When you buy a caster for your carts or equipment, you want a wheel that will help your caster work for the task you have chosen. There is nothing more annoying than finding out after the fact that the caster you chose has unintended consequences. One of these can be marks on the flooring where the caster is used.
In general, you want to use caster wheels with a softer material on harder floors, and harder material on softer floors, but this is only a general guideline and other factors can be very important. One factor that can be very important is if the floors will become marked by the caster wheels. Here are a few things to consider about flooring conditions and which casters might cause problems with floor marking.
Tile Flooring: Very Easily Damaged by Hard Caster Wheels
One of the most easily damaged flooring materials, if the right caster wheel material is not used, can be tile. If you are using a caster with a hard wheel material on your tile floor, you may have noticed the floor around your piece of equipment is more worn than elsewhere on the floor, or that there are dark flecks all over the tile, and even damage to your grouting. You also might sometimes see the particulate matter on your flooring that results from harder floors abrading nylon twin wheels, and even when the floor is undamaged, this nylon residue is unsightly and difficult to clean.
To deal with the problem of hard caster wheels damaging the floor, or very soft nylon wheels being damaged by the floor, here are a few choices that you might consider:
- Albion 01 Series: These are Albion’s best-selling light-duty caster. They are versatile and are ideal for use in business machines, construction, education, electronics, food manufacturing and service, health care machinery and plastics/rubber manufacturing. Polypropylene wheels are 2 – 4 inches in diameter, which makes them work well on hard tiled floors without damaging the tiles. The units have a single ball-bearing raceway that keeps the swivel section rotating smoothly under the load weight.
- Shepherd Pacer Urethane Twin Wheel: These twin wheel casters come in two sizes taking loads from 75 – 100 pounds and come in Flat Black, Satin Chrome, Windsor Antique, Bright Chrome, and Brass Plate finishes. The 50mm models are available with a brake if required for your application. Though the lifetime of the caster is sometimes not as long, the optional urethane tread is ideal when you’re worried about sensitive floors.
- Bassick 00 Series: These casters incorporate a dual ball bearing raceway with a high load capacity with a sleek, low profile, stylish design. These casters are ideal for electronic equipment, business machines, store fixtures and laboratory equipment. They also include an option for a soft rubber wheel material that is ideal for hard tile flooring. They can even include a side lock brake if you wish.
Concrete: Rubber Wheels are Soft, but Can Mark
While rubber can give a good grip on a hard concrete floor, when marking is a concern, there are other wheel materials that should be considered. Although it is opposite to the general rule of soft caster wheels on hard surfaces, on smooth concrete the most common wheel is phenolic which is hard, and another common option is cast iron, which is also hard. Casters with either of these wheel materials are high capacity and cost effective and will prevent the problem of marking on the floor that would be presented by rubber or another soft material.
- Colson 6 Enforcer Series: These medium-duty casters from Colson Casters come with an attractive and durable zinc finish, as well as the kingpinless swivel design that eliminates swivel section failure due to shock and stretching of the kingpin. Along with Phenolic and cast iron, the wheel material options include Performa rubber, mold-on rubber, polyolefin, Polyurethane HI-TECH, Mold-on Nylon, and Thermo High Temperature. Caster capacities range from 300 – 1500 pounds to suit any needs you may have, and come in wheel diameters of 4”, 5”, 6” and 8”.
- Colson Kinpinless Enforcer Swivel and Matching Rigid: For larger casters with larger diameter wheel options, this model is available with a zinc plated finish, as well as the kingpinless swivel design to eliminates swivel section failure. Wheel material options include Cast Iron and Phenolic, but can also be made from Forged Steel or Mold-on Rubber. Caster capacities range from 680 – 4500 pounds, and come in wheel diameters of 6”, 8”, 10” and 12”.
- 1F58 Low Profile Medium Duty Plate Casters: Built by ER Wagner with a double row swivel construction and zinc plated finish, these casters are ideal for electronic and business machines that require a low height, but high capacity caster. Wheel types include Duratex Phenolic as well as Cushionex Supreme, Poly II Urethane, Spartan Supreme and Durafoam.
The Experts in Customer Service
When you have a specific task that needs to be done, but don’t know which caster is right one to meet your needs, the expert team at Douglas Equipment can help. Douglas Equipment has been in the business of quality casters and material handling equipment since 1955. In our almost 60 years in business, our dedicated service team has gained the knowledge and know-how to help you pick the right caster to suit your unique needs. We are confident that we can help you find the right type of caster at a price that is well within your budget.
We are located in South Florida. From this location we can easily serve the entire United States, and quickly ship products to South America and the Caribbean. If you are local to Miami and want to contact us for answers to your questions, call us at 305-888-3700. National customers can call us toll free at 800-451-0030. We can also be contacted online, and one of our knowledgeable service professionals will get back to you as soon as possible. Call us now to find the right caster to suit your unique needs.