Temporary road mats are used for site access in a wide range of industries, from construction to pipelines to utilities. Understanding when you need them and which ones to use is critical for project success. If you’re exploring temporary road mats as a potential solution for your project, get answers to your top questions below.
When Do I Need Temporary Road Mats?
The main reasons to use temporary road mats are to provide safe access and to protect the surrounding environment. Sites that are marshy, muddy, or have uneven terrain may not be accessible at all or may present safety hazards that must be mitigated. Matting solutions provide a smooth, level ride that allows people, vehicles, and heavy equipment to safely move along the right of way.
Even when the ground is firm and vehicles can safely travel on the access route, frequently moving heavy equipment takes a toll on the soil and plant life. Soil compaction leads to erosion and affects the root systems of the surrounding plants. Environmental restrictions or owner contracts may also require minimal disturbance or full restoration after project completion.
Ground protection mats distribute the weight of heavy equipment, causing minimal impact to the ground below. This allows project managers to comply with environmental regulations and requires little or no site restoration after mats have been removed.
What Type of Temporary Road Mat Is Right for My Project?
Temporary road mats for heavy equipment are made from a variety of materials, including hardwood, composite, CLT, plastic, and hybrid solutions. Each type of mat has different features that lend themselves to certain types of terrain. How the road will be used also plays a role in mat selection. Knowing the size and weight of the equipment that will be used is essential for selecting the right matting solution.
It’s also important to understand that multiple types of mats are often used on a single site access project because the terrain is not always consistent along the entire access route. Whether you need to create temporary bridges to cross streams or maximize your budget by using lighter-duty mats when possible, getting the right combination of mats is key.
The best way to determine what type of temporary road mat is right for your project is to work with a qualified consultant who understands all of the matting solutions available and how it relates to your project.
Why Do Different Road Mats Cost Different Prices?
The most significant factor in determining the cost of road mats is the materials. In general, heavy-duty mats cost more than light-duty mats because they require more materials or a heavier type of material. The cost to manufacture the mats also plays a role in the price.
Another expense to consider is the cost to ship mats to your site. The size, weight, and distance of the mats all factor into the equation, so it’s not always as simple as choosing the cheapest mat that will meet your needs.
For example, if more expensive mats are located closer to your site, it may ultimately cost less than using a less expensive mat. Working closely with your provider is the best way to ensure you have a cost-effective solution that takes all of these factors into account.
Should I Rent or Buy Temporary Road Mats?
There are pros and cons to both renting and buying mats. If you always need the same types of mats for multiple projects—and have a place to store them when not in use—purchasing mats may be cost-effective. However, if you encounter multiple types of terrain, you might not want to commit to a single mat type.
Importantly, if you don’t have a place to store hundreds or even thousands of mats, renting is the best option. Another advantage of temporary road mat rental is that you don’t have to continually purchase new mats when the old ones get worn or damaged.
Is a Temporary Road Mat Reusable?
Some mats are more durable than others, but most temporary road mats are reusable. With wood mats, there are various grades of mats that can be used depending on the use of the mat. The grade of mat should be considered when evaluating your project because not all projects require a brand-new mat. If you’re using composite mats, these have a long lifespan and can be used over and over.
Get Started with YAK ACCESS
YAK ACCESS provides a range of temporary road solutions to help you tackle any terrain, but we do much more than that. When you work with YAK ACCESS, you get the benefits of matting expertise and site access consulting services. We’ll work closely with you to determine which mats make the most sense for your project and your budget.
Download A Complete Guide to Selecting the Right Ground Protection Mats for Your Next Projects for more information about the types of mats we offer, what types of projects they’re best suited for, and other details.