How to Clean a Mesh Office Chair

how to clean a mesh office chair


Mesh office chairs are highly regarded for their ergonomic design and the breathability they offer, making them an ideal choice for both bustling corporate environments and quiet home offices. However, the very features that make them so appealing—like the intricate mesh fabric that facilitates air circulation—also make them susceptible to accumulating dust, debris, and occasional spills.

This can detract from their appearance and functionality over time. Therefore, it's crucial to maintain the cleanliness of your mesh office chair not only to preserve its sleek look but also to extend its lifespan and ensure it continues to offer optimal support and comfort. In this detailed guide, we will equip you with the necessary steps and tips to effectively clean your mesh office chair, ensuring it remains a comfortable and attractive part of your office setup.

From routine dusting to dealing with more stubborn stains, we cover all the essentials to help you maintain your chair in pristine condition.

Understanding Mesh Office Chairs

Pros of Mesh Office Chairs:

  1. Breathability: The primary advantage of a mesh office chair is its high level of breathability. The open weave mesh pattern allows air to flow freely, which helps in keeping the user cool and comfortable even after prolonged periods of sitting.

  2. Low Maintenance: Mesh is generally easier to maintain than other materials like leather or fabric upholstery. It resists stains and does not require frequent cleaning.

  3. Durability: High-quality mesh is durable and resistant to wear, maintaining its shape and appearance over time.

  4. Aesthetic Appeal: Mesh chairs have a modern and sleek look that suits contemporary office environments.

Cons of Mesh Office Chairs:

  1. Comfort Variability: While mesh chairs are ergonomic, the level of cushioning provided can vary. Some users might find mesh less cushioned and softer than traditional upholstered chairs, which can affect comfort.

  2. Limited Padding: Mesh does not offer much in terms of padding, which might be a drawback for those who prefer a softer, more plush seating experience.

  3. Wear and Tear: Depending on the quality of the mesh, it can sag over time or become misshapen if not properly cared for.

The Fabric and Structure:

The fabric used in mesh office chairs is designed to be tightly stretched across a frame to provide a firm, supportive seat and back. This setup is intended to support proper posture and reduce stress on the spine and lower back during extended periods of sitting. The mesh's elasticity offers a responsive seating surface that adapts to the user's movements, promoting better ergonomics and reducing the risk of discomfort.

Moreover, the overall design of mesh office chairs often incorporates adjustable features like lumbar support, tilt mechanisms, and adjustable armrests, enhancing the ergonomic benefits and allowing users to customize their seating experience.

Mesh office chairs offer a blend of functionality, style, and comfort, making them a suitable choice for many office settings. However, like any office furniture, they come with their own set of pros and cons that should be considered based on individual needs and preferences. Regular cleaning and maintenance are essential to ensure that these chairs continue to provide support and comfort while maintaining their aesthetic appeal. For more information regarding our mesh fabrics, feel free to check out our Options Library, where we provide an in depth look into all of our mesh fabrics.  

Pre-Cleaning Preparation for Your Mesh Office Chair

Before you dive into the actual cleaning of your mesh office chair, it's important to prepare adequately to ensure an effective and safe cleaning process. Proper preparation not only simplifies the cleaning task but also helps protect the chair and ensures that it is cleaned thoroughly without damage.

Gather Your Cleaning Supplies

Firstly, assembling the right cleaning supplies is crucial. Here’s a list of items you’ll typically need:

  • Vacuum Cleaner with a Soft Brush Attachment: This is essential for removing dust and loose debris without damaging the mesh fabric.

  • Mild Detergent or Soap: Choose a gentle cleaner to avoid harming the mesh material. Harsh chemicals can degrade synthetic fibers and cause the mesh to break down over time.

  • Soft Cloths or Sponges: For applying cleaning solutions and wiping down surfaces.

  • Bucket of Warm Water: To mix with the mild detergent for creating a cleaning solution.

  • Soft-Bristled Brush (optional): Helpful for tackling more stubborn areas of dirt or stains without causing damage.

  • Dry Towel: For drying the chair after cleaning.

Check Manufacturer’s Cleaning Instructions

Before cleaning your mesh office chair, it's vital to consult the manufacturer’s guidelines. Different manufacturers might use different types of mesh and frame materials, which can require specific care instructions. Adhering to these guidelines will help you avoid any actions that could void warranties or damage the chair. 

Prepare the Cleaning Area

Choose an appropriate area to clean your chair, ideally a well-ventilated space or even outdoors if the weather permits. This prevents the buildup of fumes from cleaning products and allows the chair to dry more quickly after cleaning.

By thoroughly preparing before you start the cleaning process, you ensure that you have all necessary tools at hand and that you are cleaning your mesh office chair in a way that will extend its life and functionality, rather than causing potential harm.

Basic Cleaning Steps for Your Mesh Office Chair

Basic cleaning steps for cleaning mesh chair


Cleaning your mesh office chair regularly is crucial for maintaining its appearance and functionality. The basic cleaning steps outlined here will help remove dust, dirt, and light stains, ensuring that your chair remains in optimal condition.

Step 1: Vacuum the Chair

Start by thoroughly vacuuming your mesh office chair to remove any loose dust and debris. Use the soft brush attachment on your vacuum cleaner to gently go over the entire chair, including the mesh back and seat, as well as any fabric parts and crevices where dust can accumulate. This step helps prevent dirt from embedding deeper into the fabric during the wet cleaning process.

Step 2: Wipe Down with a Damp Cloth

After vacuuming, lightly dampen a soft cloth with water or a mild cleaning solution (as per the manufacturer’s instructions or a mix of mild detergent with warm water). Gently wipe down the mesh and any other parts of the chair to remove surface dirt and minor stains. Be sure to wring out the cloth well to avoid saturating the mesh, as excessive moisture can damage the material.

Step 3: Spot Cleaning Stains

For more stubborn stains, apply a small amount of mild detergent directly to the stain or use a specialized fabric cleaner recommended for office chairs. Using a soft cloth or sponge, gently dab the stained area. Do not rub harshly, as this can push the stain deeper into the fabric or damage the mesh. Allow the cleaning solution to sit on the stain for a few minutes before wiping it away with a damp cloth.

Step 4: Rinse with a Clean, Damp Cloth

Once you've addressed any stains and the overall chair has been cleaned, use a clean, damp cloth to go over the chair once more. This step ensures that no soap residue remains on the mesh or other parts of the chair. Residue can attract more dirt and may lead to a buildup that degrades the material over time.

Step 5: Dry the Chair

Finally, use a dry towel to gently blot any excess moisture from the chair. Allow the chair to air dry in a well-ventilated area before using it again. Avoid placing the chair in direct sunlight or near heat sources, as this can damage the material or cause it to fade.

These basic cleaning steps, when performed regularly, can significantly extend the life of your mesh office chair and keep it looking clean and professional. Remember, consistency is key in maintaining the quality and comfort of your office furniture.

Deep Cleaning Process for Your Mesh Office Chair


For a more thorough clean, especially if your mesh office chair has accumulated significant dirt or stubborn stains over time, follow these deep cleaning steps. This process involves more intensive cleaning techniques that go beyond the regular maintenance routine.

Step 1: Prepare a Cleaning Solution

Mix a mild detergent with warm water in a bucket to create a cleaning solution. Ensure the detergent is gentle to avoid damaging the mesh fabric. For tougher stains, you can consider using a cleaning solution recommended by the chair manufacturer or one specifically designed for office furniture.

Step 2: Detach Removable Parts

If possible, remove any detachable parts of the chair, such as cushions, armrest covers, or adjustable lumbar supports. This will allow you to clean these parts separately and reach areas of the chair that are usually hidden, providing a more comprehensive clean.

Step 3: Scrub the Mesh Gently

Using a soft-bristled brush, gently scrub the mesh with the cleaning solution. Work in sections and use circular motions to lift dirt and stains without stretching or tearing the mesh. Pay special attention to areas that are frequently touched or come into contact with the body, as these tend to accumulate more grime.

Step 4: Clean the Non-Mesh Parts

Apply the same cleaning solution to a cloth and wipe down non-mesh parts of the chair, such as the frame, arms, and legs. If these parts are made of metal or wood, consider using a cleaner appropriate for those materials to prevent corrosion or damage.

Step 5: Rinse Thoroughly

After scrubbing, rinse the mesh and any other cleaned parts with a cloth dampened in clean water. It’s important to remove all traces of the cleaning solution to avoid leaving a residue that could attract more dirt or degrade the material.

Step 6: Dry the Chair Completely

Use a dry towel to blot the chair gently, removing as much moisture as possible. Allow the chair to air dry in a well-ventilated area. Ensure the chair is completely dry before reassembling any removed parts or using it again. This prevents moisture from becoming trapped in the chair, which could lead to mold or mildew growth.

Step 7: Reassemble the Chair

Once all parts of the chair are dry, reattach any components that were removed. Make sure everything is secure and correctly in place to maintain the structural integrity and ergonomic features of the chair.

This deep cleaning process should be conducted periodically, depending on the frequency of use and exposure to dirt. It’s a great way to refresh your mesh office chair and extend its lifespan, ensuring it continues to provide comfort and support in your workspace.

Cleaning the Non-Mesh Parts of Your Mesh Office Chair

While the mesh fabric is a crucial part of your office chair, it's equally important to clean the non-mesh parts to ensure the entire chair maintains its function and appearance. Here’s how to tackle these components effectively.

Step 1: Identify the Materials

Different parts of your office chair may be made from a variety of materials including metal, plastic, vinyl, or wood. Identifying these materials will help you choose the correct cleaning products and methods, avoiding damage to these surfaces.

Step 2: Cleaning Plastic and Metal Components

For plastic and metal parts, such as the base and frame of the chair, use a mild soap solution or a dedicated cleaner suitable for these materials. Apply the solution with a soft cloth and gently wipe down each part. For tougher grime, a non-abrasive sponge can be used to scrub lightly. Always ensure that no water drips into the mechanical components like the adjustment levers.

Step 3: Caring for Wood and Vinyl Parts

If your chair includes wood or vinyl components, use cleaners specifically formulated for these materials. Wood cleaners help maintain the sheen without damaging the finish, while vinyl cleaners remove dirt and body oils without leaving residues that could degrade the material over time. Apply these cleaners with a soft cloth, gently rubbing the surfaces to lift dirt.

Step 4: Wipe Down Armrests and Other Accessories

Armrests, whether they are made of fabric, leather, or plastic, should be cleaned based on their material. For fabric and leather, use appropriate upholstery or leather cleaners. For plastic, a damp cloth with mild soap will suffice. Make sure to clean underneath and around the armrests as they often collect dust and debris.

Step 5: Clean the Wheels and Base

The wheels and base of the chair can accumulate a lot of dust and hair, especially if used on carpeted floors. Turn the chair over to access the wheels more easily. Remove any hair and debris tangled in the wheels with tweezers or a small brush. Wipe the wheels with a damp cloth and mild cleaner. Dry thoroughly to prevent rust or other damage to the metal components.

Step 6: Final Inspection and Drying

After cleaning all non-mesh parts, do a final inspection to ensure all areas are clean and no residue remains. Use a dry cloth to wipe down everything once more to remove any excess moisture. Allow the chair to air dry completely in a well-ventilated area before using it again.

By regularly cleaning both the mesh and non-mesh parts of your office chair, you help ensure it remains a comfortable, functional, and attractive piece of your office environment. This thorough approach to maintenance can greatly extend the life of the chair and enhance your daily comfort and productivity.

Preventative Measures and Maintenance Tips for Your Mesh Office Chair

Maintaining your mesh office chair involves more than just regular cleaning; it also requires attention to everyday use and environment to extend its life and functionality. Here are some practical tips for preventative care and maintenance.

Regular vacuuming is essential to keep your mesh chair free from dust and other particles that can embed themselves into the fabric. A weekly vacuum with a soft brush attachment can help maintain the integrity of the mesh without causing any abrasion.

When it comes to spills and stains, immediate action is crucial. The sooner you blot out a spill with a clean, dry cloth, the less likely it will set into the fabric, making it harder to clean later. Always avoid rubbing the spill, as this can work the liquid deeper into the mesh fibers.

The choice of cleaning agents is also vital in the upkeep of your chair. Harsh chemicals and abrasive cleaners should be avoided as they can degrade the mesh material and potentially strip away color. Opt for mild detergents and make sure to thoroughly rinse any cleaning solution to prevent residue build-up, which can attract more dirt over time.

In addition to these cleaning tips, physical placement and handling of the chair also play a significant role. Direct sunlight can be detrimental, as UV rays can fade and weaken the mesh material over time. If possible, position your chair away from direct sunlight or use curtains or blinds to mitigate exposure.

Furthermore, rotating your chair periodically can help in even wear distribution, especially if the chair is used extensively. This involves adjusting the chair's position or the user's seating orientation to avoid excessive wear on any one part of the chair.

By following these maintenance tips, you can not only keep your mesh office chair clean but also enhance its durability and functionality, ensuring that it continues to provide comfort and support in your working environment.


Maintaining your mesh office chair is crucial not only for keeping it visually appealing but also for ensuring it continues to provide optimal support and comfort. Regular cleaning, coupled with careful use and preventative maintenance, plays a pivotal role in extending the life of your chair. By following the detailed steps outlined—from basic cleaning to deep cleaning, and addressing the non-mesh parts—we've provided you with a comprehensive guide to help you care for your chair effectively.

Moreover, adopting routine maintenance practices like vacuuming, immediate stain removal, and avoiding direct sunlight can prevent common issues and reduce the need for more intensive cleaning. This proactive approach not only preserves the ergonomic benefits of your mesh office chair but also contributes to a more pleasant and productive workspace.

Remember, a well-maintained office chair can significantly enhance your daily work experience, promoting better posture, reducing discomfort, and maintaining the professional aesthetics of your office. Invest a little time regularly to keep your chair in top condition, and it will serve you well for years to come. 

If you are looking for high quality ergonomic mesh back chairs, make sure to check out our Affirm Series as well as our Yes Series. Both offer extensive ergonomic options and features so you can find the chair that fits your needs the best. 


What are the disadvantages of a mesh chair?

Mesh chairs can sometimes lack the padding and cushioning provided by traditional upholstered chairs, which might lead to discomfort during prolonged use. Additionally, poor-quality mesh can sag over time and may not offer the same level of support as when new.

Why do people like mesh office chairs?

People appreciate mesh office chairs for their breathability, which keeps the user cool and comfortable. They also offer a modern aesthetic and are generally lightweight and easy to move around, making them a practical choice for many office environments.

Are mesh-backed chairs good?

Yes, mesh-backed chairs are good for those who seek comfort and support without the heat buildup typically associated with traditional padded chairs. They promote better air circulation and can provide tailored support through tension adjustment features.

How long do mesh chairs last?

The lifespan of a mesh chair depends on the quality of its materials and construction, but a well-made mesh chair can last between 5 to 10 years with proper care and maintenance.

Why are mesh chairs so popular?

Mesh chairs are popular due to their ergonomic benefits, including improved breathability and adjustable support features. They also fit well in contemporary office designs and are available in various styles to suit different tastes and budgets.


Hadar Ziv
VP Operations | OfficeMasterChairs.com
Leading Expert in Ergonomic Seating Solutions
"At OfficeMasterChairs.com, we've been transforming workspaces into comfortable, productive environments for over 15 years. Our mission is to help you achieve the perfect balance of comfort and productivity."
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