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How To Open A Sofa Bed: 4 Simple Steps

Bed, Sofa, sofa bed

Do you own a sofa bed, or are you planning on purchasing one and want to know the basics before doing so? This article would be an excellent guide to knowing how to open a sofa bed.

A sofa bed is a versatile, convertible piece of furniture that is comfortable, stylish, functional, and the perfect fit for your space.

It is really popular in most small houses, business centers, or studio apartments. It can also be found in large houses with no guest rooms.

Sofa beds perform a two-in-one function; they can be a sofa when you need it and a bed when you need it.

It is also a great option for guest beds and couch beds instead of a sleeping mat, and it helps to save space in case there is no guest room for visitors.

They come in different design makes, and makes, each is made to be efficient and accommodating.

Sofa beds are a new special design that originated from upholstered chairs to make it easier for one to stretch fully without straining any limb.

Some sofa beds are designed to convert part of the sofa into a comfortable bed, while others convert the whole sofa into a bed.

There are different types of sofa beds, and each has its method of opening, characterized by a simple mechanism.

These features have helped sofa bed models evolve and reach the high-quality standard we have today.

The main types of sofa beds are the traditional sofa bed, which is an old model, and the modern sofa bed, which is a fixed model. The main difference between the two is the conversion mechanism.

Modern sofa beds come with a sort of movable frame that occupies the space underneath the seat, which you have to unlock to pull out your bed.

While with a traditional bed, you get to remove the cushions and lift the handle at the front of the base to pull your bed out.

Opening a sofa bed can be pretty simple if you get the first steps right. You can follow these steps to open a sofa bed in no time.

How To Open A Sofa Bed (Traditional)

kaboompics, Pixabay

1. Remove all cushions from the back and base of the sofa

The first step in opening a traditional sofa is to remove the cushions. Removing the cushion will give you wider access to the frame of the sofa.

Lift the cushions room of the back of the sofa and set them aside. You still need to pull each box cushion out of its slot and set it down.

The box cushions are the square-shaped cushions that you sit on in the living room.)

Most cushions have velcro so they can be attached to the sofa, so do well to set aside the base cushions along with the back ones until you need them.

2. Pull the metal handle or bar to pull the mattress out

In the traditional sofa beds, the mattress is hidden within the exterior of the sofa. When your box cushions are removed, you will notice a metallic bar or handle in the front of the seat where the box cushions used to be.

It will allow you to pull the mattress out with ease.

Grip it firmly with both hands then pull it upwards and outward at the same time. This will give room for the bed frame to slide right out.

This is the standard opening mechanism in all traditional sofa beds. However, you must apply force with both hands or get someone to help, as traditional sofas are usually hard to deal with.

3. Unfold the bottom half of your sofa bed

After you have pulled the handle, you can set the base on the ground. Unfold the bottom of the bed completely.

Pull the folded bed out slowly as far as you can. If you reach the end, set the base down. Grab the top of the mattress that’s been folded over and simply pull it away from the sofa to open the whole mattress.

There may be a lever to unlock the middle bar on some older beds. Pull this lever out to keep it unlocked while unfolding the bed.

Some traditional beds also have fabric straps clipped to the folded part of the mattress, to keep the mattress from getting unfolded while inside the sofa. You open each clip by pressing the metal pieces together to unlock it if the mattress does not unfold.

4. Pull the bed bar up and out, try to lock the bed in place

To get your sofa bed out fully, grip the bed bar with two hands and pull up and out. As you pull, the bed frame will unfold, and your sofa bed will lie out completely. Pull the center bar up to fully set your bed up.

Now once your mattress unfolds, pull the middle lever up slightly to see if the bed locks in place.

Some traditional sofa beds usually come with this middle lever. If yours does not come with a middle lever, skip this step.

You can now add your pillows, bedspread, and blanket to finish setting your bed up and make it more comfortable.

How To Open A Sofa Bed (Modern)

VirgoStudio, Pixabay

1. Locate the handle or lever

Modern sofa beds have a lever underneath the bed either at the front or the back of the sofa, so make sure to check underneath.

If you can’t find a lever underneath your sofa, look in the back. Some models like Futon beds normally have a lever or handle on the side of the bed. Others put the handle at the top or back of the cushion.

Take note that modern sofa beds are usually folded in the center and use the sofa cushions as the mattress.

2. Pull out the lever

After you have located the lever pull it out or hold off the back of the sofa, push it forward a little so it can unlock. You can simply press it inwards until you hear a click.

When you hear this sound, leave it in the same position and pull the bed upwards, this will allow the back of the bed to move and help the bed to rotate.

3. Rotate the bed completely

After you have done that, rotate the sofa backward until it doesn’t move anymore, and then release the handle.

Next, the box cushions and the back of the bed will turn upwards as one unit.

A newer, high-end model of sofa bed may have an electric “Bed” or “sleep mode” button at the side of the bed. You just need to press and hold for the back of the sofa bed to unlock.

4. Lower the base of the sofa

Once the back of the sofa is locked in place, lower the box cushions back down and the base of the bed to unfold the bed. Once you have lowered everything to the right position, the bed will lock automatically and you can lay down on your flat surface.

Finally, add your bedspread and pillows and enjoy a good night’s sleep.


There are other kinds of sofa beds apart from the modern and traditional sofa beds. But these two are the most common ones.

However, we hope that these steps have helped you in opening your sofa bed.

If you can’t open your bed using one of these methods, check the tag usually under your box cushions so you can identify your bed’s brand and model.

Then look it up online to get specific instructions that will help you unlock your sofa bed successfully.

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