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Reupholster or Buy New?

If your old sofa is looking aged, worn, and a little worse for wear, then you need to decide whether you will repair what you have or buy something new. Reupholstering a sofa or buying a new one both have their pros and cons. Reupholstering tends to be an easier process than buying new, as the cost to reupholster a sofa is often less than buying new and it can save you some time. However, buying new can be desired if you want to try a new style or shape of the sofa.

It is also possible that a sofa that you bought several years ago is of better quality than a mass-produced one these days, which is another reason why reupholstering what you already have could be worth it, rather than buying new. As a rule, sofa frames that were made over ten years ago will generally be of better quality, so reupholstering the sofa could help it to last. A benefit of reupholstering is that you know what you have, and you know it fits the space, as well as not having to find a way to dispose of an old sofa.

Alternatively, if reupholstery is not an option or you have just had your sofa reupholstered and want to protect it, you could opt for our Loose Sofa Covers option!

Determine if a sofa is worth being reupholstered

If you know that the sofa needs to be reupholstered from looking at the fabric, you also need to determine if it is worth doing because of the rest of the sofa. The fabric could be faded and ripped, but if there are other aspects of the sofa that are beyond repair, or it was cheap and damaged, to begin with, reupholstering won’t be worth it. So if you want to know how to recover a sofa, then checking it is worth it first is a must. 

  1. Examine the frame

For a sofa to be worth reupholstering, the frame needs to be made of quality materials, starting with a hardwood frame that has relatively few knots. The joints in the frame should be secured with wooden dowels ideally, rather than staples. To determine if the frame is hardwood or not, take off the sofa cushions, and then try to lift the sofa. A light sofa is unlikely to be hardwood, and therefore, likely to not be sturdy enough to carry on with. A heavy sofa would indicate hardwood and higher quality.

2. Are the springs broken?

A high-quality sofa that will be worth the repair will have springs that are coiled up and tied with twine. If the sofa has some panels of runner instead of having springs, or with springs not coiled, then it is likely to be an item that isn’t worth the cost of reupholstering. If you can’t see the springs, then from the bottom of the sofa, feel for the dust cover. Usually, a tight cover will indicate good quality.

3. Is the foam high quality?

To check the quality of the foam, it is a good idea to press on the cushions and squeeze any padded arms on the sofa. If the squash and compress easily, then it is likely that they are made from low-quality foam. As such, it won’t make reupholstering the sofa a good investment in time or money. The foam could feel lumpy and firm, but that is something that we as a re-upholstery service can work with, to make the sofa usable and comfortable again.

4. How much do you like the frame of the sofa?

Thinking about how much you like the frame of the sofa is important. If the frame is of good quality, then you need to weigh up the option of reupholstering against finding a new sofa that you would like as much. When you have a sofa in the shape and size that you want, then reupholstering can be a good option, rather than hunting for something that isn’t quite right. It can also make reupholstering antique couch possible too.