Frequently asked caster questions.


I ONLY NEED ONE CASTER. WHY SHOULD I BUY A SET OF FOUR OR FIVE?
Caster wheels wear like tires and should be replaced for a safe and even ride. In addition, there are slight differences to each caster made by other caster manufacturers. This difference could also cause an unsafe, uneven ride if all casters are not replaced at the same time.

HOW DO I KNOW WHAT CASTER NUMBER TO ORDER? I HAVE A (manufacturers name) CHAIR - I DON'T KNOW STEM SIZE. CAN YOU TELL ME WHAT TO ORDER? I DON'T HAVE MODEL OF CHAIR. HOW DO I KNOW WHAT CASTER TO ORDER?
A. CHECK THE CHAIR BASE: Is it metal, molded, plastic, wood, or a wood clad metal base?
1. If it is a metal or wood clad base: Most chairs require a 7/16" diameter or 3/8" diameter stem. These stems have grip rings attached, which hold the casters in place in the chair base so no sockets are needed. After determining the correct diameter of a stem, then measure the length. (A stem shorter than your original can always be used.) CLICK HERE to learn how to measure to determine proper stem size.
2. If it is a wood chair base: All wood chair bases need the same stem caster with a 5/16" diameter that is called a grip neck stem. A socket is required with this type of stem to hold the caster in place in the chair base.
3. If the stem is welded to the chair base: • We can supply a caster to accommodate this special situation in both hard and soft wheels. Stems welded to the base must be 3/8" diameter with a maximum length of 1-5/16".

For a more detailed answer to this question - Take our 3 step course on choosing the proper caster - click here.

I JUST BOUGHT A NEW CHAIR TO BE USED ON A CHAIRMAT AND IT HAS CASTERS WITH HARD WHEELS. I WAS ADVISED TO CHANGE THE CASTERS TO SOFT WHEEL CASTERS----WHY?
Almost all new chairs are equipped with hard wheel casters unsuitable for use on a chair mat or any hard floor surface. These wheels should be replaced with soft wheels. Just as tires must have the proper tread for safe driving on dry pavement as well as slick or snow covered roadways, chair movement depends on wheels that provide appropriate traction on hard or soft wheels. Hard wheels are made of nylon, hard rubber, vinyl or some other hard plastic compound suitable only for carpeting considered a "soft" floor surface. Soft wheels are soft rubber or soft compound such as urethane which are resilient and "give" making them grip on hard surfaces such as hard floors, tile, linoleum and chair mats providing a better and safer ride.

WHAT WHEEL DO YOU USE ON CARPETING, VINYL, TILE OR HARD FLOORS? WHICH IS THE BEST?
Use hard wheels for carpeting - with the 60mm or 75mm being best choice for plush carpets. However, with this variety of floor materials, you should use a soft wheel with polyurethane tires. The polyurethane tires will work well on the hard floors and be "slippery" enough not to grab the carpet fibers.

WHY IS WHEEL SELECTION SO IMPORTANT?
Caster wheels that are incorrect for the floor surface can pose risk of serious injury. Hard floor surfaces require soft wheel casters to prevent dangerously rapid movement while user is seated or rolling away, when user rises, or when user bumps empty chair causing it to move out from under user. Muscle strain can also result due to the users effort to keep chair in place. Hard wheel casters are necessary for carpeted surfaces as they allow the chair to glide smoothly over carpeted surfaces. Soft wheel casters used on carpeting can also cause muscle strain due to the increased difficulty in making the chair move.

WHEN HOLDING A CASTER IN YOUR HAND, HOW CAN YOU TELL IF IT IS A HARD OR SOFT WHEEL?
You can't tell until you try to put your fingernail into wheel and see if it "gives". If it does, even just a little, then it is a soft wheel. A hard wheel will not have any resilience.

DOES A ROUND OR FLAT TOP STEM MAKE A DIFFERENCE?
No, some caster manufacturers use round tops, some flat - makes no difference. Correct diameter is the determining factor for selection.

WHAT IS THE PURPOSE OF A GRIP RING ON METAL BASE CASTER STEMS?
Grip Rings expand when inserted in chair bases and hold the caster in place inside the base.

DOES POSITION OF GRIP RING OR WIDTH MAKE A DIFFERENCE?
No. Manufacturers stems vary. Size or placement of grip ring is not a factor. There is no metal notch in chair leg for them to fit into. They expand once the stem is securely inserted into the chair base.



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