Author Topic: Mustachian solution to protecting hardwood floors from office chairs?  (Read 696 times)

Sandia

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Thought this might be a good question for people who've mastered working from home. I've just moved into my own place that has nice, newish hardwood floors and I'd like to avoid damaging them. I've seen normal office chair wheels really badly scratch up wood floors before, and I'm 100% WFH. Obviously a plastic mat is the standard solution, but I've read it can cause damage as well (if any grit gets under the mat to grind where you can't see it, or it causes uneven discoloration over time in a sunny room), and also I attempt to avoid buying new plastic when I can.

Wondering if anyone has any experience with any of the following options in rough order from least to most favoured currently:

1) Replacing standard castors with "roller blade" wheels for office chairs - these look interesting, but a little pricey and not so great on new plastic. Also, they look like they add a bit of height to the chair - I'm quite short and can just about sit ergonomically with the chair at the lowest height right now.

2) Castor wheel "cup glides" with felt on the bottom, so the chair is sliding on felt on the floor. All our other furniture is on felt, which is working well so far, and at least these could be swapped to other chairs in the future, making this plastic a bit less single-use. I can't find any useful reviews for these though.

3) Rubber "gym tiles" floor mats - these are relatively cheap, could be multi-use in the future, and I can find some that claim to be made of recycled tyres which sounds promising. Not sure if they might have the same problem as the normal plastic mats though, with grit on the underside causing damage?

4) Something else I don't know about yet.


If it matters, my office chair is an Ikea hattefjall, and I'm currently sitting it on the remains of a moving box, so excited for any ideas or reviews.

uniwelder

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Re: Mustachian solution to protecting hardwood floors from office chairs?
« Reply #1 on: January 25, 2022, 07:32:56 PM »
Commercial carpet tile squares?  They're 24"x24" with dense low pile carpet on one side and a strong stiff rubber backing.  Could do carpet side down, so you have a non-scratch surface against the hardwood and a relatively hard surface for the casters.  I just put a bunch of carpet tile in a basement, and I'm finding various uses for the leftover scraps.  I haven't tried putting any under office chair wheels, but I think it could work out.

SailingOnASmallSailboat

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Re: Mustachian solution to protecting hardwood floors from office chairs?
« Reply #2 on: January 25, 2022, 07:39:03 PM »
what about cutting a slit into tennis balls and slipping the balls over the rollers. Tennis balls will slide on the floor.

Sibley

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Re: Mustachian solution to protecting hardwood floors from office chairs?
« Reply #3 on: January 25, 2022, 07:58:30 PM »
I just put a rug down, large enough for where the chair is and under the desk, but don't need to cover the rest of the floor if you don't want. You can get an inexpensive rug, or used, or a piece of carpet remnant.

Note that hardwood, while pretty, is cold. Sitting and working at the desk your feet and ankles will be cooler, if not actually cold (depends on you really). Rugs largely solve that problem.

AccidentialMustache

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Re: Mustachian solution to protecting hardwood floors from office chairs?
« Reply #4 on: January 25, 2022, 08:49:27 PM »
You can get glass chair mats at costco. Hasn't broken yet, and was delivered in the post in one piece (bit of a surprise there, IMO).

Will still have grinding stuff in issues (I have mine on med-pile carpet and it does creep on its own over time), but if your floor is flat, it will not flip up or bend to accommodate dirt like plastic will.

mm1970

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Re: Mustachian solution to protecting hardwood floors from office chairs?
« Reply #5 on: January 26, 2022, 06:51:45 PM »
Quote
1) Replacing standard castors with "roller blade" wheels for office chairs - these look interesting, but a little pricey and not so great on new plastic. Also, they look like they add a bit of height to the chair - I'm quite short and can just about sit ergonomically with the chair at the lowest height right now.

We did this.  Only problem I have is that my house is not level, and my damn desk chair keeps drifting towards the front of the house...they are really smooth.

Shinplaster

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Re: Mustachian solution to protecting hardwood floors from office chairs?
« Reply #6 on: January 27, 2022, 11:40:12 AM »
Quote
1) Replacing standard castors with "roller blade" wheels for office chairs - these look interesting, but a little pricey and not so great on new plastic. Also, they look like they add a bit of height to the chair - I'm quite short and can just about sit ergonomically with the chair at the lowest height right now.

We did this.  Only problem I have is that my house is not level, and my damn desk chair keeps drifting towards the front of the house...they are really smooth.

We have the same problem with a floor that is not level.  They are on Mr. SP's office chair, and he says he doesn't have an issue, but when I sit in it I go for a ride across the room if I don't hang on to the desk first. 

I like that they raise the chair up a bit - I'm short, so I need the height.   They have been great on protecting the floor - no scratches/wear marks at all after a year.   Even with the 'ride' aspect, we have no regrets on getting them.

therethere

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Re: Mustachian solution to protecting hardwood floors from office chairs?
« Reply #7 on: January 27, 2022, 11:48:04 AM »
I just put down a low pile carpet. Works perfect for my very unlevel floor. Without the carpet my chair would roll and slam into the wall 10ft away every single time I got up.