Casters are a very important component of office chairs. They carry the weight of both the chair and the person sitting on it. If your job duties require you to sit continuously on an office chair and make small movements within the office, you will understand why casters are so important. Some other office equipment that may have casters installed beneath them are file cabinets and desks. Casters can be fitted with wheels made from various materials including steel, iron, polyurethane, mold-on-rubber, elastomers, nylon, etc. Each of the materials listed above has their various applications. Office chairs often use plastic or rubber wheels because they are best suited to carpet floors. We will be discussing rubber wheels in this post since it is one of the widely used materials for office chair casters.
Care for Rubber Wheels
A lot of office workers do not care for their office chairs. All they do is resume each morning, sit on the chair, make short movements while on the chair, recline when tired for a short nap, and then get off the chair when they are through with work. This is quite a bad practice because they will not know how well the chair is performing and if some parts need maintenance or replacement. The wheels, for instance, could already be worn out leading to poor balancing. Worn out wheels could also cause undesired markings on the floor when making short movements within the office. Below are some tips on how you can care for your office chair casters.
Fasteners are the necessary items that keep your casters in place. If one or more of the fasteners are loose or worn out, it could affect your wheels. You should examine your casters by turning the chair on its side and looking closely for loose or worn out parts. These parts could be bolts, nuts, deck boards, welds, etc. If you discover any worn out or damaged part, try to fix them before returning the chair to normal use.
Lubricate Bearings Frequently
Any equipment with moving parts requires frequent lubrication to keep the parts from wearing out as a result of friction. Lubricating the ball bearings of your casters frequently will prevent the rubber tires from becoming stiff. As long as the wheels continue to move smoothly, there will be less tendency for them to wear out.
Don’t overload the Wheels
All casters have a maximum loading capacity, and office chairs are built with the appropriate casters for their designed load. It is a good practice to find out the maximum loading capacity of an office chair before sitting on it. This will ultimately prevent you from overloading the chair and causing the wheels to wear out before its designed time.
Use on Appropriate Floor Covering
Just as I have already hinted above, caster wheels are designed using various materials and each of these materials are best suited to various floor coverings. Rubber wheels come in two designs which are hard rubber wheels, and soft rubber wheels. Hard rubber wheels are best suited to soft floor coverings while hard rubber wheels are best suited to hard floor coverings. If your casters and floor covering do not complement each other, you will experience poor movement while sitting on the chair and the wheels may draw marks on the floor as well.
Why Rubber Wheels are the Best for Office Chairs
Office chairs are built for comfort and efficiency. That’s the reason why you will hardly find metal or steel wheels beneath them. Various wheels have their various applications so if you find yourself in a position where you need to replace the casters of your office chair, you need to choose rubber wheels for maximum comfort. Find below some more reasons why rubber wheels are best for office chairs.
If you have ever pushed equipment with wheels on a hard floor, you will notice a type of sound that is made. Office chair wheels make sound too when moving but you need this sound to be minimal so as not to disturb other employees. Hard rubber wheels are best suited to carpet floors and they make minimal noise during movement, making them the most-ideal for an office environment.
Higher Coefficient of Friction
Office chair wheels require a high coefficient of friction to keep you in one position while carrying out your office duties. Metal wheels have a low coefficient of friction so they are bound to move at the slightest push. However, rubber wheels have a better grip on the floor and will require a more significant push to move. The better grip feature could come in handy when you want to take a nap without the fear of falling off a moving chair.
Resistance to Corrosion
The effect of corrosion can render any equipment useless so it’s best to avoid it as much as possible. Rubber materials do not suffer from corrosion so there is no reason to be scared of purchasing an office chair with rubber wheels. The chair can be used in both dry and humid conditions. The only thing you may worry about is wears and this occurs with all wheels regardless of their construction material.
Rubber wheels have a lot of advantages on office chairs and we have discussed some in this post. They essentially make you carry out your office duties comfortably. Their grip on the floor ensures that you don’t move while working thereby keeping you focused on the task at hand. Their soft design makes them roll freely on the floor without leaving disfiguring trails behind. If you are replacing the casters on your office chair, remember to check the loading capacity of the ones you are purchasing to be sure that they align with the loading capacity of the chair.