Perhaps it is because when a lot of people go shopping for their new sofa they lack basic knowledge about upholstered furnishings and we all know that knowledge means power. Buying a new sofa for your home is a big purchase because you are probably going to spend a lot of money on it and you want it to last a long time so you should be fully aware of what you want from it before you go shopping for one. Take for example when you buy a new car, you will probably have found out a lot about what the car’s functions and features are and the same has to be said about buying your new sofa. You look for the same thing when buying both, something that suits your taste, is practical and suits your budget. So when you are shopping for your new sofa there are many important things that you need to consider before making your big purchase, read on to find out what they are.
The frame of your sofa needs to be strong as it is basically the skeleton of the sofa. If you are buying the very best sofa money can buy then your frame will be made of kiln-dried solid hardwood, such as maple or oak. The frame will be constructed with wood blocks or metal braces that strengthen the places where the frame joins together, along with glue and screws. When you buy a sofa that has been constructed this way you should expect it to last a lifetime and only need to be re-upholstered a few times if need be. Sofa frames were only ever constructed this way up until the mid twentieth century but then new manufacturing methods came around and the pressure on firms to sell sofas at low prices meant that new ways of building sofa frames were created. Most are adequate ways of building frames but some are not very good at all.
If you are aiming for the middle of the road price for your new sofa then the frame will still be constructed out of hardwood but there will also be some softer woods in there also such as pine. Sometimes plywood is also used with the pine for extra strength.
If however you are intending on buying the least expensive sofa then more often than not the frame will be made out of pine, but if the frame has good bracing then it could last for a few years. These types of sofas frames cannot be reupholstered because they are too weak. A good manufacturer such as Buy Sofas Online will be able to supply you with the information about how your frame was constructed and they will also offer a warranty against any defects that may occur in the future that are not your fault.
Padding & Cushions
If you really want your sofa to last then you need to make sure that the padding underneath the fabric of the sofa is of the best quality. You will notice with less expensive sofas that they show wear much quicker and this is due to the lack of padding that is between the frame and fabric cover. Whilst padding provides extra comfort for the user, it also cushions the fabric from the sharp edges of the wooden frame. This area would quickly wear the fabric through but the extra padding prevents this from happening. An expensive sofa will also have various layers of padding, normally about three or four, made up of fabrics such as foam rubber, cotton and Dacron-polyester. All of these fabrics are kept in place by a muslin undercover. It is quite simple to tell an expensive sofa from a cheaper version by patting the back of the sofa, an expensive one will be well padded and not in the slightest bit hollow. However as the price of the sofa reduces then amount of padding that is in the sofa is reduced also. Sofas need ample padding so that the user cannot feel the frame when they sit on it. The arms of the sofa need to be well padded, normally there is a piece of lumber that is normally 2x4 in size and padding is placed around this. Cheaper sofas will only have a piece of cardboard sitting under a piece of foam rubber, which is why sofa arms break quite quickly on cheap sofas once they are sat on. Ask your sofa retailer if the sofa has lumber in the arms because the cardboard trick is not simply limited to the cheaper retailers.
Cushions are also a very important part of the sofa and the more expensive sofas will have a choice of different types. The cushions that will last the longest are spring down; these are much like a mattress in that they have feathers that envelope a coil spring unit. These types of cushions are thought of as the best but they are not to everyone’s tastes because they are also very firm. Many people who find it hard to get up off sofas or do not like to sink too low into them prefer this type of cushion. Another good type of cushion is the foam and down version of cushion, although still firm they are covered by an envelope of down and feathers. These cushions allow you to sit comfortably because they have a slight give to them and they maintain their shape well, unlike cheaper cushions. Cheaper cushions are made from either foam or Dacron; Dacron is spun polyester that is wrapped around the foam. Although this is fine at first, soon it will lose its shape and look flat after a year or two unlike the more expensive ones. To avoid them looking too flat too quickly you will need to flip them often allowing them a chance to recover.
If you are looking for a good quality sofa then you need to check for the following:
Look for covers over the filling in the back cushions, loose filling is never a good idea. Ideally the inner cushions will be divided into sections to stop the filling moving around For the seat cushions, ideally these would be ‘closed-cell foam’ because this ensures that air does not escape when you sit down on them, Foam inside the cushions should be white in colour and not yellow, yellow foam is an indication of a very low-end sofa because this yellow foam will go flat very quickly, therefore not lasting very long.
We hope this helps you in your search, BTW all sofas at Sofa Savings are checked at least three times before being sent to a customer. We always carry out fire checks by setting them on fire is we feel its nessessary. If you are in the hospitality, trade, a landlords or letting agents, we will supply you with wholesales sofas.
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