How to Repair a Recliner Parts – Backseat, Seat Springs, Cable, and Footrest

A recliner is a magnificent piece of furniture to have at home. It becomes a single chair or couch where you can lay, to be one of the most vital parts of your life. 

So, when it starts failing – your life starts getting worse. Luckily, you can always learn how to repair a recliner when it starts to fail.

Whether it is the backseat, the springs, the power cable or the footrest – here we have everything you need to know to repair your recliner.

Want to know more so you can get your recliner fully functional again? Then read our guides, and you may find useful tips to follow.

How to Repair a Recliner Backseat

One of the recliner repair parts that tend to fail the most is the backseat. Due to the pressure and weight a recliner’s backseat needs to support, it is very likely to break sooner or later. But sometimes, it just happens that the fasteners at the bottom of the back start to loosen up, so you’ll need to repair them.

Whatever the problem with the piece, here we’ll teach you how to repair your backseat.

Here’s a video explaining how:

Tools You’ll Need :

  • Flathead screwdriver
  • Phillips screwdriver
  • Allen wrench
  • Replacement backseat (if needed)
  • Replacement fasteners 

Steps to Take :

  1. First, focus on finding out what the problem with the backseat is. If it is the wood that’s broken, then you’ll need to replace it entirely. But if it is the fasteners, you can always repair it in a single afternoon.
  2. To do any of these, you need to find the locking levers on the backseat base where it joins to the rest of the piece. These locking levers maintain the backseat in the desired position but also make sure that the back never comes off. They are almost always locked down.
  3. You’ll need to flip these levers upwards before proceeding with the replacing process. For that, use the flathead screwdriver through the crevices between the sofa chair and the backseat (from behind). You’ll see small levers pointing down within the crevices; use the screwdriver to flip them up.
  4. Once the levers on both sides are flipped up, you can slide the backseat off instantly. It doesn’t take much than a few seconds to do so.
  5. Here, you can decide to place the new backseat. Or if the back is in a good state, then keep checking the fasteners to look for the problem. If the fasteners look bad, then you’ll need to replace them. We recommend using universal fasteners for the best results. Sometimes, they just need tightening.
  6. Other backseats don’t have any fasteners but screws and bolts. You’ll have to use either the Philips screwdriver or the Allen wrench to get them off accordingly. If they look well, you just need to reattach them to the piece and check them.
  7. Lastly, you’ll find backs that are bolted to the seat. These are less common, but it is necessary to still unfasten the bolts with the Allen wrench and get them off. The bolts are generally located underneath the seat. Refasten them if needed. You may need to replace them.
  8. After you do any of these, you can then slide the backseat on position and try it. When you activate the reclining system, the couch should go back smoothly with no issues at all. If it doesn’t, there’s still something producing damage. We recommend doing a second check-up, and that’s it.

Checking your recliner backseat this way will give you a perfect chance to repair any backseat problem you may have. Remember it’s all about being sure of what kind of backseat system you have. Then, you can decide to either replace the fasteners, screws, or bolts accordingly. 

If you can’t repair your backseat following these steps, then you should look for the manufacturer’s help. Any shop or facility that you can find will be ideal. 


How to Repair a Recliner Seat Springs

Another of the recliner chair repair parts that gets damaged easily is the seat, more specifically the springs in the seat.

When you sit on a recliner, you feel comfy because the seat is cushioned but also firm. The padding and the cushions work together to offer enough comfort, but the springs make sure that even the fluffiest of paddings and cushions are firm and not sink you down. 

Most common issues with springs include metal parts or the coils breaking and making the seat uncomfortable to use. Sometimes they just sag off, and the seat loses its firmness. And last but not least, the springs start making weird clacking or grinding noises that can be annoying – which means they are soon to break.

Whatever the problem with the springs of your seat, you’ll have to replace them. In this video, you can learn how:

Tools You’ll Need :

  • Phillips screwdriver
  • Allen wrench
  • Pliers
  • Recliner spring replacement

Steps to Take :

  1. To start, you need to place the recliner upside down so you can see and handle the mechanism and the inside of the piece more easily. Here, we recommend looking for a well-ventilated and illuminated area so you can work more comfortably and with enough visibility. 
  2. Once you turn the recliner down and find the right place, you can start looking for the problem with the spring. Here, you may need a flashlight to look through the reclining mechanism directly into the seat. If you spot any broken spring, then you’ll need to take the mechanism out.
  3. For that, we recommend using the screwdriver or the Allen wrench accordingly. You’ll need to look for the fasteners, screws or bolts, loosen them up and remove the backseat. Afterward, you can then proceed to remove the base.
  4. The base takes a little more time than removing the backseat takes. This happens because it is heavily bolted or screwed to the frame of the recliner. You just need to find where the mechanism connects to the structure and unscrew or unbolt it accordingly. This could take several minutes.
  5. After unscrewing or unbolting the reclining system, you need to look for the cable. Most recliners come with a cable or wire that activates the reclining function. We recommend looking for this cable or wire and remove it using either pliers or hands. It is often just clamped. You may find screws holding it to the system.
  6. The cable also connects to the handle or lever outside. So, you’ll probably need to unscrew the casing or cover of the handle out so you can remove the cable altogether. 
  7. Once you remove all the screws/bolts from the frame and taking the cable/wire off, it will leave the space open for you to access the seat and the springs. Proceed by removing all the broken springs.
  8. Most springs are clamped to the frame as well. You just need to find the clamps and open them. Other ends are just fitted inside holes in the frame that you can simply loosen up by moving around. In the worst case scenario, they are bolted to the frame. Just use the Allen wrench to unbolt them, and that’s it.
  9. After removing the broken coils, you can install the new ones. Follow the same process (bolts, screws, clamps, or holes). Make sure they are tightly screwed and don’t move at all. 
  10. Once you replace the springs, it is time to mount the reclining mechanism back on. This part can take a lot of time as well.
  11. Just follow the same process of removing the system but backward. Remember to mount the cable or wire first and then continue with the bolts, screws, or clamps in the frame. 
  12. After mounting the reclining system, you are ready to flip the recliner back up. Everything should be in place now. Try the seat and test how it feels and sounds. If it is like new, then you’ve successfully repaired your recliner’s seat springs. 

This is a general guide on how to fix the spring or coils on a recliner. But all mechanisms, constructions, and designs differ exponentially so you’ll have to take the right precautions accordingly.

We always recommend doing this with the help of a friend or family. If you can ask an expert for assistance, that would be even better.


How to Repair a Recliner Cable

One of the main issues with recliners happens when the cable that makes the mechanism work starts to fail. This could either be because the wire rips, breaks, or just starts to wear off. 

When a cable is not working correctly, then pulling the tab to activate the piece won’t work as typically. Either the recliner stays in an upright position, or it just takes too much to recline. Sometimes, it just falls down or comes back to upright position without any movement.

 If either of this happens, then it is the recliner cable or wire that’s faulty. The only way to fix this is by changing the defective cable for a new one. And here, we’ll explain how.

This video can give you an excellent idea:

Tools You’ll Need :

  • Phillips screwdriver
  • Pliers
  • Recliner cable replacement

Steps to Take :

  1. To start, you’ll simply need to place the recliner upside down so you can have access to the reclining mechanism.
  2. Once you have the system in front of you, look for where the cable meets the locking/reclining fastener. Here, you’ll have to detach the cable from it. The cable is often clamped or screwed to the base to prevent it from breaking or loosening up.
  3. If you notice that the cable is just loosened from the mechanism or has fallen off track, then you just need to reconnect it to start working again. But if there’s any fraying or break, then continue to replace the part. 
  4. After taking the cable out of the locking/reclining fastener, you can proceed to remove the bolts or screws piecing the cable to the footrest too. Sometimes, the cable is attached to the frame in other holes too, take it off completely.
  5. Now, you’ll have the cable already detached from every place inside the recliner. So, it is time to take it off completely. To do so, you’ll have to disconnect it from the pull-tab or handle.
  6. You’ll have to remove the handle from the recliner to properly take the wire out completely. Here, you can use the screwdriver either from the inside or outside if needed. Start by removing the casing on the handle, then finish by detaching the cable from it.
  7. Now you can install the recliner chair cable replacement. Make sure to start by attaching it to the handle and getting it through the hole on the side. From that on, you can begin to install the cable inside through every hole, fastener, clamp or screw to keep it on its place.
  8. Finish by attaching it to the locking/reclining fastener that you disconnected the broken one from in step 2. 
  9. Then just place the recliner back in an upright position and test the handle or the lever to see if it works. If the recliner functions well by now, then you’ve successfully repaired the cable.

 It is always essential to buy high-quality cables as a replacement. Some wires tend to be for smaller or larger recliners, so you’ll have to know what to look for.  We recommend to always look for the cable that matches your recliner model. 


How to Repair a Recliner Footrest

When the footrest of your recliner doesn’t want to work anymore, there’s a high chance you’ll need to make some at least some minor but critical amends.

It could be either because the footrest doesn’t stay up, or because it doesn’t want to rise. Other issues can be the footrest moving too much or not staying rigid. 

Whatever the issue you may have, here we’ll explain how to fix your recliner’s footrest the right way. 

This video has everything you should know on footrest mechanisms:

Tools You’ll Need :

  • Phillips screwdriver
  • Allen wrench
  • Ratchet or spring replacement

Steps to Take :

  1. First, you should validate that it is the footrest having an issue. If the recliner doesn’t recline when you pull the handle or lever, then it means it is not the footrest having the problem alone. We recommend going to your How to Fix a Recliner Mechanism article to fix this. 
  2. If you are entirely sure that it is only the footrest having the issue, then you can start by flipping the chair upside down. After doing this, you’ll be able to have a better look at the bottom of the couch and possibly find the issue.
  3. We recommend looking for any sign of a broken mechanism or steel part. Typically, the part that holds the footrest in the upright position looks like a ratchet. This is the component that usually breaks. Sometimes, it is just the spring that moves with the rest of the recliner parts.
  4. Depending on the component that broke, you’ll need to remove the screws or bolts that hold that part to the recliner. There could also be springs, hooks, coils, pins, bars, or fasteners. Take anything that holds the piece to the chair. Use the right tool accordingly. 
  5. Sometimes, the ratchet or spring that connects to the recliner is not defective, it just needs readjustment. By now, you should know what it needs. If it looks broken, you’ll have to look for a new one. Otherwise, you’ll have to place it again and make sure it is tightened. 
  6. Some people like to remove the fastener, ratchet or spring completely and let the footrest move up and down without a locking mechanism. This is also a solution. Otherwise, you’ll have to replace it. 
  7. To replace the piece, just get it off after unscrewing it and place the new one instead. Then screw the replacement and make sure it is tight. 
  8. To finish, just screw or bolt the piece down to the footrest. If there was any bar, coil or pin holding the piece, remember to adjust them too. This will help you keep the footrest working. Now, you’ve successfully repaired a footrest.

With footrest electric recliner parts, the process is way easier. You just need to make sure that everything inside is adequately oiled.

Usually, power recliner problems with the footrest come from lack of lubrication. You just need to use WD-40 or any similar product, and that’s it. 

You should apply the lubricant only in the bushings or movable parts. Any arm or sliding mechanism may also need some oil.

After that, you should have your footrest completely ready to start working again as usual.

Bottom Line

By now, you should be ready to repair any type of issue with most parts of your recliner. Just remember that each process takes time and effort, especially when you need to replace any part.

Also, take into account that it’s always better to bring the recliner to a manufacturer’s shop or facility to get it fixed. That can save you a vast amount of time and money in the long run.

But if you are positive that you can learn how to repair a recliner by following our guidance – then get ready for it. 

It all comes down to being patient and careful. As long as you follow our advice, then you’ll probably fix the piece without much hassle. Start now!