July 20, 2019

How to fix the hinge on an IKEA Friheten couch

If there is one piece of furniture I regret buying from IKEA, it is the FRIHETEN sofa bed for €400. I wonder if this is where they make their margin, after selling €5 coffee tables as loss leaders to get you into the store.

The FRIHETEN has two mechanical components that are prone to failure: a section which pulls out and “pops up” to form the sofa bed, and a chaise section which opens up to provide storage within. After two years of occasionally pulling the sofa out to vacuum, the chaise lid seat started to “slip” into the storage compartment when someone was sitting on it.

Sagging corner

Upon closer inspection, it seems that there is a metal edge on each side of the lid near the hinge assembly, which when closed should rest on top a metal bracket on the lower box. I noticed that my hinge arms were no longer perfectly centered, so when the top piece came down it would slip off “into” the storage, and that corner would dip.

I managed to stop it from slipping by putting a 10cm wide metal corner bracket over the connecting bracket, which adds an additional ~1cm of metal, giving the top piece a solid surface but still leaving just enough clearance for the hinge mechanism to function.

Hopefully this helps anyone who is facing a similar issue. Your couch is not garbage, you can fix it with a €2 piece of metal from your local hardware store.

© Geoff Ruddock 2019