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How Long Should An Office Chair Last? 7 Factors Decrease The Chair Lifespan

If you’re here, you’re probably sitting in an old dingy office chair.

You might also be longing for comfort that your office chair can’t give you because it’s falling apart!

It might be hard to accept that “old reliable” is now out of commission, but it’s time to let it go.

Remember, it’s nothing to feel bad about because office chairs aren’t supposed to last forever, and they do have a lifespan.

An office chair is an essential tool in your job, so it’s part of your responsibility to learn about how long it lasts.

In this article, you’ll not only learn about how long an office chair should last, but you can also learn more about what contributes to its longevity or its deterioration.

In this way, you can correctly take care of your office chair, so it lasts longer, and you can also avoid doing things that will accelerate the breaking down of your chair.

The lifespan of office chairs based on the warranty

woman relax on a new office chair

Office chairs usually come with a warranty, and this piece of information is an important key to find out how long your office chair is going to last.

In saying this, I urge buyers to add a warranty as part of their standard when buying an office chair.

If you don’t pay attention, you might miss these crucial specifications, so make sure to write it down or add these details!

With a 5-year warranty, your office chair might last for about 7-8 years.

If it has a 10-year warranty or more, it can last for about 12-15 years.

Based on studies by Baylor University, office chairs can last for 7-8 years. After this duration, they recommend replacing or repairing the chair.

Other studies claim office chairs can last for more than ten years. Now, this is all dependent on different factors that can affect the lifespan.

But at the end of the day, the lifespan of your chair also depends on other factors.

The quality of the materials, caliber of manufacturing, maintenance, care, and the conditions of its usage all affect how long your office chair will last.

What can decrease the lifespan of your office chair?

To avoid breaking or damaging your office chair so fast, you need to know what habits and actions are terrible for your chair.

1. Direct sunlight

Have you noticed how furniture tends to break down faster if it’s always under the sun?

The constant exposure to direct heat and sunlight is going to make your chair break down faster.

Vinyl chairs are especially prone to deformation when exposed to sunlight all the time.

Getting curtains or blinds is going to help it last longer. However, if you don’t have this option in the office, you can simply turn the chair away from the sunlight.

2. Shared office chair

In some offices, the chairs are shared by employees, especially if you switch shifts! Because of this, employees use office chairs for a more extended period.

In comparison to your office chair at home, these chairs will get damaged easily or will need replacements more often.

3. User care

They say that if you take care of anything right, it’s going to last forever.

While office chairs might not last forever, you can prolong its lifetime if you maintain and care for it properly.

Cleaning it, protecting it from damage, and repairing issues before it gets worse, are all effective ways that can prolong your office chair.

4. Habits of the user

We’re all guilty of awful sitting habits, and I relate to that!

Rocking your chair too much, and putting up your feet on the seat are only some of the bad habits that can break down your chair quicker.

5. Misusing the chair

Most of us just throw away the manual without reading it through completely.

While this is relatable, it might lead you to be unaware of specific warnings about incorrect usage of chairs.

Maybe you might even be unable to adjust your chair correctly, causing you to break something.

6. Using the wrong chair

Aside from incorrectly using the chair, you might also be using the wrong chair entirely!

For example, you might be using a chair that’s not meant for your weight. Some chairs have a minimal weight capacity, so it’s necessary to pay attention to this detail.

7. Inferior materials and craftsmanship

If your office chair is cheaply made and uses poor quality materials, you can’t expect it to be durable enough to last a long time.

Doing research on superior materials for the frame, upholstery, and cushioning, are all necessary for you to find a remarkable office chair.

How often should you replace office chairs?

old leather office chair

Let’s think about how much we use an office chair, and just how much pressure it’s in every single day.

In a year, an office chair is used for over 2,500 hours. That’s 262 days a year, but it’s probably more than that depending on the circumstances in the office.

As mentioned before, if there are shifting schedules. In this case, the office chairs are used 24/7.

Even if office chairs are designed to withstand constant use, it’s still a stretch to expect it to feel and look brand new under such conditions.

So instead of looking at it as expiration date, you should be looking for SIGNS that it’s time to replace the office chair.

Signs that you need a new office chair

I’ve narrowed it down to 3 signs to make it easier for you to remember!

1. Damaged parts and upholstery

This is the most obvious indicator that you need to shop for a new desk chair.

You might notice that the upholstery is fraying, or the padding is completely deflated.

If you have a mesh chair, you might notice the mesh sagging. Without this tautness, it can no longer give you the support you need.

Or maybe your chair used to recline, but now it’s just stuck at an awkward angle.

If your office chair is broken, especially the frame or the mechanical parts, you might end up with an injury!

At this point, it’s probably past the possibility of repair, and you need a new one.

2. Uncomfortable

Office chairs are made to make long hours of sitting bearable by making you comfortable.

If you notice that you’re just getting more uncomfortable by the hour, you can take other measures to make your chair more comfortable.

But if none of these steps help, it could be because the ergonomic designs and features have already worn down.

3. Your body hurts!

Female suffering from low back pain at work

This ties in with the discomfort you feel in an old office chair. However, you might not notice that a chair isn’t giving you the support you need until the damage has been done.

You might feel an ache in your lumbar area or your upper spine. If this happens, the chair isn’t giving you the functions that you need.

In this case, it’s no better than an ordinary chair, so you should start looking for a more ergonomic office chair!

Famous brands that manufacture long-lasting chairs

Did all the signs check out? Is your office chair damaged, uncomfortable, and giving you aches and pains?

If so, then these brands can give you the lasting support and comfort that you need.

1. Herman Miller

As one of the pioneers of ergonomic office chairs, you can be sure that Herman Miller delivers seats that will last you a long time.

One downside is that their chairs are on the expensive side. But considering the excellence, awards, and quality of their products, it would be worth it!

2. Ficmax Gaming Chair

Technically, this is a gaming chair, but it’s well made and durable enough to last you a long time.

These are also made for comfort even when used continuously.

If you’re not too familiar, you can read here to find out if gaming chairs are the right seats for you.

3. Tempur-Pedic

Another great brand you can check out is Tempur-Pedic. The durability of the TP9000 office chair is outstanding, indicating that it will last you a long time.


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