When people buy a couch, they're not just buying a piece of furniture. They're buying the place where they will watch movies with family, play games on their Xbox, and let friends crash after a night of partying. A couch, no matter what price point it's at, is an investment in your home's quality of life. Did you ever wonder how long a typical couch lasts? Let's take a look at the stats to answer this question.
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Couches last for as long as they can retain their shape, aren't torn, aren't stained, and don't have sunken couch cushions. For most models, you can expect a couch to last 7 to 10 years with typical use. With careful maintenance, it's possible to stretch a sofa's lifespan by several years.
A sofa isn't something that you should purchase lightly. It's a major staple in any home, so it's best to know what you should expect. This guide is here to give you a better understanding of how couches deteriorate and how long you can expect this piece of furniture to last.
What Kind Of Couch Lasts The Longest?
Couches are expensive, so it makes sense to do some research when it comes to their lifespan. After all, you don't want to go replacing it every other year. If you want to get the most return on your investment, it makes sense to buy a couch that is built to last. However, this isn't very easy to do without knowing the traits of a long-lasting couch.
The longest-lasting couches are all made of similar materials. The materials to look for include:
- The best framing is made of hardwood, such as teak or mahogany. Hardwood offers heaviness and sturdiness that woods like pine won't. If you want to get the highest-quality stuff, look for "kiln-dried" hardwood; these frames have been further solidified.
- When it comes to the springs in your couch, look for a couch that has "8-way hand-tied" spring setups. This is considered to be the gold standard for spring-based couches. Sofas that do not have springs often won't last as long, simply because foam tends to have similar lifespans to foam pillows.
- Look for a rating that is approximately 15,000 double rubs. The term "double rubs" is what manufacturers call movements that behave like a person getting up and down from a couch. A single, double rub is, therefore, a sit session. Heavy-duty fabric is considered to last for 15,000 sit sessions (or longer).
- If you don't want to opt for fabric upholstery, go for leather. Leather is considered to be the most durable material for a couch.
- Keep an eye out for signs of good quality craftsmanship in the frame, stitching, and filling (more to come on this in the next section).
How Can You Tell If A Couch Is Good Quality?
Quality is king, especially when it comes to furniture. Figuring out which couch is high-quality, though, takes a lot more attention to detail than you would expect it to. When shopping for the perfect couch, take a look for these "green light" signs of good furniture quality:
- The number one thing you need to look at is the materials. If the couch has the materials listed above, then it's safe to say that you probably will get a good quality couch.
- Lift up one side of the couch six inches off the ground. If the other side of the couch doesn't follow suit immediately, the frame is twisting and isn't actually as sturdy as it should be.
- Look at how the sofa's legs are connected to the rest of the sofa's body. You want to get a couch that has brackets, dowels, or screws, not a glue attachment. Staples aren't that good either!
- Sit down on the couch and check the padding. A high-quality couch will be heavily padded on every corner.
- Shove the sofa. The frame shouldn't wobble back and forth.
- Finally, check the upholstery. Your sofa should be stitched well and have stripes that are even across the trim. When you run your hands over the upholstery, it shouldn't have any bumps or pilling in one section over another.
Does Price Make A Difference In The Quality Of A Sofa?
Let's say that you want to save some money on a couch. Truth be told, it's possible to find an expensive sofa that isn't high quality. It's rarer, though, to find an affordable couch that is high quality. It's still possible, though it's not something that you will often see unless you're antiquing.
How Can You Make A Couch Last Longer?
Once you get a good couch built to last, you need to make sure it lasts as long as possible. Thankfully, there are a couple of easy ways to ensure that you get the most time with your couch as possible. For ease of use, we're going to break it down by main categories.
Preventing Couch-Destroyer Access
Do you have a puppy who loves to chew on fabric corners? What about a baby who likes to take off their diaper whenever they get the chance to? If you said yes, then you may need to invest in a baby gate for the room with your couch in it. By limiting sofa access to people who are old enough and pets that are well-trained, you reduce the chances of seeing damage occur greatly.
Don't Eat Or Drink Near Your Couch
Spills from errant food and drink can greatly reduce a couch's lifespan. Even tiny crumbs can wear away at fabric or leather. Don't eat your meals on a couch, and you should be able to see your sofa stay in shape for a longer time. If you do get a spill on your couch, clean it immediately.
Clean Your Couch Regularly
Every couch, much like every other item in your home, will need to be cleaned regularly to ensure it'll be able to continue looking its best. When it comes to your couch, it's best to vacuum your upholstery and underneath the cushions once a week. If you have a leather couch, using a leather conditioner from time to time is a must. It's the only way to keep your leather supple.
When cleaning your furniture, don't forget to clean the pillows on your sofa, too!
Don't Throw Yourself On The Couch
Though you can shop for a high-quality couch and spend thousands on it, you still have to treat a couch like a couch. Even the most well-built couch will break if you jump on it, flop on it, or otherwise treat it like a wrestling ring. By just carefully sitting on the couch, you prevent it from breaking.
While using common sense by not tossing yourself on the couch is an obvious part of the deal, other things might not be. For example, not letting shoes on the couch, rotating your cushions regularly, and possibly using a blanket as a couch cover can all be ways to treat your sofa with more respect.
Place Your Couch In A Smart Area
Did you know that leather couches shouldn't be placed near radiators? It's true. The heat from the radiator can cause your couch's leather to crack or dry out prematurely. On a similar note, you should avoid putting fabric couches near areas prone to mold and mildew---like under an air conditioning unit.
Don't Be Afraid To Refinish Your Couch
Let's say that it's been 10 years, and your couch is looking worse for the wear. Believe it or not, you might not have to replace it. If you can bring it to a professional, you could get your couch reupholstered or even completely refurbished. This may not be the most cost-effective thing in the world, but if you really want to keep using your couch for decades, it's the best choice on this list.
When Should You Replace Furniture?
Furniture of any sort needs to be replaced when any of the following is true:
- It no longer is capable of being repaired.
- It can no longer serve the function it was meant to serve.
- It's stained, unable to be cleaned, torn, or otherwise fouled.
Most furniture can hold on for years, even decades, before it needs to be replaced. With padded furniture like couches, sofabeds, or futons with built-in mattresses, the most important thing to look for is sagging. If you have dents forming where your butt usually goes, it's time to replace the couch.
A sofa is not something that should be bought lightly. It's a legitimate investment that brightens your home and acts as the main stage for your living room activities. That's why the best way to ensure that you get a full decade of use from your next sofa is to invest in one that's remarkably high quality.
Quality's only half of the equation, though! To make sure that your couch continues to be the stylish and comfy thing you want it to be, make sure to treat it well and maintain it. Your wallet (and your family) will thank you.