For some guys, having a bar in their man cave is essential. We’ve gone over how to build a bar in your man cave, but to complete the set up you are going to need some seating. Before you jump on Amazon to find some bar stools, you should ask yourself, “How tall should my bar stools be?”
Just because they say “bar height” stools, doesn’t mean they will fit your bar. Different bars are going to be different heights, so you’ll want to make sure that the bar stools you get are a match for the height of your bar. In general, the seat of the bar stool should be approximately 12 inches below the counter. This is not a hard and fast rule; a difference of an inch or two in either direction is acceptable.
Standard Bar Heights
Of course a bar could be any size that you make it, but generally bars come in four heights: table height, counter height, bar height, and extra tall. Which height you have will naturally determine how tall your bar stools should be.
Table Height Bar Stools
Table height or short bar stools are 16 to 23 inches tall. If you have a 30 inch table height bar, your bar stools should be about 18 inches tall.
Check out our buying guide on the best table height bar stools.
Counter Height Bar Stools
Counter height bar stools are 24 to 28 inches tall. If you have a 36 inch tall bar, you should shoot for bar stools that are 24 inches tall.
Check out our buying guide on the best counter height bar stools.
Bar Height Bar Stools
Bar height bars got their name because they are the most common height. If you enjoy going to sports bars, this is most likely what you’re used to. They are usually 42 inches tall, but can vary from about 40 to 43 inches.
Bar height bar stools are 29 to 33 inches tall. For a 42 inch tall bar, you should get stools that are 30 inches tall at the seat.
Check out our buying guide on the best bar height bar stools.
Extra Tall Bar Stools
Extra tall bars are great if there are going to be other people between the bar and the TV. The extra height allows the people at the bar to see over them with an unobstructed view. Bars that fall into the extra tall category are usually 46 inches tall, and can range from 44 inches up to 50 inches.
Extra tall bar stools are 34 to 40 inches tall. For an extra tall bar that is 46 inches tall, the stools should be 34 inches tall.
Check out our buying guide on the best extra tall bar stools.
Choosing the Right Height
The seat of the stool you choose should be 12 inches from the bottom side of the counter. However, if you find a set of stools that you really like, they don’t have to be exactly 1 foot shorter than the counter. Sitting at a bar stool that is anywhere from 10 to 14 inches below the bottom side of the countertop will be comfortable.
Picking new stools for your man cave bar isn’t the only decision you’ll have to make. You should also decide if a wet bar or dry bar is right for you.