Chair glides are designed to help protect the flooring that the furniture is sitting on. Hardwood flooring can be marked and scratched by the repetitive motion of chairs scrapping back and forth. By placing glides on the bottom of the chairs the marking of the hard wood floor can be prevented. The best type of chair glide depends on the type of use the furniture will receive.
Felt glides are good at reducing the marks on the floor from the sliding motion of furniture. The adhesive backing on the felt glides allows them to be adhered to the bottom of the chair legs. The drawback to felt glides is that they can move off of the centre of the leg over time with frequent use. If the felt glide is not positioned properly on the leg it won't be able to protect the floor from marking. Furniture that is used only occasionally is less likely to have this problem.
PVC glides are a small piece of plastic that has a tack like point on one side of the glide. The tack portion is pressed into the bottom of the wood chair. This type of chair glide won't move out of position on the bottom of the chair leg because of the tack holding it in place. This type of glide may not be the best to use in areas that have hardwood floor with dark finishes though. As the glide wears it may leave thin layers of plastic on the top of the hardwood floors finish. This residue is rarely seen on light coloured hardwood floors but may be an eye sore on dark coloured finishes.
Spring Loaded Glides
Spring loaded glides are attached to the bottom of the chair with a screw that goes through the base of the glide and into the chair. The rest of the glide is then snapped into the base of the glide. The spring inside the glide helps to level the chair and prevent wobbling and as a result reduces the potential dents that could appear in the floor. The portion of the glide that touches the floor is made of a hard plastic that can be matched in colour to the chair so that the glide isn't noticeable.
Combo glides take the durability of PVC glides and the softness of felt glides and combines them. These glides are pressed into the bottom of the chair leg and secured in place with a tack like end. The PVC portion of the glide rests against the bottom of the chair leg. The other side is covered with felt that protects any colour floor from scratches or marring that can occur with other glides or no chair glides at all. The floor must be kept swept with this type of glide though. If dirt is allowed to collect in the felt part of the glide it will become a mini sanding pad instead of the soft felt pad it is supposed to be.