Tri-Fold Sofa Bed For RV (Comfort, How Does It Work, Tips)

RVs are not known for having the best sleeping accommodations. Their sofa beds, etc., can be quite uncomfortable even if they are a tri-fold model. The best thing to do is add your own adding if you want to get a good night’s sleep

One option that makes the tri-fold bed/sofa more comfortable is that it is big enough to sleep two people. When you are alone, you get lots of room to stretch out and find that perfect sleeping zone. For added comfort, add a topper/

To learn more about this piece of furniture, just continue to read our article. It has the information you want to know about in case you are thinking about upgrading your current sleeping areas. This is a better option than other RV sofa models.

What is a Tri-Fold Sofa In An RV?


This is a piece of furniture that has a dual function. First, it is a sofa that adds to the number of people you can have seated inside your RV or trailer. Generally, these sofas can be quite comfortable and relaxing to sit in.

But when you use it for its other purpose, a bed, often that comfort level disappears and you or your guests have trouble getting any sleep at all. The tri-fold sofa is actually a hidden bed to help owners make sure there are enough sleeping options for their families or guests.

These can be upgraded to more comfortable models and there should not be any problem installing a more comfortable version of this sofa/bed combination.

What is good about this form of sofa is that usually, you can get 2 people sleeping on it instead of 1 like the jackknife option. It is a better sofa to have inside your RV when you are looking for comfort, style, and function.

How Does a Tri-Fold Sofa Work?

It does not take a degree in rocket science to maneuver a trifold sofa into the bed position and back again. It is a simple pull operation much like a hide-a-bed sofa.

You simply grab the handle, pull up and out, and in a few seconds, you have a bed. A few seconds more with a push in and sown, you have a sofa. It is a piece of furniture that anyone can manipulate.

The drawback to the tri-fold sofa is not the folding and space needed for it. But the weight and the bulky size of this item. Jackknife beds need space as well but they are often lighter and do not take up a lot of room as they are not bulky.

Since there are different versions of this sofa bed, you may find that different designs have different operation methods. For example, a futon tri-fold sofa just manually folds up underneath itself and you can leave the ‘leg’ open if you want to.

How To Close a 3-Fold Sofa Bed

This will depend on the design of the bed/sofa you buy. There are very cheaply made ones that do not have any real mechanism to use except your brute strength.

Then there are more expensive and sophisticated models that will have different mechanisms that will take some instruction before you can successfully operate the sofa/ bed combination.

The best thing to do is research the different models of tri-fold beds and see which one is best for your RV and living situation. Not all will work in every trailer, etc., because of the differing sizes.

Plus, the mechanisms may be in the wrong position for your floor plan. There are a variety of reasons why some tri-fold sofa designs won’t work in your current RV. We are not talking about costs here.

There are also comfort levels to consider as one owner loved the bed portion. He said it was very comfortable but when the tri-fold was closed and used as a sofa, it was very hard and uncomfortable.

The closing mechanism is the least of your worries in this situation. As long as it doesn’t break, you should be fine.

How Big is a Tri-Fold Sofa?


This will depend on the style and length you want. There are some love seat tri-fold sofas that reach 62 inches long. That is from arm rest to armrest. You can seat and sleep two people on it but how comfortable is another question.

Then if you have the space, there are regular-sized couches that reach 80 inches long. The tri-fold sofa is wide enough to seat 3 people and comfortable sleep 2.

Then we have seen some futon designs that reach 75 inches which will seat only 2 people and still sleep 2 people fairly comfortably. For those families that need to find sleeping berths for an odd number of family members or guests, there is a 42-inch single chair size.

Keep in mind that the love seats can also come in different widths as some are 68 inches long and 72 inches long. It all depends on how much space you have to insert this tri-fold sofa option.

Shopping around will help you find the length you need and the style you want.

Tri-Fold Sofa vs Jackknife

The latter of these two sofa options tends to sit a bit higher than the former option. That makes it easier to get in and out of bed. They also fold out to a full-size bed very quickly.

The drawback to this style of bed is that it is not really made for tall people and usually, they only sleep one person. The tri-fold bed may be lower than the floor but it can at least sleep two people.

They are also more comfortable to sleep on than a jackknife bed. Both are easy to operate, open and close, and you do not need a lot of strength to perform that operation.

It has been suggested that getting a topper for the tri-fold sofa is the best way to get maximum comfort. But often, you are stuck with the type of bed, the RV maker places inside your RV, etc.

You can as for an upgrade or you can just do the upgrade yourselves. That means looking at the different styles, measuring the space you want to place the beds in, and then spending time going to furniture shops to see how comfortable those options are.

Or just buy a topper and use that to make either bed feel better.

Ease Of Changing From Sofa To a Bed

The only thing we would caution about in this operation is to watch your back. If you have a bad back, get someone else to do the opening and closing of the sofa. While jackknife beds are lighter, they can be hard to handle when you bend over to pull them out and push them back in place.

Tri-fold beds are a little heavier and a little harder to handle for some people. The mechanism can be stiff, hard to pull, or too loose and you are caught by surprise. All of those situations can harm your back.

While the transition is simple to do and it only takes a few seconds to get it done. You still have to be careful. Make sure to go slowly and place your body in the best position so that you do not pull a muscle or harm your back.

If you want to make the operation a little easier, a little lubrication can help at the joints of the folding mechanism. Most people should not have a problem with this operation.

RV Trifold Sofa Comfort


This remains to be seen. There are different models and levels of a tri-fold sofa and they all do not provide the same service. For example, one owner felt the bed was very comfortable when the sofa was pulled out.

But when it was pushed back in place, he felt that the sofa was very hard and very uncomfortable. Your level of comfort is not always guaranteed by the higher price or better quality materials.

Generally, that is the case but often you will find that being expensive does not guarantee comfort. Being cheap does not always guarantee discomfort either. But when you pay the lower price chances are the sofa is not going to be comfortable for everyone in your family or for all your guests.

If you like it, then the tri-fold sofa should be comfortable for you and that is the main issue here. Pick the one you like, and feel is comfortable at the price you can afford.

How To Make a Trifold Sofa Comfortable

One option would be to add a topper. These 2 to 4-inch foam mattresses are ideal for adding comfort to your tri-fold bed. Many owners swear by these little add-ons as they do help put space between you and the supports holding the mattress up.

Or, you can change your sleep position and put your head where your foot would normally go. That is where the softest part of the cushion will be so it makes sense to put your head there.

Another option would be to buy an air bed or air mattress. Both this option and the topper idea cost very little and should fit in between the arms if you bought the right size.

Both the topper and the air mattress come in different thicknesses so you can buy according to your tastes. Then, you can buy one that is a bit larger than the one you are replacing.

Having more space to lie down is always a good way to find comfort. Being able to spread out or move without bumping the sides is a comfortable way to sleep.

Finding a Tri-Fold Sofa Bed For RV (Options)

Beds for RVs, no matter their name or designs, are not hard to find. There are more than enough furniture makers that build sofa beds for RVs as well as for traditional homes.

Thomas Payne is one example and Lippert uses their furniture as RV options. Recpro is another option and both of these may be on the high end of the cost scale. Recpro sells theirs for around $1400 +/- depending on size and style.

RVNation has at least one for $700 and sometimes even Amazon has them in stock. Plus, you can go to different furniture stores to see if they have anything compatible that can be installed in your RV.

Just do a local search for RV tri-fold beds and you should come up with a lot of results near you. Or if you are traveling, just do a generic search and see which outlets are on your route. This will ensure you do not lose time or get detoured.

RV Tri-Fold Sofa Reviews


The reviews vary and they are mixed. Some people love the Recpro models saying they are very comfortable and well-built. Other owners say one function is more comfortable than the other while still more owners need to add padding to get the comfort level they want.

For the most part, the owners preferred the tri-fold over the jackknife design. But this is a subjective issue and what you find comfortable someone else will not. Then some people do not like the bed length.

Tall people will be uncomfortable no matter what style of tri-fold bed you buy.

Some Final Words

When you are not happy with the sofa bed installed by your RV brand, you are not alone. Many people are not satisfied with the quality, function, or the comfort of those built-in pieces of furniture.

The good news is that there is nothing stopping you from upgrading that sofa with one that you like and find more comfortable. The drawback to this option is the price of the new sofa.

They are not cheap and the better ones will be very expensive but they will be of higher quality.

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