Massage chair with beige upholstery

Massage Chair Maintenance and Care Guide

In Massage Chairs by Consumer FilesLeave a CommentLast Updated: July 14th, 2021

Your new massage chair is an expensive investment. Unlike regular furniture, it’s designed with advanced technology that needs proper care to last through the years.

That means a spray down with some leather cleaner now and then isn’t going to cut it.

Don’t fret. We’ve compiled the best tips and tricks to give you a detailed guide on massage chair maintenance.

Deep Cleaning Process

It is recommended to administer a thorough cleaning every 1-2 months, depending on how often you use the chair. The main focus of your deep clean will be on the upholstery, especially the little crevices that are difficult to reach.

Deep Cleaning a couch

Massage chair upholstery is generally made from leather, fabric, or synthetic leather. For all three, you’ll want to focus on the areas that get the most wear and tear, including the following areas:

  • Headrest
  • Armrests
  • Footwells
  • Neck

You’ll be cleaning dust, dirt, and oils left behind from pets, skin, and hair. If you have heating elements in your chair, this can cause perspiration to build up and also damage the upholstery over time.

Here are 5 steps for thorough massage chair care:

1. Preparation

You’ll want to start by removing as much of the upholstery as you can. This includes the cushions and parts with a zipper that can be detached.

Some removable parts can be cleaned in the washing machine using a gentle cycle, but be sure to read your user manual carefully to clarify this first.

With most of the upholstery removed, wash each piece by hand, really working into those nooks and crannies without missing a spot. Always line-dry to avoid shrinkage.

2. Sweep or Vacuum

Start by using a brush or a handheld vacuum to pick up debris, dust particles, and loose hair. Focus on the seating area, footwells, and underneath the chair.

3. Water and Mild Soap

Massage chair cleaning is best accomplished with a spray bottle. That way, the chair doesn’t get soaked. You want the surface just lightly spritzed so it will dry quicker.

For natural or fragile materials, mix mild soap and water, refraining from acidic solutions that can damage the fabric. You may want to test a small area first to make sure the material doesn’t react negatively to the soapy water.

Work from top to bottom, focusing on one area at a time. After spraying a section, use a damp cloth to mop up the soapy water. It’s important not to leave droplets on the surface because they can leave stains.

4. Clean the Cushions

Once you’ve finished wiping down the chair, let it air dry and work on cleaning the separate cushions using the same method as you did with the chair.

5. Put It Back Together

Once your chair and cushions are completely dry, you can put everything back in order, and you’re good to go!

Pro Tip: Got a spill? Keep stains at bay by grabbing an absorbent cloth to blot the liquid away immediately. Never rub the stain, as this can spread it out over a larger area.

How to Oil Your Massage Chair

If your massage chair is upholstered with leather, it’s time to return the favor…you’ll be giving it a massage for a change!

Oiling your recliner after every deep cleaning session is essential to keep it soft and supple through the years; otherwise, the leather will crack.

A brown leather sofa wiped with oil

You can use any leather oil or leather conditioner, even scented for a nice touch. If you’re into natural products, coconut oil works just as well.

Never use petroleum jelly because if there are rubber parts on your chair, the oil in petroleum jelly can cause damages. Some guides may suggest olive oil or cooking oil, but this can damage the leather.

Be sure to use a small amount of oil, focusing on one area at a time. A little oil goes a long way, and you don’t want to overdo it.

Use your hands to massage it into the leather, then once finished, wait for it to absorb completely. If there is excess oil, you can wipe it away.

Regular Massage Chair Cleaning

Keep up with regular massage chair maintenance by wiping the chair down with a damp cloth every 1-2 weeks or as needed.

This will keep your chair in prime condition, cutting down on grime build-up and making your job easier when it’s time for a deep clean.

Pro Tip: Use a dry cloth or a microfiber cloth to carefully clean the remote controller.

How to Store Your Massage Chair & Extra Tips

You need to put some thought into where you want to house your massage chair, not just for the amount of space or how it looks with your interior design, but also where it will be in the best environment to stay in pristine condition.

A beige massage chair in a showroom

Sunlight is an enemy of upholstery, causing unsightly fading and cracking over time. Find a spot away from any windows and place a fabric cover over the recliner when not in use.

Do you have pets or kids? You might want to choose a private room where the massage chair is out of bounds. Pet nails scratching up the leather or a child hanging or sitting on the armrests will cause damages.

Watch the Weight

Keep to the weight capacity and never place extra items on top of the recliner while it’s being used. Going over the maximum weight could cause a malfunction. 

Get Those Massages in

Here’s something you’d think never to hear- make sure the chair gets used regularly. This will keep the technology fluid and functional. Another excuse to get a massage, right?

Prepare & Protect

Finally, consider the weather in your area. You never know when a big storm can cause a power surge that takes out a few electronics in your home.

A surge protector is a worthwhile investment to keep your massage chair from becoming an expensive loss. Sure, it’s an extra cost, but you can find a surge protector for around $15 or less.

Massage Chair Troubleshooting

After work, you get home, sink into your chair, and hit your favorite massage program on the remote. After a few minutes, your peaceful serenity is shattered by a grating noise coming from your beloved recliner.

Don’t turn into Ms./Mr. Fix-it. The inner workings of a massage chair are complex and require the expertise of a professional.

Contact the manufacturer for repairs and refrain from using it until it’s been fixed.

Also, have your warranty handy, as most massage chairs come with a solid warranty. It’s always a good idea to be clear on this before purchasing a massage chair.

When is it time to make the call? These are common signs of trouble:

  • Unusual noises
  • The chair won’t recline or perform other functions on command.
  • You’re not able to switch between massage programs.
  • The chair has difficulty turning on and off.

Massage Chair Maintenance Conclusion

Your ergonomic recliner is an expensive piece of technology, so it makes sense to take care of it. With regular massage chair maintenance, you’ll be able to enjoy quality massages and supreme relaxation for years, saving money on all of those chiropractor appointments!


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Massage Chair Maintenance and Care Guide was last modified: July 14th, 2021 by Consumer Files