How To Turn A Chair Into A Recliner? Comprehensive Guide

Helen Skeates
Helen Skeates
26 min read

Here, you will learn the steps necessary to convert any chair into a comfy recliner. It only takes a few commonplace items and maybe 10 minutes to accomplish.

Keep in mind that not all chairs are built the same, and that the ease with which they recline depends on their design.

What Makes a Chair Recline?

In order to recline in a chair, the back must be positioned at an angle. Depending on how advanced your furniture is, you can either do this by hand or using an electric power mechanism.

Depending on the materials used to construct your chair, this could take anywhere from 30 seconds to several minutes. How the back is adjusted depends on the structure of the chair.

If you have a reclining chair equipped with a weight-sensitive electric mechanism, all you have to do is sit in it so that your body weight activates the lever, and the chair will recline to the perfect position for you.

If you are using a manual slider there will be a locking knob on one side of the chair so that you can lock it into place and then pull the lever back to adjust the slant.

Steps on how to Turn a Chair Into a Recliner

When using a manual slider, you’ll find a locking knob on one side of the chair; once you’ve got it in place, you can draw the lever back to change the angle.

As a third step, you should stand or sit up straight. Put your arms on the back of the chair and lean back. You should be lying down at this point.

What Is a Recliner Chair Bed? | Fenetic Wellbeing

Step 4: Repeat the motions from Step 12 with one leg within the seat and the other outside.

Fifth, the amount of force required will be established by the structure of the chair itself. Getting the chair into a reclined position may need some trial and error.

Step 6: Depending on how heavy your chair is or where you are, you may need assistance from someone to help you turn it and get it in a comfortable reclining position.

How do I Adjust my Electric Recliner?

First, check that the recliner is both powered and activated.

Second, use your weight by sitting in the chair to pull the lever.

Third, it needs to be able to detect your weight and adapt accordingly. If not, there will typically be a knob or handle at one side of the electric recliner that can be turned to adjust the height of your chair.

Third, it needs to be able to detect your weight and adapt accordingly. If not, there will typically be a knob or handle at one side of the electric recliner that can be turned to adjust the height of your chair.

How do I know When my Electric Recliner is Broken?

Third, it ought to detect your weight and adjust accordingly. If not, most electric recliners will include a handle or knob on one side that may be rotated to change the height of the seat.

All the lights should be on in a complete circle, not just a few. If this is not happening, or if only some of the lights come on as you recline, the chair may be malfunctioning.

If this keeps happening and you can’t figure out how to fix it, it’s time to get a specialist out or get a new chair.

How do I know if my Electric Recliner Needs New Batteries?

The first step is to make sure that while you’re seated on your chair, the lights on all sides are on in a complete circle.

The second step is to check the battery if the lights are dim or not working at all.

Third, if this persists and occurs more frequently than before, you should contact for professional help to determine the source, which could be as simple as a faulty light bulb.

Do Power Recliners use a Lot of Electricity?

Power recliners are less expensive to operate than a manual chair, but they’re not always cheaper.

Do power Recliners use Less Electricity Than Manual Chairs?

Although power recliners are typically more affordable than manual chairs, this is not always the case.

Reduce the power recliner’s usage to only when absolutely necessary to save money.

Contact your utility provider to find out if they provide a rate plan for power recliners and for more information on the exact amount of electricity it consumes.

These days, you may choose a chair for anything from lounging to getting a massage to playing video games. Continue reading to find more about the various recliner chairs available and the factors you should take into account when making your purchase.


Large, padded chairs with broad, thick seats and high, supportive backs are what most people think of when they hear the term “recliner.” The seats of several of them are built on coil springs, and they all include plush padding and armrests. There are a variety of recliner upholstery options, such as leather, microfiber, and microsuede. They have a mechanism built in that allows the back of the chair to recline as the footrest elevates.

There are typically three possible positions for a standard recliner: fully reclined, moderately reclined, and upright. Some older models of recliners may only be used in two positions: completely upright or fully reclined. They can adjust the angle of their seat using the push-pull mechanism, or by utilizing the bar on the right side of the seat.


The motors of power recliners are incorporated right into the chairs themselves. Modern power recliners can be stopped at any position between the completely upright and fully reclined positions, but conventional recliners often have only one or two reclining modes and are sometimes manually operated with a lever on the side. Power recliners allow you to control the reclining motion via a small control panel mounted on the chair’s side or with a corded remote control. Some power chairs allow you to adjust the headrest, back tilt, and footrest independently. Power recliners are about 100 pounds heavier and have the same overall size as conventional recliners. They cost more than regular recliners too.


Motors are integral to power recliners. Modern motorized recliners may be stopped in any position between completely upright and fully reclined, unlike their manual counterparts that only offer one or two reclining settings and are occasionally controlled by a lever on the side. Power recliners allow you to control the reclining action via a small control panel positioned on the chair’s side or with a corded remote control. There are power chairs available with separate controls for the headrest, back tilt, and footrest. Although power recliners and conventional recliners are both around the same size, the power recliner is about 100 pounds heavier. They cost more than conventional recliners as well.


Massagers generally use standard power cords to power the massage functions, which are controlled with a remote. Although massager recliners are similar in size to traditional recliners, the massager mechanism adds weight, making it heavier than a standard recliner at around 75 pounds.


In most cases, the massage capabilities of a massager are powered by a regular power connection and managed by a remote. Recliners with massage mechanisms are about the same size as regular recliners, but they weigh about 75 pounds more due to the massage mechanism.

Standard dimensions for an extra-large recliner are 60 by 40 by 40 inches. Because of its size, manual recline is not an option for this type of chair; instead, it is more commonly used as a power recliner. When compared to a standard recliner, their weight difference is usually at least 50%.

Another type of two-seat recliner has two seats, each with its own reclining back and footrest, and a big padded armrest that serves as a console with cupholders and a place to store remote controls. These massive chairs can be as wide as 80 inches and as heavy as 200 pounds, yet they are deeper and taller than standard recliners.

What to Consider When Choosing the Best Recliner

Recliners come in a wide variety of sizes, materials, weights, and controls, so it’s important to think about all of these factors as well as the design. When searching for the ideal chair for your needs, those factors are decisive.

Available Space

Seating on a recliner takes up a lot of room. When fully reclined, a typical sofa-style recliner is around 80 inches in length. If you put a recliner in a room that doesn’t quite have enough room for it to fully recline, you won’t get the full benefit of using it. If you’re shopping for a recliner, measure the space available behind it (12 inches) and in front of it (24 inches) to accommodate the chair’s recline and footrest extension.

A space-saving recliner should fit in your compact area. These devices, known as “wall huggers,” require only a thin opening behind them to function. They often measure the same as a standard recliner. Since the seat of this recliner travels forward on a track when reclined, less space is required behind it.


Typically, the frames of high-quality recliners are fabricated from hardwood or strong plywood, and then outfitted with metal fittings and steel corners. This strong build can withstand the chair’s normal motion.

The most relaxing chairs feature molded polyester cushioning in the back and batting sheets in the crevices. In other recliners, the hardwood frame is left exposed for a more rustic look. The typical weight limit for a chair is between 300 and 400 pounds. Compared to plywood or hardwood, the durability and strength of a recliner made from chip wood is significantly lower.

Fabric, leather, microfiber, and microsuede are common materials for reclinable chair upholstery. The most long-lasting material is leather, while the most comfortable are fabrics, microsuede, and microfiber. High-performance fabrics, used in the upholstery of several types of recliners, are resistant to stains and wear.


Many current models maintain the time-honored design of their forebears with curled arms, leather upholstery, and plump cushions, but shoppers can also choose from many other options. Some are made using high-performance materials like polyurethane leather, stain-resistant polyester, microfiber, and microsuede in addition to leather, which makes them more breathable, easy to clean, and even waterproof.

You may buy recliners in a variety of styles, from classic to modern to retro.


Manual and power recliners offer different reclining angles. The mechanism of most manual recliners only allows for a single or double recline, plus an upright position accessible by a push-pull bar.

Standard 120-volt wall plugs power electric recliners with either side buttons or a remote. With those buttons or the remote, you can go from a completely upright position to a fully reclined one.

The Best Recliners of 2022

Read on for a review of some of the greatest recliners on the market, including both manual and electric models, some of which even have massaging functions. The recliners in the following list range in size from those suitable for big rec rooms to those more suited to compact living quarters.

PB Comfort Roll Arm Upholstered Recliner

With a choice of a plush down or memory foam seat cushion, this model delivers on the promise of a relaxing recliner. There are three thicknesses of cushioning in the shoulders, upper back, and lower legs. This recliner’s hardwood frame and mortise-and-tenon construction make it sturdy enough to withstand repeated reclining and rising.

Data Sheets

  • Type: Traditional
  • The measurements of the upright are 42 inches in width, 35 inches in depth, and 38 inches in height.
  • 60 pounds


  • Mortise and tenon joinery on a solid hardwood frame.
  • With its triple-layered construction and memory-foam padding, the seat cushion is extremely comfortable.
  • Exuding a refined air of tailoring
  • There are a plethora of fabrics and hues to choose from.


  • Expensive
  • This single-position recliner has its limits.

Landon Pushback Recliner Chair

By pressing back on the chair, you can recline it to a fixed position. Although it doesn’t go as far back as some other recliners, it does have a foot extension that can be adjusted to one of two heights. The chair’s modest price belies the quality of its construction, which includes sturdy oak and a linen fabric that stands up well to regular use. The Landon requires minor assembly upon arrival.

Data Sheets

  • Type: Traditional
  • Measurements for the whole unit are as follows: 30.5″ in width, 32.5″ in depth, and 40″ in height
  • Dimensions: 90 pound


  • Economically reasonable
  • Possibility of choosing between two hues
  • Resilient wooden structure
  • Dual-level footrests


  • Recliner that doesn’t go as far back as most

Cranedall Oversized Power Recliner

The chair can be reclined and the headrest adjusted separately at the push of a button, allowing the user to relax in comfort while still getting a good look at the screen. While unwinding, a USB port allows one’s phone to be charged. This chair’s wall-saver design means it needs just 3 inches of space between the back of the seat and the wall.

MF Studio Electric Power Lift Recliner Chair Sofa for Elderly with Massage and Heat, PU Leather, Black -

Data Sheets

  • Type: Power
  • The overall measurements of the upright are 524043 inches.
  • Body mass index: 153


  • Size and padding go a long way in making furniture cozy.
  • Tilt-and-recline headrest
  • Effortless decoration for the wall


  • One and only one fabric option
  • Possible unsuitability for some quarters due to size.

Red Barrel Studio Noletta Leather Manual Recliner

The Noletta’s width and depth of 30 inches each make it a good fit for tight spaces. It has a kiln-dried hardwood frame that is fastened together with nails and glue, so it will last for a long time. The Noletta is one of the more expensive recliners because it is crafted entirely of genuine leather, which is both elegant and costly.

Data Sheets

  • Type: Traditional
  • Stands are 37.5 inches tall, have a 30 inch diameter, and a 30 inch depth.
  • Estimated 106-pound body mass.


  • Leather that is actually leather
  • Exposed brass tack heads create an air of refined sophistication.
  • Heavy-duty hardwood construction
  • Two different ways to relax


  • Costs a lot of money.

Charlton Home Manual Swivel Standard Recliner

Without having to stretch or strain, you can easily reach any area in the room thanks to its 360-degree swivel design. The Charlton’s five available hues and modern design make it a versatile pick for any space, whether it’s a study or a den.

Data Sheets

  • Type: Traditional
  • Dimensions: 27.25″ x 39″ x 37.5″ (standing) (not including ottoman)
  • Dimensional Analysis: 40.74 lb (not including ottoman)


  • Adjustable reclining position between entirely flat and sitting upright
  • Ergonomic support is provided by the contoured padding.
  • One ottoman is included.


  • If you add the ottoman, it could be too lengthy for some rooms.

Nason Manual Rocker Recliner

It’s equipped with a high-resiliency foam cushion that provides ample support while adding durability. Large pillow-topped arms add to the comfortable feel of the recliner and give it a relaxed look suitable for a den. With its thick polyester fabric and a metal-reinforced seat, this chair can hold up to the rigors of rocking and reclining.

  • Dimensions (WxDxH): 39 x 40 x 40 inches
  • Estimated 106-pound body mass.


  • The chair’s reclining mechanism is operated by a pull tab, so it may be adjusted to multiple positions.
  • For long-lasting rocking and lounging, a metal frame is the way to go.
  • Overstuffed for extra softness and comfort.


  • One foot of space is needed between the back of the recliner and the wall.

Three Posts Faux Leather Heated Massage Chair

In the event of a power outage, the lift can be used thanks to a backup battery. Cupholders and a pocket on the side provide convenient storage for beverages and reading materials. This recliner’s dimensions are 32 by 28 by 42 inches, making it a suitable choice for apartments with little space; however, it does need 25 inches of clearance to fully recline.

Data Sheets

  • Function: Lift and massage
  • Dimensions of the upright: 32 inches in width, 28 inches in depth, and 42 inches in height
  • A total of 104 pounds


  • Includes 4 individual massage areas.
  • There are five different rhythmic choices.
  • There is a backup battery for the lift.


  • Clearance of 25 inches is needed for full reclining.

Darby Home Tuthill Faux Leather Reclining Loveseat

The big central armrest has built-in cupholders and two storage compartments, suitable for remote controls, in addition to the pillow-top armrests, huge cushions, and headrest that already provide extra comfort. Each of the two chairs can be reclined to two different angles; one is ideal for watching the big game, while the other is perfect for a nap in the afternoon. This glide-equipped recliner may be placed just a few inches from a wall and yet allow for complete reclining.

Data Sheets

  • Type: Traditional
  • Standing measurements are 783741 inches.
  • Weight: 161 pounds

Weight: 161 pounds

  • Total Mass: 161 lbs.
  • There is no need to move anything but your chair to get comfortable.
  • Reduced wall clearance is needed thanks to the glide feature.


  • Significant global impact

Carter’s by DaVinci Arlo Swivel Rocking Glider

This chair is a great alternative for a wide range of nurseries thanks to its versatile color palette and traditional wingback design. You can sit comfortably thanks to the generous padding, and your lower back will appreciate the extra support provided by the cushioned section of the backrest. The fabric can withstand spills and messes from bottle feedings because of its water repellency and stain resistance.

Data Sheets

  • Rocker with a swivel base
  • Dimensions: 38″ wide x 29″ deep x 41.5″ high
  • Estimated 106-pound body mass.


  • Is swivel-, rock-, and recline-capable
  • Fabric that repels water and won’t show stains
  • Lumbar support pillow adjunct


  • The price is high for a manual reclining chair.

Jummico Fabric Recliner Chair Adjustable

This compact chair includes an adjustable massage intensity and eight different massage settings for the lower back. The broad, curved armrests and plush back cushion provide for a relaxing seat. This chair is available in gray, brown, light blue, and red, and features a simple, contemporary style that will work well in a variety of settings. There are 55.3 ounces of it.

Data Sheets

  • Type: Traditional
  • Dimensions (width x depth x height): 19.8 x 28.8 x 38.6
  • To put it another way, that’s a total of 55.3 pounds!


  • It has three reclined positions.
  • a massager that just targets one specific area
  • Choice of 4 Colors


  • Not big enough for those of us who are taller or heavier.

Vitesse Gaming Recliner Chair Racing Style

This recliner can withstand the most intense gaming sessions thanks to its steel reclining mechanism and hardwood frame. Console controllers can be stashed in the rear compartment. The dimensions of the chair are 31.9 x 25.2 x 40.0 inches.

Data Sheets

  • Type: Traditional
  • Dimensions (width x depth x height): 31.9 x 25.2 x 40
  • 59 lb is the stated weight.


  • Two different ways to relax
  • The cloth is waterproof.
  • Numerous color choices


  • Slightly cramped for those with larger frames.

How We Chose the Best Recliners

For our top recliner list, we evaluated dozens of options based on these criteria. As its primary function, a recliner’s ability to go from an upright to a reclined posture places significant strain on its construction. Because of this, we were careful to select only pieces with solid construction, such as metal or oak frames and long-lasting fabrics.

Any piece of furniture needs to look good. Both formal versions befitting a formal living room and more relaxed models perfect for dens and big areas may be found in our inventory. Because of the importance of relaxation, we looked for recliners that included thick, resilient padding that would not flatten during normal use.

How to Maintain and Care For a Recliner Chair

1. Prevent damage to your chair

Starting from a position of proactivity and taking precautions before any damage occurs to the furnishings is always the best option. If you want your reclining chairs to last as long as possible, keep them out of the sun. Because leather is used for most of the chairs, they are especially vulnerable to sun damage. The leather ages quickly because of the way it fades and breaks.

The passage of very pungent odors to the passenger compartment can also be impeded. Cigarette smoke, for instance, can be transferred to upholstery and other fabrics and accelerate the aging process.

As a last point, loose cushions should be replaced frequently. Wear and tear is typically hastened by heavy use, thus this will slow it down.

2. Deep clean the leather

Cleaning and caring for leather sofas and chairs can be a hassle. In spite of the price, many consumers would rather have experts handle the situation. However, there is a method for individuals who prefer to do it themselves. The most important piece of advise is to stay out of the water. One major drawback is that the liquid can permanently discolor leather.

In this case, a steam cleaner is the ideal option. It’s an added cost you might be unwilling to bear, but it pays off in the end. In addition to the typical benefits of dusting, this method also eliminates any lingering, unpleasant odors. Saddle soap is another viable alternative. Removes grime and prevents damage to the seat’s surface.

3. Look after the fabric

Fabric recliners are easier to maintain than their leather counterparts when it comes to cleaning. However, that is not an excuse to disregard it. The first thing to always consider is vacuum cleaning. It’s important to use utmost caution around recliner chair textiles because they are often rather delicate. To get the job done right, use a gentle brush.

Fabric recliners require less maintenance than leather ones in terms of cleaning. But that’s no excuse to disregard it, obviously. Always start with a thorough vacuuming. As a result, recliner chair textiles require special handling. It’s best to have a gentle brush conduct the cleaning. Cynefin Chair Bed Sleeper, Pull Out Sleeper Chair, Futon Chairs That Turn into Beds,3 in 1 Convertible Chairs into Beds with Side Pockets and Cup Holders 2 Lumbar Pillows Tufted Fabric (

4. Take care of the mechanics

Reclining chairs differ mechanically from regular chairs in significant ways. The ability to move it and change its orientation is also crucial when it comes to servicing it. Because elderly people may not be able to properly care for reclining chairs, this is of utmost importance. It’s important to remember to oil the moving parts on a regular basis.

Being proactive rather than reactive is encouraged once again. Do it now, before the chair starts making noise or the safety of the movement is abruptly compromised. If you remember to oil it up beforehand, it will last you a long time and work hard for you.


If you’re still wondering something regarding recliners after reading this, maybe it’ll help.

Q: How do power recliners work?

Power recliners can be operated by either a battery or an electric motor that is plugged into a regular 120-volt household socket. Most chairs have a small, two- or three-button controller attached to the side of the chair or a connected remote. The recliner’s back, footrest, and headrest can all be adjusted with one handy remote.

Q: How do you measure for a slipcover on a recliner?

To get the perfect fit for your recliner’s slipcover, follow these instructions.

  • The recliner should be returned to its normal, non-reclining position.
  • You may find the recliner’s overall height by measuring its back from top to bottom.
  • Take a measurement across the chair’s breadth from the outside of each armrest.
  • Move the chair into the reclined position and retake the measurements, measuring from the top of the chair to the edge of the footrest.
  • Move the chair into the reclined position and retake the measurements, measuring from the top of the chair to the edge of the footrest.

Q: How long do recliners last?

Once the chair is in the reclined position, remeasure it from the top to the edge of the footrest.

Helen Skeates

Helen Skeates

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