Couch Research

Sofa Safety 101: Ensuring a Hazard-Free Choice For Your New Living Room Addition

The introduction of safety labels marked a significant step toward making homes a little safer. urges you to read the safety fire label on your couch!

Where is the fire safety label on a couch?

If your sofa is fire-resistant, it should have a fire label that indicates it meets fire safety standards. This important label can often be found sewn under cushions or might be found on the underside of the couch, affixed to the frame or the decking. As a minimum, the label should display the caution, batch number/identification number, and whether the item includes a fire-resistant inner lining. Finally, it should include a summary of the measures which were taken to ensure compliance.

When did fire labels start on furniture?

Fire labels on furniture, it's a fascinating tale. Fire safety regulations for furniture manufacturing began back in the 1980s, specifically in the United Kingdom, to combat the alarming increase in upholstery fires. These regulations paved the way for fire-resistance standards and mandatory labeling practices that have since been adopted by many countries.

  • 1970s: Fire safety concerns prompt the introduction of fire-resistant regulations for upholstered furniture in the United Kingdom.
    - Development of Fire Safety Labels: Manufacturers start attaching fire safety labels to furniture, indicating compliance with regulations.
    - Focus on Upholstery: Regulations particularly target upholstery materials like foam, aiming to reduce the risk of fire spread.
  • 1980s - 1990s: Stringent regulations evolve to address the safety of upholstered furniture, including couches.
    - Introduction of 'Cigarette Test': Standards require upholstery materials to pass a 'cigarette test,' ensuring their resistance to ignition from smoldering cigarettes.
    - Expansion of Regulations: Regulations expand to encompass various components of couches, aiming for comprehensive fire safety.
  • 2000s - Present: Ongoing efforts to improve fire safety in furniture continue.
    - Innovation in Materials: Manufacturers explore advanced fire-resistant materials and techniques to meet regulations without compromising comfort or design.
    - Global Impact: The influence of fire safety regulations on furniture standards extends beyond the UK, impacting international manufacturing practices.

In today's market, the vast majority of couches come equipped with advanced fire-resistant technologies, providing consumers with a reassuring level of safety. These innovative measures have significantly reduced the risk of fire-related incidents in homes. However, it's essential to remain informed about the safety features of your furniture to avoid a dreaded couch-tastrophe. By taking a few moments to confirm before you buy your new couch, you can confidently unwind and relax. Even as technology evolves, a responsible and cautious approach remains the key to a secure and comfortable living environment.

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Alex Back is the founder and CEO of Previously, he was the co-founder and COO of the popular furniture brand, Apt2B, which was acquired by a large US retail furniture chain in 2018. He worked to integrate Apt2B, one of the very first online furniture retailers on the Shopify platform, into the operations of the 100 year old larger business entity and was deeply immersed in the business operations of both online and brick and mortar retail for 4 years before leaving in 2023 to start Working in various parts of the furniture industry since 2004, he has 20 years experience in retail sales, e-commerce, marketing, operations, logistics and wholesale manufacturing and distribution. He has worked extensively with partners such as Costco, Bed Bath and Beyond and Amazon and his work has been highlighted in many publications such as Forbes, CNN and HGTV, among others. Alex is delighted to bring his experience and authority on couches and the furniture industry to this platform, along with many of his industry colleagues who are helping him keep the audience informed and engaged on a daily basis.
Alex Back CEO & Founder