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Seat Foam - The Buyer’s Guide


Seat foam guide infographic

Seat foam is a type of foam used within seat cushions on sofas, arm chairs and other similar furniture items. This foam usually comes in the form of foam seating blocks or thick seating foam sheets. Seat foam is praised for its durability and quality at an affordable price, and is also available in a range of thicknesses and densities to suit personal tastes.

Seat foam is incredibly versatile and is known for its resistance to wear and tear, making it a popular choice for sofas and armchairs in busy households.

What type of foam is used for seats?

Seat foam is also known as upholstery foam, and is an open cell polyurethane foam. Most seat foams are of a medium to high density to ensure adequate support, although softer foams are also available. Softer foams are usually used in children’s seats, like mini arm chairs.

There are various grades of seat or upholstery foam. When labelled in this way, you can be sure that the foam is fire retardant and of an appropriate density to ensure proper support and comfort.

How thick should seat foam be?

Most domestic seats, like those found on sofas and armchairs, will use medium density seat foam. Medium foam offers the right level of comfort when used for seat pads that are at least 10 cm in thickness. Medium density seat foam is usually a great replacement for seat pads that were once filled with fibre.

High density seat foam is much firmer and is typically used for thinner seat cushions. For example, high density seat foam is commonly found in dining chair seat pads, and in soft furnishings found in caravans and boats. It is not recommended for domestic seating within the home as it is not ideal for use in applications that are over 10 cm in thickness. It will feel too hard.

How to order the right seating foam?

Choosing the right seating foam for you is down to both personal preference and the intended application. To replace foam within a sofa, armchair or similar, a medium density foam is a good option. Those who wish to achieve a more luxurious feel do sometimes opt to include a thinner memory foam pad on top of their seating foam block, although this must be accounted for in your measurements when ordering. For applications other than these, high density seating foam is great for when a thinner foam pad is required. High density foam ensures that the right level of comfort will be achieved even with a much thinner product.

Seating foam guide

How to replace a foam seat cushion?

Replacing a foam seat cushion is very easy. Simply remove your old foam piece and measure the width, depth and height of the piece. Given that this is likely to be mildly flattened or mis-shapen, also proceed to measure the dimensions of your outer fabric cushion cover and add at least 1.5cm to your recorded thickness dimension to ensure there is adequate space. Proceed to order your foam online via our cut to size online tool, alongside appropriately sized stockinette. Once it arrives, simply slip the foam into your cover!

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