Single Motor Vs. Dual Motor Standing Desks: Which Is Better

Update:05 Dec 2020

If you’re in the market for a two leg standing desk, you’ve probably noticed that there are two different motor configurations for these desks. The first option is a single motor system and the second a dual motor system. Naturally, you have probably wondered what the main differences are. Surely, two motors have to be better than one, right? The truth, the answer isn’t that simple. For the most part, we really have to look at the motors being used for each desk to better understand the advantages or disadvantages that may exist between desks. In this post we will cover the different things to consider so you better understand if a brand’s single motor or dual motor desk is a better fit for your needs.

Desk Design Differences

When you look at the major design differences from most single motor vs. dual motors, the first thing that stands out is the motor itself. Single motor desk designs always have a motor or a motor cover that is visible. Because two leg desk designs share the motor, they will each use a hex rod driven system to move each of the legs simultaneously.

While most would think two motors should be stronger than a single motor, this isn’t always true.Understanding if a single motor or dual motor standing desk is better isn’t a simple question to answer.There are a lot of variables that are in play and which is better depends on the specific motors that are used. You’ve likely heard the saying that it’s more about quality than quantity. That is also true with motors used in standing desks. While some dual motor desks outperform single motors, this isn’t the case across the board.

How reliable a motor is likely comes down to the quality of the motor itself. There are plenty of lower quality motors being manufactured for low cost electric standing desks. Through our reviews we have found that many of these have overlapping issues. A lot of these issues are linked to the worm drives and gear systems used. These include over greased worm drives and gears and/or exposed worm drives and gears. Inside the motors, there are also differences on how well the wires are wrapped around the motor core and the quality of the magnets used.Some brands have attempted to say that two motors are more reliable than one. The problem with this is that an electric standing desk with two motors actually needs both to function properly. If one of the two motors dies, the desk will only go up on one side. So technically speaking, you now have two opportunities for a motor to fail and your desk not to work. This really isn’t meant to scare you; again it all goes back to the quality of the motor. The higher the quality of the motor, the less likely it will be to fail.

The second consideration to make is that most Adjustable Desk Manufacturers that use two motors end up using a more compact motor than those who use one. While dual motor desks might be able to evenly displace the weight of a desk amongst each motor, they tend to be less powerful than a larger single motor. Desk manufacturers choose to go with smaller motors because they are almost always designed to hide within the desk frame. Single motor systems that I have seen in the market have one external motor system. This makes it easier for manufacturers to use a larger motor.