Do Rolling Office Chairs Damage Wood Floors?

You finally have your home office setup, and now you might be wondering if the rolling office chair is going to damage your beautiful hardwood floors. Or maybe your office chair has already caused some damage to your flooring and you want to stop it before it gets any worse. Well, did you know that protecting your hardwood floor is incredibly easy? Yep, all you need is some office chair wheels for wood floors.

Protecting your hardwood floors from rolling office chairs doesn’t involve plastic floor mats, special wood floor finish, or expensive area rugs. Just simply some better office chair casters than the cheap plastic ones on your chair.

Why Do Rolling Chairs Damage Hardwood Floors?

The problem isn’t your chair or how you use it. The main issue is the type of wheels attached to your seat.

It’s those standard, hard plastic caster wheels that wear, scratch and damage your wood floors.

The problem is, these hard plastic wheels don’t have enough grip when moving. So they sometimes actually slide instead of smoothly rolling. Over months or years of use your task chair will eventually wear and damage the hard surface.


So, can this be avoided? Absolutely!

By simply changing the wheels on your office chair you no longer have to worry about damaging your hardwood flooring.

What's the Difference Between Standard Chair Casters and Rollerblade Style Chair Casters?

Knowing the type of caster wheel attached to your office chair could be the difference between a damaged and pristine wood floor.

Standard Chair Casters

These are the dual wheel, plastic office chair wheels that you see on any office chair you’ve purchased. These wheels are made of a hard nylon material. And this material is the principal reason why rolling chairs cause damage to hardwood floors.

standard plastic chair wheels



The hard nylon material doesn’t perfectly “grip” the flooring while rolling, which causes some sliding. This causes the wear and tear you see on hard surfaces.

Rollerblade Style Chair Casters

Yep, these casters are exactly as you might think. They use rollerblade-like wheels as chair casters. Maybe this brings back some memories of rollerblading as a kid, but they are actually extremely functional when used on rolling chairs.

Instead of hard nylon plastic, these wheels are encased in a soft polyurethane. Polyurethane is a rubber-like material that is extremely durable and strong. But most importantly, it grips hard surfaces so it can never damage, scuff or scratch hardwood floors. The polyurethane wheels actually protect your wood floors.

office chair casters for hardwood floors

A set of rollerblade style chair wheels is the absolute best way to protect your hardwood floors. These polyurethane rollerblade style wheels also protects all other types of hard flooring, like wood, laminate, LVT, tile, bamboo, pergo, etc.

The Best Way to Protect Your Hardwood Floors

As we’ve touched on before, the best way to protect your hardwood floors is using the proper office chair wheels. And there are two ways to do that:

Option 1: Replace the Wheels in Your Office Chair

If you already have an office chair that you love and want to make sure you don’t damage your hardwood floors, you can easily replace the wheels yourself (no tools required). It’s a super easy process. All you have to do is pop the old ones out and push the new ones in.

replace chair wheels for wood floors

Here’s a quick video for more details.


If you’d like to purchase chair wheels for wood floors (rollerblade style), just click here.

Option 2: Purchase a New Office Chair with Rollerblade Style Casters

Maybe you’re looking to upgrade your current office chair to something more comfortable and ergonomic. Or many you just started working remotely and need a reliable office chair.

office chair with rollerblade casters

This is one of the only office chairs available that actually comes standard with rollerblade style wheels.

What if You Already Have Damage to Your Wood Floors?

Scratches, scuff marks or a worn out hardwood floor can be very frustrating. Especially when you take pride in how your home office looks. A clean, organized, and pristine office space can actually lead to happier and more productive work days.

So what if you already have damage to your floors because of your rolling office chair? What options do you have?

Protect Against Any Further Damage

The first thing you’ll want to do is protect your flooring from any further damage. Your floor may already be starting to show signs of wear, but you can at least stop it from happening further. The best way to do that is by no longer using the hard plastic casters on your office chair. You can remove and replace these with chair wheels that are specifically designed for wood floors.

Consider a Low Pile Area Rug

In some cases, you might just want to hide the damaged floor. Especially if it is just in a small section where your desk is.

office wood floor area rug

Repolish, Refinish, or Replace Your Flooring

While these are much more expensive options, these can fix the damage that has already been done to your flooring.

repolish refinished replace wood floors

Why you Shouldn't Use an Chair Mat for Wood Floors

It is recommended to avoid using chair mats for hardwood floors or other hard surfaces.

These may seem like a good idea at first, since they are covering part of your flooring. And some office chair mats are even advertised as safe for hardwood floors. However, chair mats can actually cause more harm than good.

As you roll in your office chair, the mat can slide or rub against the hardwood floor beneath. So, any dirt or debris between the layers will actually wear down and damage your floor.

They also come with many other limitations. Your movement area is restricted by the size of the mat, which defeats the purpose of your rolling chair. They cover part of your beautiful wood floors. And they also require extra care and maintenance.

Even the expensive ($200-$800) glass chair mat should be avoided for all hard floors.

Chair mats (plastic or glass) have a time and a place in offices. But only for plush or high-pile carpet.

The Office Oasis

Written by The Office Oasis