Gas Lift Cylinder for Office Chair

10 Simple Steps on How to Replace Gas Cylinder on Office Chair

The gas cylinder regulates the height of your office chair with the use of pressurized air. And what many people don’t know is that gas cylinders can run out of gas or they can get worn out. And when it does, your chair can sag more. Thus there is a need to replace the gas cylinder of your chair when the need arises.

A malfunctioning gas cylinder can make your chair feel several years old. And in this article, we’ll teach you how to replace your gas cylinder. It might sound intimidating, but trust us, it’s quite the opposite! 

Replacing the gas cylinder

First off you have to remove the gas cylinder so that we can replace them. 

  1. Gather the materials first. We will be needing a rubber mallet and a pipe wrench. We also need blankets or newspapers.
  2. This particular method will warrant the replacement of your existing cylinder. So keep in mind that your old cylinder might get damaged during the procedure.
  3. Get your blanket or newspaper and place it on top of the floor or your working surface. It should be in a flat and leveled area. 
  4. Place your chair upside down, with the bottom part of the chair facing you. Make sure that it sits on top of the blanket so that the blanket will protect your working surface.
  5. Find the base of the cylinder. It protrudes just a bit outside the base of the chair.
  6. Grab your mallet or hammer and hit the base of the cylinder with it. Doing this will release the base of the chair so that the entire cylinder will be exposed.
  7. Press the gas lift so that the cylinder will extend fully. 
  8. Grab your pipe wrench and twist the cylinder with it to knock it off. Any type of wrench will help release the cylinder from the chair, but it will require you to put more pressure on the wrench. So save yourself from extra work and use a pipe wrench instead.
  9. Grab your new cylinder. Put it onto the base of the chair. It uses pressure fit to make a snug connection so you really don’t have to hammer it in.
  10. Then pop the base back to the other end of the cylinder. The pressure will bolt the cylinder back in the proper position again.

It’s quite easy and you don’t even need help to do it. Even those who are new to DIY repairs will be able to replace a gas cylinder of their office chair.

Are all gas cylinders the same

Not really, there are two types of gas cylinders for office chairs, these are the pneumatic and the hydraulic gas cylinders. The former is more often used in office chairs than we have today. And how do they differ? Well, they have a bit of difference. Let’s see below.

How a pneumatic gas cylinder works

Pneumatic gas cylinders work similarly to a bike pump does. As the pump is pushed down, the air inside the tube is compressed. Then that compressed air is forced out of the nozzle and directed to the bike’s tires. 

The only difference between a bike pump and a pneumatic gas cylinder is that the latter has more gas inside the cylinder. And the gas cylinders of office chairs are filled with pressurized nitrogen instead of the simple air. 

So when you lift the lever for the seat height adjustment, the air is released and it pushes and lifts the chair up. The chair can be lowered by accessing the same lever. But this is due to your body weight as you sit on the chair and pull the lever at the same time. 

How a hydraulic gas cylinder works

Hydraulic gas cylinders make use of two chambers instead of one. And from the word itself, hydraulic means fluid or liquid. So instead of nitrogen, one of the chambers contains fluids. Then the second chamber has a piston. 

It uses the same technology as pneumatic gas cylinders in lifting the chair to a higher position. The main difference, however, is that a hydraulic gas cylinder can bear more load. But the pneumatic cylinder is a cleaner and safer option. That’s why you will rarely see an office chair using a hydraulic gas cylinder.

How often do you need to replace your gas cylinder

It actually depends on the use and abuse of your office chair. How often do you adjust the seat? How old is the char? These are just two factors that will affect the longevity of your gas cylinder.

But one thing’s for sure, as the chair starts to sink, it could mean either two things. One. your gas cylinder warrants replacement. Or two, the spring mechanism of the chair is faulty. 

Can you re-gas a pneumatic gas cylinder

It’s not impossible to do so, but you’ll rarely find people doing that. And even manufacturers recommend replacing the cylinder instead of re-gassing it. Or you can also buy a new office chair altogether. In addition, a new cylinder will help your office chair perform better rather than just regassing it. 

Why do you need to replace the gas cylinder of your office chair

Whether it’s an old chair or a faulty gas cylinder, a sinking chair will be of no use. And it will be irritating to work on a chair that keeps on sinking, isn’t it? That’s why there is no choice but to replace a worn-out gas cylinder. Either you replace the gas cylinder of your old office chair or buy a new office chair altogether. 

Can office chairs explode

This is an urban legend that can still cause a bit of fear in some people. Since pneumatic gas cylinders use pressurized nitrogen to lift the chair, there’s a danger in it exploding right? Well, because of the gas yes. But hold our horses! It doesn’t mean that you have to fear sitting on your office chair every day! Here’s why.

Office chairs are manufactured in such a way that it’s still safe to use despite the gas cylinder loaded with nitrogen. But there is still a minimal risk. To keep yourself safe, avoid these instances. These conditions will put an office chair at a high risk of exploding. 

  • Use of regular air instead of nitrogen

Unscrupulous manufacturers often use ordinary air instead of nitrogen in the gas cylinder. So shouldn’t that be better? Not really, it’s quite the opposite. Regular air contains oxygen. And over time, oxygen causes rusting. So when the chair gets old, the pneumatic gas cylinder will rust. Thus, there will be a leak and this is what causes the explosion. 

  •  No strict  safety standards

There are strict safety standards manufacturers have to adhere to in making gas cylinders for their office chairs. And in many parts of the world, the government enforces these standards seriously. So the risk is higher if the office chair is manufactured in another country where there are no strict safety standards.

  • Extreme abuse

Even a decent and quality office chair can explode if subjected to extreme abuse. So what do we mean by abuse? If you deliberately dropped a heavy load on the chair, it has a high risk of exploding. And also jumping up and down on an office chair as if you’re a child on a trampoline will also put it at very high risk of exploding. So just use the chair as it’s intended to and nothing bad will happen to you. 

The use of gas cylinders is now a norm in modern office chairs. This technology helps you change the seat height easily. And it’s all about convenience these days. But if you’re still wary of your office chair exploding despite avoiding the circumstances that we have listed above, the next option is to buy an office chair that doesn’t make use of any gas cylinders. 

Final Say

Changing the gas cylinder of an office chair is quite easy and simple. But if you don’t have even an inch of a handyman in your veins, you can always ask for help.

Also, the risk of an office chair exploding is very low. It is mostly possible if you buy from unknown sellers. That’s why you have to buy from reliable brands and sellers. 

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