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How To Fix an Office Chair That Won’t Stay Up

An office chair that won’t stay up correctly can be frustrating, to say the least.

It can hinder your productivity at work and your comfort, and no one wants to deal with uncomfortable office furniture.

In addition, if you force your neck to look upward at your monitor, you’re probably causing a lot of strain on your neck. That strain can lead to chronic neck pain or other posture problems.

Instead of running out and buying brand new office furniture — or worse, ignoring the problem altogether — give these DIY methods a try and enjoy the results of a more comfortable work experience.

Why Won’t My Office Chair Stay Up?

The most common reason for an office chair not staying up is a loss of gas. The gas lift in the chair is what keeps the pressure on the base whenever you raise it.

5 Ways to Fix an Office Chair That Won’t Stay Up

Hose Clamp and Duct Tape

A hose clamp can be a temporary solution to your problem. While both a hose clamp and duct tape are budget-friendly, this solution likely won’t last more than a few weeks.

The clamp acts as a spacer on the piston of the gas cylinder to hold the chair up. The duct tape around the piston increases the grip so the clamp won’t slip off suddenly. This can be a quick and effective solution because you don’t have to disassemble any parts of the chair.

You can also sand down the pistol to make it easier for the grip to clamp on. Once you place the clamp, the chair will be set at that height and you won’t be able to adjust to a different one.

PVC Pipe

Using a PVC pipe is more of a temporary solution to your sinking chair problem. The PVC pipe solution involves a lot of measuring and DIY aspects, such as cutting the PVC pipe.

You’ll need to measure the chair’s current height and then measure the desired height. Cut a ring of PVC pipe to the exact measurement and fit it around the gas cylinder.

The pipe will hold the weight of the chair at that desired height.

This is a temporary solution, though, and will last a few months if done correctly. If you cut the pipe to the wrong size, you won’t be able to add another piece or it will be wobbly. If you have enough piping, though, you can always cut another piece.

A pipe is probably the most difficult method to adjust the height of your office chair. It involves a lot of hands-on work and intense tools to cut the piping accurately. Unless you are comfortable and familiar with these materials, we recommend choosing another method.

Chair Riser

A chair riser is a set of buttons that attaches, usually with a screw, to the legs of your chair. This makes the chair adjustable and can raise to different heights. It requires no disassembly and needs a screwdriver to secure the chair riser in place.

The buttons can be different shapes depending on your particular chair, but chair risers work for all office chairs.

Chair Saver Kit

A chair saver kit requires no assembly and is an affordable option. These kits come with a series of rings which fit onto the pistol of the gas cylinder that is already on the chair.

The kits are great because they will last years, and even when one ring breaks or isn’t at the right height anymore, it’s simple to add more rings to adjust it. The rings have a universal fit, so it doesn’t matter what brand you buy or which office chair you have.

Replace the Gas Cylinder

Replacing the gas cylinder is the best way to restore the chair to its original feel and operation. If you do this, it will result in a chair that can lift and lower along with the lever as it should when you first get it.

Since the main cause of an office chair not staying up is usually the loss of gas in the cylinder, replacing it should remedy the problem immediately. Gas cylinders are mostly the same size, so they shouldn’t be difficult to find.

We suggested you opt for a cylinder with the same brand as your chair because it will most likely work best with your existing furniture. Gas lift replacements are cheap but do require some disassembly replace — only the base needs to be removed and then replaced again after inserting the new gas lift.

Consequences of Not Fixing an Office Chair

How to Fix Office Chair That Won't Stay Up
Source: Shutterstock

If you decide to just let your office chair sink and not try to fix it, it can negatively impact your health. Constantly raising your head to strain and look at your monitor will cause pain and discomfort in your neck and back after enough time.

Your health is important, and the ergonomics of computer use show more serious consequences of ignoring this kind of discomfort. For example, spinal curvature can become a chronic problem in many individuals that work in a desk set up that isn’t comfortable.

Bottom Line

Having an office chair that isn’t set to the correct height for you damages your health, comfort, and productivity. Uncomfortable office furniture is very frustrating. There are ways to fix this issue without having to replace your whole chair. So, before you run out and buy a new one, give one of these a try and save time and money.

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