Majority of people are aware of the negative impacts of not maintaining a healthy sitting posture. Nevertheless, there are a few who do not know how to sit in an office chair properly and end up experiencing several health problems. If you maintain the correct posture, you would be free from Repetitive Motion Injuries (RMI), Carpal Tunnel Syndrome, Eye Strain and Back and Neck Strain. Sometimes, the backaches spread to the neck and can be really painful.
Therefore, knowing how to sit straight in an office chair is important. If you notice that your office chair leans back too far, making it difficult for you to maintain the correct posture, it’s time to fix the chair or get a new one.
However, it isn’t always necessary to sit straight. In fact, a general rule says that leaning at a 135° angle between your thighs and trunk gives you a comfortable posture and allows you to concentrate on your work better.
But, leaning back on chair too much is bad for your health. If you find your chair always leaning backwards, it needs to be fixed. Before going through the different ways to fix this problem, let’s go through some of the reasons that cause your office chair to lean backwards.
Why Does My Office Chair Lean Back Too Far?
An office chair leaning back too far is a common problem that a lot of people face at their workplaces. Usually, when a chair is used for a long time, it tends to lean backwards due to a variety of reasons. If you cannot find out what’s causing your chair to lean backwards, you have come to the right place.
Once you find out the reason behind your office chair leaning backwards, fixing it wouldn’t be an issue. Apart from the fact that some parts of the chair get damaged or wear out over time, the chair might also be broken. If it’s broken, you must replace the parts with new ones. Repairing and making some adjustments wouldn’t be helpful in the long run.
Now, without any further delay, let’s know the reasons that can cause a chair to lean backwards.
Extremely less tilt tension
Considering you have an ergonomic office chair, you must inspect the tilt tension of the chair.
Ergonomic chairs come with a tilt tension knob that allows the person sitting to adjust the tension and sit comfortably. Now, if the chair keeps on leaning backwards, it means the tilt tension is extremely less and you have to adjust it.
The recline lever needs replacement or repair
Sometimes the recline lever gets damaged which is why the chair fails to maintain your desired angle. In that case, inspect the recline lever and see if it can be repaired.
If not, replace it entirely. To find out the problem, lay the chair upside down and inspect it thoroughly. Call for a professional to get it replaced.
The recliner spring needs replacement
When a person uses a chair for a long time, the recliner springs tend to become loose. This is another reason why your chair keeps leaning back too far.
If the recliner spring is the culprit, replace it with a new one. Turn the chair upside down and pull the recline lever. If you feel zero tension, it needs to be replaced. Also if you find it’s broken, replace it.
How To Fix An Office Chair That Leans Back Too Far?
If your chair isn’t broken, it means some parts of the chair need to be replaced. Usually, office chairs these days are adjustable and comprise various features to ensure the user’s comfort. Sometimes, these parts and components malfunction and need to be repaired or replaced.
If you are feeling uncomfortable sitting on a chair that’s leaning back too far, you mustn’t neglect your problem. Here are various ways in which you can fix this problem in simple DIY steps and sit comfortably. Let’s go through them one by one.
Replace broken or damaged casters
Usually, office chairs contain casters underneath. The casters make it possible for the person sitting to move around whenever necessary. The casters hold the weight of the entire chair.
This indicates that the balance of the chair is maintained by the casters. Sometimes, the casters break, causing off balance. It’s when the chair loses its tension and brings discomfort to anyone sitting on the chair.
Therefore, if your chair is leaning back too far, inspect the casters before anything else. When a chair is used for a long period of time, the casters tend to break, calling for a replacement.
While replacing the damaged or broken caster, you must remember that all the four casters must be of the same height and should touch the floor evenly. If any of them is damaged or broken, the chair loses its balance.
Buy a new set of casters if you find any of them broken. If anyone of the casters is faulty, pull the entire set and replace it. Usually, single casters aren’t available in the market. So, if you have to replace one, it’s better to replace all of them. To get the exact matching pair of casters, you must give the manufacturer the chair’s model number.
Wondering how you would fix the new casters to your chair? It’s easy. Turn the chair upside down. Take a screwdriver to pull the damaged or broken casters from their sockets. Now, apply lubrication before installing the new set of casters. This would ensure less friction between the sockets and the casters.
Use a rubber mallet to install the casters properly in their sockets. However, remember to tap the casters gently, otherwise they might break again. After you are done, tighten the screws on the casters, to make sure they remain in place and don’t become loose easily.
If you notice that the casters are in good shape and are leveled, it means they do not need any replacement. In that case, skip the casters and check the tilt tension of the chair. You might have to tighten the tilt tension.
Adjust the tilt tension
Sometimes, the tilt tension reduces which causes a person to lean back automatically. It’s easy to fix. You simply have to readjust the tilt tension as per your comfort. When a person throws himself continuously into the chair, the tilt tension tends to reduce over time. To determine how less is the tilt tension, sit on the chair, with your feet touching the ground. Then, lean against the back of the chair to determine how far it leans backwards.
Now, to fix the tilt tension, you must reach out underneath the chair. There is a knob located at the bottom of the chair. The exact location of the tilt tension knob varies according to the model of the chair.
If you do not know where to find the knob, refer to the user’s manual that you got from the manufacturer. If you have found it, rotate it in anticlockwise direction to tighten the tilt tension and bring the backrest forward. Keep rotating and adjusting until you have found your comfort position. When you have achieved your desired level of tilt, leave the knob.
Adjusting the tilt tension of the chair so that you don’t lean back too far is extremely important. Constantly sitting in an awkward posture is bound to cause health problems. Not only that, adjusting the tilt tension allows the chair to adapt to your body, thus giving you confort. All ergonomic chairs come with the tilt tension knob nowadays. However when you tighten the tilt tension, make sure not to make it too tight.
Tighten the seat plate
If the tilt tension is okay, it means the seat plate is faulty. That’s the last component of the chair you must inspect if it’s leaning backwards always.
While inspecting the seat plate, check the bolt of the seat. Examine whether they are tightly fitted or not. Sometimes, these bolts become loose especially when the chair has been used for a long time, sometimes they fall off. In any of these cases, the backrest tends to lean backwards. To fix this problem, you need a few extra screws and readjust the position of the seat plate.
Apart from the bolts falling off or becoming loose, the seat plates also shift with continuous usage. Thus, they lose their original adjustment or setting and become bent or loose over time.
Usually, these seat plates are fitted in position by 4 screws found at the underside of the seat. If any of these screws become loose, you simply have to turn them in the clockwise direction to tighten them. Use a screwdriver for this purpose. Now if you find any of the screws missing, find a matching screw and fit it tightly into the position. To get an exact match of the screws that is required , users are advised to take one sample screw to a nearby hardware store.
Wondering how you would fix this matter? Don’t worry. We have you covered.
Firstly, flip the chair upside down and tighten all screws that are loose. Now check if the chair still leans backwards. If yes, you must inspect the seat plate for any bent metal.
Office chairs are not totally flat. The seat plates have bends, dumps, holes and dents. If the seat plate looks deformed or old or damaged, you must replace the seat plate.
Now when you have a damaged or deformed seat plate to repair or replace, it’s wise to consider replacing the entire chair and buy a new one. This is entirely up to the intention of the user. If you find that replacing the chair is costing you more, it’s better to replace the seat plate for the time being.
Needless to say, the cost of seat plate replacement will vary according to the model of the chair and the brand of the chair. We would advise homeowners to contact the manufacturer of the chair or the store from where you bought it and ask them to get the seat plate replaced.
The Bottom Line
Oftentimes, people do not bother to care about the condition of the chair they use. Sometimes, people are seen using chairs that are broken, worn out, tension-less and lean backwards.
As a consequence, they deal with discomfort along with various health problems. Isn’t it amazing how by adjusting the office chair, you can sit comfortably and focus on your work better! It improves your performance and allows you to maintain the correct body posture, most importantly.
Nowadays, experts recommend users to prefer ergonomic chairs to ensure the correct seating posture and avoid all sorts of discomfort and pain, no matter if you intend to buy a desk chair or gaming chair or an office chair. So, the next time when you consider buying a new chair for yourself, do not forget to check the features present.