How to Fix A Recliner Pull Handle?

With time, you can find more and more tears and wear in your recliner. It is expected that someday, the pull handle will break when you are sitting in the chair and trying to pull it.

Don’t get agitated! It is not a big deal! The replacement part is cheap, and you don’t need to be a handyman to get it fixed.

We will teach you how to fix a recliner pull handle step by step. Keep reading, and you will save hundreds of money that you plan to hire a pro.

Where to buy pull handle replacements?

As we said, those pull handles are usually not expensive. So, where to get them?

If you are using a regular recliner, you can easily find a replacement in big online stores. Most recliners use standard pull handles so that you can get them regardless of which brand the chair is. There are a few sizes available, and you can use a ruler to take some measurements before purchasing.

However, if you are using a custom-built recliner from a high-end brand, it may use some unique handles, meaning that you have to order a replacement from them.

We suggest you talk to the seller or the manufacturer of your recliner to know more details.

How to replace a broken recliner pull handle

The way to fix a broken recliner pull handle is to replace it with a new one. Once the replacement part arrives, you can start to fix it.

Prepare the tools

The tools you need are quite simple: a screwdriver and a set of needle-nose pliers, that’s all. Put them in front of you to boost the process.

Turn the chair into an upside-down position

If you feel it is hard to access the reclining mechanism,  you can opt to close the footrest and flip the chair. 

Remove the screws

Replace recliner pull handle
Remove the screws

In general, there are 2 screws or 4 screws inside to fix the handle to the frame of the recliner chair.

Therefore, to remove the broken handle, we have to use the screwdriver to unfasten the screws in advance. When you deal with them, you should be careful and don’t twist the screws out on the holes as you are going to use these holes later.

Remove the handle

Now, the handle becomes loose and you can easily take it out. Then you need to use the plier to separate the handle from the cable by removing the clip.

Install a new pull handle

Connect the new handle with the cable by using a new clip and then put the handle into its original place. Test if the handle is working properly.

Fasten the screws

Once the handle works, put the screws back to the same spot and fasten them.

Put the chair back

Now, the recliner can work as it used to be. Flip the chair and make it in the upright position. You can check this video to know more details:

How to fix a recliner pull handle if it is not broken

If the handle itself is not broken but can’t work. It is likely that there is something wrong with the pull cord (also known as pull cable). So what you need to do is to replace a new pull cable.

Get the cable and tools

It would not take too much effort to find a cable replacement. Most of them are standardized. Other equipments include a screwdriver and a set of pliers.

Flip the chair

The same as the method we mentioned above, for easy access, you can choose to flip the chair upside down.

Unfasten the screws

You should remove the screws so that you can loosen the pull handle and get the cable out. As we said, you ought to unfasten the screws carefully to ensure you can fasten the new screws later.

Remove the handle

You can take out the handle after unfastening the screws. You will see a clip that is be used to connect the handle and the cable.

Remove the cord

Use your hands or a plier to remove the clip and squeeze the cable holder. The handle will disconnect with the cord and you can pull the cord out.

Insert a new pull cord

Put the new pull cable into the hole slowly and tighten it. Then you should clip the lid back. This is a reversal mechanism. 


Test if the recliner can work again. If it is working, fasten the screws and flip the chair back to the upright position.

There is a video that illustrates the process clearly:

Take care of a pull handle

In order to make the chair last longer, you’d better know how to maintain a pull handle. There are a few helpful tips.

Regularly clean the handle so that the dust and debris will not block the mechanism and make the chair stop working.

Also, remember to oil the mechanism from time to time. We suggest you check the cords and wires every a few weeks to avoid unnecessary tears and wear.

Another thing worth mentioning is that you should pull the handle gently. When you sit in the chair, slowly pull the lever, your chair will recline as you wish. Pulling it hardly will not make any difference and it will shorten the lifespan of your chair.


We introduced 2 methods to fix the recliner pull handle. Both of them are easy and cost-effective. You can save a lot by fixing it by yourself. All you need to do is replace a handle itself or a cable.

In order to make your handle last longer, you need to use it gently and clean it regularly. Maintaining a recliner is easy-peasy.

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Rachelle is the founder of Best Chair Finder. She is a fanatic of home improvement, and as an engineer, she knows well about each chair's mechanism. You can find her story on the About page.