This sofa inspection report was compiled for a customer in December 2023, who had disputed the quality of the foam cushioning/padding used in their new leather recliner sofas that they received from the retailer, NCF Living.
Having reached an impasse in their dispute with the retailer, they contacted their credit card company – who asked them to get a specialist to compile a sofa inspection report for them – in order that they could initiate a chargeback.
The customer contacted us – and we compiled the following report for them. The credit card company paid for the compilation of the report, so the customer didn’t have to.
The report is copied below – we have removed any references to the customer for the purposes of data protection:
To whom this may concern,
We are a professional furniture restoration and repair company – and I am a trained upholsterer, accredited by the AMUSF (Association of Master Upholsterers & Soft Furnishers). As a company, we are regularly engaged by customers to provide advice, and repair furniture which has been supplied to them with faults.
THE CUSTOMER contacted us last month, asking us for some advice re: 2 x leather recliner sofas (a 2-seater and a 3-seater), supplied by NCF Living (Paisley branch), and delivered to him on 11th August 2023. THE CUSTOMER suggested he was unhappy with the sofas, and had had no offer of help or assistance from the supplier. THE CUSTOMER contacted them in writing within a week of the initial delivery date – to report a fault/issue with the foam/padding in the seat cushions, backrest, and footrest of each sofa.
THE CUSTOMER is unhappy because he stated to us that he could clearly feel the frame underneath the padding whilst sitting/reclining on the sofa, and that it was far too soft, lumpy, and that there was very little support provided – and as a result this was resulting in neck and back pain for him and his partner whilst using them in both the sitting and reclining position/s.
THE CUSTOMER wondered if we might be willing to come to his home and provide some advice on the sofas, and write a report on their condition.
Upon visiting THE CUSTOMER’s home, I visually inspected the sofas, and asked whether I’d be able to sit on them to test them. As soon as I sat on sofa number 1, I immediately felt the metal recliner frame underneath at the front of the seat – underneath the cushioning. The cushions themselves felt extremely soft, in my opinion, and the firmness level/support offered wouldn’t normally be considered anywhere near firm enough to give adequate support to anyone of an average adult size and weight.
THE CUSTOMER showed me how to use the reclining function of the sofas, and upon doing so, once again it was immediately obvious that the padding on both the footrest and backrest was far too soft, and you could feel the solid metal frames beneath both almost immediately. Sofa number 2 (2-seater) is identical to sofa number 1 (3-seater), as described above.
THE CUSTOMER then explained a bit about the background of the sofas, and his dealings with NCF Living. He stated that they hadn’t sent a technician out to inspect the sofas, despite his request for them to do so. They instead asked him by email (on 25th August) to send a photo of a label which should be located on the underside of a/the footrest on each sofa, which should have a batch ID number on it. I was unable to find such a label with a batch ID on it – on either sofa.
The only other communication he subsequently had from them – was a reply to his email (in which he had included photos of each sofa, as per their request), on the 21st September 2023 – that stated that the photos he’d sent had been reviewed by the ‘services and faults team’ at NCF Living, and that they had concluded that there had been ‘no manufacturing fault’ with the sofas.
I’m confused by this – I’m unsure how they could possibly tell from a set of photos whether there was enough support being provided by the cushioning, and whether there was a problem with the sofas at all – given THE CUSTOMER’s complaint – without actually attending in person at his home address, and sitting on them/physically inspecting them.
Given how soft the cushioning is in the seats, backrests and footrests in both of the recliner sofas that were supplied to THE CUSTOMER – and how quickly you sink into them with almost no support whatsoever, it seems reasonable to suggest that the foam cushioning used is not suitable whatsoever, for the intended purpose. Indeed, during my visit, after sitting on sofa number 1 for around 15-20 minutes (whilst talking through the issues THE CUSTOMER was having with them and the supplier), I myself started developing some slight neck pain due to the lack of support – this is very unusual for me, and isn’t something I’d normally suffer from.
The foam used in the seating, and the foam/padding used in the footrests and backrests – do not serve the intended purpose of providing adequate support, as required for sofas of this type and construction.
It is my professional opinion that the use of this foam and padding in the sofas (whether it’s of the wrong grade, or whether it’s a faulty batch that’s been used – and not having been tested/checked properly by the manufacturer) – should be classed as a fault made during the manufacturing process – and that these two recliner sofas are in no way fit to be used as intended.
Please let me know whether you have any further questions or queries as regards this report.
Also enclosed are a selection of photos showing the two sofas supplied by the manufacturer to THE CUSTOMER, in his home, taken on the date of my visit (2nd November 2023).
Signature Upholstery Company Director