I have a number of work surfaces around my space, and they are invaluable when I am in the throws of an intense detail job. I find it frustrating to put something down and then lose track of it, so having a variety of accessible work surfaces makes things much more efficient and pleasant for me.
I have experimented with a variety of materials to line the tops of my various work surfaces. Until the other day, I had heavy duty rubber lining atop my benches and rolling cabinets. The price of the lining was ludicrous especially after customs and shipping fees, but Rubber Cal carries an extensive selection of high quality products that are great for protecting the tops of your work surfaces. Just be prepared to pay through the nose if you are shipping to Canada.
So, I was using Rubber Cal's "corrugated wide rib" rubber runner mats. They were working okay, but I didn't like the way they marked up so easily and they did require regular cleanings in order to look good. Plus, they never did sit flat on the top of my tool box or workbench. I had to anchor them down along the edges which has never sat well with me. It just looked bad, but without them, the ends of the rubber mats would start to roll up. If you haven't caught on, I'm a little bit particular about things, and I just couldn't deal with it any longer. I had an extra strip of industrial carpet laying around so I thought I'd give it a shot. I cut a piece to fit the top of my rolling 4-drawer cabinet and I was pleased with the result. That was a few weeks ago, but now all my work surfaces sport carpet.
I know what you are thinking, "Carpet on a workbench"? But, before you start questioning my sanity, you have to understand that the most abuse my work surfaces see is the placement of spray bottles, polishing pads, and the occasional detailing brush. Obviously, this solution wouldn't be practical in 99% of garages, but I think this will suit my needs nicely.
If you are wondering what I did with the expensive corrugated rubber, don't fret. I used it to line my two Craftsman carts which do come into contact with water quite regularly.