Looking to Increase Sleeping Space in Your RV?

Looking to Increase Sleeping Space in Your RV?

Updating the furniture in your RV can be an exciting experience as it’s a chance to utilize the space better and change the look and feel of your RV. RV furniture can be considered an investment because it can last a long time and provide comfort and utility if you pick the right piece.

What are my options?

RV furniture manufacturers are well aware that their market puts great value on items that are functional for a variety of purposes. Space is limited in RVs, so using all of the available space is imperative. There are plenty of options for RV furniture that can double as sleeping space or storage, in addition to day-time seating. Before choosing your specific piece of new RV furniture to add to your room, you should consider the general options available. Read on for more information on the different types of convertible furniture commonly used in RVs for additional sleeping space.

RecPro Hide-A-Bed Sofa

Traditional Hide-a-Bed Sofa

Hide-a-beds are by no means exclusive to the RV industry, but they certainly meet the standards RV owners have set for multi-purpose functionality. This traditional sleeper sofa style is a long-standing favorite because, unlike other options, hide-a-beds contain a full-size mattress separate from the couch cushions.

RecPro Jackknife Sofa

Jackknife Sofa

Jackknife sofas are designed to look like a traditional sofa when upright but lay down flat for sleeping. In one easy step, the couch can be converted into a bed and vice versa. You may also hear these called “Jiffies” because they can transform from a couch to a bed in, you guessed it, a Jiffy!

RecPro Trifold Sofa

Tri-Fold Sofa

These sofas can be listed under various names but describe a type of couch that easily converts into a bed by pulling out from the seat bottom and extending flat. As the name suggests, tri-fold couches are converted between couch and bed by folding and unfolding the accordion-style cushion mechanism. Like jackknife sofas, the couch cushions are cleverly transformed into a mattress by lying flat, so no separate mattress pad is necessary.

RecPro Dining Booth Set

Dinette Booth Bed

Your RV may have come with a dinette or small eating area, but did you know that this is another area you can convert into extra sleeping space with the right furniture. While less common than convertible sofas, convertible dinette booths transform from seating to bed by lowering the table to seat height and using the back seat pads to cushion the center.

Air Mattress or Sleeping Cot

Convertible furniture is great to add extra sleeping space, but that’s only true if you use it. You may not get enough overnight guests to justify specialty furniture and would prefer a powered reclining sofa for you and your co-pilot to rest after long drives instead. You can always have an air mattress or sleeping cot on hand just in case of an overnight guest.

Buying Considerations

Before determining which convertible furniture is best for you, you should consider the following points as they vary slightly between options.


Space is the number one limiting factor when choosing between RV furniture options. Especially with convertible furniture, which needs space to transform between functions. Obviously, if a piece is larger than the space you would like to install it in, you won’t be able to do so. However, you also want to avoid wasted space in your RV which can happen if you choose a piece that doesn’t fill up the area you planned to put it.

Suppose you choose a furniture manufacturer specializing in RV furniture. In that case, they will likely design their pieces to fit through a 22” or similar size opening so they can be installed into your RV. This may not be the case if you choose an option that is not a specialty RV product.

Most retailers will provide exact specifications for their furniture. For convertible options, they should also provide the specifications for the piece in every configuration. Make sure to check these before purchasing to avoid headaches later on.

RecPro Furniture Fabric Swatch

Fabric Type

The fabric type you choose will depend on personal preference and durability requirements. If you have small children or pets using your RV furniture, you may want to consider a more durable option such as the Suprima leather offered by RecPro for most of their furniture. Compare fabric types based on price, durability, comfort, and color options.


Cost can vary between the types of convertible furniture listed above. Those with more intricate transformation mechanisms and materials will run on the higher cost side. Jackknife couches are usually the most cost-friendly option due to the simple mechanism of action and the fact the cushions transform directly into the mattress. You can expect to spend between $600 and $1,700 for a quality piece of convertible RV furniture.

Frame Construction

It can be tough to get an idea of how sturdy a piece of furniture is when shopping online. You can examine the quality of a piece based on the construction materials. Many manufacturers list the material from which the furniture is constructed, for example, steel, metal, or wood. Steel is the strongest option, but metal may be used to save on overall weight and can still provide a good amount of structural support.

RecPro Memory Foam Mattress

Mattress Type

As we discussed earlier, hide-a-beds are the only option we covered that come with an actual mattress pad. The other convertible options use the couch cushions for sleeping on and often recommend an additional pad to increase comfort. If the extra sleeping space is used frequently in your RV, it may be better to consider an option that includes an actual mattress because it will provide better comfort and support. The RecPro Charles Hide-a-Bed, which I will introduce in more depth later, comes with a 5” thick memory foam mattress, so the person sleeping won’t even know they are on a convertible bed.


The final thing you must consider when choosing new furniture for your RV is functionality. If you’re reading this article, you are likely curious about incorporating additional sleeping space into your RV. However, you may also be looking to increase your storage space or have an unsightly water tank or wheel well that you would like to cover up.

Also, how easy it is to transform your piece between functions. You can find great pieces of RV furniture capable of doing all these things. Still, you will have to decide which functions are most important to you because compromise and multi-purpose furniture, unfortunately, go hand-in-hand.

Top 8 List

The top 8 convertible sofas will depend on personal preference, as discussed in the previous section. So instead, we decided to put together 8 options that do certain things very well. Read on to check it out!

Perfect for Small Spaces

RecPro Charles 62” RV Jackknife Sleeper Sofa with Optional Legs

RecPro Charles 62” RV Jackknife Sleeper Sofa with Optional Legs

With optional legs and a minimal design, this sofa is great for adding a sleeping spot to your RV, even if space is limited. This design is also great if you need to cover a tank or wheel well. Jackknife couches are easily transformed between sofa and bed with one single motion.

Best Convertible Dinette

RecPro 44” RV Dinette Booth with Optional Table and Leg

RecPro 44” RV Dinette Booth with Optional Table and LegRecPro 44” RV Dinette Booth with Optional Table and Leg Open

This dinette made the list of best convertible RV furniture because not only can it be used for additional sleeping space, it also provides extra storage space. To go from dinette to bed, the tabletop drops down, and the back seat cushions pad the middle section, creating a flat surface for sleeping. Since the backs remain, this option is best for children or shorter travelers.

Easiest to Operate

kathy ireland® Slide-Jack Jackknife Sofa

While most jackknife couches are relatively easy to operate, this one takes the cake since it includes a front latch, so you can convert this sofa to a bed and back with one hand! In addition to ease of use, this sofa boasts a contemporary style that will fit in with and update any decor.

Budget-Friendly Find

YAHEETECH Sleeper Sofa RV Couch Bed

If you want a convertible sofa but don’t want to break the budget, this is the option for you. This RV couch bed comes in under $200 and features a drop-down cupholder and sleek design.

Top-Choice for Tall Travelers

RecPro 80” RV Wall Mount Rollover Sofa with Adjustable Legs in Cloth

RecPro 80” RV Wall Mount Rollover Sofa with Adjustable Legs in Cloth

As someone who is 6’, I understand the difficulty in finding pants that are long enough, let alone a convertible bed designed to fit in an RV that is long enough. This is primarily due to the lack of available space in RVs. If you are struggling to find an additional sleeping option that provides over 6’ of bed length, look no further than the RecPro 80” RV Wall Mount Rollover Sofa.

This sofa is more basic than some of the other options listed, but if bed length is your top priority, then this is a good option for you. In addition, this sofa is easy to install thanks to the additional optional wall bracket, which extends the possible mounting area to ensure proper alignment with the wall studs. With a few minor adjustments, this piece quickly transforms between sofa and bed.

Best for Increased Storage Capacity

BEYAN Vermont Modern Fabric Upholstered Convertible Sofa Bed with Storage

This sofa can check both boxes if storage is as much of a priority as additional sleeping space. There are 2 rectangular containers underneath the cushions that measure 25” x 20” x 20” each and can be used for discreet storage.

Most Sturdy

RecPro Michael 72” EZ-OUT™ Trifold Sleeper Sofa

RecPro Michael 72” EZ-OUT™ Trifold Sleeper Sofa

Tri-fold sofas work similarly to hide-a-beds but include some key differences that set them apart from each other. Tri-fold sofas fold out in a way that is close to hide-a-beds, but the cushions are permanently mounted to the frame, which extends and retracts as one piece. When the RecPro EZ-OUT trifold sleeper is in the bed position, it provides a very sturdy sleeping area (if used correctly). To elaborate on correct usage, it is important not to put too much weight on the first section closest to the backrest when the sofa is fully extended. This could cause the accordion-style fold-out to fold back in on its own. This typically shouldn’t be an issue but certainly something to keep in mind.

Comfiest All-Around

RecPro Charles 80” RV Sleeper Sofa with Hide-a-Bed

RecPro Charles 80” RV Sleeper Sofa with Hide-a-Bed

If you have the space to accommodate this RV sleeper sofa, it’s a great ultra-comfy option, both as a couch and bed. In addition to comfort, this sofa features options in both Suprima cloth and leather, so you can choose which material is best for you. While not as simple to convert as the jackknife styles, this sleeper sofa is still easy-to-operate, and you’d never be able to tell it’s a convertible bed from looking at it.

What is your preferred type of convertible sofa, and why? Let us know in the comments below!

Jul 12th 2022 Molly Muhs

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