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Is it worth it to get a sleeper sofa if it may very rarely be used?

By Jeff Frank

There is a low cost alternative available.

  • The problem with sleepers in general is that they are not as sturdy as stationary sofas.
  • The mechanisms are heavy and relatively delicate. They are far more likely to break or become misaligned if the sleeper is moved or dropped.
  • Cheap mattresses are not comfortable when you do need to use the sofa for sleeping. Good mattresses are expensive.

Basically the sleeper base is a plywood box that is held together by the sleeper mechanism.
This is far less sturdy than the normal sofa construction for mid priced or high end stationary (non-motion) seating.

In addition there are no springs or webbing holding up the cushions. You are basically sitting on the folded up mattress.

  • This is generally firmer (and less comfortable) than sitting on a good conventional foundation.
  • The comfort difference is especially noticeable for higher quality furniture when compared with coil spring or 8 way hand tied foundations.

In Susan Kaveny’s answer to this question she states that sleeper mechanisms provide a superior support as compared with inexpensive sinuous wire “S Spring” foundations.

I don’t think many people can actually tell the difference in comfort between the two support systems.

It should be pointed out, however, that sinuous wire foundations almost never break during the life of the furniture.
In contrast, it is not unusual for sleeper mechanisms to become bent or misaligned over time. This can be caused by moving the sleeper or by normal use.
Below is a low cost alternative for occasional guests who need a place to sleep?

This is a photo of a queen size Endura Ease air bed.

The specially shaped mattress fits onto the sofa decking (the part below the seat cushions) for any sofa with at least 60″ of space between the arms.

Click here to go to the Endura Ease website. Then click on the video for all of the details.

Advantages of the Endura Ease over a full time sleeper:

  • Less expensive. The Endura Ease is available online from multiple sources including Amazon.
  • Comfortable. This is actually a very comfortable air bed for occasional company.
  • Using the deck of the sofa for support takes up far less space in the room than standard stand-alone air beds.
  • When deflated the air bed fits back into its small box.
  • Allows you to have a sturdier, more comfortable sofa for every day use.


  • This is an air bed. Air beds sometimes leak over time. The good news is that it can be replaced online from multiple sources.
  • The inflation process takes about 15 minutes using the included electric air pump. Although this is not a major hassle if you are only doing it a few times each year, it is not something that would be fun to do every night.
  • Deflation takes about 10 minutes. The air bed does not store inside the sofa. It does fit into a small box which can be stored in a closet.

My company offers the Endura Ease as an option to our customers. Over the past decade we have sold hundreds with generally excellent results.

  • I have no connection with the companies that make or distribute this product and have not solicited or received any payment or remuneration for mentioning this brand.
  • As far as I know there are no other similar air beds available that are designed to fit onto the deck of a sofa.

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