A very important factor to consider when purchasing an office chair that often gets overlooked is whether your chair will be used on a carpeted floor or on a hard surface floor such as wood, laminate, tile or vinyl. Today’s office chairs come with many options, arms or no arms, standard lumbar or adjustable lumbar, and even the type of caster.
Hard casters are standard on most office chairs and are made for carpeted floors. However, not all offices are carpeted. If your floor is a hard surface such as hardwood, laminate or tile, you will need soft casters on your chair. Many people prefer to use a chair mat to protect their carpet. Soft casters should also be used with hard plastic chair mats. Soft casters are typically offered at a small upcharge but sometimes at no difference in price depending on the chair and the manufacturer. But whether offered at an upcharge or not, it is well worth it to have soft casters, if you will be using the chair on a hard floor. Using hard casters on a hard floor is actually quite hazardous.
A chair with hard casters will scoot very quickly on a hard floor sometimes catching an employee off guard and the employee may find themselves on the floor. It is not worth the risk of injury to the employee and liability to your company. You should always take the type of flooring into consideration when selecting the options for your chair.
Written by Karen F. Workplace Interiors Consultant