Difference Between Hard and Soft Chair Casters

Are you interested in learning more about the difference between hard and soft chair casters?

There happens to be numerous situations where one’s chair is utilized on plastic chairs and wood floor mats where the soft caster is a better alternative.

The majority of chairs come with the usual hard casters that are for carpeted flooring. 

The way things used to operate in our environment has altered as a result of recent technology advancements.

Speaking of chairs, they are now made differently to accommodate people’s evolving demands.

Traditionally, a chair was thought of as a piece of furniture with 4-5 legs. 

Modern chairs are made using a single gas lift, which is placed under the chair’s center and serves as the chair’s load-bearing leg.

Gas Cylinder of Office Chair

This one-legged creature branches out onto the floor into numerous little feet. These feet are made to include a wheel that facilitates moving the chair easier and more conveniently. Chair casters are the name for these wheels. 

Differences Between Hard & Soft Chair Casters

You already know what a chair’s caster is, so let’s move on to a detailed discussion of the many sorts of casters. This article would also highlight variations among the varieties and those that are most suited for your chair. 

Casters are essentially divided into two categories; 

  • Soft Chair Casters
  • Hard Chair Casters

What Do the Soft Chair Casters Entail?

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Differences between hard & soft chair casters? As the name implies, soft casters are made of a light, flexible material that is suitable for use on a hard surface. You must be certain of the type of floor you plan to use for your chair. You cannot use soft casters on a floor that is carpeted or cushioned due to the nature of the material. 

These could damage your carpet or be difficult to move, which is usually inconvenient. Consequently, if your floor is constructed of a hard surface, such as hardwood, laminate, or tile, your chair needs soft casters to complete the job. 

Typically, soft casters cost a little bit more, but they are completely worthwhile. To save that extra money, you can end up shortening the life of your chair if you utilize hard casters on hard floors. Be wary, then! 

The following are some characteristics of soft casters: 

  • If you operate your chair properly, soft casters won’t do much damage to the floor. Any furniture you utilize would be harmed by excessive rough use. 
  • The chair’s soft casters made the trip more comfortable, making it easy to move it from one location to another. 
  • The chair’s soft casters are made to support both heavy and light loads. As a result, they are priced at a premium. 

What Do the Hard Casters Entail?

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Differences between hard & soft chair casters? On the other side, hard casters are made to be utilized on carpeted or cushioned floors. Again, this entirely relies on the layout of the floor, and hard castor chairs are all you need if the flooring in your office or house is carpeted or cushioned. 

When used on carpet, hard casters are easy since they tend to be simple to maneuver. However, if you use hard casters or a hard floor, you run the risk of injuring yourself. 

Let’s examine the specific characteristics of Hard Casters; 

  • Hard casters outlast the other categories in terms of durability. So you don’t have to worry about changing them quickly. 
  • They are capable of keeping their shape throughout time. 
  • Another benefit is that moving the chair from one area to another requires little force. 
  • You can save money by using hard casters for applications involving big loads because they are affordable. 

Understanding the Major Differences Between Hard and Soft Chair Casters

Differences between hard & soft chair casters?

The Soft casters prevent items from rolling out from beneath you and damaging the floor since they tend to be way softer than the hard casters and more resemble roller skate wheels than hard kind of plastic.

They work best when used with a chair mat (pvc/plastic) or on surfaces with a hard surface, like wood. 

Since they tend to be way softer than typical plastic casters, some people refer to them as soft casters, while others refer to them as hard floor kinds of casters because they are designed for that particular sort of surface.

Although they use different words, they both mean the exact same thing. Instead of purchasing a good chair mat, many individuals choose to save money and protect their floors by purchasing soft chair casters. 

Soft Chair Casters Hard Chair Casters
noisy silent
unbraked braked
damage your floor save your floor

Most desk chairs come with the hard casters that are designed for carpeted flooring, however not all businesses have carpeted floors. Your chair needs soft casters if your floor is a hard surface like hardwood, laminate, or tile.

To protect their carpet, many individuals prefer to use chair mats. Hard plastic chair mats should be used in conjunction with soft desk chair casters. Soft casters are often available for a minimal additional cost, though this can vary depending on the chair and the manufacturer.

However, if you plan to use the chair on a hard floor, it is well worth it to have soft casters, whether they are included or not. It is actually highly dangerous to use hard casters on a hard floor, and it will shorten the life of your chair, such as the SIHOO Ergonomic Office Chair.

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On a hard floor, a chair with firm casters can move very quickly, occasionally catching an employee off guard and leaving them on the floor. The possibility of the employee becoming hurt and your organization becoming liable is not worth the risk.

The type of flooring must always be taken into account when choosing the options for your chair. Even Steelcase has a dedicated website set up to aid in caster selection. 

Choosing the Best Chair Caster for Yourself 

Here are a few variables that will assist you in choosing the appropriate caster for your chair because choosing the proper caster necessitates a thorough study process. 

Type of Floor 

As was already said before, it is crucial to examine the type of floor. Soft casters are simply made for hard flooring, whereas hard casters are simply made for cushioned, carpeted, or rugs surfaces. That is the law. 

Operational Setting 

Another thing to think about is the setting in which you will utilize your chair. Essentially, this refers to the chair’s use time and temperature. You must also determine whether your chair must interact with chemicals while in use and subjected to other mistreatment. 

Load Limit 

It’s crucial to calculate the load on each caster, so take a preliminary estimate with you. Simply calculate the average load you will place on the chair and divide it by the number of casters to determine the load each caster must support. 

More weight can be supported by hard casters than by soft ones. The longer the life of your chair will be, nevertheless, the less weight you should place on each caster. A heavier weight causes the caster to experience more heat and friction, which eventually causes the caster to break. 


You might not consider the weather when selecting a castor for your chair. However, you should unquestionably take this into account. Your chair casters may endure a long time if you use it in mild climatic circumstances, which often change many times every year.

However, if you use your chair in extremely arid conditions, the oil in the casters will suffer, eventually degrading the casters. 

Where Can One Find Soft Casters?

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Differences between hard & soft chair casters? The chair you are purchasing likely has soft casters. Because most chairs are produced with the hard casters, you must request soft casters from your vendor.

If you already purchased your chair, keep in mind that it will definitely take some time to be adequately delivered because soft casters must be obtained from the chair manufacturer. 

Are Soft Casters More Expensive? 

Yes, the soft casters often cost more (you still would obtain the standard casters, alongside the soft casters if well purchased at extra cost). 


If you don’t utilize the proper caster, you could end up hurting both the person using the chair and your pricey floors. If your chair is unable to support your weight, especially when you are transferring from one location to another, it may simply shatter and cause you to fall.

Therefore, picking the correct caster is crucial. I hope this advice will assist you in selecting the best caster for your chair.