Questions for Specifying Appropriate Casters for Your Application
- What is the total load that the casters will need to carry?
Load per caster is not necessarily taking the total load and dividing by the number of casters to be used (as the load is typically not evenly distributed over all of the casters). In most applications, the load is centered over at least three of the casters, meaning that each caster should handle one third of the load.
- What type of caster wheel is needed to protect your flooring?
Floor conditions are a very important factor in determining the proper caster. On rougher floor settings, there is more likelihood that the load will not be evenly distributed over the total number of casters. Hardwood floors need a much different wheel type than cement in order to prevent damage.
- What size wheel is necessary to provide ease of rolling?
The diameter of the caster wheel plays a large role in mobility. Typically, the larger the wheel, the easier that it will roll.
- What is the environment in which the casters will be used?
The environmental factors (water, oil, acids, corrosive materials, or temperature) greatly affect the necessary caster. There are a variety of wheel options that are designed for such reasons.
- How will the casters be pushed/pulled?
Choosing the caster that is best for the application is also determined by how the unit is moved. Ergonomic casters are designed to provide an ease of rolling for manually pushed units. Different bearings are options for powered units to provide length in life of the casters. Speed also comes into play when selecting casters.
- How many swivel and how many rigid casters are needed?
Determining the number of swivel and rigid casters is necessary to ensure the proper mobility of the unit. More swivel casters provide ease when moving the unit into tight spaces. A unit using all swivel casters will be difficult to push long distances.
- How are the casters being mounted in the application?
There are a variety of mounting alternatives for various casters (i.e. Plate, Stem, Hollow Kingpin, etc.). When selecting the caster, be sure to have the appropriate measurements of the mounting device.