If you are opening a new restaurant or redesigning an existing establishment, the furniture you choose is of the utmost importance. While the style of furnishing you select and finding it at an affordable price are obviously important when choosing your restaurant’s furniture, one must not underestimate the importance of the furniture’s durability. Many commercial furniture suppliers do not provide items that are built to withstand the wear and tear of everyday commercial use in a busy bar or restaurant. No matter how good a price you find for restaurant furniture, you will end up losing money in the long run if it has to be replaced every one or two years. The following are some tips to finding restaurant furniture that is built to withstand the rigors of everyday commercial use.
1) Ask your vendor what makes his furniture built to last.
A distributor that takes pride in the products he is selling will not only be able to answer what specific design points will contribute to the life of his furniture, he will be happy to answer such questions. When buying furniture you should ask how much wood is actually used, how thick are the cross sections and are all the piece’s pressure points reinforced.
2) Make sure the furniture comes with a warranty
If a restaurant furniture vendor knows his items are well-made he will offer buyers a warranty. A vendor who knows his goods are finely crafted will have the confidence to warrant furniture free from defects for at least 2 years.
3) Check for compliance tests
Furniture that has passed independent quality tests ensuring that it meets industry standards is much more likely to last. Ask your vendor what kind of tests its furniture passed if any. An example of quality testing can be seen at the Business and Institutional Furniture Manufacturer’s Association (BIFMA) which is a non-profit, non-biased organization.
4) Opt for furniture that comes already assembled
Restaurant furniture that does not come fully assembled is not only a hassle and a waste of time, it can also be an indication that the furniture is not made to withstand commercial use. Furniture should come glued and screwed by professionals in factory conditions. The only thing that can come un-attached are the chairs and bar stools seats which have no real impact on stability and can be easily attached by you. Getting the seats un-attached can save some extra money without letting you compromise on the quality of the furniture.
5) Ask where and how the items are manufactured
Many restaurant furniture companies import their merchandise. They are often not aware of the manufacturing process of the furniture they are selling. Choose vendors who are the sole manufacturers of their own merchandise and can tell you what materials were used in the making of their furniture. This means that even if the furniture was made outside of the US, the manufacturing process and the items’ quality have been closely inspected by the seller/manufacturer. It is also advisable to buy from a furniture vendor that specializes in commercial furniture rather than retail.