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How do I know if an office chair is good quality ?

Updated: Feb 22

How do you know if you are buying a quality office chair ?
Quality office chairs

This is a real problem. What I say to customers is - "Most of the time you will only know if you have a good office chair after 5 years. The good ones will still be functioning".

This doesn't help people who are shopping for an office chair so here is our guide to recognising a quality office chair when you see one.

  1. Price This is just common sense. If an office chair is costing you $150 - you have got a cheap chair by definition. It will last you 1 - 2 years and then it will break and be off to the landfill. It may look fine on the shop floor but it won't last. This is not a criticism of the people that sell these office chairs but you shouldn't fool yourself that you are getting an office chair that will last.

  2. Foam quality Foam comes in many different grades and just like with beds the high quality foam will hold it's shape longer. Many of these high quality foam are denser and they have a slightly harder feel to them while new. Don't be put off by a slightly harder feel to the seat. A softer seat may make your butt happy but it won't make you happy when it starts sagging after a couple of years.

  3. Fabric quality Once again it really isn't easy to identify good quality fabric on an office chair. We often use European fabrics on our seats and they tend to be better quality. If the seat fabric is thin or shiny from the outset it is likely to wear more quickly. Finally check where the fabric is sewn into the chair for nice clean sewing. This is often where the fabric or mesh tears away from the frame so check here.

  4. Warranty A good warranty means the supplier is backing the quality of the chair. We offer a 10 year warranty on our office chairs. We only do this after we have been selling them for 4 to 5 years and we have confidence in the quality. Our warranty conditions are here.

  5. Standards There are two main international standards for office chairs. They are BAFTI which covers American manufacturers and AFRDI which tends to be used by the rest of the worlds. We look to the BAFTI standards for durability because they are designed to covers higher weight limits and that tends to be an indicator of durability. Having said that the AFRDI level 6 standards are extremely rigorous and if you have an office chair that has passed this standard you can be reasonably confident it is a good standard.

The last thing you may want to consider when deciding whether the office chair you are looking at is a good buy is whether you are buying direct or not. If you are buying direct from an importer you know there is only one margin and you probably can be sure you are getting an office chair where the quality matches the price. If it is a retailer who has bought from a wholesaler who has bought from an importer you may not be able to assess the quality based on price because of the shear number of margins that have been added on.


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