An Introduction to Casters and Caster Wheels
Make life easier without re-inventing the wheel - just use it more often.
While casters and caster wheels are often used interchangeably to described the wheeled attachments that enable large pieces of furniture, appliances, and equipment to be moved with relative ease, it’s important to note that there are distinguishable differences between the two.
A caster is a special component that attaches a wheel or a tire to a piece of equipment. A caster wheel is a special type of wheel that is used in conjunction with a caster. Large pieces of furniture, appliances, and equipment that may need to be periodically moved from one location to another cannot be moved easily without having both casters and caster wheels attached.
Here are some common examples of casters and caster wheels in use in your own home or office:
- upright refrigerators and freezers
- metal bed frames
- desk chairs
- some types of sofas and chairs
Here are some common examples of casters and caster wheels in use in commercial settings:
- appliances in restaurant kitchens
- desk chairs and mobile workstations
- hospital beds
Caster wheels are configured to move in a variety of directions: either back and forth, from side to side, or in a total 360 degree motion. The direction or directions that the wheels move in depends on the configuration of the casters. Some can be adjusted to allow for additional movement, while others are set for just one or two specific direction.
The majority of casters do include a flip-down/flip-up locking mechanism for safety. After all, if you’ve taken the time to carefully roll a 200 pound piece of computer equipment from one room to another, the last thing you want to have happen is to see it roll away and become damaged!
Caster Wheels Use
The majority of caster wheels are made out of a combination of metal and plastic, though some wheels may feature rubber textures to help grip uneven floors. The casters themselves are typically made out of a strong metal, such as stainless steel, in order to ensure that they do not crack or bend under the weight and strain of supporting large, often heavy equipment.
If you’re in need of replacement casters or caster wheels, you should be able to find them at just about any hardware store. Click here for purchasing information.
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