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When should you replace your furniture?

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It is only a recent practice to state the average lifespan of the furniture. But even so, it does not mean that there might be a cause to replace it right after the said period. On the other hand, sometimes it might give out before the expected time.

Additionally, furniture can be replaced not only when it is damaged but also when 1. it doesn't meet your needs or 2. doesn't suit your style. Read on to find out when you should consider replacing your furniture.

When should you replace your furniture?

1.    Table- Study tables and desks

When and if you should replace the study table or desk depends on your use. Of course, wear and defunct drawer mechanism are apparent reasons to do it. You might need upgrades when children grow up and need a bigger size; or when you get new gadgets or technology that cannot fit on the existing table.

If there is a dedicated study in the house, you might need a table that provides enough storage. And if your current one doesn't fulfil that requirement, you might want to get something that does.

2.    Bedroom furniture- bed and mattress

Every bedroom should have a stable bedframe. If it gets rickety or 

Wooden study table set for your home office - Beautiful Homes

Image courtesy, Photographee.eu/ shutterstock

moves when you sleep, you'd want to check if it can be fixed, and if not, you might want to start shopping for a new bed. On the other hand, mattresses should be replaced every 5 to 10 years.

Aside from that, if the bed does not provide adequate support or has lost its shape, you'd want to get a replacement. The life span depends on the type of mattress too. Most brands will disclose the "best before" date, so that is something you should keep an eye out for.

3.    Chair- workspace and study

In times like these, when work from home and online study is the norm, you want an ergonomic work chair that supports your body well through the day. In general, office chairs have 5 to 7 years of life expectancy. The constant use wears out the wheel and recliner mechanism. Over that period, most chairs also lose their shape, making them unsafe and uncomfortable.

4.    Dining table and chairs

Dining tables are at the heart of all activities in the house. It is a makeshift study space, work area. But first and foremost, it is where you gather around for mealtimes. Damage from spills and heat is apparent. But when used around the clock, scratches, chips, and other kinds of erosion are common.

If the legs are unstable and the wear on the surface is unfixable, you might need a new dining table. Another good reason for replacing your current table is if it is either too large or too small for your requirements.

People tend to drag the chairs when they sit at the dining table. This compromises its structural integrity and might need replacement after a couple of years. If the chairs are upholstered, changing them every five years is a good option.

5.    Bedroom furniture- closets, wardrobes and dressers

Overloading and calloused use damages doors and drawers in storage units such as these. The mechanism is also affected by environmental factors such as dust and humidity. This is another reason why hinges, slides, etc., stop functioning smoothly.

More often than not, the hardware can be repaired. You might want to consider getting a new wardrobe or dresser if the entire structure of the furniture is compromised. They pose a safety hazard, especially when the piece gets wobbly.

Furniture designs for your living room area - Beautiful Homes

Image courtesy, Followtheflow/ shutterstock

6.    Living room furniture- Sofa and armchairs with upholstery

These are some of the most used living room furniture. Check the cushioning for lumbar support and sagging in upholstered sofas and those with cushions. An obvious indication is if it has lost its original shape. The mainframe is probably compromised if it creaks and shakes and seems unstable when used.

The upholstery sofa fabric might need to be changed if it is stained, faded or ripped. Over time, exposure to direct sunlight and moisture damage both the fabric and the cushioning. It is also known to collect dust, so the upholstery should be cleaned regularly for longevity. And even well-maintained ones should be replaced every 7 to 10 years.

7.    Centre, side, coffee and end tables

Another furniture that sees a lot of use in a living room is any table placed in and around the sitting area, such as the centre and coffee table. There is wear from stains, beverages and food, dirty feet, heat from food containers, scratches from childrens' antics, etc.

The extent and look of damage may differ depending on the table's material. Most material gets damaged due to constant exposure to heat, moisture and direct sunlight. Wood can largely be refurbished with some sanding and polish. Unless it's starting to rot, you might not need to replace good quality solid wood.

Surfaces like vinyl, laminates and glass might need replacement if 

Coffee table ideas in your living room - Beautiful Homes

Image courtesy, Photographee.eu/ shutterstock

the abrasion is significant. Legs should be resized or replaced if they become uneven and wobbly. If the metal bits are rusty and eroded, it is time for new ones.

8.    Kitchen cabinet

Damage to kitchen cabinets occurs primarily due to the following reasons:
●      Rough handling
●      Overloading
●      Constant heat, humidity and moisture.

Most surfaces in a kitchen set with only top layer wear, barring wood, cannot be restored. Thus you will have to get new ones. Overloading and rough handling damage the hardware the most. If they cannot be repaired, it is time for a replacement.

9.    Outdoor furniture

Outdoor furniture is the most susceptible to damage due to direct exposure to the elements. Rusting, warping, abrasion, and fading are common signs that the furniture needs at least some care, if not a replacement. If the piece's frame is compromised to the extent that it cannot take the weight of an adult, it is time to get a new one.

How to dispose of old furniture?

Just because you're replacing "old" furniture doesn't mean that it is entirely unusable. Consider the following options before you decide to throw them away.

●    Repair- Many poorly functioning pieces of furniture can be repaired and given a new lease. Especially if the furniture does not have any
       structural issues, you can easily make it last for a few more years.

●    Restore- Antique and vintage heirloom furniture often hold sentimental value. Getting the help of a professional to restore is always a good
       idea. Get a few professional opinions to see if restoration is within your budget.

●    Upcycle- Do some research to check if you can upgrade the furniture. For example, just reupholstering can sometimes give you the desired

●    Reuse- If the furniture piece is still in decent condition, always check if you can sell it or donate it to someone who needs it. Or you can even
       barter with friends and family. This is an inexpensive way to change up your interiors.

●    Recycle- Sometimes, only certain parts of the piece are damaged. In such cases, you can repurpose the rest of it to make new furniture or

●    If the furniture is truly in bad shape, so much so that it can be a hazard, you might want to dispose of it safely. Contact your local authorities to
       figure out the best way to do it.

So what is the best choice?

This is something only you can be the judge of. Research is critical here. Many times repairing and refurbishing an old piece of furniture may cost way more than buying new. You're going to have to consider your budget in either case.

Sometimes, the sentimental value trumps the financial analysis. In that case, restoration, recycling or repurposing is the way to go.

Modern living room furniture for your home - Beautiful Homes

Image courtesy, Africa Studio/ shutterstock

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