What is a Table Pad?

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  • Written By: Malcolm Tatum
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 25 December 2019
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The table pad is a simple device that is used to protect the top of a table by covering the expanse of the tabletop. They are most often used to protect the tops of dining room tables, but may also be used with occasional tables around the house. It is possible to purchase these table protectors in a number of different sizes and colors, allowing the devices to easily work with tables of all sizes and designs.

A basic table pad is composed of a plastic shell filled with a sturdy padding material. Many designs call for a body design that allows the pad to fold with relative ease. This makes it possible to handle even a large pad with relative ease, as well as store the device without a great deal of trouble. Basic pads tend to come in neutral colors that will not show through a tablecloth, while still providing protection for the tabletop.

There are a number of ways that the table pad protects the tabletop. The most obvious has to do with preventing watermarks or damage from spilled liquids from ruining the finish. Since most pads are made with material that is water resistant, the moisture never actually reaches the table itself. This function can be especially important when the table is considered a family heirloom and there is a strong desire to keep the table top in pristine condition.


A table pad also provides protection from direct sunlight. Many people do not immediately think of sunlight as being able to fade a wooden tabletop, since the process usually takes a number of years. In spite of the use of sealing agents, exposure to direct sunlight over the years can damage the finish. By using a table pad, the tabletop continues to look new, year after year.

Scratching of the tabletop is also eliminated if a table pad is used. Everyday scratching from eating utensils, serving bowls, centerpieces, and even the occasional set of keys that is left on the table can leave behind fine scratches that become more noticeable as time goes on. With a pad protecting the tabletop, scratches are not an issue, and the table remains in excellent condition.

It is possible to purchase a basic table pad for very little money. Many furniture stores carry pads in the most popular sizes. Discount retailers may also have basic pads that are available at budget prices. It is also possible to order a custom designed table pad to fit the dimensions of any tabletop, as well as of any thickness that the owner desires. While more expensive, these custom pads tend to last for a number of years before they must be replaced.


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