My elderly in-laws have a couch that allows you to sink deeply into it
when you sit. Because of their physical infirmities, standing is
difficult. The frame of the couch is in tact. None of the frame is
broken or drooping. The cushions look fine, but I'm sure they have lost
some of their support. My theory is that the springs supporting the seat
cushions are worn.
Assuming that my theory is correct, does it make sense to try to get the
springs replaced? Is there a snowball's chance that a furniture repair
person or an upholsterer would be able to replace the springs? The sofa
is not a sleeper version. It's just a sofa.
The couch is in great condition otherwise, and the in-laws are not
amenable to buying new furniture. Any thoughts?
Possibly depending, but...just guessing it could easily be the price of
a new, better-suited couch and less satisfactory.
The general need is for things to not be as low for older folks as is ok
My last experience with upholsterers convinced me that the next time,
I'll buy new for less.
Is there any way you might be able to set the couch on 4X4s or even 6X6s
without it looking really strange? You could probably build a frame
quick and dirty, then staple some material or carpet to it to conceal it.
Second that. Older folks, myself included, find arising from ordinary
furniture more of a chore than when younger.
Simply adding four inches to the furniture's height is all that's needed to
make it adequate.
The level of the cushions is one issue, but if the springs allow one to
sink in too far, it is another issue. The cushions at the proper level
might be fine, but the springs making the person sitting sink in too
far. Cushions may be at right level but if too soft, require more
effort to stand up.
I had some friends who put the couch on 4 x 4, and it was much easier
to get in and out.
Might also be able to brace some plywood under the cushions. Screwed
to the couch, or make a platform from the floor.
for the most part it is, Roomstore, Rooms to go, Ashleys are complete junk
Ethan Allen, Bassett, Thomasville even Baker and Henredon are no where near
what they use to be.
Hell, even Lazy boy is shit. Most all is made in China. Even some of the
custom manufacturers are cutting corners just to compete.
People no longer see furniture as the investment that our parents did.
It's all disposible to this generation
Forget the chains- go to the small ma'n'pa dealers for brands you never
heard of, that still have some quality. There is an 'Amish' furniture
store up the street here that has some gorgeous stuff that is absurdly
expensive, but would easily last a century or more. I have maybe 30
years or so left if I am lucky, so I can't justify a $2k dining room
set, even if it is quarter-sawn oak a full 5/4 thick. with a base that
would make it strong enough to hold go-go dancers. Their couches have
exposed hardwood doweled frames, with fabric parts and cushion covers
that can be redone easily- no nasty dead spaces for monsters to grow.
IOW, the frame will last forever, and is well worth several hundred for
recovering every 30 years or so. If I were to hit the lottery, I could
easily drop 20 grand in there.
I did buy a decent couch and chair (quasi-mission style) for the other
living room, just so I could have one room nice enough for company. Not
at the Amish place, but another small store with prices a little closer
to my place on the food chain. On sale, they were $1500. Everything I
looked at elsewhere was either crap, and/or the oversize overstuffed
styles aimed at drywall McMansions. In my tiny (12x21) 1960 living room,
they would have overwhelmed the entire room. Anyway, if a SWMBO were to
move in here by some miracle, those are the only 2 furniture items I
would have any chance of keeping. Anyone with taste would burn or
Goodwill the rest in short order. For some reason, women don't seem to
like plywood bookcases and office-spec credenzas and desks and such.
50 years ago, such rebuild work was routine. You can still get it done,
if you can find somebody. Prepare to be shocked by the price, however.
It is artisan work. You are likely to spend as much as on a new cheap
couch. Are the cushions foam/batting only, or do they have springs in
them as well? (Some high-line couches basically had little mattresses
for the seat cushions.) I'd have the repair place look at the cushions
as well, and clean the whole thing while they are at it. (Even in a
non-smoking house, couches are still a magnet for dust and cooking fumes.)
All of the above is shop work, by the way. Around here, the repair
places do not pick up and deliver. So figure that into your calculations
as well, unless the company you find offers that as an optional extra.
Some upholstered furniture has webbing across the bottom that supports
the springs...if the webbing rots or tears, the springs will sag.
Looking at the underside will tell you whether this is happening. If
you remove the dust cover from the underside, you can tell what kind of
springs are in it...older furn. prob. has coil springs, newer stuff
might have zig-zag springs.
Most decent upholstered furniture can have springs replaced, but it
would probably be almost as costly as purchasing something new. I can
think of two things that might solve the problem a bit more
simply...first would be to get a piece of plywood cut that can be placed
under the cushions, resting on the frame. Second would be to replace
the stuffing of the cushions with firm foam.
I completely agree with this post. I especially encourage you to try the
or even just on the springs. If it works you can then pick up some drapery
lining at a fabric store and cover the board to reduce the chance of
splinters in the fingers.
We currently have such a board under a two cushion couch to improve the
sitting of the middle seat and make it more comfortable for lying on.
Please come visit http://www.househomerepair.com
Leave this one alone or ask a question. I have a sofa just like this. It's
also the only spot I can *sleep* with no pain. Your inlaws would not
automatically mention that it needs to be just as it is because 'x' has
(insert back or hip issues) that make it perfect. It may be as simple as
the back or hip issues are eased when sitting in it as it is and the
discomfort of rising is acceptable because it fits so well when seated. If
either fits, your interference will be understood if gently mentioned as in
'would you like' and not at ALL appreciated if 'assumed they want a swap
when they do NOT.
Springs break. Springs come loose. That's about all that can happen to
If the couch was made in the last 50 years or so and is not super high end
the springs are most likely zigger wire ("no sag"). They attach to clips at
the front and back of the frame, the clips can come loose. They can be
fixed but not without taking the upholstery loose. Those springs are
attached so there is a camber.
The other method is coil springs on a web foundation. The webbing is
usually jute, jute can rot. The individual springs are tied one to another
so they work in unison. The tying can break. Both those can be fixed as
well, should be able to do so from the bottom after removing the cambric. I
doubt they have coil springs though.
Easy fix - one I used to do frequently when photographing families at home -
is to put pieces of plywood under the cushions. For them, I would suggest
1/2 or 3/4. The couch won't be all squishy soft (better, IMO) but will
still be comfortable and they won't sink in much.
There are still some upholstery shops that can fix things like that. One
thing you can try as a temporary measure it to put a piece of plywood under
the cushions. I did that on a sofa that sagged on us. My long term
solution was to buy a better quality piece though.
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