How To Set Up A Riser Recliner Armchair – Assembly & Use Guide

Without doubt, a good riser recliner armchair is one of the best mobility products for the home – being able to sit comfortably and not struggle to get into or out of a comfy chair is a godsend for many people. Riser recliners combine the latest in design with innovative technology to give you maximum comfort, and from the basic single motor riser recliner, to the multi-motor models with individual motors controlling every part of the chair, along with heating and massaging features, there is a chair to suit every need. But, riser recliner chairs are generally larger and heavier than normal chairs, and need setting up when you buy them. We provide an assembly guide with every riser recliner we sell, but if you are thinking about making a purchase but concerned about how you will put the chair together, this article will put you at ease.

Fitting Castors

Most chairs come with castors as standard, but you’ll need to fit these if your require them. Castors are only really needed if you will need to move your chair often – if your chair will sit in the same place for most of the time, it is best to leave them off. Castors are really best on solid floors or very short pile carpets – it will be very hard to roll a chair over a thick carpet or rug. If you need castors, you need to fit them first.

Your chair will come with two rear lockable castors and two normal castors for the front of the chair. They are fitted with a simple screwing nut through ready-made holes in the base of the chair. You will need to either move the chair onto its side, or have somebody lift each corner of the chair – it is generally easier and safer to roll it onto its side. Ensure all the nuts are tight before standing the chair up again.

how to fit castors to a chair

Fitting the Chair Backrest

All chairs, whether fireside chairs, manual recliners, or electric riser recliners, have the same mechanism for fitting the backrest. The backrest is fitted simply by lining up the backrest guide with the base unit prongs and gently pushing the backrest down. Gravity will do most of the work, then just push until you hear a click – once clicked in the backrest is fitted properly. To remove the backrest, find the catch on the base unit prong and press while lifting the seat – you can lift one side enough to unlock it, then do the same on the other side, before lifting the backrest off.

Connecting the Power Supply

Below the chair will be a short power cable that needs to be connected to the mains power cable. The handset will also need to be attached to the chair using the supplied cable (first picture below). If you have a heat and massage chair (second picture) there will be additional cables – these should all be colour coded as standard: black for power, red for heat and white for massage.

connecting the power cables

Where To Position Your Chair

Correct positioning of your chair is important as you need to be careful that nothing will obstruct the chair when it is moving – the motor that operates the riser and reclining features could be damaged if the chair cannot move, and likewise, if something fragile is in the way it could be damaged by the chair.

When you first set the chair up ensure that there is enough room behind it for the backrest to fully recline. Some chairs will move forward as they recline (wall huggers) and others will remain in the same place, so the distance to the wall does vary between different chairs. Be careful to avoid running the power cable anywhere where it could be tripped on – ideally you should have a power socket behind the chair.

Before you start using your chair, check that it is level – the feet can be adjusted. An uneven chair can put strains on the motor and mechanisms over time.

It’s a good idea to place a side table next to your chair with a telephone on it, in case of emergency. Although chairs should have back up batteries, they can sometimes fail while reclined, and this can make it very hard to get up.

How To Use Your Lift Chair

The first time you use your lift chair may feel a little daunting, but you’ll soon get used to it. Take the control and stand in front of the chair. Press the lift button to raise the chair, and when at a suitable height, position yourself back onto the centre of the seat, and rest your hands on the armrests. Then press the lower / down button and let the chair lower you. When you stop moving you can release the button, and if you wish use the recliner function.

Because the chair is a lifting device it is important to ensure you are always sitting in the centre of the chair when operating it. To stand up, just do the reverse – press the lift button and as the seat rises move to a standing position when you can, and let the chair lift help you up to fully stand, then use the armrests to support you as you fully stand up.

For more information about our riser recliners watch our video below, or head to our riser recliner buyers guide and read advice from our occupational therapist.

Jon Wade

Jon Wade joined CareCo in 2019 to help develop and grow the website side of the business. He has been a health blogger since 2006, worked as Content Manager for a leading digital marketing agency for 4 years, and holds a Certificate in Health Sciences from the Open University. Jon also enjoys reading and watching science fiction in his spare time.

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