A couch is a frequently used furniture item in most homes and is a favorite gathering spot. Getting up from a too-low couch can be challenging, but fortunately, it is easy to raise the height, and there are many methods to choose from.
These are ten ways to raise the height of your couch:
- Add furniture risers
- Fit longer legs
- Change the base
- Put in new springs
- Add cushions
- Put on casters
- Make storage space below
- Fit a foam pad
- Put blocks below it
- Make your own couch risers
All couches are not made equally, so your couch may need a little tuning to get it just for you. Let’s go through some of the great options available to get your couch to the perfect height.
How to Raise Couch Height
Instead of throwing out an old couch that has become uncomfortable to sit on because it’s too low, consider ways that you can increase the height of the couch surface at minimal cost and squeeze a few more years of use out of it.
Some couches are fitted with very low legs or risers which makes it difficult to clean underneath and requires the unit to be tipped or even moved out the way for cleaning purposes.
Robotic vacuum cleaners are gaining popularity in residential homes; however, most couches are too low to allow the robot to fit under the couch. The minimum clearance required is around four inches.
Raising the height of the low couches just a little can make life a whole lot easier in terms of comfort, cleaning under it, creating a little storage space, or even just giving the unit a whole new lease on life.
1 – Add Furniture Risers
Risers are a secure, easy, and neat option if you need to make your couch taller. Risers are suitable to use on beds, cots, study tables, or even to increase the height of cabinets.
Commercially produced risers are available in many design styles and heights and are made from various materials, with plastic and wood risers being the most popular. Plastic risers can crack over time, so wood is a better option in terms of durability.
Risers are available in two different configurations. One type of riser is nonpermanent, meaning the couch stands on the riser and is held in place by gravity. The second type of riser is permanently attached to the couch.
Risers come in various bun-shaped, cone-shaped, square, rectangular, or pyramid-shaped shapes. Some risers are elaborately designed to form a feature on the couch.
When purchasing risers, ensure that you have accurately measured the bottom diameter of your couches legs. The base of each leg needs to fit snuggly into the riser fitting.
2 – Fit Longer Legs
Changing the legs of your couch can make it taller and give it a whole new look! Most sofas have removable legs so that they are easy to transport, so removing ones that are too short is simple.
Replacement couch legs are available in all shapes and heights, and of course, you will need to measure how much taller the couch needs to be before you buy new legs. Also, check exactly how they are attached so that the new legs can be fitted without effort.
Some couches have legs that are fitted using a metal plate on each corner that must be unscrewed. Others have a hanger bolt fitting which is easy to clip into place.
Risers are attached in several ways, including screwing onto the couches frame, pinned into place using a spike that protrudes from the riser, and slotting into a corresponding hole in the frame. Alternately the riser may even be glued or bolted onto the couch.
When choosing new, longer legs for your couch, it helps to take along one of the old ones. That way, you can match up the exact color and shape, so your couch will retain its original look.
If, in addition to making it taller, you also want to go for a whole new look, remember to choose legs that are in proportion to the shape of the couch. Long elegant, skinny legs fitted to a chunky basement sofa would look mismatched.
3 – Create a Removable Sled Base
A sled base is ideal if you need a sturdy solution to raise a couch that gets moved around a lot. You will only need basic materials to make it, and it can be stained to match your existing couch legs.
Sled bases are strips of wood fitted to run horizontally from the front to the back of the couch. The existing legs fit into a simple framework made of two-by-fours and plywood.
Measure the distance of the outside edge of the front and back feet. It is a good idea to add a couple of inches as couch legs often taper towards the bottom, and the unit needs to fit securely into the base you are creating.
Cut the two-by-fours to length. If you place two on top of each other, you will raise the couch height by around 3 inches. You can add more pieces of wood to the stack to increase it further, but use wood glue between each layer to keep them in place.
Create an identical stack for each side. Then, cut hardwood plywood to be ¾ of an inch higher than the accumulated height of the sides and attach it securely to all four sides of the bases you have made.
Sand and stain the bases to match your furnishings, and when it is dry, lift the couch into the sled base.
4 – Put the Spring Back into Your Couch
When a couch starts sagging, it may be because the pillows, padding, or even the support springs inside have begun to degrade and collapse. In all probability, these will continue to sag over time until the couch has a tired hollowed-out look, and it will gradually drop the seating height of the unit.
Raising the whole couch would be a temporary fix in the case where the padding of the sofa is degrading. A popped spring might make you think your couch needs replacing, but it is often fixable if you have the right tools.
Should your couch be fitted with loose pillows, a quick and easy fix to increase the seating height is to insert an appropriately sized wooden board under the cushions. The wood board would rest on the couches frame.
Inserting a board will considerably firm up the seating position and raise the seating height as no sagging will be possible. The downside is that you’d be reliant solely on the pillows for padding and no longer on the couches springs, so it may not be as soft as before.
5 – Add More Cushions
Over time, couch cushions often get compressed in particular areas, making them feel lower. When the couch is used a lot, it can become uncomfortable if the cushions are ultra-compressed.
If your couch design allows, a good way to raise the couch’s height is to add more cushions. These can be custom-made to fit exactly onto the existing couch top or simply use an assortment of scatter cushions in complementary tones along the top of your couch.
Using cushions is a versatile way to modernize the appearance of the couch, which will also increase the seating height as an added benefit.
6 – Castor Wheels
Castor wheels will add a touch of modernity to your sofa, and it will also be a lot easier to move around to clean below it. Bear in mind that the castors will be visible below, so choose attractive ones that will complement the couch.
Castor wheels are easily attached to the couch base as they have a pre-drilled base that accepts a wide variety of screws or coach bolts. Avoid placing the castors too close to the edge of the couch as they may protrude at certain angles.
When fitting the castor wheels to your couch, it is an excellent idea to fit the braked wheel type to ensure the couch doesn’t roll away if someone leans against it while sitting down. This option would work even better if the back of the couch rested up against a wall.
Raising your couch height to match other seating is especially useful when you need the couch to be mobile and double as seating at a dining-room table etc. A couch fitted with castor wheels is easy and convenient to move around.
7 – Build a Box Shape Storage Base for Your Couch
If you need to raise your couch by more than four or five inches, consider building a box or platform for it to stand on. Boxed bases are strong and offer a sturdy platform option.
Like in some home theaters, the entire couch is placed on top of the platform to raise it high enough to see over the other people’s heads.
The dimensions of the base would be such that the couch must stand securely on top of the wooden structure. Should the height increase significantly, a step can be incorporated into the front of the base to facilitate more accessible seating.
An added benefit to using a boxed base is that the space inside the box can be used as storage space for smaller items.
8 – Fit a Thick Piece of Foam Below the Couch Cushion
Sometimes the best ideas are the simplest. If your couch seat needs a height boost, take measurements of the top cushion and get a thick piece of foam cut in the same shape.
Various foam thicknesses are available, so choose the one you think will be sufficient to give your couch the lift it needs without looking out of place or being too high.
Of course, it won’t look very attractive to have a plain piece of exposed foam sandwiched under the top cushion of your couch. You can sew a complementary color cover for the foam wedge or use a no-sew method by placing it inside a duvet cover.
Fold the duvet cover around your wedge a few times to look neat and tailored from the front. Then tuck the excess bits into the back of the sofa.
9 – Stand the Couch on Blocks
Standing your couch on a base of concrete blocks may not be the most attractive way to solve your short-couch problem, but practically, it will work perfectly. This basic block system is commonly used for antique furniture or heirloom pieces where alternations or changes to the unit’s structure would decrease its value.
Choose ordinally concrete blocks or stone pavers. So long as they are all uniform in shape and size, they will work. Of course, having four ugly builders bricks in your living room will lower the tone somewhat, so it is important to decorate or disguise them.
Painting them all uniform black works well as they look like part of a set, or you can match them with the color of your sofa legs. It also works well to wrap them in the type of carpet they are standing on so they appear to be part of the set.
When using this method on hardwood floors or tiles, ensure that the heavy pavers have some padding underneath. A paver placed directly on the floor may scratch it, so stick a layer of felt or carpet on the underside to prevent damage.
10 – Make Your Own Couch Risers
Building your own requires a little planning but is easy enough to do. Essentially a riser is a spacer that fits under the couch.
Risers are either used in conjunction with existing couch legs or by removing the old legs and replacing them with new ones.
When replacing the legs on your couch, the desired new height will directly influence the materials you’ll need to use to ensure the new risers are stable and robust enough to ensure they don’t collapse.
The taller the legs, the stronger they need to be. It is, however, seldom necessary to raise the average couch by more than four inches to notice a significant difference in the seating position.
DIY risers are usually made from wood as these can be neatly varnished or painted to fit into most décor themes. Metal risers are less popular but can be made if you have the know-how.
The basic idea when making new risers is to create four identical risers, one for each corner of the couch. If the couch is very long, more than four risers may be required to support the middle section of the frame.
Wood risers can be a simple four by four-inch square wooden block, disk, bun-shaped, or even turned into intricately designed legs on a wood lathe to form a feature on the couch.
Attaching the DIY risers can be done by gluing the risers to the couch base once the old legs have been removed.
The wooden block riser can be pinned into place by using a piece of dowel rod or even a steel round bar section that protrudes from the block and is inserted into a pre-drilled hole in the couch frame.
Alternately, the basic wooden risers can be attached to the couch frame or base using double-ended self-tapping threaded bolts or connecting screws.
What to Consider When Buying New Risers for Your Couch
The mounting position and type of riser needed are important to determine before buying a new riser.
Also, ensure the mounting space available on the couches frame to avoid buying the wrong thing.
Ideally, take along a sample of your couch’s old riser or leg so that you can try and match the mounting type.
Taking a sample along will also assist you in buying the correct type of riser, particularly where the old foot piece has to fit snugly into a recess in the new riser.
Below are several things to consider before buying any risers for your couch to increase the height.
|Riser height required||Check on the height of the riser, including the mounting platform in the measurement.|
|Type or style of the riser||What style riser are you after? Wood, plastic, metal. Adjustable or fixed.|
|Mounting type||Check how your current riser is attached and aim at getting a new riser with the same mountings.|
|Mounting space on the couches frame||If a different riser is needed, double-check the mounting space on the couch to determine the maximum riser size.|
|Does it require finishing?||Some wood risers are left unfinished, meaning they need to be sanded and varnished or painted once installed.|
|How many do you need?||Make sure of the number of risers your couch has. Some longer couches have multiple legs.|
|Can you fit it yourself?||Should you be fitting the risers yourself, ask for clear fitment instructions.|
|Do you need extra tools or fasteners?||Double-check if the fitment process requires any tools that you may not have. In addition, check if the riser comes with screws or fasteners.|
A couches height can be increased in many different ways. Fitting higher risers is a great solution. More DIY options include placing the couch on a raised platform, fitting castor wheels, adding additional pillows, adding a foam pad, or simply standing it securely on pavers.
I have two Associate’s degrees, one in Medical Assisting and the other in Computer Technician, and I am roughly five classes from a bachelor’s degree. Though I never ended up working in the medical field, I have five and a half years of experience in IT. I recently became a stay-at-home mom to my two young boys, and I’m so excited to start this adventure with them! In my spare time, I love to bake and read pretty much anything I can get my hands on.