When Should You Use Conductive Casters?

When Should You Use Conductive Casters?Casters have many different applications, and some casters are extremely specialized in their uses. In particular some casters can handle extremely hot or cold environments while others are very resistant to chemical damage or corrosion. One type that is very specialized is the conductive caster, but the applications that use these casters rely on this attribute to safeguard the delicate equipment that they carry.

What Do Conductive Casters Do?

Conductive casters allow any static electric charge that builds up on a cart or piece of equipment to be dispelled to the ground. In this way you do not need to worry about a static electricity build up on your equipment and carts. In some cases you will see carts with chains or wires hanging from them to try and solve the problem of static build up, but this approach relies on the chains properly contacting the floor. If the chain bounces up and tangles under the cart, your static protection is avoided and a charge can build up again. With a caster you always know they are in contact with the floor.

Why Would You Need Conductive Casters?

One of the biggest uses of conductive casters is for electronic equipment. When static electricity builds up it can cause damage to electronic equipment in the order of several thousand volts. Sensitive equipment can malfunction, either temporarily or permanently, causing costly repairs or replacement of electronics. Uncontrolled static electricity is the bane of the electronics industry.

Another equally important aspect of controlling static electricity build up on carts is the jolt of static electricity that a customer might experience as they moved a shopping cart from the row of other carts. This is much like rubbing your feet on the carpet and touching a door handle, which is painful yet unnecessary if you can properly ground the cart.

What Conductive Casters Are Available?

Douglas Equipment has partnered with many different caster suppliers to make sure that we can offer you the right caster to meet your unique needs. Many of these suppliers offer conductive casters to solve the problems we have discussed. Here are a few of the casters offered by several of our suppliers that could be considered to solve your conductivity problems:

  • Albion Anti-Static Shopping Cart Caster: Great for preventing static shocks when customers grab a shopping cart, the Albion anti-static shopping cart caster uses a synthetic resin with electrically conductive material in the wheel, which prevents static from building up with each revolution of the wheel. This swivel caster has a wheel diameter of 5” and a 250-pound capacity.
  • Blickle Lift Duty TPA Series: This series of high quality and impact resistant polypropylene wheeled casters has an electrically conductive, non-marking grey option available. Wheel diameters are 50 to 200 mm and hold 50 to 250 kg. The treads are chemically bonded for increased durability.
  • Colson 3 Series: These casters come standard with a zinc plated finish for durability and good looks. A full double ball hardened raceway ensures better performance. Mounting options are a round or square stem with wheel sizes of 4”, 5” or 6” and capacity up to 300 pounds each. The Colson 3 series has an option for a grey non-marking performa rubber thermoplastic elastomer tread bonded to a polyolefin core. The core is ribbed for added strength.
  • Jarvis W13 Series: The Jarvis design features heavy gauge cold round steel formed for strength and a bright zinc plated finish to resist rust and corrosion. The swivel construction includes a double ball bearing with hardened raceway. Both Posiloc and Vertiloc brakes are available on these units. The conductive model has a 5” wheels with 150 pound capacity.
  • Medcaster Chrome Hospital: For food service, case carts, utility carts, hospital equipment, institutional equipment, store fixtures and medical equipment, the top plate model chrome caster is ideal. With a chrome plated finish and dual ball swivel raceways this caster has added strength and durability. Models come with a directional lock to hold the swivel and help with steering and a top lock to hold the wheel from moving. The conductive rubber models have a 3”, 4”, 5” and 6” wheel option with a thread guard for added protection. Capacities for these wheels range from 190 pounds to 260 pounds.
  • Rhombus 380 Series: The electrically conductive Rhombus 380 series won a reddot design award for its style and function, and these casters have a positive wheel lock that holds the central web of the wheel and is not reliant on friction. Because of this the locking action does not depend on the tire condition since the lock does not hold against the running surface of the wheel. Wheel diameters are 150 mm with a 120 kg capacity.
  • Shepherd Institutional Series: These RoHS compliant and NSF listed casters are constructed of high strength steel for added durability and a raceway dust cap for increased caster lift and performance. Dual ball bearing raceways and zinc finish provide excellent durability. Conductive wheels are available and provide good floor protection, non-marking, durability, cushioned ride and chemical resistance. Brake options include tread lock brakes, total lock brakes, direction lock brakes, top lock brakes and PAT/PAD brakes.

When You Need Knowledgeable Caster Advice There is Only One Place to Turn

Douglas Equipment has been in the business of quality casters and material handling equipment since 1955 and we have gathered both the right quality suppliers as well as the individuals with the understanding and experience to find the right caster for your unique needs. Contact us today to find the conductive casters and material handling equipment that best meet your needs.