Bar stools come in all shapes and sizes, with backs, without backs, with swivel mechanisms, and sometimes with various other design features including arms and footrest rails. But if the height of your bar stool doesn’t match the height of the counter or bar it is used with, you’re going to lose customers. Exactly the same applies to restaurant tables and chairs, including diner chairs. Here’s how to choose the right height bar stool.

Common Heights for Bar Stools and Chairs

A good rule of thumb to use when estimating how high stools and chairs should be is 12 inches lower than the top of the table, counter, or bar. This provides enough space for legs under the counter. If the stool is any higher, it may be uncomfortable and the customer may be perched above counter height. If there are much more than 12 inches between the seat of the bar stool and countertop, chances are it will be too low for any average-height or short person.

So which comes first, the bar or countertop, or the bar stool?

Manufacturers of bar stools and restaurant chairs generally have industry-standard heights for different uses, for instance, 30 inches for bars, and 24 inches for lower counters in restaurants. These are made for use with bar counters that are commonly 42 inches high, and with other counters in both restaurants and home kitchens, that are about 36 inches high. By comparison, standard-height tables, whether used in restaurants, diners, or in homes, are generally between 28 and 30 inches high.

If the bar or counter has already been designed and installed, and it is not a standard height, you may need to opt for custom-designed bar stools or bar stools that are adjustable in height.

Benefits of Different Height Bar Stools

While 24-inch high counter stools are commonly used where customers will eat and drink, higher 30-inch bar stools are more common in bars or pubs where people go to drink, and maybe eat snack food or hearty pub grub.

Both height bar stools are used in more casual environments than standard height chairs and tables. They take up less space than most chairs and, for this reason, give an illusion of spaciousness. Popular 30 inch-high bar stools used with 42 inch-high bar counters enable some customers to stand at the counter without having to bend down to talk to those who are seated. This can be very useful at peak times as more people can be accommodated.

All American Bar Stools from Budget Bar Stools

BudgetBarStools.com specializes in high quality, budget priced commercial bar stools and diner chairs for restaurants, bars, and diners – in fact, any commercial operation that sells food and beverages. All materials, including the steel, wood, and vinyl used for upholstery, are made in the US, and there is a huge range of designs and colors available.

Whether you want bar stools with backs or without backs, for bar seating or for counters or raised bistro or café tables, we have an excellent selection of products to meet your needs. Custom designs are also available. Contact us today to discuss your needs.