How To Adjust Recliner Footrest

by Andrew Smith| Last Updated: January 4, 2022

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how to adjust recliner footrest

The footrest of your recliner can compromise or boost your comfort. This happens if it hasn’t been well adjusted or if it’s sagging. If the footrest fails to close, then your legs won’t have sufficient support, and the rest of the body also suffers alongside your legs. So, can a recliner footrest be adjusted? 

Whether it’s a sleeping recliner, cuddler, or massaging recliner, recliner footrests can be adjusted. Note that a footrest can sag or be hard to close if the pullout mechanism is tampered with. 

But there’s nothing to worry about because a footrest mechanism is easy to deal with. Even so, an All wrench would be necessary as it simplifies the process. 

How to adjust the recliner footrest?

Read on. 

How Do You Adjust The Footrest Tension On A Recliner?

The footrest of a recliner is one of the parts that are easy to adjust. But without prior knowledge of how to adjust it, it can be a hard nut. Don’t worry, though—the following steps guide you through the process.  

  • To comfortably view and access the underside of your footrest, gently place the recliner on its side. 
  • On both sides of your recliner footrest frames, there are springs that control the tension of your recliner—access them. 
  • There are also bearings that have holes and springs connected to them. These springs are the determining factor of how much tension your recliner will have. Therefore, if the footrest is loose, move the spring (backward) to another hole. 
  • To loosen, move the spring (forward) to another hole.


Avoid using your hands to adjust the spring. Here’s why. The mechanism could get damaged due to pressure, and your fingers could as well get hurt. A pulling hook would, therefore, be ideal.

So now, you want to move, but there’s a problem, the recliner footrest is too hard to close! I got your back—keep reading.

How To Fix A Recliner That Won’t Close

Recliners retract automatically because they have a kickback mechanism that enables them to do so. The mechanism determines how much effort you need to use to retract the footrest. So, here’s what to do: 

Apply pressure on the footrest using your legs so that it can go down all the way until it automatically folds back under the recliner seat. The backrest should be in an upright position while you do this. 

Here’s to learn more about the recliner mechanism.


The amount of pressure you’re to apply when pushing the footrest down is determined by the tension of your footrest—high tension needs extra effort, low tension requires minimal effort.

OKay…. What of a recliner footrest too hard to close?

How Do I Make My Recliner Footrest Close Easier?

One of the most heart-breaking things about a recliner is failing to close. Though it’s a rare issue, once it happens, it hurts. Some people have even bought new recliners due to the desperation caused by a footrest that won’t close.

Here’s how to make your recliner footrest close easier by:

  • Turn your recliner on one side—ensure the handle faces you.
  • With a keen eye on the springs, start moving the handle until the footrest extends all the way up. Be careful, though—recliner footrest repair parts can be hard to find at times. 
  • Once it’s fully extended, you should see a spring, small in size, that holds a rod (L-shaped). This spring pulls when you extend the footrest, making the pin take the L-shape. 
  • If you notice any burr, fill it so that the footrest loosens up and retracts easily. 
  • To prevent further problems with the retraction of the footrest, apply some oil on the L-shaped pin. 

If these steps do not fix a recliner that won’t close, there’s still hope before you can think of buying another modern reclining office chair with footrest.

Method B: Fixing A Recliner That Won’t Close 

One of the reasons why you should try out this method is because it not only fixes a footrest that won’t close, but it fixes other underlying issues you may not be aware of. Better still, it works for most recliners. 

One thing to note is that a footrest may be too hard to close because some parts can’t move. Lubricating them would, in most cases, solve the issue.


  • Spread a rag on the floor. 
  • Like with the previous method, ensure that the handle faces you before turning your recliner.
  • The metal is attached to the wood using screws–check for any loose screws and tighten them. 
  • Get a good rag that can absorb lubricant effectively. Protect the material underneath your reclining chair from being stained by placing your rag over it. 
  • Cautiously spray lubricating oil on all recliner moving parts. 
  • If you notice some rust on any moveable joints, apply a few drops of oil (you could apply on other areas too to ensure they also move smoothly).
  • Now grab the handle and start moving it to see if the recliner footrest retracts comfortably-it should!
  • Gently remove the rag and wipe any areas that need to be cleaned up and enjoy your luxurious recliner footrest again. 

The Parting Shot

Don’t compromise the comfort of your feet by using a recliner whose footrest is too loose to hold your legs.  Besides, learning how to adjust the recliner footrest isn’t difficult—the guide above guides you and gives you various methods to use when adjusting the tension.

Better still, one of the above methods may work to solve other underlying issues that you may not know about. 

I hope this helps you work on your recliner like a professional.