Horsebox box’s and trailers can play an essential role in modern equine life! It doesn’t matter if you’re a “happy hacker” or a budding professional the need to get out and about is crucial and keeping your horse safe while you do it is (of course) of the utmost importance! Read on to find the best horsebox matting to keep your horse safe and sound while staying in your payload and budget!

3.5T Boxes & Trailers

The 3.5T Horsebox has grown in popularity over the last 5+ years. Being able to drive them without taking extra tests has been a massive appeal, especially with younger riders. As a smaller vehicle they are able to get nearly anywhere which makes these little vehicles really appealing. The downside is that the payloads can be quite small making every kilo count.

3.5T Horsebox matting

Single Sheet Trailer mat installed into a 3.5T Horsebox

Over the years, 12mm traditional solid rubber mats have been used for Horsebox floors. These are very durable and have used successfully for decades. The only downside is you have quite a lot of leak paths and the average floor is around 60/70KG.
The best horsebox matting for the floors is roll material. It normally works out more expensive, however the benefits can significantly, outweigh the extra cost. By having a single sheet, you minimize leak paths and with the use of sealant around the outside you should be able to stop any urine getting underneath.
We have developed a new 7mm roll form material with a solid bottom, which is extremely durable, whilst keeping the weight down to around 50/60 Kgs.
In order to keep the weight down in boxes, sometimes EVA floor mats are used. However, in our experience this has mixed results. If your horse travels well and you don’t go far, they can be a complete success. If your horse has road studs/nails in, travels nervously or badly then we do not recommend this material.

3.5T Wall Matting

The walls are usually quite standard and when they evolved from the old fashioned and heavy marine ply the methods for covering haven’t really changed in many years.
Generally used now is EVA boards, which are light weight and cost effective. Very easily installed making them the almost perfect product. The only downside to these, is they do mark and if kicked can tear and rip, which obviously isn’t ideal. However, we can supply 20mm thick EVA which is harder for your travelling steeds to destroy.
By far, the most durable option is 6mm rubber insertion. With a high strength nylon fabric running through the middle it is virtually indestructible, however it is heavier and more expensive. If you have hire business or lend your box out this may be a better option, therefore covering the idiosyncrasies of more beasties whilst they travel, and it may work out cheaper in the long run.

Progression of 10mm EVA wall mats being installed into a 3.5T Horsebox

3.5T Ramp Matting

The ramps are normally quite small on these boxes and trailers and there is one product for the job, the Griptop. These has been tried and tested over more years than I care to remember and is worth its weight in gold. The only downside is it is quite hard to keep clean but apart from that its hard wearing, super grippy and won’t break the bank. Please don’t be tempted by 3-4mm material as it won’t last the test of time and is a waste of money and carpet type products don’t last and become super slippery over time.

3.5T Lorry finished with 10mm EVA on the walls and single sheet rubber on the floor

7.5 T + Lorries

The bigger lorry, where to start? The extra space for the living area. No worry about weights or being “over”. All of this comes at cost unfortunately. For starters, you either have to have “Grandad rights” on your licence or you have to take additional tests in order to drive them. As a professional or competitive rider, the chances are you will need a larger vehicle in order to take more than 2 horses and do “stay away” shows.

Horsebox Lorry matting,

Again, traditionally on the floors of these types of boxes you would have standard stable mats, tried and test these have done a fantastic job for many years. But the same pitfalls apply and where the mats joins, urine and bedding can get underneath. Roll material is the only upgrade for the floor in these lorries. Coming 2.4m (8ft) wide and up to 10m long in either 10mm thick solid rubber or 7mm you can have a single sheet. This means very little can get underneath.

Horse Box Wall matting

The wall matting is very similar to the 3.5T Boxes. Mainly because if isn’t broke, why change it? EVA is a fantastic low-cost way of covering the walls giving the horse extra warmth and protection. If they are kicking and ruining the EVA then you can go over to 6mm rubber insertion. The 6mm insertion is a reinforced rubber mat sold on the roll. It is quite heavy, so it needs to be glued up with a mechanical fix at the top. (normally anti-chew strips with screws). This material will take the battering a disgruntled horse will give it whilst traveling.

Ramp Matting

With the extra payload on these boxes, there is another product available. The Moulded Ramp Mat. This is a fantastic product that comes with the treads/bars already moulded in. These being rubber instead of metal, offer better protection to you horse as well as great anti-slip. If you have a manual ramp it might be worth talking to someone about getting your springs adjusted so it’s easier to handle. The Griptop is the other product which has been used for years! Lightweight, durable and cost effective! Not much more you can ask for from a product for your horses.

Still not sure?

We are here to help, if you are still in two minds or would rather have a conversation with a human then please give us a call on 01787 886929. If you have questions but an e-mail will do, send it over to [email protected].

Another great guide can be found on the DVLA website here