How to Prevent Caster Flutter

Casters by Monroe Engineering

Casters offer an unparalleled level of convenience when compared to traditional wheels. Consisting of wheels attached to or embedded inside of a frame, they are used to move objects. You can find casters on chairs, furniture, medical equipment and even machines. While convenient and easy to use, though, some casters may experience a problem known as caster flutter.

What Is Caster Flutter?

Caster flutter is a phenomenon in which a caster spins perpendicularly to the direction to the direction in which it’s pushed. If you’re pushing an object forward, the casters should roll forward in this same direction. But there are instances in which the casters may spin side to side. Known as caster flutter, it can make the object difficult to push, or it can even cause the object to tip over. Fortunately, there are ways to prevent caster flutter.

Choose High-Quality Casters

High-quality casters are less likely to experience this phenomenon than their low-quality counterparts. Casters shouldn’t flutter if they are properly designed. Fluttering is a sign of poor craftsmanship. When properly designed, casters should roll smoothly in the direction in which they are pushed. If you’re worried about caster flutter, choose high-quality casters from a reputable manufacturer.

Keep in mind that the weight of a caster will affect its risk of fluttering. Heavy casters are less likely to flutter than lightweight casters. As a result, you may want to choose casters made of a heavy and solid material to prevent them from fluttering.


You can lubricate casters to minimize the risk of fluttering. Frame-enclosed casters may flutter if they aren’t lubricated. The lack of lubrication creates friction between the wheels and the frame. As you attempt to push the casters, they may spin side to side rather than rolling smoothly in the same direction. Spraying a small amount of lubricant within the frame will often prevent this from happening. Lubrication will reduce friction while allowing the casters to roll smoothly.

Clean Regularly

Don’t forget to clean your casters regularly. Casters can attract dirt and debris. After all, they roll on the ground — and there’s typically a lot of dirt and debris on the ground. Failure to clean your casters may result in the buildup of dirt and debris to the point where they no longer roll smoothly. Instead of rolling smoothly in the same direction in which they are pushed, they may flutter side to side. You can prevent this from happening by cleaning your casters regularly.