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How to Clean Your Office Chair: 5 Steps

Avatar of Autonomous Autonomous | Jan 4, 2021
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No matter what material it’s made from, your office chair was probably something of an investment. Office furniture is constantly becoming more functional and sophisticated, giving this furniture greater inherent value. If you work at a desk, you might spend eight hours or more every day sitting at your chair. This is just a fact of life, but it often means that office chairs are especially prone to stains and spills, especially if you eat while you work. This can make it very useful to know how to clean an office chair.

Your ergonomic chair might be marked or stained but otherwise in great condition. If this is the case, then replacing the chair altogether could be quite a waste. Many of the materials that office chairs are usually made of, like leather and plastic, are easy to clean if you know what you’re doing. They can also be maintained in order to last for a long time. This article discusses the different materials that office chairs are often made from and how you can safely clean your office chair.

Different Office Chair Materials

Depending on the period that your office chair was made in and how much it cost, there are a number of materials it could be made from. This also depends on the design and purpose of the office chair. For example, an office chair designed for gaming generally looks quite different from a standard office chair.

Different materials also have their own advantages and disadvantages when it comes to office chairs. Leather chairs often look sleek and beautiful, but they may be far too hot for office workers living in warmer or more humid climates. On the other hand, it can be much easier to maintain clean mesh chairs or a clean computer chair. Chairs made from other materials are often more likely to have an ergonomic design, which can make a huge difference in how productive you are while you work.

Different Office Chair Materials

Leather Office Chairs

Leather office chairs are arguably the most classic choice. They usually look beautiful and sleek and are versatile. You can find a leather office chair that fits just about any office environment, no matter what the overall atmosphere and design is like. Another advantage of leather is that the material is very durable when it’s high-quality. Good leather can last for decades if you maintain it well.

Are there any disadvantages to having a leather office chair? One arguable disadvantage is that leather chairs can cost substantially more than other kinds of office chairs. This can actually make leather chairs somewhat impractical. It might be especially impractical to have a leather chair if you work at home and your office is used for other purposes, for example.

Repairing a leather chair can be quite costly. Also, most ergonomic chairs tend to be made from other materials. Finally, leather can stain more easily than other kinds of materials. Leather is generally the best material to use if you want a chair that is classic and elegant but aren’t too concerned about how ergonomic your chair is.  

Leather Office Chairs

Fabric Chairs

Office chairs covered with fabric can be a more affordable choice. In addition, they tend to be quite breathable and comfortable. You might like to choose a fabric office chair if you find that your office gets very hot, for example. A fabric chair is also a good choice if you would like a wider range of design options. Fabric office chairs tend to come in a very wide range of styles.

One major advantage of fabric office chairs is that they can stain very easily. Also, the fabric upper on the chair can easily damage and come away from the chair. This makes fabric chairs something of a poor choice if you want a chair that can last you for a while. You also need to be especially careful when using fabric chairs not to stain them because it can be almost impossible to get certain stains out.

Fabric Chairs

Mesh Office Chairs 

Mesh office chairs offer a more futuristic look, and they are generally the best option for those looking for the most ergonomic chair they can find. A mesh chair is generally very breathable and light, too. What’s more, clean mesh chairs are typically fairly easy to maintain. They’re almost impossible to stain with regular household or office substances like food and coffee.

Are there any disadvantages to mesh office chairs? While this isn’t an objective problem, many people prefer a more classic look. Mesh office chairs generally look quite modern and might not pass too well into an office with vintage or older furniture. Also, while they’re more ergonomic than leather furniture, many people find that they’re not quite as comfy as a plush leather office chair.

Mesh Office Chairs

Plastic Chairs

Plastic office chairs are often some of the most affordable. They’re very easy to clean and maintain, too. If having a clean computer chair is your priority, and you want to make this as easy as possible for yourself, then a plastic chair is probably the best choice. They can also come in a wide variety of colors, making it easy to find a plastic chair that suits your office. 

However, plastic chairs are often hard. They’re molded and rigid, meaning there isn’t much support or give for your body. If you want to make a plastic office chair as comfortable as possible, you might need to use cushions on the chair to make it easier to sit for long periods without getting sore or stiff.

Plastic Chairs

How to Clean an Office Chair in Five Steps 

There are some generic methods and steps you can use to clean any office chair. With some simple household appliances and substances, you should be able to get most chairs clean fairly quickly. It’s important to note here that prevention is best when it comes to cleaning. If you ever spill anything on your chair, you should clean it up immediately to prevent stains from developing. 

Try to do so by blotting the spot with gentle soap and water. While this might not completely prevent a stain from forming, it can stop the stain from setting too deeply in the chair. This makes it easier to remove the stain when you perform a deeper clean. Maintenance cleaning shouldn’t take too long, either. You can often do so in around 15 minutes, but it might take half an hour or so to get rid of tougher, more stubborn stains. This also depends on your chair’s material. 

First Step: Dust and Vacuum

Using a duster or vacuum, remove any and all dust and lint that has accumulated on the surface of the chair. Make sure to do so thoroughly and work over the whole chair. You can change the attachments on the head of your vacuum to get into crevices and smaller spaces.

Dust and Vacuum 

Second Step: Wipe the Chair with a Solution (Soap and Water)

Once there’s no dust left on your chair, you can wipe it down. Use a cloth and a combination of gentle soap and water. This is often enough to clean mesh chairs and plastic chairs. However, if you have a leather or fabric chair, you might need to go deeper or use various stain removers. Some of these can damage the leather on your chair, so make sure not to use the first product you find!

Wipe the whole surface of the chair gently. Try not to use too much liquid, either. The surface should be covered but not wet. You might like to use a spray bottle with the solution to prevent this from happening. If your office chair gets too wet, this can damage the material.

Wipe the Chair with a Solution (Soap and Water)

Third Step: Dry the Chair

Once you have a clean office chair, you should dry off any excess moisture to prevent it from damaging the material. Take a clean cloth and use it to wipe off any dampness left behind on the harder surfaces of your chair. You can let the rest of the chair air-dry. If you want your chair to be dry again right away, you can use a hairdryer or vacuum on the softer surfaces. 

Dry the Chair

Fourth Step: Spot-treating Stains

If your chair still has some stains in it at this stage, you should address these with a stronger substance that is more suitable for stain removal. Rubbing alcohol is often a good choice. When you’ve chosen a cleaning agent, you should do a spot test somewhere on the chair that isn’t usually visible. This way, if the substance damages the chair, you can try something else.

Rubbing alcohol is often enough to remove most stains. You can try applying a few drops to the stain and letting it sit before wiping the alcohol away. If this isn’t enough, you might need to try something more specialized for the type of chair you have.

Spot-treating Stains

Fifth Step: Upholstery Cleaning or Calling the Pros

If you have an upholstery cleaner at home, you can use this after cleaning the chair to get the deepest, most long-lasting results. If you don’t have one, it might be time for you to call a company that provides professional upholstery cleaning. 

Upholstery Cleaning or Calling the Pro

When Should You Buy a New Chair?

Sometimes, these methods aren’t enough for you to get a clean computer chair. Clean mesh chairs are fairly easy to maintain, but other materials may have stains that are too deep or old to remove completely. Eventually, you might want to consider purchasing a new stair instead of trying to clean the old one. 

Ultimately, whether or not you should buy a new chair is subjective if your current office chair is still functional. It’s generally a good idea to buy a new chair if there are stubborn stains that are easily visible, though. Having a chair that is clearly dirty or stained can make a fairly negative impression on your clients or colleagues if you share an office. 

You might also like to consider buying a new chair if your old chair isn’t ergonomic or functional enough. Some brands now make incredibly ergonomic and sophisticated furniture, which can help you be more productive and prevent issues like strain injuries and postural problems from developing.

When Should You Buy a New Chair

When to Stop Cleaning and Start Buying a New Chair

You’ve asked ‘how to clean an office chair?’ You’ve tried all of our tips and tricks. If you’ve tried cleaning your chair and there are stains that you can’t get out, then it might be time for you to think about purchasing a new, clean computer chair instead. This is especially true if you’ve paid for a professional service and the stains are still there. There’s not much point in using an office chair that is obviously dirty or stained. 

Thinking of Buying a New Chair?

Are you thinking of buying a new office chair? We spend so much of our lives sitting by our desks. This is why it’s crucial that you find a chair that is supportive of your posture and makes it effortless to sit for long periods. An ergonomic chair is a great choice for preventing or limiting postural issues. 

Sitting for long periods with poor posture can lead to a number of pain conditions developing, and it places excessive strain on your body. If you’ve decided to purchase a new office chair, then this is the perfect opportunity to find a chair that works with and helps your body instead of causing you to be in pain. 

Thinking of Buying a New Chair?

There are brands that specialize in making functional, ergonomic furniture. Buying an office chair from one of these brands is a great choice if you want to prioritize your health. Look for models that are supportive and flexible. Having a chair that you can adjust the height of is also important for keeping good posture, especially for your neck. If you can try the office chair before you purchase it, then that is even better. 

If you’ve been googling, ‘how to clean an office chair?’ then this article has hopefully cleared up the process for you. It shouldn’t be too difficult for you to maintain a clean computer chair, but sometimes you need to cut your losses and purchase a new one, especially if the chair has stubborn stains.

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