How wide should desk drawers be?

Are you puzzling over the optimal width for your desk drawers? Let's demystify this conundrum in our handy guide that focuses on the width aspect of desk drawers. Accurate dimensions are essential to ensuring your work desk effectively caters to your daily occupational needs.

Point Of Desk Drawers

A desk drawer serves as a storage box that seamlessly integrates into your desk design. It's tailored for placing different items like documents, stationery, and personal belongings.

With a simple pull, it moves towards you, making accessibility to stored items a breeze while maintaining a clutter-free desk surface.

Can You Add Drawers To A Desk?

Certainly! Individuals can either purchase pre-constructed under-desk drawer units such as the Desky Minimal Under Desk Drawer or embark on a DIY project to make their own using freestanding drawers on the side of the desk as an excellent non-permanent addition. 

Necessity Of Drawers For Desk

A common preconception is that a desk must include drawers in order to provide storage. However, this isn't necessarily true. Efficient storage is not exclusive to desks possessing drawers - ample storage can be created utilizing the existing space your desk offers.

Tricks like desktop organizers, hanging file folders, or wall shelving can maximize your storage capabilities without the need for drawers.

Ideal Work Desk Width

When examining desk widths, standard office desks usually hover approximately 47 inches, with variations often moving in 7-8 inch increments. For optimal user comfort and the best utilisation of space, we'd recommend considering desk widths of approximately 39 inches. Desks as narrow as 31 inches can be workable, but this may start to feel restrictive.

How Wide Should Desk Drawers Be

How wide should your desk drawers be?

Ensuring that your desk drawer has adequate width is pivotal for its usage. Bottom drawers should hold at least a standard letter-size paper lengthwise, which sets the minimum width at around 12 inches.

If the drawer is situated over the knee space, depth becomes the restricting factor—typically no more than 4 inches to avoid interfering with the person's knees.

How To Make a Computer Table with Drawers

Making a computer table with drawers follows similar steps as making a drawer. The major difference lies in the construction of the table itself before the drawer installation step.

Ensure that the table design can accommodate the drawers and that the desk height conforms to ergonomic standards for a computer workstation. An adjustable sit stand desk, such as the ones in Desky's collection of Standing Desks, can be a good starting point.

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Recommended Width for Built-In Desks

With built-in desks, dimensions may be more flexible depending on individual needs and room layout. Commonly, these desks have widths that range from 48 to 72 inches.

Additionally, depths span between 24 and 30 inches, and the height tends to fall between 29 and 30 inches. Every dimension is critical for the ergonomics of the desk and personal comfort while working. When in doubt, explore the various desk drawer units we offer for additional insights.

Chalk Out Space for Chair Opening

Equally crucial is the space for chair clearance for a desk. An optimum distance is roughly 23 inches to accommodate an average-sized chair. However, if a larger office chair is in your seating plan, adjust the chair opening space to be a minimum of 30 inches. This dimension ensures you have adequate space to move and work comfortably.

Optimal Desk Depth

Just as important as width and chair space, we need to consider desk depth. On average, desk depths fall in the range between 20 to 30 inches, with the sweet spot being most frequently seen between 24 and 30 inches. With the correct depth, users can fully utilise the space without compromising comfort, enhancing their experience.

Easiest Way To Install Drawer Slides

Installing drawer slides properly ensures smooth operation of your under desk drawers. With the help of clear and user-friendly instructions, careful measurements, and the right tools, this task can be simplified.

To start, measure accurately where your drawer slides need to be mounted, ensuring both sides are level. The objective is to place slides exactly parallel. Measure twice to be certain. Use a level tool for precision.

Place your slides in their determined position and mark your mounting holes. Remember to secure your slide and line it with your marks before securing it with screws.

Lastly, ensure that the slides function as planned. Slide them open and shut multiple times to make sure they glide without friction.

Helpful tools to consider:

  • A good screwdriver
  • Level
  • Tape measure

If you want to further optimize your workspace, you might want to consider the benefits of using a standing desk as it can also help alleviate back pain and enhance overall productivity.

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Setting Up Desk Drawers

The setup process for your desk drawers is contingent upon delivering a clean, organized space within your workstation. Desky's Height Adjustable Standing Desks are perfect to pair with your drawers to create an efficient workspace.

Initially, you might want to consider cleaning the drawer and wiping away any dust or dirt. Secondly, organize your office essentials; this could entail sorting similar items together in containers, using drawer dividers to segregate the space, or labeling the sections for easier navigation.

Installing Roller Runners

Roller runners uphold the operational functionality of your under-desk drawer. They allow a smooth and effortless drawer slide. To install them, mark precise positions where rollers need to be located and consider measurement accuracy for both sides.

Fit each roller runner to the drawer sides using screws, but ensure that they are flush with the drawer front. Then, attach these to the drawer cabinet, making sure that they are level. Test if the rollers work efficiently and smoothly.

How To Put Drawer Back On Track

You've likely encountered a scenario where the drawer has gone off track, making it challenging to open or close. Inspecting, realigning, and resetting your drawer can resolve this issue.

Atomic steps include removing the drawer from the current position, examining the tracks for potential damage, aligning the drawer to the track correctly, and rolling back the drawer into its initial position.

An important step during this process is ensuring tracks are not damaged, as they can render your efforts futile. In the case of damaged tracks, consider replacing them for smoother operation.

How To Make A Drawer Step by Step

  1. Plan Your Project: Begin with a design, including dimensions and materials. This initial planning stage is vital to ensuring a smooth building process.
  2. Assemble Materials: Gather all necessary materials, such as screws, wood, a screwdriver, and brackets. Reviewing assembly reviews can also be helpful.
  3. Measure and Cut: Measure the wood according to your design and cut to size. It's crucial to measure twice and cut once to ensure accuracy.
  4. Build the Drawer Box: Assemble the drawer box by attaching the sides, back, and bottom pieces. Make sure each joint is secure.
  5. Attach the Front: Attach the drawer front to the box. This will be the visible part of the drawer, so ensure it's straight and appealing.
  6. Install the Drawer: Finally, install your drawer into your desk using the brackets. Ensure it opens and closes smoothly.

While building a drawer may seem daunting, it can be a rewarding project that provides you with much-needed extra storage on your study table.


In summary, establishing the width of desk drawers involves several considerations beyond sheer measurements. We must remember to consider comfort, functionality, and ergonomic principles in our decision-making process.

Whether you are setting up a well-ventilated office or a cozy home workspace, having a clear understanding of desk drawer dimensions can improve your ergonomics substantially.

By paying mindful attention to the ideal work desk width, setting the correct width for built-in desks, ensuring adequate chair opening space, and establishing a good depth, we can create a harmonious workspace. A thoughtfully designed work area not only impacts efficiency but also positively influences well-being in the workspace.

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