Whether your camper couch is falling apart or it doesn’t match your theme, replacing a couch in an RV can feel like a challenge. How do you get through the door? Can you replace it with any couch? In this complete guide, you will find tips on removing a couch from your camper along with some new sofas to replace it with.
The first thing we did when we renovated our fifth wheel was removed the heavy sleeper sofa and recliners. Just getting rid of them opened up the space and made our RV feel so much bigger. When it came time to buy something new, I looked for a couch that was lightweight, functional, and a neutral color.
Funny story – my husband and I never measured the width of our RV door so we struggled to get our couch in. (We even had the neighbors helping us hahah). I’ll tell you later how we ended up getting it in our camper.
Can you Replace a Camper Couch?
In short, you absolutely can replace a camper couch! But, that doesn’t mean it will be easy.
To avoid scratching up your walls and floor, you will want to break them down before trying to fit them through the door. Then when you are looking for a replacement sofa, there are some things you will need to keep in mind before ordering one. But, I’ll share all of this a little later.
How to Remove a Sofa From an RV
There are a couple of ways you can remove a couch from an RV: through the door or through the window. I’m going to share a step by step guide for each method, so you don’t ruin your camper walls.
How to Remove it Through the Door
You will want to make sure that you break down the couch into small enough pieces, so you can fit it through the door.
Step 1: Flip it on its back
First, we flipped the couch on its back and looked at the frame.
Step 2: Take Pictures or Make a Mental Note
You want to remember exactly how it was put together. You can label the nuts and bolts with tape and a sharpie, take a picture of the frame, or jot it down in a notebook. This step is only important if you are trying to sell the couch after removing it because you will need to rebuild it.
Step 3: Start Unscrewing Bolts
You kind of have to do some trial and error and really just use your best judgment to see which bolts will help you break it down into smaller pieces.
Obviously, each couch and recliner will be a little different, but use a drill or a screwdriver to help you take it apart.
Step 4: Remove it Piece by Piece
Once it is completely taken apart, remove it from the RV. You can either throw it away or rebuild and sell it. As much as this couch was used in an RV it is still a decent couch (oftentimes with a pull-out bed), so there is some value there.
How to Remove it Through the Window
This is how we got our couch out! We were already renovating the trailer, so it wasn’t a big deal to remove the window. I wouldn’t recommend this method if you are not planning on painting your RV walls.
You should remove your couch through the window if……
- You are already renovating the trailer and don’t mind putting in a little extra work.
- You don’t mind tackling a little bit more of a bigger project.
What you’ll need:
- Plastic scraper
- 3-4 people total
- Cleaning spray like simple green
Step 1: Remove Screws
Remove all the screws that are around the RV window from the inside. These windows are (generally) made in two parts; An interior frame and the actual window/exterior frame combo.
The interior frame is screwed to the exterior frame which will pull both pieces together tightly against the wall. So for the most part, screws are not going into the wall or frame of the trailer. Instead, they are screwed into the frames of the window.
Keep In Mind: As you remove the screws, the outside window could start to fall away from the RV, so have someone holding the window in place. This probably won’t happen thanks to the caulking between the outer window frame and the trailer, but it’s better to be safe than sorry. I highly recommend you have someone read to catch the window!
Step 2: Removing the Window
Carefully lift the window out and set it to the side. You will have to remove the old caulking from the window and the exterior wall of the trailer. This Is where your plastic scraper comes in to play. Clean both surfaces well with your cleaning spray.
Step 3: Lifting the Couch Through the Window.
Now it’s time to lift the couch out through the window. You want to be really careful not to damage your inside or outside walls. This is why you will want to have a couple of people inside and a couple outside.
Plus, these couches are typically really heavy because they have a pull-out bed. It’s so much easier to remove with several people helping out.
Step 4: Put your New Couch In!
While you still have helping hands, put the new couch through the window! If you are renovating and don’t want the couch in the way, just use some plastic on the outside of the trailer. This will keep any unwanted debris or bugs out of your camper.
Step 5: Putting the Window Back Together
Now it’s time to put the window back.
First, take your caulk and put a healthy amount on the inside of the outer frame (the part that touches your exterior wall). Remember where you removed the old caulk from? Apply the caulk here!
Then, lift the window and set it back into its frame. Line up the inner frame and start putting screws in. Try not to tighten each screw too tight, until all the screws are in. This will allow for some play when you are putting it together because you don’t want to bend or warp the inner frame.
Replacement RV Couch Ideas
Now that you’ve removed your existing couch, you need to get a new sofa! This is the fun part. But, what do you look for? Should you use couches made for RVs or can you use residential furniture? I’m going to share all the couches I looked at for our fifth wheel.
But before we look at the best couches for an RV, there are a few factors that make these perfect for trailers.
1. Size (length + height)
Make sure you measure where your couch is going to go. I recommend using painter’s tape to outline where it will sit, so you can have a better idea of how much room it will take up.
The length is probably the most important factor here, but the height matters if you don’t want to block the window.
Obviously, those sleeper sofas and recliners are HEAVY! So, you have quite a bit of wiggle room to work with. But, you do want to check the weight of the couch just to be sure you don’t go over the allotted weight for towing.
What will you be using this couch for? Do you have kids? Pets? All of these factors go into choosing a couch.
If you plan to use this for extra sleeping, having a bed option may be a feature you need. Let’s say you have a dog that sheds a lot, you probably want leather.
Figure out what the purpose of your couch is and then you can start looking for something that will accommodate your needs.
Can you use a Residential Couch?
ABSOLUTELY!! Residential couches are really no different than the couches that came with your RV. Especially when it comes to weight. A lot of time RV couches are heavier than a small residential sofa.
When using a residential couch, you will need to measure it and make sure that it fits in your space and will fit through your RV door or window. This can be a little tricky, that’s why build your own couches are so popular for campers.
The BEST Replacement Couches for RVs
1. Easy Out Sofa – Leather
It’s leather and pulls out into a bed! This easy out sofa comes in three widths, 60”, 66”, and 70,” so you can choose a size that works best for you.
2. Reversible Sofa with Chaise + Storage
If you want more storage and a chaise to stretch out on, this couch is perfect. It’s 83in wide, so it’s a bit longer than the average RV sofa. But if you have a family or need room for the dogs, this couch will keep everyone comfy and cozy!
3. Ikea Frighten Sleeper Sectional with Storage
This couch is inexpensive and has all the features you could wish for! The only reason we didn’t purchase this one was because it was on backorder at the time. It has several color options and since it comes in pieces, it should fit through the door of your RV.
4. Small Loveseat Couch
If you are looking for a small sofa, this square arm loveseat is only 59”! Finding small couches can be tricky, but this simple sofa will look beautiful with any camper’s theme.
5. Industrial Leather Couch
If you have pets or kids, leather is almost a MUST! It just makes life easier. But surprisingly, it’s not easy to find a small couch that is leather, light, and reasonably priced. This couch has it all!!
Replacing a couch in an RV can feel like a daunting task, but hopefully, this guide has given you the confidence to do it. Adding a new sofa to your RV living room will completely change how this space feels and will be a bit more functional too. Best of luck…. And happy shopping!!