Selecting wheels on for a new office chair seems like an easy enough task, with most of us typically just choosing what comes standard at no charge. While it may seem like a simple decision, having the right casters for your office chair can actually increase productivity and improve your work environment. In the grand scheme of office functionality it is always important to have the right desk, the right office chair, the right filing cabinet, the right computer monitor, the right desk set up, but sometimes it is the little things that keep the office rolling (literally!). There are many factors that play into which type of casters will work best for your office chair such as your work environment, how mobile you want/need the chair to be, your desk height, and the surface in which you will be rolling on. In order to identify which type of casters will work best for you, it is first important to understand the different options available.
What type of wheels come standard on most office chairs?
Just about every office chair will come standard with carpet casters, a harder plastic caster that is designed specifically for rolling on top of carpeted surfaces. This is due to the fact that the vast majority of office chairs are used in carpeted areas and also because they are among the cheapest options for manufacturers to produce. Their hard plastic covering makes them an ideal choice to move over most types of carpet, particularly low pile carpet that can often be found in many office environments. Use them on any other surface, and you may find your floor getting scratched or your chair not rolling as effectively.
What type of wheels are ideal for hardwood floors?
Does your office or home have hardwood floors that you would like to preserve from being scratched and damaged by your office chair? For most of us, the answer to this question is most likely a yes and luckily office furniture manufacturers have recognized the need for office chair wheels that will not damage hard surfaces. Soft casters are typically available as an upgrade on most office chairs and are inexpensive in price, with most costing less than $25 for a set of 5. Soft casters are designed to protect hard surfaces from being damaged from the constant rolling of an office chair and are best used on surfaces with hard wood flooring, tile, linoleum, or any other type of hard flooring. They also roll with more control on hard surfaces than carpet casters would, with more friction being applied between the wheel and the surface it is rolling on. Too much friction makes the chair difficult to move, too little friction makes the chair roll with even the slightest move you make.
What options are available if you do not want your chair to move at all?
While most typically picture an office chair with wheels, there are also other options available for those that would like to keep their chairs stationary. Glides can be inserted into a chair’s base instead of rolling casters, which are essentially rubber pegs that prevent the chair from moving. This can be especially beneficial for those that work at higher work stations or sit stand work stations where a moving chair can become a safety hazard.
If you are interested in having the versatility to switch from remaining stationary to having the ability to roll your chair if needed, there are a few options available. The first, and most effective, is pressure braking casters which prevent the chair from moving when seated but allows the user to move the chair when standing up. This is most beneficial for sit stand work environments where employees lean against their chairs while working and need a stable option to support their weight. Another more cost-effective option is manual locking casters which allow the user to lock the wheels in place when necessary or unlock them when they would like to move around.
Which casters will work for my office environment?
The best way to determine which casters will work best for your office environment is to first determine your chair’s primary use and what surface your chair will be rolling on. Do you have a higher work station? Do you have floors you do not want damaged if rolling around? Do you switch between sitting and standing while you work? Do you need your chair to remain stationary during certain parts of the day and mobile during others? By answering these questions and reading the aforementioned, you will be on your way towards determining which type of wheels will work best for your office chair.
To see SitBetter’s large selection of office chairs with multiple wheel options please click here! Have specific questions about which wheels will work best for your office chair or need helping finding a chair with special caster options? Give us a call at our toll free number 1-866-311-9421.
Just about every office chair comes standard with wheels (also known as casters) which allow you to move freely from one place to another with ease. If you are anything like me and sit in your office chair for eight hours a day, your chair will inevitably get some mileage on it. You may not even be aware how often your chair rolls around, even if it is to simply adjust the way you are sitting, almost every movement your body makes requires the chair to move. When the wheels of your office chair stop working well, moving your chair may start to become a struggle rather than a convenience. Wheels often do not function properly because they become clogged with dirt, hair, dust, and other debris. Fortunately, cleaning the wheels of your chair is an easy task that does not require much work. It will also return your chair back to the enjoyable piece of furniture it once used to be.
The first step to getting your chair wheels squeaky clean again is to start by tipping your chair upside down, making the wheels of the chair stick up in the air. You may want to sit in another chair while beginning the cleaning process in order to avoid fatigue. If you are worried about getting your hands dirty come prepared by wearing latex gloves and have a trash bag readily available to throw away the debris as you go.
In order to remove larger debris, use a butter knife as your tool of choice to scrape them off. A butter knife will fit through the slots and under the wheel cover. These areas can easily be cleaned and will allow you to remove most of the debris that are preventing the wheels from rolling. Be tactful in how you use your knife to clean; too much force may create gouges in the plastic wheels which will prevent them from spinning properly. For removing unwanted hair from wheels, use a pair of tweezers.
Next you will want to remove the wheels from your chair. On most chairs, the wheels can simply be pulled off with a little force. Some chairs may require a screwdriver to unscrew the wheels from the chair. Once the wheels are removed, rub the wheels down with a damp cloth in order to remove any excess grime or dirt. If you need assistance reaching inside the wheels, cotton swabs work great for getting in those tough to reach areas.
Once you are done cleaning your wheels, make sure to thoroughly dry each of them with a clean dry cloth, paper towel, or towel. If moisture remains inside the wheel, it can cause squeaking or allow dirt to stick easier. Spray the inside of each wheel with a spray lubricant. Wipe off any excess or dripping lubricant as it can attract dirt.
Once you are done cleaning, drying, and lubricating your chair simply pop your wheels back on and flip your chair back over. Your chair should roll good as new and depending on how often you use your chair, you should be good in the wheel cleaning department for awhile. The whole process is a pretty quick and shouldn’t take you more than ten minutes.
Yes, they go Round and Round, but depending on the type of wheel, it might go round smoother, or might go round and scratch your wooden floor…
What wheels am referring to? The Office Chair Casters! These Office Chair Parts are critical to some people, and understanding the difference between the types of office chair casters is pretty simple really, if we consider the two main types of office chair casters:
The difference between a type of office chair caster is really only between two caster types: hard office chair casters, or soft office chair casters. The former are generally intended for use with carpet. You can use them on hard concrete floors as well, but since they are made of hard plastic or nylon (hence the term hard casters), you will feel a slightly bumpier roll.
Soft office chair casters are intended to be used with harder surfaces, and primarily, hardwood floors. They are made up of a polyurethane rubber/plastic combination, so they prevent marking hardwood, since they glide relatively smoothly over these surfaces. If you use soft casters on carpet though, they will be more inclined to break and slow your movement as well, since they sink with greater ease into the carpet.
Most office chair casters, hard or soft, are individually load rated for 130 lbs, and pop into the base (the necessary dimensions for the stem is 11mm x 22 mm, fyi).
So what if you need replacement office chair casters? Where can you get them? What type do you need? Don’t worry about these questions. That’s what we’re here for. So no matter if you bought your chair with us or not, contact us. We know the manufacturers, and can get you the parts. The average price for a set of soft office chair casters is around $20.00 bucks. For hard office chair casters, it is around $15.00. (Don’t hold me to it – prices vary per manufacturer).