Wear and Tear On Your Office Chair | 15+ Common Issues & How To Fix Them

Sinking Chair, Wobbly Seat, or are your wheels just not working? Thankfully most of the common office chair issues can be easily corrected. No Kits Needed!
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Broken office Chair? Don't Give up just yet, we got the resources

Troubleshooting an office chair is not too complicated but can still be a challenge if not taken seriously.
Repair Your Office Chiar | Common Issues & Solutions
Hanachirusato From The Tale of Genji-Genji CC0 Public Domain Designation

Before you read on, check with your chairs manufacturer’s information.

Already did checked it and still feel stuck?

Thankfully, most of the common office chair issues can be corrected, even if you don’t have a warranty.

Below are 15+ troubleshooting issues with their common causes and ways to resolve them all neatly on a table.

A couple step-by-step instructions on how to keep a chair from sinking.

If you’re more of a visual learner, I also found DIY chair repair walk through YouTube videos.

Common Ergonomic Office Chair Issues & How To Repair Them

Troubleshooting Table | Tools needed for these chair repairs.

Here are some typical problems ergonomic office chairs usually have over being used. Three common causes and how to fix them.

  • Adjustable Wrench
  • Long Pipe Wrench
  • Flat Tip Screw Driver (Medium)
  • Philip tip Screw Driver (Large)
  • Pry Bar (Small or Medium)

NOTE! There are literally thousands of different office chair mechanisms and it’s difficult to identify the exact dimensions of each individual piece on your chair. This table is NOT a professional troubleshooting guide.

Problem Resolution Common Causes Repair Info
Seat rocks side to side Replace Column/Mechanism Worn down mechanism pivot area metal, broken or loose column plastic liner Replace Column/Mechanism If Linear is broken or loose
Seat jerks forward while seated Replace Mechanism Commonly a worn away the pivot pin metal mechanism Replace/Install Swivel Tilt Mechanism
Seat flops back if not in use Replace Mechanism or Adjust tension spring knob Loose tension spring, broken mechanism, welds or missing parts Replace/Install Mechanism
Seat lowers or rises if not in use Replace Gas cylinder Faulty cylinder seals (worn out) Remove/Install Gas Cylinder
Seat lowers while in use Replace Gas cylinder Faulty cylinder seals (worn out) Remove/Install Gas Cylinder
Seat will not lower or raise Replace Gas cylinder Faulty cylinder seals (worn out) Remove/Install Gas Cylinder
Piston rod is hitting floor causing rocking due to high centering Install Bearing Kit Retainer clip and/or parts missing/broken. Frequently damages cylinder if not replaced. Remove/Install Gas Cylinder
Piston rod is bent Replace Gas cylinder Excessive weight lean or worn column Remove/Install Gas Cylinder
Nothing happens while activating lever Replace Gas cylinder Gas has escaped or faulty seals Remove/Install Gas Cylinder
Cylinder Column hitting floor causing rocking due to high centering Replace Gas base Center hole enlarged Remove/Install Gas Cylinder
Seat height stuck in low or high position Replace Gas cylinder Gas has escaped or faulty seals Remove/Install Gas Cylinder
Mechanism is obviously cracked, broken or bent Replace Mechanism Replace/Install Mechanism
Chair squeaks or metal powder on floor Replace Mechanism Metal rubbing against metalOiling will not resolve issue Replace/Install Mechanism
Seat is at left or right angle Replace Mechanism Metal fatigue, broken or excessive leaning
Entire chair rocks violently or leans to one side. Broken or odd size castor, bent leg, broken or worn plastic inside column, loose mountings, bent cylinder rod,worn away pivot metal. Replace/Install Mechanism
Casters difficult to roll, or steer straight Replace casters Dirty, worn out, wrong type, too small, cheap plastic mat.

COMMUNITY MADE CHAIR REPAIR VIDEOS

How do i keep my office chair wheels (castors) clean & free from drag?

Most folks don’t realize that the standard castors (wheels) your chair equipped with have a specialized design used on low-pile carpet.

Most chair manufacturers recommend using a chair mat as it reduces drag and prevents damage to your floor.

Still not convinced that using a chair mat is the best way to go? I wrote in debt about the wonders of them and even a DIY project on how to make one yourself for under $30.

Why Does My Office Chair Keep Sinking?

Maybe you’re sitting in it right now, it’s uncomfortable but common.

It could be time to lose weight, or it could be your chair that is hitting rock bottom. The valve of the lever that controls the seat height causes this common issue.

This height control is controlled by a piston that lets air through it, this part may be worn down and need to be replaced.

Does yours, your significant other, or colleague’s ergonomic office chair keeps sinking.

Fixing this instead of investing in another office chair over a faulty valve may be a fun project to some.

This challenge is best left for tinkers. Are you a tinkerer?

Many chairs have been rated for a maximum of 225 pounds. If you exceed this weight, I recommended you order a specialized "Big & Large" office chair.

 

In the market for a big and tall office chair? Read this before purchasing anything!

How to Fix a Sinking Office Desk Chair

If you enjoy DIY projects, you can purchase a ready-made kit so you can fix your office chair with the proper materials.
These materials include C-shaped spacers that can be installed if your office chair has a cylinder skirt with a movable outer ring installed.

Below is a multiple-step process on how to Stop the Sinking Chair Problem With PVC or Vacuum Extension Wand

STEP ONE: Manually lift the seat to your choice height. This may be its fully extended position if your big & tall.

 

STEP TWO: Manually lift the chair and its seat post out from the base/casters. Lay the chair on the floor horizontally.

 

STEP THREE: Take off any decorative or non-functioning collars around the seat post. (To Properly Measure)

1. Temporarily place the base back on the seat post.

2. Mark the top of the seat and then set the base aside.

3. Measure where you marked to the base of the seat.

 

STEP FOUR: Cut to fit a PVC Pipe or a similarly shaped tube between your marks.

 

STEP FIVE: Stick the cylinder back on the seat post, then slide the seat post back onto the base.

 

VIDEOS EXPLAINING DIY HOW TO FIX AN OFFICE CHAIRS

It's common for gas cylinders to gradually stop working with time. You may have a chair for over 10 years, and suddenly the gas cylinder sinks.

 

Alternative Method on How to Fix a Sinking Office Desk Chair

Another less than aesthetic way to solve the sinking chair problem is by clamping down.
By using a medium to large jubilee clip (Horse Clamp). Just use this clamp between both the cylinder’s tube and sleeve. Make sure you use at least two clamps, both at the top and bottom of an office chair’s cylinders.

Below is a multiple step process on how to Stop the Sinking Chair Problem With a Hose Clamp & Some Wood.

STEP ONE: Manually lift the seat to your choice height. This may be at a fully extended position if your big & tall.

 

STEP TWO: Manually lift the chair and its seat post out from the base/casters. Lay the chair on the floor horizontally.

 

STEP THREE: Take off any decorative or non-functioning collars around the seat post. (To Properly Measure)

1. Temporarily place the base back on the seat post

2. Mark the top of the seat and then set the base aside.

3. Measure where you marked to the base of the seat.

 

STEP FOUR: Cut to fit a PVC Pipe or a similarly shaped tube between your marks.

 

STEP FIVE: Stick the cylinder back on the seat post, then slide the seat post back onto the base.

 

VIDEOS EXPLAINING DIY HOW TO FIX AN OFFICE CHAIRS
Wear and Tear On Your Office Chair | 15+ Common Issues & How To Fix Them 1
Office Chiar Troubleshooting
The Chair Édouard Manet 1875 CC0 Public Domain Designation

Related Questions

Info Around Troubleshooting your Office Chair, Howe To Fix It, & Some F.A.Q.

To fix a squeaky office chair, turn it upside down and use a screwdriver to loosen nuts, bolts, or screws.

  • After you’ve done that, spray a lubricating oil (WD-40) on all the chair’s mechanisms and dry the excess with a rag.

Compared to traditional chairs, ergonomic office chairs encourage better sitting posture, ease back pain, and are overall a healthier option for your rump.

Most chairs have a maximum weight limit of 225 pounds. If you exceed this weight, I recommended looking into a specialized "Big & Large" office chair.

  • If you’re in the market for a big & tall office chair, read this before purchasing anything!

We may associate a chairs wobble with a faulty control mechanism or chair base. To fix the wobble, verify which of these is causing the wobble.

  • Chair Base: Turn the chair horizontal so the casters and base of the chair are not touching the floor.
  • Control Mechanism: With the base of the chair on the floor, pivot seat from side to side by switching between putting pressure on the sides of the seat. If the seat “wobbles” where the pneumatic cylinder and control mechanism join, your control mechanism is most likely faulty needs to be replaced.
  • Chair Base: Turn the chair horizontal so the casters and base of the chair are not touching the floor.
  • Control Mechanism: With the base of the chair on the floor, pivot seat from side to side by switching between putting pressure on the sides of the seat. If the seat “wobbles” where the pneumatic cylinder and control mechanism join, your control mechanism is most likely faulty needs to be replaced.

Sometimes gook, dirt, or lint gets stuck between the wheels of an office chair wheels.

  • To fix this issue, turn your chair upside down and spin the wheels a few times to get the big stuff out. Then clean out the individual wheels with a rag wet with Isopropyl alcohol.
SOURCES

“ Swivel Chair Replacement Parts.” How to Fix, Repair an Office Chair-Practical Information, Causes and Remedies, www.mychairparts.com/ Tips/howFixOfficeChair.html.

Instructables, MichaelS986. “Repair a Broken Office Chair.” Instructables, Instructables, 24 Sept. 2017, www.instructables.com/id/Repair-a-Broken-Office-Chair/.

OFM. “OFM Presents How To Switch Out A Gas Lift For An Office Chair.” YouTube, YouTube, 10 Mar. 2015, www.youtube.com/watch?v=7UY4tqUnS50.

rhinsen. “Sinking Chair Height Repair Simple and Easy Fix.” YouTube, YouTube, 25 Apr. 2015, www.youtube.com/watch?v=aL4pg56TeN0.

beertema, erik. “How to Fix a Sinking Office Chair for $1 Dollar.” YouTube, YouTube, 4 Jan. 2018, www.youtube.com/watch?v=4qoyat1YR1Q.

OFM. “OFM Presents How To Switch Out A Gas Lift For An Office Chair.” YouTube, 10 Mar. 2015, youtu.be/7UY4tqUnS50.

FortuitousOrder. “Sinking Office Chair Hack with PVC Pipe.” YouTube, YouTube, 16 Jan. 2018, www.youtube.com/watch?v=5g27QAW46a8.

Marketing, Genius Local. “Fiber Fix vs. Chair Saver (Fiberfix) – Stop That Sinking Feeling.” YouTube, YouTube, 5 Aug. 2016, www.youtube.com/watch?v=mLjShJaqEKA.

Norton, Tim. “How to Fix a Gas Lift Chair for $1 or Less.” YouTube, YouTube, 7 Aug. 2011, www.youtube.com/watch?v=er-qsUiQJH4.

BearMaker, The. “Sinking Office Chair Fix – Cylinder Removal Mechanism + Cylinder Kit.” YouTube, YouTube, 25 Oct. 2017, www.youtube.com/watch?v=wAopUFjXtQM.

overcastwithshowers. “How to Stop an Office Chair from Sinking.” YouTube, YouTube, 14 June 2012, www.youtube.com/watch?v=hPrCi9S1LGY.

Online, Dinette. “Replacement of Swivel Tilt and/or Plastic Inserts for Chromcraft, Douglas and Other Brands.” YouTube, YouTube, 23 Oct. 2013, www.youtube.com/watch?v=tj6o_PqwkZQ.

MrFileCab. “Repair Wobbly Office Chair.” YouTube, YouTube, 27 Feb. 2012, www.youtube.com/watch?v=mzGtDYleLr8&t=1s.

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Claude

ChairPickr | "Writer"

Hello, My name is Claude and I enjoy sitting comfortable. Research into what separates the good from the bad, in the matter of chairs started when I made a new year’s resolution to have better posture.

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