BIFMA safety/performance standard for general-purpose office chairs approved

by Brianna Crandall — March 10, 2017 — An update to the Business and Institutional Furniture Manufacturers Association (BIFMA) office seating safety and performance standard was approved by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) in February. The 2017 edition of ANSI/BIFMA X5.1 General-Purpose Office Chairs — Tests is now the approved standard for product testing in this classification.

Over a period of nearly three years, the BIFMA Subcommittee for Seating Standards conducted a series of reviews of the draft proposals to ensure the tests were sound.  The main revisions are:

  • Tests are based on the 95th percentile male now weighing 275 lbs.
  • Testing considers flexible materials for the backrest strength test.
  • The standard now offers a new equipment-locating option for front-stability testing.

These revisions as well as several other changes ensure that the ANSI/BIFMA General-Purpose Office Chairs standard is the most relevant product test standard for this seating category, says BIFMA.

The X5.1-2017 national consensus standard defines the specific tests, laboratory equipment, conditions of test, and recommended minimum levels to be used in the testing and evaluation of the safety, durability, and structural adequacy of general-purpose office chairs.

Copies of the new ANSI/BIFMA X5.1 General-Purpose Office Chairs — Tests are available from BIFMA immediately. This and other standards may be ordered from the BIFMA Online Store.