It can be a common problem: you have the perfect home office set up, but damage to your carpet is becoming glaringly obvious. Forget pets, kids, and regular use, the sneaky item damaging your expensive office carpet is likely your office chair.
Continuous use of wheeled office chairs can spell disaster for the delicate fibres that construct your carpet.
In this guide, we review everything you need to know when deciding how to protect your floor from office chairs.
1. Buy A Chair Mat.
Without question, the easiest way to avoid damage is to invest in a chair mat. These are practical, affordable, and durable. A chair mat:
- Is a large, flat piece of material that you place under your office chair.
- Allows you to maneuver your chair without damaging the floor.
- Can be made from various materials, including plastic, vinyl, and carpet. Transparent plastic chair mats are a popular choice since they blend in with the floor.
Buying a chair floor mat comes with a few caveats. We recommend floor mats that cover the entire length of your desk and several feet back, providing you with enough surface area to glide easily in your chair.
(Related: 7 Best Budget Office Chairs).
You should also consider:
- Mat thickness: The thicker the mat, the more resilient it will be. If your carpet pile is thick, you will also need a thicker mat to prevent the chair from sinking and damaging the carpet.
- Mat material: A plastic chair mat can crack or become brittle after years of use. We suggest something more responsive, like laminate.
- Mat texture: Depending on the surface of your office floor (whether tiled, floorboards, or carpet), a laminate, hardwood, or carpet mat would work best.
Your office floor will determine the type of mat you buy. You’ll find that most chair mats are reasonably priced, and you won’t have to break the bank in order to protect your carpeted floor or hardwood floor.
2. Buy A Stationary Chair.
A stationary chair without wheels is another sensible option to protect your carpet.
Whilst these are generally more aesthetically pleasing (since you can choose one that matches your space), you will undoubtedly uncover some downsides.
Keep in mind:
- Your need for mobility in and around the space on a stationary chair.
- The indentation left in the carpet following hours of use.
The best fix for chair indentations (or table legs) in your carpet is unconventional. Place a small ice cube in the indentation and allow it to melt. The carpet fibres will spring back to their normal state.
3. Buy A Standing Desk.
If you haven’t already invested in a standing desk, you should!
- The more time you spend standing, the less you’ll use your office chair – the less wear on the carpet.
Apart from that, standing desks are an essential office investment, especially post-pandemic, with the increasing popularity of WFH arrangements.
If you work shorter hours and fewer days, a standing desk could be a solution to expand your home office options.
The benefits of using a standing desk include the following:
You can discover our guide to the best standing desks in 2023 here.
If you have back or neck problems, standing for long periods is not the best idea. Buy an adjustable desk that will allow you to sit and stand throughout the day.
It’s worth noting that regular movement is paramount for your mental health as well as your physical health. Not only is sitting all day detrimental to your health, but so is not taking breaks. Be sure to:
- Schedule breaks throughout the day to eat and hydrate.
- Take breaks to step outside into the fresh air and natural light.
4. Replace Your Office Chair Wheels.
We recommend that you purchase rolling chairs with wheels specifically built for carpeted use (instead of a stationary chair). You could also buy soft chair casters that you can swap onto your current office chair.
Rolling chairs often have smooth, rubber wheels and are less likely to damage carpets than chairs with traditional reels.
Discover our guide to the best chairs here.
Ensure your chair is adaptable to different wheels and has all the correct tools before purchasing new ones to swap over!
5. Buy A Better Quality Carpet.
Whilst office chair wheels can damage your carpet, the quality of your carpet is also a contributing factor.
Regardless of furniture or foot traffic, a lower-quality carpet will likely need replacing after only a few years of use. Be wary of this when purchasing.
So what makes a high-quality carpet?
- Fibre: Nylon is the most durable fibre and can withstand heavy traffic. It’s also resistant to staining and crushing. Polyester is another good option. Whilst not as durable as nylon, it’s less expensive and still looks great.
- Backing: The carpet backing is also essential. Quality support will keep the carpet in place and help it resist wear and tear. A cheaper backing will break down over time, causing the carpet to bunch up and loosen.
- Pile: The carpet pile is another factor to consider. Low-pile carpets are more durable and easier to clean, but high-pile carpets are more comfortable and luxurious. We recommend a mid-tier option that balances your need for quality and comfort.
Whatever your choice, buying a high-quality carpet for your office is necessary to prevent damage by rolling office chairs.
Opt for the highest quality carpet you can afford. You will thank yourself in the future.
Final Words About Protecting Carpet From Office Chairs.
Using an office chair on unprotected office floors can permanently damage your carpet.
By employing the preventative steps above, you can protect your floor and return to work without worrying about damage.
We recommend an office chair mat underneath your desk as the best first option.
If you’re willing to spend a little extra money, purchasing a stationary chair or adaptable wheels for your office chair are also fantastic ways to protect your carpet in the long run.
Don’t forget to check out standing desks, too.
If you’re about to renovate your home office space or replace your carpet, choose the most durable carpet you can, and you will enjoy the space for years to come.