How to Fix a Walking Rocking Chair

Rocking chairs are prized possessions in many homes for their comfort and practical uses.
Rocking may be the most primal human motion. A rocking chair makes a great stress-reduction device or nursing chair; it helps soothe unhappy babies, children and adults. However, a rocking chair can slide on some floors. If the rocking chair walks as it rocks or slips along the floor, solve the problem with simple solutions.

Step 1

Turn the rocker upside down on a rug. Look at how it is constructed. Feel the supports to see if anything is loose. Examine the hardware, which usually is bolts and nuts. Use a wrench or pliers to tighten loose nuts. Lightly spray any springs or moving metal parts with lubricant.

Step 2

Put the rocker right side up in the place you wish to use it. Sit in it and rock. Move on to the next step if it still walks.

Step 3

Turn the rocking chair upside down. Use a soft cloth barely damp with rubbing alcohol to wipe the rockers, which are the parts of the chair that make contact with the floor. Wipe along the most worn area where the rockers touch the floor.

Step 4

Measure the width of the rockers. Use the rocker measurements to select gripper pads. The pads are made out of vinyl and can be cut to fit--get two rectangular strips, or one strip if the rockers are narrow.

Step 5

Use scissors or a utility knife to cut the gripper pads to fit the width of the rockers. Remove the backing and press firmly to the rails.

Step 6

Turn the rocking chair right side up and test the rocking motion. If there still is some slipping or walking, use an area rug or non-slip rubber mat under the rocking chair to provide additional traction. Use a pad under the rug to prevent it from bunching up or sliding.

Things You Will Need

  • Wrench or pliers
  • Lubricant spray
  • Soft cloth
  • Rubbing alcohol
  • Measuring tape or ruler
  • Notepad
  • Pen
  • Gripper pads (anti-slip floor protection)
  • Scissors or utility knife


  • If there is any grease on the rockers, clean them with wood soap. Let them dry before applying gripper pads.


  • Contact the manufacturer first if the rocking chair still is under warranty. Any repair attempts or modifications could void your warranty.
  • Seek professional advice on antique or vintage furniture to reduce the risk of damaging the furniture or its value.

About the Author

Gryphon Adams began publishing in 1985. He contributed to the "San Francisco Chronicle" and "Dark Voices." Adams writes about a variety of topics, including teaching, floral design, landscaping and home furnishings. Adams is a certified health educator and a massage practitioner. He received his Master of Fine Arts at San Francisco State University.