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There must be something in a man’s blood that just makes him need a recliner. This doesn’t change no matter how old or big you get. It is a little-known (and untrue) fact that King George the 9th had a reclining throne custom-made for him! For the rest of us, though, we’ll have to get by with what’s on the market. Luckily for us, big mans recliners are much higher quality and more plentiful now than they have ever been!
When I was a much younger (and smaller) guy, I remember my Aunt J. visiting my grandpa’s house. Now, there were several heavy (obese, even) people in my family, but Aunt J took the cake. At close to 500 pounds, my poor aunt had only two options: take up the whole love seat, or perch herself dangerously on one of the wooden bar chairs. For some reason, my grandpa never had any plus size furniture in his house. When it came time for my aunt to go, I distinctly remember the cracking sound of the bar chair as she struggled to get to her feet. I told myself then and there, that in my own house (my kingdom…) I would be comfortable and have a chair that was actually built for me!
Now that I’ve grown (a lot), I understand how important it is for a big guy to have a recliner that fits him. Not only is a heavy-duty chair likely to last longer and be safer, it will be much more comfortable throughout its life.
So you want a Big Man’s Recliner?
A recliner, by definition, just reclines. Simple, right? So why is it so hard to find one that is a good fit for your size? Well, it turns out that there are a number of problems with regular recliners – and once you reach the 300, 400, or 500 pound mark, there are some dangerous things that can go wrong…not to mention just uncomfy.
If you’re in a hurry, any of the above recliners will be an excellent choice. Be sure to take into consideration whether you need a lift chair, you want the fabric to be easy to clean, etc. If you have a little more time and want to be sure to choose the absolute best option, read on!
The Best Big Man’s Recliners
Mega Motion is a well-known company that specializes in providing products to make people’s lives easier. Especially people who find daily functioning a bit harder due to their weight, physical limitations, age, etc. In fact, their parent company produces mobility scooters, rehab products, etc. So it would be safe to say they know what they’re doing! In this case, they have knocked it out of the park with their Easy Comfort Lift Recliner. Let’s take a look at some of its highlights:
Weight Capacity: If you’re shopping for big guy recliners on the market, 500lbs is pretty much the highest weight capacity you’ll find and this chair is right there with them! What makes this chair unique is that it’s super sturdy base allows it to maintain this high weight capacity while also functioning as a lift chair! In addition to its high weight capacity, this chair has the widest seat of any of the typical recliners we looked at! (there is one wider but we’ll get to that below…)
Multiple Positions: Recliners typically have anywhere from 1 to infinite positions. While this chair isn’t lucky enough to give us an infinite number of recline positions, we do get 3: upright, partially reclined, and fully reclined. I would never own a chair without a partial recline function (that’s the way I watch TV and movies) so this one is still at the top of my list!
Tons of Extra Features: There are millions of Americans who find it difficult to get out of a regular-height chair. Also, millions of additional Americans need temporary help standing up after surgery, injury, etc. Now imagine you need help standing up, so you just spent $1,500 on a lift recliner. You settle in to watch a movie…and the power goes out. You’re right back to needing someone to try and pull you to your feet and, if you’re injured, God have mercy on you. With this chair, it removes this terrible future possibility – it has a battery backup system! Just stick in a couple of batteries and you’ll be able to use the lift feature even if the power is out or someone trips over the cord. It also has a holder on the side for magazines and books so you could just stay in this chair forever!
And possibly my favorite feature: comfortable fabric! I absolutely detest sitting on leather, vinyl, and even faux leather seats. Peeling my skin off a sweaty leather mess during the summer has never been enjoyable. If you are one of the leather loving crowd, then more power to you, but for me and my house we’ll stick with the extreme comfort of fabric, just like Mega Motion did here.
Sounds pretty good on paper…but what are customers saying about it?
The Best Recliner For Big Guys
When it comes down to features and smart design, this chair is the Boss, literally. The “Boss” is one of Lane’s flagship chairs and it shows in all aspects of its design.
This chair’s lifting capabilities make it an excellent choice for obese or heavy people who struggle to get back on their feet after sitting for a while. In fact, this is one of the most comfortable recliners for people up to 450lbs! Not only can it put you back on your feet, it has battery backup capability to make sure you never get stuck in your chair if it somehow loses power.
If you are of the big and tall variety, you’ll enjoy this chair as much as I did when I tested it. When fully reclined, it is nearly the length of a queen bed (76″ compared to a queen bed’s 80″)! If you spend a lot of time snoozing or sleeping in your recliner, this can be a huge benefit for you.
One of the best features is that it has dual motors, meaning you can control the back and leg rest separately. Want to sit upright, but rest your feet? Put up the feet! Want to lean back to stretch out your back? You can do that too!
If you’re put off by the thought that this chair has no side storage, think again! The arms are both hinged and open up to reveal compartments in the arms. A good place for remotes? A receptacle for contraband snacks? You decide!
The Best Heavy Duty Lift Recliner for Those on a Budget
Normally I would shy away from recommending (or even bothering to test) a chair from a company I’ve never heard off. The Mcombo chair, however, is an exception. I was convinced to learn more about this chair because not only is it the most affordable heavy-duty lift recliner I’ve seen, it has maintained a 4.5 star average on Amazon!
Now, given that this chair is less than half the price of several other chairs on our list, you can expect that it has some limitations. Its main shortcoming is that the lifting mechanism has a capacity of only 320 pounds. While this still qualifies it as a big guy’s recliner, I know that many people will find this insufficient for their needs. On the plus side, users report that the lifting mechanism works extremely well and is smooth and quiet.
In other news, this chair comes packed with features to make your time in it as comfortable as possible. It comes with two cup holders (I always have water in one and soda in the other…), two USB charging ports (phone and iPad), and a pocket on each side where you can stick magazines, books, papers, or just little bits of garbage.
While I know this chair isn’t for everyone, I love the fact that it pushes the envelope for a cheap lift chair recliner. If you are within the weight capacity and don’t mind the faux leather (it’s very high quality and easy to clean), then save some money and GET THIS CHAIR!
Extra Wide Seat Recliner For Big People
My Aunt J was one of those people who carried most of her weight on her bottom half. While a 500lb capacity chair would have been more than enough for her, she could never have fit in most of the chairs we’ve mentioned here. So what should people do when they have an extra-wide backside? Get an extra-wide recliner, of course! Even the widest of big man recliners can’t compare in width to The Hogan Oversize Recliner from Ashley Furniture. It has a total width of 59″, making it wide enough for pretty much anyone who is able to sit in a chair.
The Hogan is one of the few recliners for big guys that has a Zero Wall feature. This means that unlike a normal recliner, you can put this chair right up against the wall and it will slide forward and not ding your paint! If you are using a recliner without a Zero Wall feature, you might have to leave several feet behind the chair so it can recline properly. Even with this feature, however, this is an extremely large chair (I have a love seat in my office that is actually smaller) so be sure that the space you want to put it in will accommodate its size!
While it’s not a lift chair, if you’re looking for flat out comfort, you will be hard-pressed to beat the Hogan. The plush microfiber covering is not only comfortable, but it’s also easy to clean and looks great. And as its most obvious highlight, it is fully capable of fitting two small people or one large and heavy person. So if it’s space you need and you want a Zero Wall feature, this is the chair for you!
The Best Big Man’s Recliner For Cabins and Manly Men
While it may not seem to be a top competitor on paper, let me make a case for the Lane Stallion being one of the best recliners for big guys:
- It is, in my opinion, the best looking recliner on this list. It is also available in several colors which can match almost any home.
- It has a non-electrical reclining mechanism that is likely to last longer, be trouble-free, and can be used in places without electricity.
- It is designed as a recliner for big and tall people, meaning it can support users up to 500lbs and 6’8″ in height! If you don’t need a big and tall recliner (maybe if you’re short and heavy…), then imagine all the extra space you would have to stretch out on this monster.
- The heavy-duty steel frame moves away from the wall when reclining (similar to the Hogan above), so you can keep this chair snug up against the wall.
As a final bonus, the lack of motors and electronics means that this chair is the second cheapest chair on this list! It is an extremely comfortable and well-made chair that you can get into for hundreds of dollars cheaper than its electronic brethren. So, if the case I’ve made resonated with you, the Lane Stallion should be your new chair!
DON’T FORGET! Best Accessories for Heavy Duty Recliners
Stander Ergonomic Recliner Lever Extender
While most of the recliners we recommend are electric, the Lane Stallion has a good ole’ classic mechanical recline. If that is the chair you choose (or you have another), you may wish to invest in a lever extender to make reclining and sitting back up much easier on your arm and grip.
Mighty Monkey Washable Protector
A heavy-duty recliner is an investment, and in my opinion, you should treat it like one! That means protecting it. Dirt and grime is one of the fastest ruiners of nice furniture, and if you have any pets, this problem is intensified 100x. A washable protector will keep your recliner fresh and clean for years to come!
Plastic Runner Rug and Carpet Protector Mat
If you spend a significant amount of time (or even a normal amount of time) in a recliner, there’s a good chance that the carpet in front of it isn’t doing very well. When we moved into my first apartment, there was literally a dark brown stripe in the carpet in front of the couch where people’s feet sat. Do yourself a favor and get yourself something to protect your floor. Any sort of small runner rug would work, but I prefer to use a clear plastic mat.
Things To Think About Before Buying a Heavy Duty Recliner
Overall Size vs. Seat Size
So you think you’ve found the best recliner for big guys, you order it, and it’s delivered to your curb. You take it in and assemble it, only to find out that your oversized, 500lb capacity, $1,000 recliner has a seat that’s designed for an anemic mouse. A normal person might fit on it (even though they don’t need to…), but you certainly can’t! It may come as a surprise that many of the “high capacity recliners” on the market are simple, regular-size recliners with a reinforced frame. Hardly worth the name of big man’s recliner. The truth is, most big and heavy people who need a recliner also need more seat space.
My aunt and uncle always had a recliner in their living room that everyone joked about. It was a colossal beast, weighing at least 200 pounds and taking up a whole corner of the room. The problem was, it was so big simply because it was overstuffed. As a kid, I remember being able to lay on one of the recliner’s arms while my sister laid on the other one and my cousin sat on the seat. Because the arms and back were so big, even average-sized adults struggled to squeeze into it. Luckily, there is a simple fix: a tape measure.
The average recliner measures about 20″ between the arms, give or take, which is fine for most people. If you are big and heavy though, you’ll be needing a wider seating surface. Before buying a chair, be sure to measure a chair that you sit on regularly (or a couch cushion) to get an idea of how wide a chair you need.
Covering: Easy to Clean vs. Durability vs. Comfort
When choosing a covering for your chair, you have a few options – all with pros and cons. As usual, you can’t have everything. If you value something that is hard wearing and easy to clean, you probably want to look for a vinyl or smooth leather chair. But if you, like me, favor comfort – then you’ll want to look into a fabric or microfiber chair. Fabric chairs are the best medium of comfort and durability, and if you take care of them, (and maybe use a cover,) they will look great for a decade or more.
When it comes down to it, there is no replacement for quality. And, when it comes to well-built furniture, quality costs money. While there are good deals to be had, you are typically far better off to spend the money to get a chair that will serve you well for years. While it may cost more up front, the best recliners for big guys are more likely to last longer, and be much better looking and more comfortable in the meantime. Typically cheaper chairs have lower weight capacities (even if the manufacturer claims otherwise) and are made of inferior materials. That being said, we did our best to find chairs that are within the reach of the average person, provided that you view a chair as a long-term investment in your bodily well-being!
The Type of Recliner That Best Fits Your Needs
One of the last things to consider is: do you need a lift chair? Lift recliners with a 500lb capacity are some of the best chairs you can get, and as such, tend to be quite expensive. If you don’t absolutely need a lift chair, you can save hundreds of dollars by buying a mechanical chair such as the Lane Stallion and, if needed, get an Assist Handle to help you regain your feet.
What makes a recliner suitable for large and heavy people?
Finding the chair that best fits your needs can be a personal and difficult challenge. While I have given you some of the absolute best options that I could find, it is quite possible that none of them are quite what you are looking for! Whether you choose one from my list or not, here are some things to keep in mind when shopping for a heavy-duty recliner:
- It’s all about the seat: Is the seat wide enough? High enough? Firm enough? Be sure to take measurements of a recliner you have actually placed your backside in so you have a frame of reference when you’re shopping.
- What is the frame made out of? While some salesmen will try to sell you on “furniture grade plywood,” any chair worth its weight will have a steel frame. If you are looking for a lift chair, be sure to look for a heavy-duty metal subframe with wide and stable legs.
- While I have made my case for fabric type, be sure to consider the covering on the chair you’re looking at and think about how the chair will be used.
- Do you need a lift chair, or will an assist device like the one above suffice?
- Lastly, do not get enamored by a manufacture’s claims of an astronomical weight capacity. There is no standard for testing weight capacity for furniture, so there is no way to know what exactly the seller means when they state that the chair has a 500lb capacity. For this reason, always sit in a chair before buying (if possible) and try to buy a chair with significantly more weight-bearing ability than you need.
Delivery and assembly of your new furniture
Believe it or not, one of the most difficult aspects of getting a big man recliner is not picking it out, it’s getting it into your house. If your mobility is compromised due to your weight or injury, getting your new recliner into your house might be an insurmountable obstacle. The main reason for this is, that unlike most packages you receive, recliners (and furniture in general) typically come with free curbside delivery. This means that the delivery man is not required to do anything but leave it in the street by your curb and, if he’s feeling cranky, he will do just that. If you need to move your recliner up stairs or through several rooms, we do have some tips that will hopefully make it possible, if not easy.
- Enlist Help. This is the most obvious way to get your chair moved. However, be sure to ask someone for help before you get your chair delivered. You don’t want your chair to be sitting outside for long (or overnight), especially if it looks like rain!
- Carry it inside piece by piece. While some chairs are delivered complete, they usually come in several pieces that can be carried by the average person. While the chair may weigh up to 200 pounds, you can probably manage to carry it in small parts. Be sure to check how your chair will be shipped and what kind of assembly will be required when you receive it.
- If you are aware ahead of time that you will be unable to move and assemble the chair, most companies (including Amazon) offer a white glove delivery service with expert installation. If the company you are purchasing from does not have an installation service, you may consider calling a moving company and seeing if they will bring the box inside for you.
If you’ve decided on a chair and figured out delivery, try not to salivate too much as you consider the level of comfort that will soon be winging your way! Whether you’re just needing temporary respite after surgery or injury, want a comfy recliner to sleep in, or just need the best recliner for big guys, we hope you’ve found what you’re looking for! Until next time, sit comfortably!
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