Universal Earthing Mat (image credit: Earthing Oz, www.EarthingOz.com.au, photo used with permission)
In my article “Earthing and Grounding – Restoring Your Natural Balance” I discussed how the modern lifestyle subjects the human body to unnatural conditions which are potentially harmful to health and wellbeing. When a person is electrically insulated from the ground by synthetic-soled shoes or non-conductive flooring surfaces, and then exposed to man-made electromagnetic fields (EMFs) from electrical and electronic equipment, unnatural electrical currents are created that flow in the human body. EMFs are scientifically proven to have a biological effect – they change the way the body’s cells function, which is not a good thing at all.
We can restore the balance to our body by grounding (also known as earthing), essentially making contact with the ground to bring the body to the same electrical potential as the Earth itself. It’s nothing more than restoring our natural state of being, recreating the natural conditions our bodies are designed to function in. Outdoors, grounding can be as easy as walking barefoot on the beach, on grass or dirt, or being in physical contact with ground in some way or other, as humans have done for millennia.
Indoor locations are a greater concern, because we’re surrounded by man-made electromagnetic fields (EMFs) of greater intensity, and indoor floor surfaces are mostly non-conductive, both exacerbating the problem and making it much harder to ground our bodies. So what’s the solution indoors? Fortunately, there are a range of earthing products available which are designed for indoor use to address this very problem.
One such product is the Earthing Oz – Universal Earthing Mat, it’s a conductive, carbon-infused leatherette mat with a soft foam backing, which comes with a detachable ground cord that connects to the ground via the Earth ground port of an electrical outlet or an optional ground rod.
This is a very versatile product and can be used in various ways around the home or office, two locations where we spend most of our time, and where we most encounter various EMF sources. The Universal Earthing Mat can be used as a floor mat to place your bare feet on as you work at the computer, or as a desk mat to ground your hands while typing or using the keyboard and mouse, which is my preferred way to use this product.
What will this product do for you? Quite simply, it will ground your body, recreating the natural electrical state of the body that you experience when when you walk barefoot on grass, dirt or along the beach, just as Nature intended. The great part is that the Universal Earthing Mat will do this for you while you’re sitting at your desk at work, or engaging in some other indoor activity at home!
While it may be reassuring that the Universal Earthing Mat will connect your body to the ground electrically, preventing unnatural electrical currents which may affect your health, an inevitable question that will arise is whether this product will give any observable health benefit. Well, according to the product description:
“When working in an office environment we are surrounded by very high electrical fields, which will cause people to feel fatigued, experience sore eyes and have less focus. By working “grounded” you will greatly reduce the electrical voltage you are being exposed to, keeping the body balanced, and greatly reducing or eliminating electrical stress on the body.”
When I test products, I aim to be very thorough in my testing, and in this case, to determine if there are any observable long-term benefits from using the Universal Earthing Mat, I tested the product over a period of three months, so I appreciate the patience of Earthing Oz for the time it’s taken to review their product!
First Impressions & Specifications
When I received my Universal Earthing Mat in the mail, opening the shipping packaging, I found that Earthing Oz had thoughtfully packed the product inside a sturdy cardboard box, ensuring that the product was well protected in transit and that it arrived in pristine condition. I really appreciate it when a business goes that extra step for their customers.
The Universal Mat measures 25cm x 68cm (10” x 27”) and is supplied with a 3.6m (12 foot) grounding cord and an Adapter Plug with built in splitter.
The mat itself is black in colour, with a grey foam underside. The black top surface is actually the conductive carbon-infused leatherette layer which does the grounding, and the soft foam backing (which is latex free, suitable for people with allergies to latex) grips the desk surface very well and does not slide around at all.
Measuring the thickness of the mat, it’s around 3mm (1/8”) thick, giving it an unobtrusive low profile, so there’s no a high raised edge to catch against, making it much more comfortable to use.
The Adapter Plug has a built in splitter, which allows you to connect a second earthing product to the same power outlet point, saving space on your wall points and saving money if you want to purchase and use other products like this one in the same room.
The grounding cord is a very generous length of 3.6m (12 foot) and will reach from a power outlet to almost any other point in an average-sized room. Another nice touch is the quality of the wire used on the grounding cord, it’s light but very sturdy, and the insulation is a white glossy plastic tangle-free plastic, somewhat like the type used on the leads on decent quality headphones, but much thicker and stronger.
Also included in the box is very clearly printed and well written ‘Usage, Care & Safety Instructions’ sheet. You can click on the image to view a larger version. The reverse side of this sheet includes additional general information which is applicable to all grounding/earthing products.
From initial appearances, examining each of the items supplied, this product appears to be a high quality item that is very well made. So far I’m impressed!
Next step is to set up the product and test it to see how well it performs and does what it’s supposed to do, ground you!
Setting Up the Universal Earthing Mat
It’s really quick and easy to set up the Universal Earthing Mat, it only take a minute or two to connect it all together and have it up and running.
Here’s how to set up the Universal Earthing Mat in four easy steps:
- Place the Universal Earthing Mat under your computer keyboard or on the ground at your feet (over over a footrest).
- Clip the Grounding Cord round connector end to the Universal Earthing Mat.
- Plug the long connector end of the Grounding Cord into the Adapter Plug.
- Plug the Adapter Plug into a power outlet or power board.
Now it’s ready to use, it’s that simple.
Tests and Measures
We’ll begin our testing by looking at the individual components first, then we’ll connect them all up as described earlier and test the assembled system to see how well it works.
Testing the individual components, we’ll begin by looking at the Grounding Cord. Here I’m testing with a multimeter set to the Ohms range (electrical resistance) to measure how well the grounding cord conducts electricity.
The resistance reading is 101.4 kilo-ohms, so the grounding cord clearly has an internal resistance of around 100k (100,000 ohms). This is an additional electrical safety measure to limit current to safe levels if there was some unlikely major disaster with home mains wiring which the earth leakage detectors in the home fuses box should prevent. Having this backup safety measure is an excellent idea. How well will this safety measure work? Using ohms law, V=IxR, this will limit the current to 2.4mA in a 240V mains system such as in Australia, and to 1.1mA in a 110V US mains system, well below the level that will cause electric shock.
Next, we’ll look at the Adapter Plug which has a built in splitter. For safety, the Live (Active) and Neutral pins are made of plastic and therefor cannot conduct any electricity at all, the only conductive pin is the Earth (Ground) pin. On the top of the plug are two points or sockets for grounding cords to connect to, allowing two grounding products to be connected to one mains outlet. These two connection points are 5mm wide sockets (a bit over 3/16”) which take the proprietary plug of the same dimensions found on one end of the grounding cord.
The Adapter Plug pictured below is compatible with an Australian mains plug, it’s also available in many other formats such as US, UK, Europe, Danish – Type K and Israel -Type H.
If we test the Adapter Plug for electrical conductivity, we find that the Earth (Ground) pin is simply connected directly to the two grounding cord connection points as expected.
Now that we’ve looked at all the components separately, let’s connect them all up together and do some more testing!
In this test I’ve once again set the a multimeter set to the Ohms range (electrical resistance) to measure how well our product conducts electricity.
I’ve connected the the multimeter’s ground (black) lead to the second grounding cord connection point on the Adapter Plug, and lightly pressed the multimeter’s red lead on the surface of the Universal Earthing Mat (to not damage the surface). What we’re doing is measuring how well the connection from the mains power outlet Earth pin to the mat’s surface conducts electricity.
Results of first test:
Our connection reads an electrical resistance of 104.1k (approximately 100 kilo-ohms once again), which is a little more than the safety resistance of the Grounding Cord, showing that we have an excellent electrical connection to the ground. So yes, the product will definitely connect you to the ground electrically, there’s no doubts about that!
The testing doesn’t end here though, we still need to determine whether the Universal Earthing Mat can reduce the stray electricity that unnaturally flows through our bodies when we’re exposed to man-made electromagnetic fields (EMFs). Without further ado, let us move onto the second phase of testing.
In this test, sitting in front of my computer, I will measure the voltage produced in my body through exposure to EMFs created by the surrounding electrical equipment and wiring, then I’ll rest my hand on the Universal Earthing Mat to ground myself and observe if the voltage in my body drops.
Testing body voltage is fairly straightforward:
- Set the multimeter range to the Volts AC range
- Connect the multimeter’s ground (black) lead to an Earth/Ground connection (such as the grounding cord connection point on the Adapter Plug)*
- Touch the tip of the red multimeter lead with your fingers and read the AC voltage on the multimeter display.
* SAFETY NOTE – DO NOT push the tip of the multimeter lead directly into any power outlet to get a ground connection from the Earth/Ground pin, because if you accidentally put it into the Live or Neutral pin holes, YOU”LL GET ELECTROCUTED or damage your multimeter!!!
NOTE: You can get a safe ground connection by connecting the multimeter’s ground (black) lead to a tap/faucet, metal kitchen sink, copper water or gas pipe, a metal rod pushed into the dirt, or on the outside of your computer or other electronic equipment, any bare metal surface or screw, usually found on the back.
With the multimeter’s common (black) lead connected safely to ground via the Adapter Plug, and my hand holding the tip of the other lead, my body is flowing 4.480V AC through it!
Now, resting my finger on the Universal Earthing Mat, the voltage in my body drops down significantly from 4.480V AC to a mere 0.275V AC, that’s almost a 94% reduction.
If you’re wondering why my body is humming away with almost 5V going through it when I’m not in contact with the Universal Earthing Mat, a quick measure of the magnetic field should explain things. Using my old trusty Trifield meter, set to the 0-3 milligauss Magnetic field range, and placing it where my hand sits on the earthing mat, the meter reads 2.0 milligauss, as shown in the picture below. That may not seem like much, but there’s more to the story…
It’s so easy to miss the whole picture when measuring EMFs! If I reconsider what constitutes ‘me’, remembering that I have legs which extend under the desk near the power outlets on the wall, and that there’s other electrical gear such as power adapters for several electronic devices, phone chargers, etc. down there on the floor, then we have a more complete picture. Placing the Trifield meter where my feet rest when I push my footrest forward towards the wall, the reading is a whopping 15 milligauss! That’s over seven times higher than our first reading. Not good…
Results of second test:
Looking at this test, we’ve seen that with me as the test subject sitting in a magnetic field that varies between 2 – 15mG, an AC voltage of 4.8V is induced in my body, which drops down by 94% to below 0.28V when I am in physical contact with the Universal Earthing Mat. Clearly, we can conclude that the Universal Earthing Mat does in fact reduce the body voltage created by EMFs.
So far the test results are excellent, but there’s still a third phase of testing to do, to determine if the user of the product will feel any noticeable difference over the long term.
At the beginning of this product review I stated that for the sake of thoroughness, and to determine if there are any observable long-term benefits from using the Universal Earthing Mat, I tested the Universal Earthing Mat over a period of three months.
I’m a trainer and writer, so I spend considerable time on the computer, writing up training materials, articles for various groups and organisations, as well as articles and product reviews for my own website of course! I’ve been doing this for years. Much as I’d hate to admit it, I’m on the computer every day, so the Universal Earthing Mat being reviewed here has seen a lot of use over the three month test period. Thankfully I also work outdoors part time and also and have a lot of health & wellbeing-oriented pastimes that keep me away from the computer and allow me to maintain a healthy balance!
Results of third test:
After testing over a period of three month of daily use, the Universal Earthing Mat appears well made as there is no visible signs of wear and tear. I would have to conclude that this is a quality product that will most likely last a very long time. That’s only half the story though…
You’re probably wondering if I’ve noticed anything significant after conducting the long term testing of this product. Well, when I first received the product, I wasn’t sure what I would experience, I’m naturally sceptical but open minded person, and having a double-major in the biomedical sciences, I like to test things out for myself and draw my own conclusions, I do the scientific thing and not pass judgement or form any opinions until I have sufficient evidence.
I know from years of experience how I feel physically and mentally after spending long hours in front of the computer, especially when staying up late trying to meet deadlines! I have extensive experience to compare against, and I was interested to see whether the claims held up that grounding/earthing could greatly reduce or eliminate electrical stress on the body, which leads to feeling fatigued, sore eyes and a reduction in focus.
In my experience, I must say that I was honestly surprised that this grounding/earthing product did indeed deliver significant noticeable benefits. Since I’ve been using the Universal Earthing Mat, I’ve found that I don’t feel tired, drained or fatigued after using the computer, even after many hours of use. More importantly, I don’t seem to get the eye fatigue that plagued me in the past. I personally feel that I can maintain a clearer focus and mental alertness for a much longer duration on the computer when I’m grounded, connected back to the Earth. I’ve been told that other users of earthing products have reported similar benefits, so it appears that my experience is not unique. I’m definitely sold on this product, and I’m confident that others will also notice a difference in the same way that I have.
I highly recommend the Universal Earthing Mat to anyone who spends time in front of a computer! It’s a well-made, affordable earthing/grounding product which will deliver the health benefits it promises. It will reduce the harmful effects of EMFs in any work or home environment by dissipating unnatural electrical currents in the body that produce biological effects and alter cell function. You’ll definitely feel the difference from being grounded when using a computer, with noticeably less tiredness and fatigue. The Universal Earthing Mat can also be used as a general purpose grounding mat as its name suggests, it’s not just restricted to computer users. This product is definitely a worthwhile investment in one’s own personal health. I’m definitely glad I own one!
Deep Green rating for Earthing Oz – Universal Earthing Mat is 5 stars!
Purchasing the product:
In Australia, the Universal Earthing Mat can be purchased from the Earthing Oz online store. (You can click this affiliate link to go to the Earthing Oz website, from here you can navigate to the product to view product details or purchase this product and support Deep Green Permaculture!)
Earthing Oz supplied the product I tested, and my experience with then was very positive, they deliver excellent customer service, with prompt communication and great advice. For Australians It’s cheaper to purchase locally from Earthing Oz as this avoids international shipping fees.
If you’re outside Australia, the Universal Earthing Mat is available from Earthing.com. By buying from Earthing you know you’re getting the genuine Earthing product as there are copy-cat versions out there and there are reports that customers have bought these cheaper Chinese versions and found the quality is poor and that they don’t last.
(You can click the image or link below to view product details or purchase this product from Earthing via Amazon and support Deep Green Permaculture!)
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You might also like these other articles on earthing and grounding:
- Earthing and Grounding – Restoring Your Natural Balance
- Product Review – Earthing Oz Sleep Deep Pad
- Product Review – Earth Runners Minimalist Outdoor Sandals
- Product Review – Shoe Sync Earthing Shoes DIY Kit by Earth Runners