4 Best Ways To Adjust Recliner Chair

Do you have a recliner chair? Do you know how to adjust your recliner chair? Well, sitting in a recliner chair can’t be as comfortable as you might think not unless you make some adjustments. If you want to enhance your comfort experience with a recliner chair, it’s high time you learn how to operate it. In this article, I’m going to share with you the 4 best ways to adjust your recliner chair, and once you do this, you’ll be able to make some corrective measures. Without further ado, let’s get started.

Adjust Recliner chair Tension4 Effective Ways To Adjust Recliner Chair

1. How to adjust the recliner tension

There are easy steps to adjust the recline tension. But what is this “Recliner tension“? Well, it’s how easy the backrest can lean backward. Here are the steps;

Test the tension of your recliner chair:

Sometimes, leaning backward can be challenging, and therefore, you need to ensure that your chair doesn’t use a lot of energy when leaning. You’ll need to work on the tension by, of course, decreasing it. If you have a petite build, it will be a good start, and the chair will need less energy. Sometimes, your sleep recliner can lean easily or too far for comfort. If you’re heavy, tall, or you need strong lumbar support, it will be a nice idea to enhance the reclining tension.

 Tilt forward:

How do you tilt your chair forward? Well, ensure the footrest is closed, and the back of the chair is in an upright position. Gently, tilt the whole chair forward to make the underside visible. The recliner must rest on either the top of its back or the front of its armrests. Adjusting the tension of a recliner chair requires you to use both hands to make the process easy.

Look for adjusting mechanism:

You need to ensure that your recliner has an adjusting mechanism. You can find wing nuts or thumb wheels beneath the seat. If the mechanism isn’t there, it will be hard to adjust the tension. You need to locate either the wing nut or the thumb wheel and ensure that each is positioned at the end of a bolt. You should also ensure that the tension springs connect to the same bolt on the other side.

In most cases, you’ll find these mechanisms beneath the seat. However, the location of these mechanisms varies by model and the manufacturer. In some models, you’ll find them located towards the bottom corner.

Rotate the mechanism:

Now, you only need to turn the wing nut/ thumb wheels clockwise to enhance the reclining tension. If you want to reduce the tension, you should do the opposite (anti-clockwise). You must adjust the thumb wheels or the wingnut in the same way. This means that the instructions should be the same all the way. You can use your fingers to turn the mechanism, but it can be too tight instead use strong pliers to make it easy. You should also turn the mechanism by a quarter on each move and repeat every adjustment which you should maintain on both sides of the chair.

Test the adjustment:

Now, you need to test and see if it works. The first thing is to return the chair to its upright position, sit on it, and confirm the tension by leaning back and extending the footrests. So, what will be the results? Well, if the recliner tension is too stiff or loose, you need to adjust it further. If on the other hand, you feel comfortable, you can relax and end the process at that point.

2. How to adjust recliner tension springs

Any item with a working mechanism possesses a spring. Sometimes, these spring fail to work and requires replacements. Replacing a spring isn’t a daunting task. It requires a few minutes to get everything fixed. What you must have is a new recliner spring, adjustable wrench and maybe someone to help you which is optional. Here is a guide on how to go about it.

Turn over your recliner:

Slowly move the recliner forward and display the frame under the seat. This is done when the backrest is in an upright position and the footrests down.

Locate the attachment point:

Look for tabs or clips on both sides of the recliner. If the spring still exists, it just identifies where to attach to the frame at both ends of the spring.

Use pliers to get rid of damaged or old springs:

You only need to disconnect the spring from the frame. Try to use pliers and grasp one end of the spring tightly. You should be careful when dealing with a spring under high tension. Again, you should wear safety gadget to protect your eyes against any potential splashing metal.

Buy strong replacement springs:

In case you want to replace the old springs, you must look for a strong spring that will last for long. You’ll not like it when replacing them now and then. The best springs must be from the manufacturer’s replacement parts specifically made for your model. Here is what you’ll do.

  • Contact the near recliner dealer to inquire for replacement parts.
  • Search online
  • If you can’t find the replacement parts for your model, ask the dealers the one that can be compatible with your model.

Extend the springs:

Insert the screwdriver at both ends of the spring. Gently pull apart the spring. You can separate the coils by sliding a nickel between the spring’s coil. You can still use a washer instead of nickels.

Attach the spring:

You should attach one end of the spring to the frame. So, how do you do that? Well, it’s simple. You’ll need to use pliers by pulling the spring and attaching it to the frame. Be cautious when using a spring under tension. The best thing is to lock the adjustable pliers to make sure you have a firm grip in the spring.

Get rid of the nickels between the coils:

Now, you need to ensure that the nickel gets back to its normal tension. What you need to do is to pull the nickel separating each coil with pliers lightly. But before removing the nickel, please make sure the spring is firmly attached at both ends.

Get the recliner to its upright position:

Sit on the recliner on its upright position. If you want to test the spring tension on the backrests, you need to tilt back. You should feel some resistance when you lean at the backrests. If the springs doesn’t offer the resistance you want, then you’ll need to try using different spring sets. If you’re comfortable with the spring resistance, then you’ll need to relax and enjoy the comfort.

3. How to adjust recliner  chair pitch

Before I tell you how to change the pitch of your recliner, do you know what the recliner pitch is? Well, a recliner pitch is a height of the front of the chair when it’s closed and in an upward position. Here are the steps to follow when changing the pitch.

Sit on the recliner in an upright posture:

Gently, lean on the backrests and don’t recline. Get the pitch for your reclining for maximum comfort and back support. Normally you can adjust the pitch by changing the bolt that you can find on the bottom of your chair.

If the pitch is too low, you’ll realize that when you sit, the knees bend upwards. This causes unhealthy posture that of course results to discomfort. Ensure that the pitch is adjusted upwards to avoid that.

On the other hand, if the pitch is too high, what do you do? Well, when you sit, you’ll not touch the floor, and therefore, you need to adjust it down until you reach a comfort pitch.

Tilt your recliner forward:

The main aim of tilting the recliner forward is to expose the underside. What you’ll do is to tilt forward with the backrests in its upright posture, and the footrests must be closed. When the chair leans forwards, it should rest on the tips of its armrests and the top of its back.

Find the cam bolt:

You’ll also need to ensure that the base of the chair is fully secure. To do this, you’ll have to adjust the bolt that holds the cam. If you don’t know where to find this bolt, you’ll find it towards the center bottom of the chair.

N:B: Cam bolts aren’t the same as recliner tension bolts. Basically, four bolts hold the frame.

Loosen the back bolt:

Loosen the cam bolts on both sides of the bottom mechanism. You can use a wrench or cordless power retches to loosen the bolt. If you want to swing the chair easily, you need to make the bolts loose. Don’t allow the bolt to get out of the frame.

Get rid of the front bolt:

You can completely remove the front frame bolt. It’s possible to remove the front bolt but not the back bolts. You only need to keep them in a safe place because you’ll need to use them again.

Recliner frame adjustment:

You can adjust the frame of your chair by moving the front of the frame up and down. This not only adjusts the frame but also adjusts the pitch. Here is what you’ll do;

– If you want to increase the pitch, you need to slide the frame back and forth to bring closer to the ground the front of the chair. If you want to increase the rear pitch, you need to push the frame up and down to take it away from the ground.

Find the slot in front of the cam:

Look at the slot in front of the cam. In most recliners, there are two sets of holes that allows bolts to fit in and a groove that enables for five various settings in the slot. Basically, you can change the pitch to nine settings.

Note that a small adjustment means a lot in a recliner chair. You need to work on small increments and test before increasing further.

Return the front bolt:

Once the cam is set, you should put the front bolt into the lower frame. You’ll need to use your fingers to twist the bolt into the right hole. When you position the bolt properly, you can tighten it by use of a power ratchet or a wrench.

Tighten the back bolts:

Again, you’ll need to use a power ratchet or a wrench to tighten.

Test the pitch:

You’ll need to test if the pitch is good or not. Get the chair to its upright posture and the results should be; The knees must be bent at the right angle, and your feet must be able to touch the floor.

4.  How to fix a recliner cable

Sometimes, you’ll find that the recliner cable is broken and the backrests move up and down by itself, and can also fail to recline and adjusting. In such a case, what do you do? Well, you need to loosen the cable stop, Pull and tighten it. But before tightening, please make sure it is fixed to the piston bracket. Read full guide to fix recliner cable here.

How to adjust lazy boy rocker recliners

A recliner chair is the perfect kind of furniture to sit back and rest. However, if we are going to relax on it then we will want it to be perfect. So today we’ll tell you how to adjust a lazy boy rocker recliner, so you can control every aspect of your rest.

Will this work on my lazy boy rocker recliner?

All lazy boy rockers are designed to be easy to adjust on your own. The reason is simple; they want the best comfort possible to be at your hands. So as long as you’ve got the right brand you can follow these steps.

What will I need?

  • A lazy boy recliner
  • A tool to tighten wing nuts.

The key to adjusting lazy boy reclines lies in it’s wing nuts. Below the furniture you can find these unique bolts attached to tension springs and now we need to move them. While you can try to adjust them manually, they might be a little bit too tight, so we recommend you get pliers or a multitool. But any tool that gives you a good grip on them should work.

How to adjust your lazy boy rocker recliner

Wingnut for recliner

Image source: wikimedia

Turn over your recliner so you can see the bottom. Once the recliner is turned around look for the wing nuts. If you aren’t familiar they look like this.

Now to adjust your lazy boy all you need to do is turn them together. Turning to the right will increase the tension, so it’ll be harder to recline back. While turning to the left will make it easier on your end.

That said it’s vital that you keep something in mind. You need to keep both sides balanced, so for every turn you do in one nut do the same on the other. We recommend half turns so it’s easier to keep track of the tension.

Let’s sum it up

  • Grab a pair of tools to tighten wing nuts
  • Turn over your recliner
  • Search for the wing nuts
  • Turn them together for the perfect tension

There’s no more trick to it. Finding the right tension for your recliner can be easy; just make sure to follow above those steps.


Now, adjusting a recliner chair should be as easy as that. You don’t have to pay anything to someone to do the work for you. After all, you’re the one to set the comfort you want, and if you follow this guide, then you’re good to go!

You may find new recliner chair as your chosen:

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Daniel is a chair specialist who has researched about gaming chair, office chair, recliner chair, massage chair, etc. He has sound skills and experiences in sitting posture, ergonomic posture, back pain, etc. Daniel is a regular writer on this blog.

1 Comment
  1. What can I do when the back of the chair won’t stay reclined without constant effort?

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