Essential Considerations When Selecting Between Rigid and Swivel Industrial Castors

Although distribution facilities have embraced automation, they still use utility carts to move items in warehouses safely and efficiently. That said, a utility cart is incomplete without castors, which can be rigid or swivel. Notably, rigid and swivel castors perform the same function, but each has its unique advantages. This article highlights essential considerations when choosing between rigid and swivel industrial castors.

Facility Size/Layout

The layout and size of an industrial facility largely determine the type of castors to buy. A spacious facility has enough room for utility carts to move about while avoiding obstacles along the way. Rigid casters are suitable for facilities with ample space because you do not have to worry about maneuvering through tight spaces or closely stationed obstacles. On the other hand, you might struggle to push or pull carts with rigid castors in small facilities because wheels move in two directions only; forward and backward. Swivel castors work excellently in small facilities since you can change a cart's direction with little effort. Another thing you must keep in mind is that swivel castors are the best choice for bustling facilities since staff must maneuver between obstacles constantly.

Floor Conditions

The state of the floor on which utility carts ride also dictates the type of castors to purchase. Industrial facilities with uneven floors present a challenge to staff using utility carts with rigid casters. Since the castors move in a straight line, you must watch where you are going carefully. If you do not, the castors will hit floor obstacles or get stuck in tiny potholes, especially if pushing or pulling utility carts outdoors. Instead of rigid castors, use carts with swivel castors if a facility's floor is rugged. However, fixed castors move smoothly on floors in excellent condition. Therefore, you do not have to worry about looking straight ahead for imperfections on a floor.


Proper castor maintenance is critical for optimal performance and longevity. However, how much time are you willing to put towards castor maintenance? For an industrial facility with hundreds of utility carts, maintaining castors can be costly and time-consuming. Therefore, you should only have a few carts fitted with swivel castors and a majority equipped with rigid casters. The former don't have moving parts, making them low maintenance. However, if you do not have an issue with maintenance, then swivel castors are the best bet. Notably, the swivel section requires regular greasing and should be protected from debris.