Will it fit through the door?

greenpondMarch 25, 2008

After taking all the measurements of my room and determining that the sofa I like the best will fit in my living room, I just realized it may not fit through the front door! My door is 36" wide; the sofa is 40" tall and 44" deep. It's the largest opening into the house.

I made a paper template using the measurements from the company's website, thinking I could bring it in at an angle. To my best estimate, it still won't fit - not even close. We really wanted a 40" tall sofa, but of course the depth would then have to be much less than 44" for sure. I know it can be "angled" through, but I wonder if there's a sure way to tell what the limits are.

Anyone out there have any advice on how to tell from the measurements given online if a piece will fit, or experience with moving a large piece through a 36" door?

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36" door is a piece of cake with all regular sofas provided you have good egress before and after the door. A basic door with primer as it pertains to furniture deliveries - and very general.

Most furniture is designed to go through 33" - 34" doorways, so a 36" door is a luxury (if you ever want to see delivery guys break out in a big grin, have a double opening front door).

At 32" things get interesting. There are certain larger sofas that won't fit, and some that have to be 'shoved' through if the customer decides thats OK, and might have get abrasion marks on leather pieces, or light soiling on fabric ones. In my delivery trucks we carry a special pad with metal bands to fit around door jambs for exactly this reason.

Anything other 32" requires careful planning beforehand, and many pieces simply won't fit. You're up against the laws of physics. 29" and 30" doorways are virtually useless for sofas, but you can get recliners through them relatively easy by opening them up flat and carrying them through in an extended mode (be very gentle if you do this, as its hard on the mechanisms).

Whats as important as door width is egress on each side of the door. On many doorways, we have to be able to 'hook' the sofa around the door frame. If we can't do that, it may not go in.

An experienced delivery crew is your best bet. They can tell usually very quickly be eyeballing the doorways if a piece will or will not go in, plus they know the tricks in handling larger pieces to get them in the house, whereas a new crew will simply give up and put it back on the truck.

There is a decision-making point on some difficult deliveries that the customer must decide upon whether they want the furniture pushed up against the jambs and walls. If you as the customer say 'yes', then expect some minor blemishes on your furniture or walls. Sometimes thats the only way to get a piece in.

I've often remarked that every architect should have to work on a furniture delivery truck for at least a month before they get certified. We'd see a lot better egress into homes if that happened.

-Duane Collie

    Bookmark   March 25, 2008 at 9:42PM
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Once again, Mr. Collie, your reply has been most helpful - thanks so much! An interesting perspective for architects too! I completely agree. I'm calling the store first thing tomorrow to make sure the delivery team is experienced in such things. It's a straight shot, no tight turns, so maybe it will work. This is a fabric (chenille print) piece, so hopefully abrasion won't be a problem.

I have emailed you off-list, BTW, regarding a visit to your lovely state in a couple of days.

Thanks again!

    Bookmark   March 25, 2008 at 10:23PM
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Just thought I'd post a follow-up. I called the store, a very reputable one I might add, and the very nice salesperson discussed it with their delivery men. They confirmed everything Mr. Collie said, that this particular sofa is a very popular model (Bradington Young) and that they fit through 36" doors all the time with no problems. Whew!

Yes, Mr. Collie *is* the Go-To Guy for great advice!

    Bookmark   March 26, 2008 at 11:15AM
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