A guide to opening and closing a futon bed - HomelyVille (2023)

A futon bed is an amazing piece of furniture in more ways than one. As someone who frequently has out-of-state guests, I need to provide them with a good night's sleep. Of course, as someone with a small, cozy apartment, I can't afford to have a huge bed or even a full-size bed. That's why a fold-down option doubles as a frame bed for me.

However, people tend to avoid using futons in general. When I asked my friends why they didn't get it, they usually said yes.too complicated to open and close.

So I thought I could help some people with a guideHow do you open and close a futon bed?. In addition, I'll also cover what makes futons a great investment, as well as potential issues you might have if you own one.


Different types of futons

It may sound strange, but people tend to think that all folding bed frames are more or less the same. However, that couldn't be further from the truth. Some frames are two-piece, others three-piece; and while some come with special steps, brackets, and latches, some don't. Also, they can have legs that automatically snap into place or that you have to manually pull out.

We'll cover all these types in this handy little list below.

double futon

When it comes to futons, everything is in the name. Usually, a cursory glance at the name is enough to tell what kind of frame your favorite futon has. Commontwo piece futon, the key is in the "bi" part.

a typicaltwo piece futonhas, for lack of a better explanation, atwo piece frame. When you look at it, it looks like a regular sofa with a seat and back. And these two, namely the seat and the back, are exactly the two folding sides of the structure.

When laid out, a folded futon looks like a large, flat surface. The backrest retracts until it hits the floor. Once it is in place, it should be flush with the seat to form a makeshift bed. When you fold it back into a sofa, the futon mattress itself follows and folds lengthwise.

Tri-fold futon

It is very easy to identify atri-fold futon frame. Again, we must pay attention to the name. If the folding frame has two sides that fold and unfold,a triple has three. Of course, real futons fit the frame along the folds.

A simple look at a tri-fold photo frame says it all. As with the bifold, there are two sections that make up the seat and back. However, there are alsoa third section extending the seat.

There are many reasons for this design choice. For example, if I pull this part out, I'll have an incredibly wide leg rest. However, if I want a traditional sofa look, I just tuck the third part under the seat. So I can save space.

Many people shy away from buying a tri-fold futon because it can be difficult to fold. Finally, we have to fit the futon into a narrow space under the seat, which can be cumbersome. Of course, there are many pros and cons with trifolds.Compare them to their double cousins. But they are definitely not an inferior product as far as design is concerned, far from it.


Aloveseat-Designis by far the most popular among millennials. When folded, not only does it look like a real sofa, it's aa little more stylishthan bifolds and triplefolds. In other words, it's the perfect addition to a compact living room.

Like trifolds, loveseats tend tothree parts(althoughsome have more). In contrast to the triple folds, however, the third part is hidden under the seat part in the loveseat. If and when I want to sleep, that's all I have to doRemove hidden sectionand lower the backrest until both are flush with the seat.

Opening and closing futons: step by step

double fold open

  1. First, stand in the center of the seat and face the futon.
  2. Then take the base just below the seat (it can be a barbell or handle)
  3. If there is a lock, be sure to release it.
  4. Then firmly grasp the base and pull it up a little.
  5. Then pull the base towards you while moving backwards step by step
  6. Finally, release the base when it and the bed pad are flat.

Some folding futons are a little more difficult to unfold than others. I would normally recommend getting onewooden frameas metal frames tend to rust and seize. However, there is no denying that it is a metal frame.but strongEmore durablelike wood. Also, it offers better lumbar support.

Fechar bifold

  1. First, remove all sheets, pillows, etc.; nothing should be left behind as it can get stuck in the mechanics
  2. Then, grab the top bar of the bed support and slowly start to lift yourself up.
  3. Once you've got it upright enough, secure it in that position, making sure the mattress fits the base and rest
  4. If there is a latch, be sure to lock it so the bed support doesn't fall out when your back rests against it.

Opening a triple fold

Most trifolds have a hidden deck on the front. Before you do anything you must do itFind and unlock this deck. It is usually just below the futon.

  1. First unfold the mattress so that it is on the bottom
  2. Then lift the seat and pull the third deck down
  3. Be sure to adjust the legs if the frame has them; some automatically fall into an adjusted position
  4. Then adjust the mattress above the third deck
  5. Make sure the backrest falls flat automatically
  6. Some models have a support orthosis that keeps the platform in a vertical position; If this is your model, loosen the clamps on the steps and place the base support horizontally.
  7. Finally, straighten the mattress so that it is completely flat.

Closing a triple fold

Trifolds can be difficult to close for beginners. If you are one of them, I suggest giving it a try.First remove the mattress, for easy access.

  1. First pull the backrest to the vertical position; If there are steps and supports, secure them properly
  2. Alternatively, if there are no steps, the backrest easily slides in and locks into place.
  3. Then lift the seat and start slowly sliding the third deck down; When doing this, cover the triple with a mattress, but let it only cover the backrest and seat.
  4. Finally, tuck the remaining part of the mattress under the seat next to the third deck.

opening a sofa

  1. First, lift the seat and locate the hidden third deck.
  2. Then pull the deck out of position.
  3. If the deck has manually adjustable legs, pull them out.
  4. Don't forget to remove the third mattress; A large number of love seats are furnished with separate mattresses on the third deck
  5. Finally, press the back of the loveseat to make it flat.
  6. Alternatively, your model may have a pull and push option; If this is the case, gently pull the seat forward and then push it back until it is flat on the floor.

closing a sofa

  1. First, slide the backrest to the upright position; Again, if you have steps or brackets, make sure you secure them correctly.
  2. Then remove the small mattress from the third deck
  3. After that, lift the seat and place the third deck back in its hidden compartment.
  4. If the third deck has adjustable legs, be sure to fold them up before placing it back in the bay.

Benefits of a futon bed

space saving

Let's assume you live ina small, compact house or apartment. There are tons of ways to save space and even make a room look big. I described it all when I talked about itwashing machines and dryers, like thiscurtains.

However, washing machines and dryers don't usually end up in living rooms and guest rooms.temporary bed arrangementslike futons.

A futon bed will come in handy in a tight space. Even though it seems a bit complicated to fold and unfold it twice a day, I still love the fact that I cana few more inches of spacefor simplyrest Panel in ein anders. Also, some futons are so compact that you can put them away and just roll them out when you have guests over.


As I said before, some futons can be folded completely until they take up enough space to fill a closet. That alone makes them perfect, doesn't it?You can put them awayand pass them out if you have overnight guests. I can tell you from experience that sleeping on a folding futon is much better than sleeping on a mattress or sleeping bag on the floor.

But even futons, which cannot be fully folded, are more comfortable than regular beds. For example, your mattresses are easier to wash and dry. Also, you can even dobasic DIY repairs to a futon frameif you know how The frame itself is easier to access than the base of a regular queen bed.


While some modern futons can be expensive,most are cheap. Price alone doesn't matter much, as you can also find beds and bedsteads that cost about the same.

However, you have to comparewhat do you get for the money you pay. If I were to buy a regular bed I would only buy the frame and mattress (most of the time I would have to buy them separately). Some beds have extras like hidden compartments, but they usually cost a pretty penny.

On the other hand, a futon product can workboth as a sofa and a real bed. Also, the tri-fold beds and sofa have the added benefit of having some sort of footrest. Paying less, we have a more versatile product that offers more mobility at home. And most importantly, if it breaks, we can replace it much more easily without having to pay professional haulers to remove it.

Disadvantages of a futon bed

As awesome as a futon can be, of course there are somepossible setbacksto use it. For example, if I use it continuously and open and close it daily,The mechanism will eventually break. Yes, some futonsIT COULDthey can be fixed with DIY tricks and we can even build our own futons. But for bigger jobs I still have to call the right mechanic.

Another disadvantage of futons is that they are basic.don't offer the same lumbar support as regular beds. Since they don't have a single solid structure, they don't distribute our weight evenly, which can cause problems. In short, a futon bed is a great temporary solution, but I still recommend regular beds for long-term sleeping.

some final words

Unfolding and folding a futon bed is not very difficult. There are many tutorials online, including mine, but in all honesty, all you have to do is watch someone else do it. You'll get it in a few minutes.

But let me know what you think. Has this text helped you with your futon problems? Do you perhaps have a frame-style futon that I haven't covered in this article? Please let me know in the comments below.


How does a futon mechanism work? ›

Traditional futons work by unfolding into a mattress when in use and being folded into a roll when not in use. Western futons work by being sofas when not in use and behaving like beds when they are unfolded.

Why do you need to air out a futon? ›

Futon retains the moisture. Too much moisture can lead to mold and mites. It is most important to give your futon time to air out. Please fold up your futon mattress every day.

How do you store a futon during the day? ›

It's important not to leave futon on the floor in the same style as it was at sleeping time. Please fold or roll up your futon when you're not using it. In Japan, people often put their futons in a oshiire – closet in a tatami room to make the most of the space in the room or hide it from the guests.

How does a futon mattress stay in place? ›

To ensure that your futon mattress doesn't slip out of position, you can secure it to the metal or wooden frame with foam or rubber grip strips. Foam grip strips have adhesives that permanently stick to the frame, making removal difficult, so rubber, mesh-like grip strips are a better option.

Do all futons come apart? ›

A futon can be disassembled into small pieces and easily transported with minimal risk of damage (or injury.) A futon sofa disassembly can be accomplished with a wrench, pliers and tape.

How do you release a sofa bed? ›

Look for a button the side of the sofa that says, “Bed,” or “Sleep Mode” and try pressing it or holding it down. Pull the handle up until it clicks to rotate the bed. Once you've located the handle or lever, press it inwards until you hear a click.

How often should you flip your futon? ›

— The cotton in your futon will compress with use. During the compression period, turn your futon regularly. A level sleeping or sitting surface is the goal. Your futon should be flipped about every seven to ten days for the first 6- 8 months, then once a month.

How long does it take to get used to a futon? ›

Your body and all its muscles adjust to your sleeping surface over time. Just as you may wakeup feeling sore or uncomfortable or get a poor night's sleep in a hotel room, you may have a short adjustment period to your new futon. This is usually about a week.

How do you use a futon? ›

A futon is a Japanese bed. Totally different from the low-slung western sofa-bed with the same name, the futon of Japan lays directly on the floor, typically atop a tatami or other soft mat. Because the Japanese are very hygienic they lay out and fold up their beds daily.

How do you open a click clack futon? ›

Unfold the support legs from the zipped compartment located on the underside of the sofa bed. Pull the Sofa Back a little forward to unlock it. Place the Sofa Back in a flat position to use as a bed. Lift the Back forward until you hear a click and release back into the Sofa Position.

Is it OK to sleep on a futon every night? ›

You can also use a futon mattress for a traditional bed. Many of our customers prefer futon mattresses to other traditional bedding. So yes, well made futons are an excellent choice for everynight sleeping.

Why do Japanese people sleep on futons? ›

Although many people in Japan have Western-style mattresses and box springs, futons remain a popular choice, especially in compact apartments, because they're easy to move or store away.

Are futons healthy to sleep on? ›

A firm surface helps keep the spine aligned and reduce chances of back pain every time you wake up. Moreover, even pregnant women have benefitted from sleeping on futons. The dreaded back pain was the least of their problems as a result. You can add another soft layer to achieve your desired level of comfort.

How do you air out a futon indoors? ›

When you can't put your futon out because of the bad weather, landscaped grounds, air pollution or a pollen season, use a laundry drying stand to dry futons in the sunshine indoors. Various goods such as a futon drying machine or a futon cleaner are recently available, so it might be good to use such handy tools.

Why do futons get moldy? ›

A futon mattress, or any mattress, can grow mold if there is a lack of air circulation. Your mattress is like a large sponge and over time if this moisture is not released through regular flipping and airing, it will begin to grow mold.

Should you put a sheet on a futon? ›

A futon cover helps protect the futon cushion and keeps it clean, much the same way that a fitted sheet covers a regular mattress. While a fitted sheet can be used in place of a futon cover, it fits best if the futon is used flat, in the bed position only.

How long do futons last? ›

Futon mattresses typically last between five and 10 years. They will last longer if you only use them occasionally. For example, if you only use the futon as a guest bed, then it may last for 10 years or more.

How do I keep my futon from molding? ›

The most important thing you can do to maintain your futon is to dry it outside regularly.

How long does it take for a futon mattress to expand? ›

Sometimes it only takes a few hours, but other times it can take up to 48 hours to fully expand. The safe and easy rule we follow is to just eye-ball it. Once your mattress looks fluffy and comfortable, it's safe to sleep on and that's usually on the first night.

What is underneath a futon? ›

A Japanese futon is ideally placed on a tatami floor which retains heat and is comfortable to sleep on. For those who don't have a tatami floor, tatami mats are often used.

What size bed are most futons? ›

Full-size futon mattresses are the most common kind you'll find in stores and online, and there's a good reason for that: They're the best balance between cost and convenience. Full or double-size mattresses and futons are 54 inches wide and 75 inches long.

Is a futon a twin or full? ›

Most futon mattresses come in a full size/double size because they can easily fit two people, but when opened up to be used as a bed, they don't take up too much space. They are also big enough to be folded up and used as a couch when they aren't being used for sleep.

Do futons have to be against walls? ›

Traditional, “front loader” futon frames require clearance of approximately 10” from the back of the frame to the wall. So, if you are looking to save floor space, you will have to physically move the entire frame away from the wall in order to convert it from a couch to a bed.

What do you cover a futon with? ›

If you're looking to cover your futon whether you want a new look, or your futon has seen better days, you'll need a fitted sheet to cover it. Visit Walmart and find your style of fitted sheets. Wash and dry your fitted sheet before adding to your futon.

Why is my sofa bed not opening? ›

Sometimes after a long period of time, the sofa frame of the sofa bed can get rusty and stiff, especially if it has not been used for a long time. This can cause the frame to get stuck in place. This can easily be solved by spraying some metal lubricant on the joints or the parts of the frame that is stuck in place.

How do sofas come apart? ›

Take off the sofa upholstery by pulling out the staples. Use a staple remover or a flathead screwdriver to do this. Remove the upholstery so you can see the frame of the couch so you can see the fasteners that attach the arms to the base. Once the arms and base are exposed, remove the arms.

Is a futon good for side sleepers? ›

Futon can be used no matter if you are a side-sleeper or stomach-sleeper. Although side sleepers feel more comfortable when their shoulders sink into the mattress.

Is it better to get a futon or couch? ›

The decision between futons and sofa beds will primarily come down to your personal preference and needs. If comfort is your optimal desire, then a sofa bed will work much better than a futon. However, if you want more flexibility then a futon should be your go-to furniture.

What are the advantages of a futon? ›

Futon Benefits
  • Futons are child friendly. Due to the nature of the low base, there is no fear of children hurting themselves if they roll off the bed. ...
  • Space saving. ...
  • Easily transported. ...
  • Multi-purpose room. ...
  • Better for back health. ...
  • Hygienic. ...
  • Affordable. ...
  • Disturbance free.

Can you use a futon as a couch? ›

Comfortable enough for everyday sitting and just in case you need to use as a bed, you want your guests to feel welcome. Most futons in living rooms are used as a couch. HGTV have decorators that suggest mixing a futon with a pair of occasional chairs or a lounger.

How do you fold a Japanese futon? ›

If you leave the sheet on the shikibuton (mattress), fold it in half with the sheet sides against each other for cleanliness. Then fold it in half again. If, you remove the sheet (shiitsu), you can fold the shikibuton in thirds instead. If you have a bottom mat, fold in in halves until it gets to a manageable size.

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