Home » Blog » 25 Best Recliner Brands: Reviews & Ratings June 2024

25 Best Recliner Brands: Reviews & Ratings June 2024

By Jeff Frank

How many years should the best reclining sofa brands last?

I paid over $3000 for my reclining sofa. It is less than 3 years old and already falling apart. 

The leather is peeling and the foam in the seat cushions is broken down.  

I really need a new sectional, but I’m afraid to make the same mistakes all over again.

Where can I find an affordable reclining sofa or sectional that will hold up for at least 10 years?

Answer:

Although the most expensive reclining sofas & sectionals usually last 10+ years, there are also more affordable options that can last almost as long.

Paying higher prices does not guarantee that reclining sectionals & sofas will last a long time.

It is very possible to pay several thousand dollars for reclining furniture that will fail within 5 years or less.

This article lists 25 reclining furniture brands from best to least best.

Reclining sofa ratings & comments listed below are based on my personal research, available information, & opinion.

Each April and October, I spend a week at the International Home Furnishings Market in High Point, NC.

Over 3000 furniture manufacturers & associated companies display their latest products for over 100,000 retail buyers and other furniture industry professionals.

Best-selling groups & furnishings are also featured.

During those two weeks each year, I visit dozens of manufacturers’ showrooms, including at least 15 of the reclining furniture brands reviewed here.

Furniture designs, raw materials used and construction methods are constantly changing.

It is not possible to keep up with all of these changes as they occur.

In many cases, manufacturers do not even inform their own customers about design and material changes to products that are being sold.

This was especially true during the Pandemic years, when frequent unexpected spot shortages forced manufacturers to substitute alternative raw materials and components.

If any individual or company believes that something I have written is inaccurate or outdated, please notify me so that I can make immediate corrections.

The reclining sofa brands listed below are ranked by quality.

1) Hancock & Moore, Hickory, NC

H&M is one of the top quality upholstered furniture manufacturers in the U.S.

Leather is their specialty, but they also have a selection of high-quality fabrics.

75% of their sales are leather. 25% is fabric.

H&M sells both manual and powered recliners.

It has dropped the manual option for its reclining sofas and sectionals.

best reclining sofa brands
Hancock & Moore Reclining Sofa

 

Styles are traditional to transitional. Product lines include recliners, reclining sofas, reclining sectionals & home theater.

Standard cushions may be 2.55 density Qualux foam or Spring Down.

Although H&M is known for heirloom quality hand-crafted furniture, their reclining furniture (and sleeper sofas) will not have the same durability as the brand’s stationary sofas and sectionals.

Hancock & Moore Youtube video

Best reclining sofa brands: Traditional style

2)  MotionCraft, Morganton, NC

MotionCraft, a division of Sherrill Furniture, has been building custom reclining furniture for over 40 years.

The company offers a large variety of arm styles, sizes, configurations and custom options. Everything is available in over 1000 fabrics & 100 leathers.

best reclining sofa brands
MotionCraft sectional

This is handcrafted furniture, built by experienced, skilled artisans.

The detailed tailoring goes beyond what is possible for most other motion furniture manufacturers.

Most reclining furniture is designed for efficient mass production.

MotionCraft’s expert craftspeople still hand-craft one piece at a time.

Best reclining sofa brands: Durability

3) American Leather, Dallas TX

American Leather was founded in 1990.

Although the company specializes in top quality leather, 35% of reclining furniture sales are fabric.

Hundreds of different fabrics are also available.

best reclining sofa brands
American Leather Gaines sectional

Hudson sectional by American Leather

Production is highly automated, using state-of-the-art technology.

Fully customized furniture can be shipped within 30 – 45 days.

The company designs its own mechanisms, but does not actually produce them in-house.

Check out the American Leather factory video tour.

All reclining sofa and sectional mechanisms are motorized.

No manual mechanisms are available except for the Comfort Air Collection reclining chairs.

The Comfort Air Collection has no visible mechanism.

The chairs recline and adjust themselves to your body effortlessly and automatically.

They do not have (or need) a footrest.

American Leather’s Comfort Air chair line is very comfortable.

Prices are steep – around $3500 in fabric and $5000 in leather.

best recliner brands
Comfort Air Chairs by American Leather

American Leather is the only American manufacturer to offer Reclining sectionals with a Sleeper option.

Best reclining sofa brands: Modern style

4) Himolla, Made in Germany

Himolla has been made in Germany for over 70 years. The brand has a major USA distribution network.

best recliner brands
Himolla Stratus Reclining Sofa set

Frames are solid beech. 

This is a good hardwood that is more commonly found in high end European frames than those made in the U.S.

Seat cushions are 60 – 65 kg/cubic meter density cold rolled moulded foam. 

25 kg/cubic meter is equivalent to 1.8 density foam.

Himolla’s foam is more than twice as dense.

These cushions should last 15 – 20+ years for most people.

Most Himolla reclining styles are available in both manual and power versions.

Both have outstanding reputations for quality.

Himolla power recliners are wireless.

There is a small rechargeable battery pack that unobtrusively fastens on to the back of the recliners.

These battery packs should last 3 months for most people before needing recharging.

[Cold rooms, above average weight, and more than average usage can deplete the power more quickly.]

Himolla was the Winner of the 2022 German Brand Award “Excellent Brands – Product Brand of the Year”

Himolla uses high quality full grain leathers.

Some of the leathers are specially treated to resist scratches and stains.

Himolla’s fabrics are high performance Rohleder Q2 high performance fabrics. 

This is not a fabric brand that is common in the U.S., but the Himolla sales manager swore to me that he has personally removed black marker and oil stains from white Q2 fabrics.

The Rohleder Q2 fabrics do appear to be heavy-duty, highly durable fabrics that look and feel good.

20 years ago, most high end leather brands shipped leather care kits along with their furniture.

Himolla is still doing that.

Basically, this line is over-built. Every component appears to be engineered for extra durability and safety.

It appears to me as though this company is determined to make a product that will not break down.

The solid beech frames are heavy and solid.

Electrical cords attaching the remote to the chair/sofa are often weak points in power recliners. People accidentally pull the cords out while trying to  operate the remote.

Himolla tests their remote cords to 50 lbs. (far more pressure than most people will ever exert on their remotes.)

Power footrests have a special sensor that stops the footrest from closing if a small child crawls underneath.

5) Ekornes Stressless, Morganton, NC

Ekornes Stressless has been manufactured in Norway since 1934.

In 2008, Ekornes was sold to a Chinese private owner who owned 150 retail stores in China.

Most Ekornes Stressless furniture is still made in Norway.

The Ekornes IMG factory in Thailand makes lower priced reclining seating with similar styles and functionality.

This factory also makes the Stressless Mike and Max chair lines.

Stressless has a 200,000 sq. ft. assembly plant in Morganton, NC.

Stressless seating is assembled there from parts, primarily sourced from the Stressless factory in Norway.

The Ekornes IMG factory in Thailand makes the Mike and Max chairs.

best reclining sofa brands
Stressless reclining sofa

 

Ekornes Stressless manual models can last 20 years or more.

The newer power models can be expected to last about half that long.

The manual models have been introduced slowly over the years, being very careful to make sure there were no product defects.

Power models have been primarily introduced over the past 5 years and are more likely to encounter problems.

Stressless seating is built with 3.7 density cold cured moulded foam.

This is the heaviest density foam used by any reclining furniture manufacturer.

Stressless strictly controls pricing for its authorized dealers.

The company authorizes several promotions during the year, primarily with discounts on specific leather selections.

Ekorness Stressless Video

Best reclining sofa brands: Manual mechanism

6) Taylor King, Taylorsville, NC

Taylor King, a top quality leather specialist, currently offers only 3 different reclining sofas and 2 reclining sectionals.

There is a larger selection of recliner chairs.

Although the company is a leather specialist, they also offer an extensive line of fabrics.

All Taylor King reclining furniture uses a heavy-duty reclining motorized mechanism made by Ultra-Mek in North Carolina.

Best reclining sofa brands: Best power mechanism

best reclining sectional brands
Taylor King Sampson reclining sectional

For those who like Taylor King but can’t find the exact pieces they really want, check out the next brand, Bradington Young.

The quality is close to Taylor King, but BY features a far more extensive selection.

7) Bradington Young, Hickory, NC

Bradington Young offers an extensive collection of well-built traditional and classically styled reclining sofas and sectionals.

The company specializes in top grain leathers but also offers fabric options.

best reclining sofa brands
Sectional by Bradington Young

Details and finish are not quite up to the standards of Hancock & Moore or Taylor King, but prices are lower.

The overall quality is still excellent.

Bradington Young is a division of Hooker Furniture.

Hooker offers a similarly styled line of imported, lower-priced reclining sofas and sectionals.

Hooker is not currently reviewed in this article.

8) Fjords, Norwegian brand made in Thailand

This is an interesting, fast-growing alternative brand for those who like the Stressless style, but have limited budgets.

The company has been around for 70 years, almost as long as Stressless.

Even though Fjords is not an American manufacturer, they are an interesting and fast-growing brand.

Fjords is priced about 30% lower than Stressless for comparable items.

Each Fjords sofa is available in 2 sizes (high or low back.)

best reclining sofa brands
Fjords Hardstad motorized reclining sofa

 

98% of sales are leather. Fabric is only 2%, but is available.

80% of Fjords reclining chairs and sofas are motorized, but the company has very few negative reviews.

Fjords seems to have avoided the quality problems that have upset so many Stressless customers over the past couple of years.

Best recliner brand: Best value – Modern style

9) Smith Brothers, Berne, IN

Smith Brothers no longer offers reclining sofas or sectionals.

Reclining chairs are still available and are excellent quality.

This 90-year-old furniture manufacturer is located in the heart of Indiana’s Amish community and prides itself on building furniture the old-fashioned way, one piece at a time. Everything the company makes is custom built.

Frames are solid maple, reinforced with double dowels, screws, glue, corner blocks, and metal brackets. The company builds its own frames.

best recliner brands

The company designs its own exclusive arm support system to reduce the arm wobble that is commonly found in reclining furniture.

Seat cushions are removable and reversible, with coil spring construction. No-sag springs are used to support the back.

Best recliner brand: Best traditional style recliner value.

10) Hydeline USA*, Made in China

Hydeline USA is a Direct-to-Consumer brand of Amax,  a major supplier of leather furniture to large retail chains.

*Hydeline offers a Special 5% discount to Insiders Guide to Furniiture readers.

Use Coupon Code IGF5X or Order Directly from  Hydeline Special Discount Link.

Items already marked On Sale are not eligible for the 5% discount.

This is the first Chinese-made furniture I have ever recommended.

Stores often rebrand Amax furniture. For example, it can be found in Costco under the Prospera Home brand.

Before writing this review, I visited Hydeline’s showroom in High Point, NC. to examine their furniture in detail. This showroom is not open to the public. 

best reclining sofa brands
Hydeline Zero gravity reclining chair

Hydeline specializes in leather match powered reclining seating.

Seats, backs, & inside arms are semi-aniline top grain leather. Outside parts are a matching vinyl.

Most Hydeline recliners and reclining sofas feature zero gravity power mechanisms and power headrests.

Reclining sectionals are not currently available, but may be introduced soon.

Hydeline’s leather, frame and cushions are built to last 10+ years.

Frames: Kiln-dried solid wood and hardwood plywood.

Foundation: Sinuous wire foundation.

Cushions: Fabric wrapped pocket coil springs surrounded by 1.8 density foam and padded with 2.25 density and memory foam. Estimated lifespan 10+ years.

Each seat is rated to support at least 350 lbs.

Mechanisms: Most are zero gravity with powered headrests.

Zero gravity recliners are often recommended for health reasons, including bad backs or necks. See How Zero-Gravity Recliners Work and Why They Are Beneficial

Leather: Semi-aniline top-grain leather with matching vinyl.

The seats, backs and inside arms are made with semi-aniline top grain leather.

Outside arms and backs use a matching polyurethane faux leather.

All-top-grain-leather is available as a Special Order for a $200 up charge.

Hydeline reclining sofa group
Hydeline reclining sofa group

Hydeline’s website also features a Premium Outlet section with big discounts.

The outlet features discontinued in-stock models at discounted prices.

Current models with discontinued leathers also appear in the Outlet.

Pocket coil spring vs. Foam cushions

Hydeline’s cushions make this line stand out from every other reclining brand listed in this review.

Pocket coil cushions last 10+ years (twice as long as 1.8 density foam cushions used by most similarly priced reclining furniture brands.)

Cushions are 8 inches thick and can support 350 lbs.

Fabric covered steel coils are surrounded by non-load-bearing 1.8 density foam and topped with more durable 2.25 density and memory foam layers.

Best reclining sofa brands: Best leather value.

11) Bassett Furniture, Bassett, VA

Bassett makes three different quality levels of reclining furniture.

Club Level reclining furniture is mass produced in Thailand. No custom options are available. This is inexpensive, generic reclining furniture.

Bassett also has two different lines of custom-built reclining furniture, both made in the same Newton, NC factory.

One of these custom lines is also named “Club Level.” (I checked three times to make sure it really had the same name as the cheap imported line.)

The other custom line is called “BenchMade.”

The difference between these two different custom lines is that:

Club Level has the standard traditional/transitional recliner look with the front coming down close to floor level. Seats are not removable.

BenchMade uses a different mechanism for a high leg style that looks similar to stationary sofas. Seats are removable.

best reclining sofa brands
Bassett BenchMade Reclining Sofa

The BenchMade high leg reclining sofas and sectionals have removable seat cushions.

The Club Level custom reclining furniture does not have removable seat cushions.

Bassett Custom Upholstery Video

Best reclining sofa brands: Best high leg reclining sofas.

12) Omnia Leather, Chino CA.

This is an environmentally conscious company with a wide range of reclining products and pricing.

Upgrading from a basic manual reclining sofa in a Grade 1 leather to a fully accessorized, upgraded leather version of that same model can result in a significant cost increase.

The same model sofa in a Grade 6 leather with all options, including triple power (headrest, footrest, lumbar) can add $2000 or more to the retail price.

The vast assortment of leathers is sourced primarily from Europe.

According to a company spokesperson, Omnia does not use Chinese leathers.

According to Omnia, both the starting price model and the top of the line have the same frame, 2.0 density foam, springs, mechs, and 100% top grain leather.

According to Omnia’s Sales manager, the brand also offers a 2.5 density cushion upgrade, but store salespeople are not always aware that the upgraded cushions are available.

According to the website, frames are solid kiln-dried hardwood.

According to the factory expert I spoke with at the October 2022 furniture market, the frames are 7/8″ plywood.

It really doesn’t matter. In either case, the frame should outlast the cushions and mechanisms.

Omnia’s seat cushions are also available in a firm seat core option at the same price. (You should not expect the extra firm cushions to last any longer than the standard firmness.)

best reclining sofa brands
Omnia Leather reclining sofa

Omnia has an unusually strong warranty for this category of furniture.

This includes:

Lifetime warranty on the hardwood frames.

5 year warranty on leather against the transfer of color, peeling, tearing, or becoming hard.

3  year warranty on cushions.

2 year warranty on Recliner motors.

Omnia is manufactured in California, a state with the strictest environmental regulations in the nation.

As a result, Omnia is especially sensitive to ensuring that its products are “green” and sustainable.

The company is a founding member of the Sustainable Furnishings Council.

Omnia Leather reclining sectional Youtube video

13) Elran Furniture, Montreal, Canada

Elran makes motorized reclining furniture only.

90% of sales are Special Order.

Approximately 1/2 of sales are leather and 1/2 are fabric.

Elran seat cushions are unusually durable. 

According to their website and product description, Elran’s seat cushions use 2.0 density foam.

But it is not standard 2.0 density foam.

Elran runs its foam through a special chamber that pulls out gas bubbles. Somehow this results in a highly compressed pre-crushed 2.0 density foam.

Because of the pre-crushing, the foam is more resilient (less likely to compress) and is equivalent in resiliency and durability to 2.4 density foams.

I don’t know of any other reclining furniture manufacturers doing this to their foam.

best reclining sofa brands
Elran reclining sofa

 

Customer reviews are generally positive. There seem to be fewer complaints than many of their U.S. and Asian competitors get for similarly priced products.

50% of sales are top grain leather . 50% are fabric.

Elran makes a few leather match products for major retailers looking for lower price points, but they do not accept leather-match for special orders (which are the majority of their business.)

Leather match reduces costs by about 15% compared with all top-grain leather.

Retail pricing is generally around $2500 – $3500 for a fabric reclining sofa and $4500 – $5000 in leather.

Frames are 7/8″ hardwood plywood

Elran videos can be found at this link.

14) La-Z-Boy, Monroe, MI

La-Z-Boy’s founders introduced the first modern reclining chair in 1929.

Since that time, the company has grown into a $1.5 billion business with over 11,000 employees and3 regional manufacturing plants located in Dayton, Tennessee, Siloam Springs, Arkansas, and Neosho, Missouri

Since 2019, La-Z-Boy has closed 2 of its U.S. factories, while expanding its facilities in Mexico.

The best article on this topic can be found at Where Are La-Z-Boy Recliners are Made.

best reclining sofa brands
LaZBoy reclining sofa

La-Z-Boy has an unusually broad product selection at a wide range of prices.

La-Z-Boy offers over 200 different reclining designs, available in over 1000 fabrics and leathers.

 It offers a wide variety of mechanical and power mechanisms, and is one of the few companies to make its own reclining mechanisms.

Styles range from modern to traditional.

Many of the parts used in this furniture, including the frames, are manufactured domestically, however, a significant number of components and fabrics are purchased overseas.

La-Z-Boy’s manual reclining sofas are not all the same quality.

Some are far more durable than others.

La-Z-Boy makes reclining furniture in both the U.S. and in Mexico.

It can be difficult to tell which models are made where.

Unless the description specifically states that the furniture is made in the U.S., it is probably safe to assume it was made in Mexico.

LaZBoy’s Mexican-made manual reclining sofas start around $1300. Like other reclining sofas with 1.8 density foam and non-removable cushions, they have an estimated 3 – 5 year lifespan before the cushions will wear out.

What differentiates better quality, long-lasting La-Z-Boys from the cheaper models is the seat cushions.

La-Z-Boy has seat cushion upgrade options featuring 2.5 density foam layers.

The upgraded cushions should last twice as long as the standard 1.8 density foam.

Cushion upgrade options are explained in A Review of La–Z-Boy’s Chair and Seat Cushions.

In the cushion upgrade option article, the ILD number describes the firmness of the cushion. An ILD of 36 is considered medium firm.

A lower number, such as the 27 available on some of the options, is softer.

The ILD firmness number does not affect durability. Firmer foam does not last any longer than softer foam with the same density.

The more important number is the foam density.

Most recliner seats are made with 1.8 density foam. La-Z-Boy’s optional upgrade adds a layer of 2.5 density.

This costs $450 per sofa but will double the expected lifespan of the cushions, but is well worth the extra cost.
 
The 2.5 density foam upgrade is just an added layer. If the entire cushion was 2.5 density foam, it would triple the lifespan of the cushions.

“High Resiliency” is another factor that determines foam durability.

This is a manufacturing process that adds durability to foam.

The HR process isn’t expensive, adding only about $1 per cushion to the price of the foam. This can add a year or two to the cushions’ lifespan.

Most polyurethane foam made in the U.S. for cushions is HR.

Many of the cheap imported foams are not.

La-Z-Boy has an extensive network of La-Z-Boy Home Furnishings and Décor stores.

The company also has hundreds of La-Z-Boy galleries in larger furniture stores. Most of these offer in-home design assistance.

Most of La-Z-Boy’s reclining furniture is made with “tight” seat and back cushions that are not removable or reversible.

If the tight seats begin to “sag” and become uncomfortable, replacement or repair is very expensive.

The warranty will not apply since this is considered “normal” wear.

Avoid La-Z-Boy’s Bonded leather fabrics.

This includes the company’s Renew recycled leather fabrics.

La-Z-Boy provides a detailed description of its leathers and “alternative” leathers.

The article, Leather Selections at La-Z-Boy, has some glaring errors. 

Faux leather is described as, “recycled leather that the tannery did not use because they were shaved away from the original hide grain.”

This is incorrect! The term “faux leather” is typically used to describe any synthetic leather material, including recycled leathers.

Also, “recycled leather” is not made from “shaved” pieces of leather hides.

It is made from the small pieces of complete hides that were left over after being cut up from larger pieces.

The small left-over pieces are chopped up into small granules and mixed with adhesives.

The granulated “recycled leather” is then used as the backing for recycled and bonded leather materials.

The facing of the material is 100% synthetic.

This is the opposite of what the LaZBoy article says.

15) Flexsteel, Dubuque, IA

Recently, I reviewed the current Flexsteel product line at the April 2023 International Home Furnishings Market in High Point, NC.

I was impressed with recent quality improvements that have been made.

Most of the criticisms I have made in the past about Flexsteel products have now been addressed.

  • Bonded leather is gone.
  • Cushion durability has been improved.

Frames: Flexsteel uses 7/8″ plywood with 7 plies. Although this is not the strongest way to build a frame, it should still last 20+ years for most people.

Foundation: Flexsteel’s famous flat blue steel seat support system has been the strongest in the furniture industry for over 100 years.

For average people with average use, most of these foundations should last 50+ years.

If used by 300+ lb. individuals or if jumped on by kids, they will probably still last 50+ years.

[Historical factoid – I was representing Flexsteel to the U.S. government in the 1980s, when they were sued by Drexel-Heritage over the award of a government contract for sofas.

Drexel’s argument was that the contract specified “8-way hand-tied” foundations, which they claimed was superior to Flexsteel’s blue steel flat spring.

Flexsteel won the lawsuit (and the contract) by “proving” that the blue steel spring was “as good or better than” 8-way hand-tied springs.]

Cushions: Flexsteel appears to have finally recognized that reclining furniture lasts only as long as the seat cushions remain firm and comfortable.

All reclining sofas and chairs now use 2.0 density foam (an upgrade from the 1.8 density foam used by many of Flexsteel’s competitors.

In addition, the cushions are larger and thicker than they have been in previous years.

Foam cores are now larger (more surface area) and thicker (6″ or more.) Larger and thicker seat cushions last longer than smaller or thinner cushions.

Many of Flexsteel’s competitors are still using smaller 5″ thick foam cores.

Power Options: Flexsteel offers a wide range of mechanisms and power options with up to 4 motors.

Triple power options (3 motors) allow you to control the headrest, footrest, and lumbar support individually.

Flexsteel’s popular zero gravity recliners are all triple power.

The fourth motor is used for Lift recliners.

Flexsteel does not offer heat or vibrating massage options.

Manual options: Most of Flexsteel’s SouthHaven (Mexican made) reclining furniture is available with either manual or power options.

Manual recliners are less expensive.

Adding seat and back power options increases sofa prices by about $500.

Adding a 3rd motor for the power lumbar support increases prices by an additional $100.

Zecliner collection:

The Zecliners are an exclusive Flexsteel design. These are zero gravity recliners being marketed as “heavy duty sleep chairs.” They are designed to be a health-and-wellness recliner with lifestyle appeal.

Zecliners are multi-function chairs with recline and lift functions, offering zero-gravity reclining, charging ports, MyRecline app technology, and LiveSmart performance fabrics. Select models offer LED automatic ambient base lighting and a Technogel pillow for cooling comfort and pressure relief.

Zecliner chairs features design elements like minimal seams, single-needle top stitching and a soft pad over the arm with a subtly contoured seat, full chaise and removable techno gel head pillow. Both sides have angled side pockets and larger general-use pockets located at the bottom of the sides.

best reclining sofa brands
Flexsteel Zecliner

 

All Flexsteel reclining furniture is now made outside the USA.

Flexsteel’s Mexican factory produces custom-built products with a wide range of fabrics and leathers. The Mexican factory produces Flexsteel’s SouthHaven collection.

SouthHaven options include “leather match” or “all top grain” leather.

Leather match provides good quality top grain leather for the seats, inside backs, and inside arms. The remaining parts (outside arms and back, and the base) are a matching vinyl.

Note: Many of Flexsteel’s competitors substitute “split leather” for the vinyl on the outside parts.

“Split leather” is the bottom grain of the hide after the top grain has been removed.

The advantage of “split leather” is that it allows retailers to truthfully state that the recliner is “all-leather.”

The advantage of vinyl is that it is much stronger and much easier to clean than split leather.

Flexsteel’s Vietnam factory produces the Latitudes collection. These are high volume leather reclining pieces, sold with limited custom options and color selection.

All pieces in the Latitudes Collection are “leather match.” There is no “all top grain” leather option.

Flexsteel has one remaining U.S. factory, producing custom stationary seating.

Flexsteel’s Nuvo bonded leather is gone.

I won’t have to warn my readers to avoid it going forward.

16) England Furniture, New Tazwell, TN.

England Furniture is a LaZBoy company.

England specializes in rapid shipment of custom-built Special Orders.

During the Pandemic period, England’s special order shipments were taking 12 – 14 weeks (and sometimes longer.)

As of April 2023, the company reports it is back to its preferred 3 – 4 week Special Order shipping time.

Where LaZBoy makes mostly recliners, England primarily makes custom stationary furniture, but it also makes reclining pieces.

Reclining sofas and chairs make up 25% of England Furniture’s total sales.

They feature both manual and motorized mechanisms. Interestingly, they do not buy their mechanisms from LaZBoy.

Fabric kits are sewn in Asia and matched up with the frames in Tennessee.

What I find intriguing about England’s reclining line up is that they make a serious effort to make their products just a little bit better than their similarly priced competitors.

In addition to offering the standard sinuous wire foundation, they also have an optional upgrade that combines sinuous wire with added coil springs that appear to add additional flexibility to the seat support.

I have not seen that before. I’m not sure how much durability or comfort the additional coil springs add, but I find it interesting.

If I were purchasing an England reclining sofa, I would get the sinuous wire/coil spring option.

England also offers a cushion upgrade option.

The standard cushions are 1.8 density foam, but the brand also offers an upgrade that combines foam and coil springs.

Holes are drilled through the foam core and coil springs are inserted into these holes.

This foam/coil spring cushion option should extend the the lifespan and increase the comfort of the seat cushions.

 

best reclining sofa brands
Reclining sofa by England Furniture

My biggest concern with this product is that the plywood frames are not glued. 

The plywood they are using (7/8″ thick with 11 plies) is actually better than what most of their competitors use.

They claim that the plywood locks together tightly so that no glue is needed.

I have not seen any complaints about frames falling apart, but upholstery craftspeople generally feel that leaving out the glue can result in squeaking and twisting frames.

17) Barcalounger, Made in China & Vietnam

Barcalounger reclining furniture must be shopped very carefully.

Not all Barcalounger furniture is made by Barcalounger!

The more expensive Barcalounger furniture is made in multiple factories that make reclining furniture to be sold by Barcalounger.

Barcalounger also sells licenses to various retailers (including Costco) that allows these companies to make their own reclining furniture using the Barcalounger brand name.

These products made under license are not required to conform to Barcalounger manufacturing standards, even though they may have the same product descriptions.

There are also “Click bait” Barcalounger products advertised on various e-commerce websites. These are cheap products advertised with the Barcalounger brand name, but not manufactured or licensed by Barcalounger.

These fake Barcalounger products may not actually exist at all and may be a scam for trying to steal your money

Barcalounger’s recliners priced below $1000 are usually licensed products.

These licensed products are not made by Barcalounger and are not made to the company’s standards.

Real Barcalounger leather reclining sofas priced under $3000 & leather reclining chairs under $2000 are good values.

Barcalounger and Hydeline often appear to have similar quality and value for leather reclining sofas priced below $3000 and for leather recliners priced below $2000.

The appearance of similarity can be deceiving.

Barcalounger recliners and sofas have a weight limit of 400 lbs. compared with Hydeline’s 350 lbs.

That figure makes the Barcalounger appear to be a better made product.

But when we examine the actual construction, Hydeline appears superior.

Frames & Foundations:

Barcalounger frames are plywood and engineered woods.

Hydeline frames are primarily solid hardwood.

Cushions:

Both Barcalounger and Hydeline have 8 inch thick cushions with a central pocketed coil spring core.

Barcalounger surrounds those coils with 1.8 density foam.

Hydeline has a bottom layer of 1.8 density foam, but then adds additional layers of 2.25 density and memory foams.

Hydeline’s cushion construction should last longer and support more weight.

Barcalounger has a wider selection of styles and special features.

Some reclining sofa styles are priced above $4000, but are still excellent values.

Barcalounger’s reclining furniture is leather and leather match.

Leather match uses top grain leather for seats, backs, inside arms, & vinyl for the outside parts.

Barcalounger’s leather is top grain. The website does not specify whether it is also semi-aniline.

Each of Barcalounger’s products and groups is available in only a limited selection of leathers.

Fabric is available for a few of the best selling models.

All Barcalounger reclining sofas are powered.

Some models have additional motors for the headrest and/or lumbar support.

Barcalounger features two primary style categories:

Vintage (traditional style)

best recliner brands
Barcalounger Vintage recliner

Modern Expressions

best reclining sofa brands

Styles & Special Features include:

Big & Tall

Heating/Cooling

High/Low Legs

Rocker Recliners

Swivel Recliners

Wall Proximity

Zero Gravity

Heads Up recliners with power-tilt headrests

The video below shows a demonstration of Barcalounger’s unusual power headrests that can be adjusted to tilt-forwards

Lift Chairs

Barcalounger offers two types of Lift chairs:

Lux Recline & Lift

ThermaLift

18) Best Home Furnishings, Ferdinand, IN

This is a family-owned and operated business, over 50 years old with over 1 million square ft. and nearly 1000 employees. The company has been making recliners since 1989.

The specialty of this company is fast special orders – shipped within one week after the purchase with a selection of over 1000 different fabrics.

best reclining sofa brands

Best makes nearly 200 different recliners and over 60 different reclining sofas and sectionals.

This includes multiple sizes, made especially for small, medium, large and extra-large people.

50% of recliner sales include manual mechanisms and 50% have power mechanisms.

Frames are solid hardwood and hardwood plywood that are doweled, corner blocked, glued, and screwed.

Most of the other manufacturers in this price range have switched to plywood or OSB (Oriented Strand Board) engineered wood frames.

Although Best Home Furnishings does not make its own mechanisms, they do have proprietary mechanisms made exclusively for their seating.

This includes its Comfort Sync mechanism from Leggett & Platt.

Cushions for most Best Home recliners use 1.8 density foam.

But they do have some heavy-duty and large recliners made with 2.5 density foam.

The Best Max line uses 2.5 density foam.

The Beast line, built for extra-large individuals, includes both 2.5 density foam and a heavy-duty coil spring foundation.

Beast models also use an extra-strong proprietary Performa-Weave polypropylene material instead of the standard polyester fiber fill.

19) Franklin, Houston, MS

Although not as well known as some of the other recliner brands, Franklin Furniture is one of the largest privately owned furniture manufacturers in the U.S.

Franklin has been making recliners in Mississippi for over 40 years.

The company employs over 1300 workers. Its facilities total over 1 million square feet.

franklin reclining sofa
Franklin reclining sofa

Franklin makes both reclining and stationary upholstered furniture.

As a reclining specialist, the company offers a wide variety of mechanisms, styles, and custom options.

Franklin is especially known for its proprietary Gravity Glide Mechanism.

This is a manual mechanism that allows the sitter to stop the seat and back movement at any position.

Most popularly priced recliners with manual mechanisms have a fixed number of positions (usually 3) where the seat and back can be stopped.

Franklin’s cushions are made with 1.85 density foam.

The foam is mixed with a gel that is supposed to increase comfort and durability compared with other recliners made with standard 1.8 density polyurethane foams.

Frames are 7/8″ plywood with 5 – 7 plies.

This is an average quality frame in Franklin’s price range.

Franklin does not offer all-leather seating, but does offer leather-match.

Franklin also offers a large number of custom options.

These options include heat and massage mechanisms, infinite reclining positions, and an iPod docking station controlled from a touchpad command center.

You can also find models with lifts, extra storage, hidden tables, and cup holders.

Franklin is a vertically integrated manufacturer, making nearly all of its own parts, including manual and power mechanisms.

Price ranges for recliners are generally $499 – $1299.

Reclining sofas range from $899 – $1699.

Franklin also has a large selection of Lift recliners ranging in price from $599 – $1499.

20 & 21) Natuzzi EditionsPalliser

Natuzzi Editions and Palliser are being reviewed together. They make very similar furniture and compete directly for the same types of customers.

Although their prices may seem higher than most other brands in this mid-range section, most of their sales are for leather.

Real leather sofas selling for less than $5000, are usually within the mid-range price category.

Natuzzi Editions is the largest leather seating manufacturer in the world.

Natuzzi Editions furniture sold in the U.S. is made primarily in Asia.

About a year ago, in the midst of the Pandemic, , Natuzzi Editions announced it would be opening a Mexico manufacturing facility. I don’t know whether that was actually opened or was cancelled as  supply chain and shipping problems eased.

Natuzzi Editions seating sold in Europe is mostly made in Romania and possibly other Eastern European locations.

Natuzzi Italia furniture is more expensive and better made. It is built in Italy and is not being reviewed here.

Palliser bills itself as a Canadian company, but Palliser seating sold in the U.S. comes from its 3 Mexican factories.

Palliser also has a Canadian assembly plant. This factory assembles parts made in Mexico. The finished products are then distributed to its Canadian customers.

Natuzzi & Palliser combine high quality leather with poor quality frames & foundations.

The excellent leather allows both brands to offer seating that looks and feels great when brand new.

The cheap frames, foundations, and cushions limit the furniture’s expected lifespan.

Although the leather may last 20+ years, the estimated frame lifespan for their reclining furniture is 5 – 10 years.

The non-removable foam cushions may also wear out within 5 years or less.

Natuzzi introduced the first cheap “real” leather sofas in the 1960s.

The streamlined modern design allows highly efficient, low cost manufacturing.

Costs are further cut by using low-cost materials inside the furniture, where they cannot be seen.

Natuzzi and Palliser marketing highlights the beautiful, plush leather.

It makes very little reference to the inferior frames, foundations, and cushions.

Natuzzi and Palliser frames are constructed with fiberboard, plywood, & softwoods.

They are equivalent in quality to frames used in fabric sofas selling for less than $1000.

Fiberboard & softwood frames are much flimsier than solid hardwoods or thick hardwood plywood.

They do not hold staples or other fasteners well.

As a result, the frames are  held together primarily with glue.

Glue is very strong. When a heavy pressure is exerted on a sofa seat, the frame is far more likely to break than for the glue to fail.

Natuzzi’s foundations are made with elasticized webbing.

Webbing can be an excellent foundational support – but not the type of webbing Natuzzi uses and not the way they install it.

Top-quality, high-end modern-style furniture uses webbing that is wide, thick, and does not stretch.

Natuzzi and Palliser use lower-quality “stretchable” webbing.

Stretchable webbing is far easier (and faster) to install by low-skilled assembly line workers.

Stretchable webbing can “sag” after a few years of use.

Larger than average individuals or kids who like to jump on the sofa can cause cushions to sag even sooner.

Engineered woods, fiberboard, and softwood, like those used by Natuzzi, do not hold staples well.

Loose staples can pull out over time, causing the webbing to sag.

Sagging webbing results in uncomfortable seat cushions that wear out more quickly.

High-quality non-stretchable webbing, used in better quality seating, is securely fastened to strong solid hardwood frames.

Palliser is a Canadian brand.

But most Palliser Furniture sold in the USA is manufactured in Mexico, not Canada.

Like Natuzzi, Palliser’s modern designs allow efficient low-cost production.

They also use high-quality leather in combination with low-cost frames and foundations.

Both Natuzzi & Palliser make furniture that looks good on the outside and feels good in the showroom when new.

The leather is of excellent quality.

It will far outlast the rest of the sofa.

Everything on the inside, that cannot be seen, is built cheaply.

The frames are very inexpensive, made with cheap engineered wood and softwoods.

Engineered wood does not hold staples well.

As a result, the frames are basically held together with glue.

The frame quality is no better than many brands selling at less than half of Palliser’s prices.

Palliser’s seat cushions are fabricated with 1.8 density foam cores.

This is industry standard foam, found in sofas selling for $499 to $3000+.

1.8 density foam seat cushions have an average lifespan of 5 years in stationary sofas.

The actual cushion lifespan will vary, depending on:

  • Foam density & thickness.
  • Cushion surface area. (Larger cushions last longer.)
  • Amount of use the furniture gets.
  • Size of the people using the furniture. ( A 250 lb. person can wear out a 1.8 density foam cushion within 1 year or less.)

Natuzzi & Palliser both have extensive selections of reclining furniture.

This review does not cover reclining furniture. In most cases, reclining furniture has a shorter lifespan than stationary seating made by the same brand.

Warranties

In one of the videos below, one of Palliser’s employees speaks proudly about the company’s lifetime warranty.

Palliser does not have a lifetime warranty.

You can read the current warranty document here.

Palliser’s longest warranty is 10 years on wood frames, springs or webbing.

What they do not point out is a clause stating that after the first year, this covers only replacement parts.

It does not include labor or transportation, if the sofa needs to be taken somewhere for repair.

Component parts are very cheap. Labor and transportation cost far more.

Natuzzi’s warranty is 10 years for wood frames only.

Springs and webbing are covered for only 2 years.

But because it also does not include labor or transportation after the first year, it is actually just as good as Palliser’s warranty.

After the first year, the warranty covers only the parts and materials needed for repairs, but not labor costs.

Palliser cushions are warrantied for 5 years. But there is an added clause that states,

“All cushions will soften with use and will conform to the shape of the user.

This softening is considered normal wear and is in no way considered a
manufacturer’s defect.”

That clause describes exactly what cushions do when they wear out.

It may happen after 5 years, or 3 years, or less.

Regardless of how soon your cushions soften up, Palliser will not be replace them under warranty.

This is the same for almost all low and mid-priced reclining sofa & sectional brands.

Natuzzi’s 2 year cushion warranty has an almost identical exclusion clause.

It does not cover:

Softening of the cushions with use, which must not in any way be interpreted as a loss of resilience due to production faults, defects in materials, or non-conformities of any kind.

Extended warranties do not help in any way.

All of the restrictions listed above will also be found in extended warranties.

Check out this video showing a Natuzzi sofa being repaired.

Palliser has just as many problems.

Here are a few independent review websites I pulled up.

Better Business Bureau – Complaints

Complaints board

ReviewsTalk

Yelp reviews

Check out these videos of Palliser Furniture made in Mexico:

22) Jackson Catnapper, TN

Catnapper is the brand name for recliners made by Jackson Furniture Industries.

The company has over 1500 employees and 1 million sq. ft. of manufacturing space in 6 different facilities, located in Tennessee, Mississippi, Texas, and Florida.

This company offers a wide range of features and options.

jackson reclining sofa brands

 

One of Catnapper’s best features is the “Comfort Coil” cushions, available on most of its models.

I consider coil spring seat cushions to be an upgrade over the standard 1.8 density foam.

Very few of Catnapper’s low and mid-priced competitors have offered coil spring seat construction, probably because of the extra cost.

Several years ago, I was seeing a significant number of complaints about Catnapper’s coil spring seats, but those complaints have mostly disappeared in recent years.

Catnapper offers both power and manual reclining mechanisms.

Most people currently purchase powered reclining furniture. That percentage is growing.

Many brands no longer sell manual mechanisms.

Manual mechanisms usually last longer than power mechanisms.

When manual mechanisms break down, it is usually possible to get replacement parts, even after 10 years.

When power mechanisms break down, replacement parts are frequently unavailable after 5 years.

Jackson Catnapper has a large number of negative reviews.

Although they have fewer complaints than many of their competitors about seat cushions, they have a high percentage of complaints about frames and mechanisms.

Worst of all, as of 2023, it appears they are still offering bonded leather as a fabric option.

Bonded leather is possibly the single largest source of complaints in the entire furniture industry since it was first introduced in 2010.

Since that time there have been well over 100,000 complaints about “peeling” bonded leather. (I know of individual retail chains that have registered over 1000 bonded leather complaints in a single year.) If you are interested in why retailers accepted this huge problem for so long, check out my article, Why Do Furniture Companies Sell Bonded Leather After Knowing That It Peels?

Many of Jackson Catnapper’s competitors began switching to 100% synthetic composite faux leathers made of polyester and polyurethane. The new composite faux leathers are indistinguishable from bonded leather in look and feel – and they don’t peel!

You can check out some of the most recent customer reviews at:

ConsumerAffairs.com reviews

Better Business Bureau reviews

Complaints Board

23) Southern Motion, Pontotoc, MS.

Southern Motion™ specializes exclusively in reclining furniture.

It had nearly 1500 employees in 5 Mississippi facilities, but has had some recent difficulties and laid off about 1/3 of their workforce.

The company offers a wide assortment of reclining chairs, sofas & sectionals.

These are available with a dozen different mechanisms and a wide variety of options, including power headrests and electronic accessories.

Southern Motion was founded in 1996 and has grown into a leading supplier to the national furniture retailers, offering a line that includes all categories of motion furniture.

southern motion reclining sofa
Southern Motion reclining sofa

 

Southern Motion’s SoCozi, line features heated massaging and other high-end options.

From a quality and durability view, Southern Comfort faces the same challenges as the other mid-priced competitors.

Price seems to be the #1 criteria from a quality/value perspective.

Southern Motion offers a wide variety of upgraded designs with special features & options at higher prices.

The company seems to get a higher than average number of consumer complaints.

I do not recommend most Southern Motion models for people weighing more than 200 lbs.

24) Ashley Furniture, Arcadia, WI

Ashley Furniture is the largest furniture company in the world.

The brand has manufacturing plants all over the world, including several in the U.S.

Ashley also owns (and franchises) a huge network of Ashley Home retail stores.

On top of that, Ashley’s furniture is sold through other large and small furniture retailers worldwide.

ashley reclining sectional
Ashley reclining sectional

Over the past 40 years, Ashley has entered virtually every furniture category in the low and middle price ranges.

Ashley pioneered the big, puffy modern “casual” look for reclining furniture.

That casual style has been copied by so many competitor brands that it has become virtually generic.

Inside the furniture industry, this type of style used to be known as “Furniture by the pound.”

The idea is to give the customer the illusion that they are getting the most furniture possible for each dollar spent.

One big advantage of this modern “casual” style is that it can be manufactured very quickly by low-skilled workers.

Another advantage is that it reduces costs by utilzing low-cost materials and components.

These are hidden away inside the furniture, in places shoppers cannot see or feel when the furniture is brand new in the showroom.

Much of the “puffy” look that makes reclining sofas and sectionals look so big and plush is created using very low cost polyester fiber in the arm pads and backs.

Foam is one of the most expensive materials used in low and mid-range quality upholstered seating.

The puffy casual styling, featuring tight (non-removable) seat cushions, substantially reduces the amount of foam required.

Money is also saved by using 1.8 density foam for the seat cushions.

All polyurethane foams are not equal in quality (or cost.).

A 1.8 density foam produced in Asia will be cheaper, but can break down faster, than a premium quality American made 1.8 density foam.

But even American made 1.8 density seat cushions can lose their resiliency (ability to bounce back) and comfort within 3 – 5 years (or sooner for above average size individuals.)

Increasing foam density to 2.5 would more than double seat cushion lifespan.

But it would cost an additional $10 per seat at the manufacturing level.

That translates to a $50 – $100 increase in the retail price of a 3 seat sofa with non-removable seat cushions.

When the furniture is new in the showroom, shoppers would not be able to tell the difference between the two different foam densities.

Three years later, there will be a very noticeable difference in both looks and comfort.

But most retail salespeople are not skilled enough to justify the extra expense to their customers.

When I first encountered Ashley Furniture in the 1970s, the company was a small Arcadia, WI manufacturer, making cheap bookcases and occasional tables.

At that time, I was a buyer for a Top 50 furniture retail chain.

IKEA opened up its first U.S. store in 1985.

Ashley immediately recognized that it could not hope to compete in its existing product line of bookcases and tables.

Ashley became the first U.S. furniture manufacturer to explore the advantages of building furniture in China.

The company soon branched out into bedroom and dining room furniture, followed by upholstery.

Over the past few years, tariff and supply chain issues have forced Ashley to move most of its production out of China to other Asian countries – and also to the U.S.

Most Ashley upholstered furniture, including reclining pieces, are now Made in the USA.

I recently spoke with Ashley’s VP of Business Development at the October 2022 International Home Furnishings Market in High Point, NC.

In response to my question, he told me that 75% of Ashley reclining furniture sold in the U.S. is currently being made domestically.

One reason for Ashley’s low position in this Review article is that the company has refused to give me any information about their construction.

Ashley’s websites also provide very little information about product construction.

Reclining furniture brands that no longer make furniture in the U.S. include:

Klaussner, Asheboro, NC

Klaussner Furniture has gone out of business.

All factories have been closed

Klaussner’s reclining furniture is mass-produced using low-cost materials and inexpensive labor.

Klaussner has the same problems as most of its large competitors, including non-removable cushions that wear out within a few years

In addition, there seems to be an unusually high number of complaints about frame failures.

This is a problem commonly found with cheap imported reclining sofas but is not as common with U.S.-made furniture.

[Note – This may be linked to a change from plywood to engineered wood frames. Over the past two years (Pandemic & supply chain crisis) the price of plywood tripled. Some manufacturers switched to engineered woods. They were easier to obtain (and much cheaper.]

One reason for Klaussner’s low position in this Review article is that the company has refused to give me any information about their construction.

Klaussner’s website also provides very little information about product construction.

Lane Furniture, Tupelo, MS

[UPDATE Nov. 22, 2022 – Lane Furniture has shut down and fired all employees.]

HIGH POINT, NC Nov. 22, 2022 — WXII News, Winston Salem is reporting that United Furniture Inds. has terminated all  Lane employees. According to the station the company, which has operated under the Lane brand in recent years, sent two letters to employees. The first instructed employees not to report to their work locations today. The second e-mail, sent overnight, immediately terminates all employees, with the exception of over-the-road drivers currently out on delivery.

According to WXII, the memo stated that, “Your layoff from the company is expected to be permanent, and all benefits will be terminated immediately without provision of COBRA.”

Lane no longer makes reclining furniture in the U.S.

Lane is one of the best-known brands in the furniture industry with a history that goes back over 100 years.

Unfortunately, this is not the same company. Ownership has changed three times since 1996.

If you like my Insider’s Guide To Furniture please encourage your friends and family to check it out.

Unlike other furniture review sites, I do not solicit or accept payment from any of the brands reviewed or mentioned on my website.

My 45 years in the furniture industry have provided me with a detailed knowledge of furniture brands, construction, quality & value.

Over the past decade, I have written over 2,000 articles, reviews, and answers, seen by over 2 million viewers.

If any company or individual feels that the information on this website is out-of-date or inaccurate, please let me know and it will be promptly corrected.

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24 thoughts on “25 Best Recliner Brands: Reviews & Ratings June 2024”

  1. Wow! So glad to have found your blog, which popped up when I was researching Hydeline recliners. Thank you for this information.

    Reply
  2. Hello! I’m so grateful for your work and research! I am in the market for a new couch, and after two failures in the past two years, I’m really diving deep into the research. In 2022 I bought an inside weather sectional and received multiple emails from the company, apologizing for the wait on the couch build before finally receiving a notification that they went out of business and could not fulfill my purchase. I was out over $3k and could not get it back despite my efforts. Next, my husband and I went to Ashley furniture knowing that its reputation had gone south over the past few years, but at least it was a more reliable company that fit our budget at the time. The couch is OK. The cushions are foam the biggest complaint is the fabric pills terribly and looked years old by the 3rd month, so we’re selling and looking for a long-term, quality option with a much higher budget.

    One couch that seems to have it all that I haven’t seen on either of your list is the Homebody couch. It’s a recliner which suits my husband needs, it’s stylish which suits my needs, and has removable covers which suits our lifestyle with pets, and hopefully children. I live in NC so I have lots of furniture options around me, but this particular brand keeps popping up. I’m super nervous about the prospect of ordering anything online again, so I’m wondering if you have suggestions or if you e had a chance to review Homebody for its quality yet?

    Reply
  3. Hi,
    I have been trying to decide what brand of sofa and loveseat or sectional to purchase. I’m looking for top grain leather and reclining. Price isn’t the biggest issue, rather finding furniture that I will have for 10 or more years without avoiding sitting in worn down seats. I have visited the largest furniture retailer in Utah and I was told they didn’t offer anything with a foam density of 2.5. I hesitate to buy something online without getting an honest answer. I saw you listed a contact at Southland furniture, Jason. I wanted to see if I can send him an email and get his help. Thanks for the great information.

    Reply
    • If price isn’t an issue and you prefer modern styling, get something from Stressless, Himolla or American Leather. These brands are more likely to have moulded foams, which are thinner but have a density of 3.25 or more.

      If you prefer transitional or traditional styling, look at Carolina Custom Leather, Hancock & Moore, Motioncraft, Taylor King, Bradington Young.
      If the cushions are removable, get the upgraded Spring Down cushions. They will be the most comfortable and longest lasting.

      Furnitureland South carries many of these brands. They may also have some European or Canadian high end leather reclining brands that I’m not familiar with.

      My contact at Furnitureland South is Jason Campbell.

      If you want to contact Jason, he can be reached at:

      Jason Campbell, Design Consultant, Furnitureland South
      jasoncampbell@furniturelandsouth.com
      Mobile: 336.324.7678 | Phone: 336.822.3243

      Just let Jason know you got his name from Jeff Frank at Insider’s Guide to Furniture to have access to the special pricing.

      If price is an issue, and you want the best possible leather reclining sofas and loveseats priced under $3000 or leather reclining sectionals priced under $6000, Hydeline is the brand to get.

      Hydeline’s cushions are 8 inches thick with pocketed coil springs padded by layers of 2.25 density and memory foams. They’re extremely comfortable and durable.

      Hydeline has a special 5% discount for my Insider’s Guide readers. Contact Johanna Morgan at Johanna.Morgan@hydeline.com.

      Barcalounger uses the same pocketed coil springs for some of its reclining furniture, but the padding is only 1.8 density foam.

      Reply
  4. Loved this post! As a recent apartment dweller, I’m in desperate need of a comfy reclining sofa. These reviews are incredibly helpful in narrowing down my options. Thanks for sharing!

    Reply
    • You haven’t specified your price range.

      If you’re looking for a very durable, comfortable reclining sofa in the $2000 – $3000 price range, you should definitely check out Hydeline.

      Hydeline’s leather match reclining sofas last twice as long as many similarly styled and priced competitors (10+ years.)

      The difference is the pocketed coil seat cushion construction. Pocketed coils last far longer than the 1.8 and 2.0 density foams used by most of their competitors.

      The biggest problem with pocketed coil cushions is that they may feel too “firm” for many people.

      Hydeline doesn’t have that problem. Their cushions are 2 inches thicker than the vast majority of pocketed coil cushion seating. Those extra 2 inches are filled with 2 layers of high quality foams. One layer is 2.25 density. The other layer is memory foam.

      Those extra foam layers make a huge difference in comfort. In my opinion, Hydeline recliners are more comfortable than Flexsteel or LaZBoy, and will also last twice as long.

      Hydeline’s cushions will lose very little of its initial “As-new” comfort over 10+ years, while foam recliner cushions, such as the ones used by Flexsteel and LaZBoy will gradually lose their firmness and comfort until needing replacement within 4 – 6 years.

      Reply
  5. Great roundup of reclining sofa brands! I’m currently in the market for a new one and this post has been super helpful in narrowing down my options. Love the detail in each review and the ratings system. Definitely bookmarking this for later reference. Thanks for creating such a useful resource!

    Reply
  6. Hi Jeff, thanks for maintaining this excellent site. I’ve learned so much about materials in my quest for quality.

    Do you have any recommendations of a reclining sofa that is around $3000, hold up well against a 38lb dog, and offers good lumbar support (doesn’t need to be motorized) but feels like you can sink into it a little with a big soft head pillow?

    The Hydeline Erindale is the current front runner but I’m reading reviews that mention their sofas are too firm, like car seats. Not sure if this is just their personal preference or that the 2.5lb foam is uncomfortably firm. We also enjoyed a Flexsteel Bowie from Living Spaces but it sounds like their leather quality won’t be as good as Hydeline despite also being top grain.

    Reply
    • “Soft” seat cushions in mass produced reclining furniture may feel very comfortable when the furniture is brand new. They may even feel very comfortable for the first year or two.

      But they will soon lose that initial comfort as the foam wears out. Since the cushions are not removable, they can’t be replaced when the foam wears out.

      Hydeline doesn’t use 2.5 density foam in their cushions. The “firmness” and long-lasting comfort comes from pocketed coil springs. Above the coil springs are layers of 2.25 density foam, memory foam (for softness) and polyester fiber.

      Hydeline’s cushions are 8 1/2 inches thick. That’s more than two inches thicker than most pocketed coil cushions.

      When I spoke with Hydeline’s owner a few weeks ago at the International Home Furnishings Market in High Point, NC, he indicated they were thinking of replacing the 2.25 density foam layer with 2.5 density foam, but that hasn’t been done yet.

      I also spent time with Flexsteel’s Sales Manager, and was disappointed to learn that several improvements he had spoken about at the previous Market, never occurred.

      Although Hydeline’s 8.5″ thick pocketed coil cushions do feel firmer than 1.8 or 2.0 density foam, they have enough padding to be quite comfortable. They lose very little of that initial comfort over the 10+ year lifespan of the furniture.

      There are some other differences between Hydeline and Flexsteel.

        Most of Hydeline’s mechanisms, including the Erindale, are Zero gravity. Flexsteel’s Bowie is not a zero gravity mechanism.

        Usually, zero gravity mechanisms add a couple of hundred dollars to the price of a reclining sofa.

        Zero gravity mechanisms lean back further, and have added health benefits.

      For more information on Zero gravity health benefits, check out this article, Zero Gravity – The Latest in Comfort Technology.

      Both Hydeline and Flexsteel use semi-aniline top grain leathers. The quality is very similar.

      Both of the reclining sofas you are looking at are “leather match.”

        Flexsteel’s leather match (used on the outer portions of the furniture) is vinyl.
        Hydeline uses bottom grain leather for their match. Bottom grain is not as durable as top grain (and costs less.)

      If you special order Hydeline, you can have all top grain leather substituted for the bottom grain “match” for an additional $200.

      Barcalounger’s more expensive reclining sofas have similar construction to Hydeline.

      The potential problem with Barcalounger is that, in addition to making and selling reclining seating, they also license out their brand name to some big low end retailers (including Costco and Amazon.) These lower priced “licensed” Barcaloungers are not made by the Barcalounger factory and Barcalounger has no control over quality or specs.

      Reply
  7. I am in the market for a sofa and love seat and I am thankful to have found your Top 25 review. Since I am looking for a chenille cloth reclining unit my choices are limited. I am replacing my 10 yr old Lazy Boys which were good but now worn. Anyway I looked at LazyBoy and Flexsteel but both are a little pricey , now more so after reading your article. I may go for Flexsteel if you can confirm the 2.0 foam density is being used. I am also considering Franklin because they have exactly what I want at a good price if there magic 1.85 gel infused foam cushion is all they say it is. Any advice on this would be appreciated. Thanks Steve Anderson

    Reply
    • Six months ago, I was told by a Flexsteel sales manager that the foam was being upgraded to 2.0 density. I’m not sure whether that ever happened.

      Next week, I’ll be attending the International Home Furnishings Market in High Point, NC, where I’ll be visiting a couple of hundred manufacturers, including most of the companies listed in my articles about recliners and sofas.

      I’ll be checking with Flexsteel, Franklin, and many of their competitors for the latest products.

      Please check back with me on the “Ask the Expert” part of my website after 10/18.

      To give you the best possible recommendation, I’ll need to know:

      1) What is your budget?

      2) What type of reclining sofa and loveseat are you looking for? (Size and style?)

      3) Manual or power?

      Reply
      • Thanks for your prompt response. I was hoping to spend less than $3000 but I can go more if the quality justifies it. I know Flexsteel and LaZBoy will run closer to $5000. I was looking for a contemporary style like the Franklin Dayton in chenille fabric.
        Sofa 80 to 90 inches and reclining loveseat without console. We are sold on the Chenille fabric because this has held up to our 5 cats for 10 years. Manual is fine for me. Thanks in advance Steve Anderson

      • It can be very difficult to identify Chenille fabrics, without actually seeing the fabric.

        Chenilles come in hundreds of different variations. They can be made from cotton, rayon, olefin, polyester and other fibers. Some are more durable and stain resistant than others.

        A whole new category of “high performance” fabrics has been introduced since you purchased your previous reclining furniture. Some of these high performance fabrics are Chenilles, but there are many good alternatives.

        There are very few reclining sofas and loveseats under $5000, that will last for 10 years. Most are more likely to have average lifespans closer to 5 years. This also includes lower priced brands such as Franklin, Best Home Furnishings, Ashley, Southern Motion.

        Any reclining furniture made with 1.8 or 2.0 density foam (including foams described as “high density” or “high resilience”) should not be expected to last more than 5 years.

        Most of the brands selling sofa/loveseat sets for $3000 or less will also have issues with poor frame construction and t

        A few brands under $5000 have coil spring or pocketed spring seat construction. Most of these should have average lifespans closer to 10 years. This includes Barcalounger (mostly leather, but some fabric), Hydeline (leather only), England (with the coil spring cushion option.)

        Note: There are some cheap import brands from Asia that feature pocketed coil cushions. These are more durable than cheap foam, but are usually uncomfortably firm. If a reclining sofa with pocketed coils is priced below $1500, it should be avoided. (Barcalounger makes some cheap models for mass merchants that may fall into this category.)

        Jackson Catnapper makes recliners in your price range with coil spring cushions, but the overall construction and tailoring are poor, and there have been many negative reviews. (See Consumer Affairs reviews – Jackson Catnapper.)

        Some of the higher priced modern style brands have seat cushions made with cold rolled moulded foam. This is a very durable type of cushion that should last 10+ years, but I don’t know of any brands with these cushions that have sofa and loveseat sets priced under $5000.

        I can’t identify any reclining sofas and loveseats that fulfil your requirements (close to $3000, 10 year durability, Chenille fabric) so I’m going to refer you to Jason Campbell. He may be aware of other brands that might work best for you.

        Jason also may be able to get you better pricing on brands like Flexsteel and Franklin than you have found on your own so far. He was able to quote a price to one of my readers on a Flexsteel sectional that was more than $1000 below the price quoted by the reader’s local Flexsteel dealer.

        Jason is a senior design consultant for Furnitureland South, the largest single furniture store in the world with 1.3 million sq. ft. of showroom space. They sell over $200 million annually from that single location. The store carries over 1000 brands. They give special inside pricing to my blog readers.

        If you want to contact Jason, he can be reached at:

        jasoncampbell@furniturelandsouth.com
        Mobile: 336.324.7678 | Phone: 336.822.3243

      • I myself am looking at Flex steel reclining products. Mostly with the added features of Lumbar, head rest, zero gravity isn’t really needed. Price range 3-5 grand also but only if the quality verifies it. Was thinking about what cloth. I am wanting something durable. Do you have recommendations?

      • Before I can give you any recommendations, I need to ask you some questions:

        1) How many pieces do you need? Which pieces? (If there is a specific Flexsteel item you like, can you send me a link?
        2) If you are looking for a sectional, how many seats do you need?
        3) Leather or fabric?
        4) Manual or Power mechanism?
        5) What style?
        6) Does anybody who uses the furniture regularly weigh over 250 lbs.?

  8. So with regard to Flexsteel reclining sofas – I’m a bit confused by your two articles that address this company. This one says that the foam density in the cushions HAS been upgraded to 2.0 in lieu of the previously used 1.8. But in another article specifically about Flexsteel, you updated with the fact that it had not. So in short, are you saying that this is still not a reputable brand to purchase from due to the fact that what should, in theory, last for 10+ years is in reality lasting less than 5? We have had an Ashley’s couch for 6 years and the cushion/support is almost non-existent. None of us in my family are over 175lbs, and we do not misuse the furniture. We are looking for something more reliable and durable as I have chronic low back issues and really need the support. We were told by two different salesmen yesterday that we definitely needed the Flexsteel, but I’m honestly not sure I fully trust that anyone that works on commission actually gives you the full picture. Do we ultimately need to avoid this brand?

    Reply
    • Flexsteel is one of the best known furniture brands in the U.S., even though very little of its furniture is still made here.

      The brand still has a great reputation, primarily due to its unique blue steel flat spring foundation, which was invented over 100 years ago, and is still probably the most durable seat support foundation available.

      Flexsteel’s marketing (and sales pitch to store customers) still heavily relies on associating overall product quality to that blue steel flat spring foundation.

      Unfortunately, a foundation that lasts 50+ years doesn’t help much when other critical components can fail within 5 years.

      Flexsteel’s long reputation for durability was primarily based on the quality of its stationary seating.

      Its reclining furniture (and the reclining furniture of all of its closest competitors) has always been far less durable than its non-reclining products.

      One of the big changes Flexsteel has gone through over the past 10 years (since the last major Recession) is that, where it used to sell far more stationary seating, currently 2/3 of Flexsteel’s sales are for reclining furniture.

      Despite all of its problems, Flexsteel reclining sofas are usually still better than Ashley.

      Mass produced reclining furniture has the highest rate of complaints of any single furniture product category.

      Fortunately, one of the biggest sources of complaints for reclining furniture, bonded leather, has been gradually replaced by other (more stable) 100% synthetic leathers over the past few years.

      Flexsteel’s Nuvo Leather is a bonded leather and still appears as an option with some products. Do not buy Nuvo Leather!

      If you are confused about Flexsteel’s current construction and quality from my articles, that’s probably because I am confused. I was told that Flexsteel was making improvements, especially to its cushions.

      Apparently that has not yet happened, at least among older models. I’m not sure whether their newer products are getting upgraded foam.

      I hope to check that out when I visit their showroom at the International Home Furnishings Market in High Point, NC that is coming up in October.

      I was a buyer for a major furniture store chain in the 1970s and 1980s.

      At that time, Flexsteel was one of the few mid-priced mass produced brands that spent money on interior components that could not be seen or felt by its customers, but which resulted in longer lasting furniture.

      I am also familiar with Flexsteel because I was in charge of their U.S. government sales from 1984 through 1989, selling several million dollars annually to the U.S government military and various civilian agencies. (Ethan Allen and Bassett were two of my other clients at that time.)

      During the last Recession, (2007 – 2010) many of the smaller furniture retailers that purchased from Flexsteel (and all of its competitors) went out of business. The furniture industry, which had been dominated by small manufacturers and small retailers, has changed dramatically over the past 25 years.

      Currently, the Top 100 furniture retail chains account for 85% of U.S. furniture sales. The top 10 account for over 50%.

      The result of this change has been cut-throat competition. Buyers for the large retail chains demand lower and lower prices. The manufacturers who are able to satisfy their huge volume requirements are forced to reduce quality to meet the price points demanded by the retailers.

      This situation changed recently because of the Pandemic.
      At the height of the crisis, when demand overwhelmed supply, furniture retailers raised prices for the first time in over a decade, and found that they were able to continue selling at those higher prices, even when supply chain costs came back down.

      If you are shopping in a store that carries the Flexsteel line, the salespeople will assure you it’s top quality. That’s their job!

      Flexsteel is an important line for many major furniture retail chains. Salespeople who do not enthusiastically endorse the brands carried by the store they work for, don’t last long.

      In addition, they usually know very little about the competitive brands that they don’t sell.

      If you can answer a few questions for me, I should be able to recommend some reclining sofas that are superior to Flexsteel in quality and value.

      1) What is your price range?

      2) What size reclining sofa are you looking for?

      3) Leather or fabric? / Power or Manual?

      4) Style? (Modern?, Traditional, Transitional, Contemporary?) If you can send a photo or link to a style you like, that will help.

      5) Do you need a Lift chair mechanism for your back pain problems?

      6) If you don’t need a Lift chair, a zero gravity mechanism is usually considered best for back problems. Zero gravity mechanisms usually cost a few hundred dollars more than standard motorized mechanisms.

      For more information on Zero gravity health benefits, check out this article from the Healthy Back store. How Zero-Gravity Recliners Work and Why They Are Beneficial.

      Reply
  9. Thank you for sharing your insights about recliners and furniture. As a 61 y/o looking to completely furnish a 4 bedroom home, I need all the advice I can get.
    Question: I’m about 4.5 hours from High Point NC and always looking for an excuse for an overnight trip. Would it be helpful to plan a trip to see the various furniture stores and facilities there? I’m even considering a concierge service to help me navigate the experience.
    Again, thank you for your time.

    Reply
    • 40 years ago, there were several thousand furniture stores within a 50 mile radius of High Point. Tiny stores, with low overheads, offered deep discounts on furniture from hundreds of local furniture factories.

      Over 95% of those furniture stores and factories are long gone.

      One furniture store in High Point is still worth visiting.

      Furnitureland South is the world’s largest furniture store.

      It has 1.3 million sq. ft. of showroom space, and sells about $200 million from the single location, shipping all over the U.S.

      I have a special deal with Furnitureland South. They give special pricing to my readers.

      One of their best design consultants, Jason Campbell, personally assists my readers.

      Jason can be contacted through his personal Furnitureland South page or by phone.

      jasoncampbell@furniturelandsouth.com
      Mobile: 336.324.7678 | Phone: 336.822.3243

      I am copying your comment to Jason so he will know who you are and what you are looking for if you contact him.

      Reply
  10. I have been in the leather stationary and motion category for over 25 years manufacturing in Asia and Mexico dealing with retailers from Rooms To Go to COSTCO.
    This is the most complete and valuable article I have ever read about American-made motion furniture. It is exceptionally informative. I take my hat off to the author. Great job.

    I suggest next blog you research just how improved and competitive the out sourced motion furniture has become and many of the American folks you mention are actually OEM product as part of their offerings. Again great start for you.

    Reply

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