La-Z-Boy (LazyBoy) Recliner: Replacing the Trip Wire

Many La-Z-Boy recliners are also rockers. The rocking mechanism is designed so that when the handle is pulled the footrest comes up and the recliner is locked from rocking.

(Click on picture to enlarge. The picture shows the inside base area under the chair seat. The left of the picture is towards the front of the chair)

Under the seat is a trip wire (B) that is connected a short rod (C) with a hole through the center of it. Both ends of the trip wire go into opposite ends of this hole. Then a bolt screws into the bar to hold thends to the tripwire in place. That short rod is mounted on a square bar (F), on which is mounted the handle on the outside of the arm. When the handle is used, the trip wire pushes against a locking bar (D) to engage a set of notches (A), thus locking the recliner from rocking. Sometimes this trip wire will break and needs to be replaced.

To remove the old trip wire, unscrew the bolt at C, pull the wire out of both ends of the rod, then unthread it through the slot at E.

The trip wire is made of a stiff spring wire. Regular wire will not work. It needs to be a stiff spring wire.

Before you remove the old trip wire, take some pictures of how it is connected.

Replacing the Trip Wire: Here are a couple options:

You used to be able togGet A Replacement from LaZBoy by Contacting a Lazyboy showroom and ask the location of a service center. (I've been told that they no longer stock that part)

Make A Replacement: If you don't have a Lazyboy service center close to you, find a piano tuner and ask to buy three feet of #19 (.043") or #20 (.045") piano wire*, which is usually cut off of a roll. (Since the wire doesn't cost much, you might buy enough for 2 or 3, in case you make a mistake or make the first one the wrong size.) When you go get the wire, take the short rod (C) with you to make sure that two pieces of the piano wire will fit into the hole in the rod.) Care not to loose it!

Note: since writing this article I've found an online source for the wire,  Here: Piano Music Wire in 10' lengths from Schaff Piano Supply. On that page there are many thicknesses available. Get the thickness as described above, which is listed on that page.

When you get the wire back to the shop, lay out the old wire in its original shape. Then use it as a guide to bend the piano wire into that same shape. Or use the measurements below to make a new trip wire. (Note: The measurements of the trip wires might vary some, so try to get the measurements from your existing trip wire if possible.) You can use a pair of pliers to make the sharp bends in the wire. As you make the bends,  keep the wire flat on a table so that you can make all the bends so that the wire lays flat when finishehd. Then install the new wire back in the bracket that you removed the old one from.

                          (Both sides are the same length (9 3/4"))


*Special thanks to David Dewey, a professional piano tuner in Oroville California, who corrected my information about the correct size of the piano wire.