What Everyone Needs to Know Before Buying Their Next Couch

In our daily life, furniture plays a very important role. In our house, the living room is a very important place, and the status of the sofa in the living room is beyond doubt. So what should we pay attention to when buying a sofa, and what are the factors that affect the sofa? Let’s talk about the sofa.


We found that the cushion structure is the most important factor in determining the comfort and service life of a sofa, sofa chair or chair.

A recent survey in the furniture industry shows that most consumers expect their new sofas to last only 3-5 years. This estimate may be very correct, but most consumers are surprised by the short life span. Consumers who have been concerned about the durability of furniture usually ask questions about the structure and fabric of the frame/base. In fact, many “cheap” frames and cheap fabrics can last more than 5 years.

The cushion is almost the first part of a sofa or sofa, it will wear out and need to be replaced.

Unfortunately, most manufacturers and retailers have difficulty replacing worn or damaged cushions. Because the replacement of cushions usually requires cooperation with professional custom decorators, and the price is very expensive.

Most cushions sold with mid-to-low-priced upholstered furniture basically lose their shape and comfort within 1-3 years, and need to be replaced within 3-5 years.

Most sofas and sofas sold in the U.S. have three basic types of cushion structures
Coil spring
Many cushions are made using a combination of two or three of these structures.

Foam is the most common cushion structure. It has several different densities at the same time.

Each foam density has many different hardnesses. Although most people think that density and hardness are synonymous, they are actually quite different. Most foam suppliers now usually provide residential furniture cushions with a common density of 4-5, ranging from 1.5 to 2.5. This number represents the weight (in pounds) of 1 cubic foot of foam. Each of these foam pads in different densities can be provided with 10 or more different hardnesses (from very soft to very strong).

The life expectancy of foam pads mainly depends on the density and thickness of the foam.

Another important factor is whether the foam is HR, even with high resilience, it can better recover its shape after use. However, the frequency of use and the number of people using the cushion will also affect the service life of the cushion.

The “sturdiness” of the foam pad has little effect on life expectancy. However, since most consumers equate “sturdiness” with durability, cheap foam is often made “very strong.” However, for low-density foams, this “particularly hard” feeling will not last long.

The foam used in affordable residential furniture cushions is usually between 1.5 and 2.0. Lower density foam is often used for cushions or cushions that extend over the arms or other parts of the frame. Higher densities (2.0-2.5) can be found on more expensive residential furniture. Foams with a density of 3.0 or higher can be used in furniture designed for heavy commercial or public institutions. The higher the foam density, the higher the cost of the cushion. Changes in hardness usually do not affect cost. HR (high resilience) foam is more expensive than non-HR foam.

For household furniture sold in the United States, the most commonly used foam density is 1.8.


Foams described as “high density” without any specific numbers are usually 1.8 density foams. The foam core is usually between 4″-6″ in thickness and is usually wrapped with polyester fiber. The fiber wrap is usually 0.5-1.5 inches thick on the top and bottom of the mat. It can soften the feel of the cushion and increase the total cushion thickness by 2-3 inches, but it has no effect on the service life. A 4-inch thick foam core made of 1.8-density HR (high resilience) foam can be used for an average of about 2 years before the foam starts to lose its ability to rebound and retain its shape. A 5-inch thick foam core made of 1.8-density HR (high resilience) foam can last about 3 years on average before the foam starts to lose its ability to rebound and retain its shape.

After the deterioration process begins, the foam cushion is usually still usable for several years. Foams that are not highly resilient will degrade more quickly.

The actual foam density will vary during the manufacturing process. A change of 0.1 is considered normal. A foam with a density of 1.8 may actually be 1.7 or 1.9. Major changes are not uncommon. There are many sofas sold for cheaper (lighter weight), foam with a density of 1.5, and even within a year of purchase, the degradation rate is even faster.

The total thickness of the cushion may or may not indicate the durability of the cushion.

Those “value-for-money” sofas sometimes put some cushions on the soft cushions, and a few inches of polyester fiber are wrapped around the foam core. The polyester fiber will compress quickly, which will cause the mat to deform. Higher-quality sofas usually use 1″-1.5″ fiber on each side of the cushion. Lower quality sofas may use up to 3 inches of fiber on each side. Thicker fiber layers are an inexpensive way to add cushions in the short term. Crude fibers compress quickly and cause the mat to deform (usually within a year).

If you want to get more than 5 years of use time from the sofa, then you need to find a better quality sofa.

Higher-priced sofas usually use thicker foam with a density of at least 2.0. But it is better to be higher.

Cushions with built-in coil spring support are usually (but not always) more durable than low-density foam cushions.

Because these coil springs are surrounded by a foam boundary (usually 1.5 or 1.8 density), then additional cushions are filled on the top and bottom. Down/feathers are usually used as cushions together with coil springs. The down/down “jacket” is used as a filling layer on the top and bottom to soften the feel of the cushion. Other common filling materials used in combination with spiral spring pads are generally memory foam and polyester fiber.

The down hybrid cushion is a combination of down/feather and foam core cushion. Compared with the solid board of similar density foam, the service life of down mixed air cushion is relatively short.

When down/feathers are used with coil springs or foam cores, the down of the mixture will usually drop by about 5% (or less) with the rest of the down. Because down is much more expensive than feathers, the cost is too high. More expensive furniture may use a higher percentage of fluff. But down is much softer than feathers. 100% down/feather cushions were very popular in the 18th, 19th and early 20th centuries. Because of the high cost and the need to loosen the cushion every time you stand, they are not so common today. Down/feather will not have “elasticity” after use, and will not bounce back by itself like foam or coil springs after use.

No matter how much money you spend on purchasing the cushions, they are almost not covered by the warranty.

Guarantees (including extended guarantees) are usually written as required, so that anything that happens on the mat is considered “normal wear and tear” * or “abuse” *. As long as you have any of these conditions, your warranty will usually be invalidated-even if the mat was purchased for less than a year. Therefore, a small tip for consumers who want to buy furniture is to pick them up to test cushions when buying sofas. Generally, if the cushion feels “light”, it means that your sofa life expectancy is very short. The longest cushion will be the heaviest.

The cushion structure is a key factor that affects the comfort and service life of the sofa. Because of the difference in structure, the price is different. When buying, you need to think about which sofa you need to buy.