel-off mats. Sticky mats can introduce more contaminants, with a 9.6% to 381.9% increase, even with contaminated footwear. Choosing the right type of mat is crucial for maintaining a clean and safe environment.  

Dycem Vs Peel-Off Mats
Dycem Vs Peel-Off Mats

Wheeled Traffic

Peel-off mats pose numerous difficulties with wheeled traffic. They are prone to wrapping around wheels, tearing, and transferring the adhesive from the mats onto the wheels and into the critical environment. Additionally, Peel-off mats are susceptible to becoming heavily saturated very quickly, reducing their efficacy in heavy-wheeled traffic environments where particle frequency is generally high and particulate size is super coarse (over 100+ microns). 

Dycem WorkZone flooring is specifically designed to withstand heavy wheeled traffic, supporting weight up to 90kg/cm2. Dycem has introduced a metal border for the Dycem WorkZone flooring to safeguard it against damage caused by heavy-wheeled traffic entering and exiting the mat.

Particle Shedding

An independent study commissioned by a peel-off mat manufacturer highlights the problem of particle shedding during the removal process of a used peel-off mat. It revealed that on average, 125,000 particles were released back into the environment, re-contaminating the area during the removal process. 

 Dycem flooring and mats capture up to 99.9% of contamination. It will retain this contamination until you wash it away and avoids particles being reintroduced into your controlled environment. 

Dycem Vs Peel-Off Mats


Compared to peel-off mats, Dycem offers a more effective solution for controlling contamination in critical environments. While peel-off mats may have a lower upfront cost, they require regular replacement and disposal. The total cost of ownership of peel-off mats compared to Dycem (which has a lifespan of 3-5 years) can be significantly higher.


Each time a contaminated layer is removed from a peel-off mat, it creates a 20cm ball of contaminated waste. Consequently, multiple dumpsters are filled annually with this type of waste. Peel-off mats are classified as secondary waste, requiring proper disposal, which can be costly.  

The accumulation of contaminated waste, and associated disposal cost makes peel-off mats an impractical and expensive choice in the long run. As an alternative, Dycem’s reusable mats offer a more sustainable and cost-effective solution, eliminating the need for frequent disposal.

Singular peel off mat
73% contamination entering
critical environment

Dycem Vs Peel-Off Mats

Ganged peel off mat
20% contamination entering
critical environment

Dycem Vs Peel-Off Mats

<0.01% contamination entering
critical environment

Dycem Vs Peel-Off Mats