Ways You’re Using Casters Wrong

Ways You’re Using Casters WrongDo you know which casters you need for the flooring you will be travelling on? Do you know the weight capacity of the casters on the cart you are using? Do you know what mobility and control you will need from your casters? If you have answered no to any of these questions then you may not be using your casters correctly. The good news is we can help. Douglas Equipment has been in the business of quality casters and material handling equipment since 1955, supplying our customers with answers to caster questions in order to meet their needs. Here are some things to consider when you are thinking about the right casters to use in your application.

Do I Have the Right Casters for my Floor?

Different flooring conditions require different types of casters. If you are using casters on a carpeted floor for your office chairs not just any casters will do. For this application you will want to consider a steel, hard rubber or hard synthetic caster to allow for the movement of the chair without damaging the carpet. For these situations we might suggest a Baron Caster that will not only work well in the office environment but are also held in a decorative housing.

You may even want to consider a self-braking chair caster for greater safety. A compression brake caster will activate when a person sits in the chair, stopping it from rolling when someone is sitting. However, a decompression brake caster will unlock when sat in to keep the chair in place when no one is sitting in it, yet allows for mobility when in use.

If you are considering casters for a concrete floor you will want to consider a hard rubber or polyurethane caster since using steel or cast iron casters may cut into the concrete surface causing damage. The hard rubber or polyurethane wheels will also provide some protection from leaving scuffmarks, skid marks or scratches in the floor surface finish. Our Encore Dolly caster can handle capacities from 180 to 260 pounds and are perfect for concrete floors as they use a thermoplastic rubber wheel.

Do I Have the Right Casters for the Load I am Moving?

Casters are broadly separated into light-duty, medium-duty and heavy-duty casters. While light duty casters can typically carry up to 150 pounds each, medium duty casters can hold considerably more weight at a maximum of 1,500 pounds and heavy-duty casters can hold loads all the way up to 20,000 pounds or more. With this much variation it is easy to see why some people might not realize that there is such a difference among caster types.

While Douglas Equipment carries casters for all size loads, it is important to ensure you do not over-load the casters you use. While this may not cause immediate failure of the caster it can damage the caster over time greatly reducing the life expectancy of your casters or material handling equipment. When you are in the middle of moving a heavy load is not the time you want your casters to fail.

Do I Need Special Casters for Extreme Temperatures?

If you are using your material handling equipment in an extremely cold environment such as a freezer unit, or an extremely hot environment such as are seen in the baking or powdercoating industries you will want to consider how well the casters you will use can handle extreme fluctuations in temperature. While regular rubber casters may be problematic in such situations, Douglas Equipment recommends you consider a High Temp Thermo wheel for your casters as these can withstand continuous temperatures from -45 degrees F to 480 degrees F.

Do I Need Improved Mobility and Control from my Casters?

If you need your material handling equipment to maneuver easily through tight corners you will want to consider a caster that has a precision bearing in its swivel section. For these situations we might suggest either a Colson Stainless Precision caster for light to medium loads, or an Evolution caster for loads heavier than that. Each are created to maximize swiveling ease, with a maintenance-free precision radial thrust bearing in the swivel head. The Stainless Precision is also exactly what it says it is: stainless, and can therefore be used in the most punishing corrosive conditions, including those with daily washdowns. The rugged Evolution caster is heavy enough for use in dynamic towing applications, including on towlines. Each will maneuver as easily and as precisely as anything on the market. .

If you are moving taller loads you may want to try to lower the center of gravity of the load to better control the load and protect against tipping. For this we would have you consider the Business Machine caster, which has a low profile to help with the reduction of the center of gravity and can include a Sure-Lok Brake that allows the operator of the material handling equipment to stop the motion of the caster quickly.

Where Can I Get Answers to my Questions?

At Douglas Equipment we pride ourselves in providing excellent customer service and can help answer all your questions when choosing the right casters for your unique needs. We are confident that we can help you find the right type of caster at a price that is affordable. We are located in South Florida, which means we can easily service the entire United States, and we can also quickly ship products to South America and the Caribbean as well.

You can contact us online through our contact form and we will respond as soon as possible. If you are local to South Florida you can call us at 305-888-3700, and national customers can call us at 800-451-0030. We would love to hear from you and help answer the questions you have to pick the right casters for your purpose!