How to Repair a Wobbly Chair

4 Materials
10 Minutes

Do you have a wobbly chair or table? Don’t throw it out! Today we are going to show you How to Fix a Wobbly Chair or Table. In fact, this quick and easy furniture repair can be done without any special tools. Not only is this step by step tutorial easy to follow, but when you try it, you will be amazed that it took no time at all.
Alright, you know that Steph and I love thrifting, shopping garage sales and vintage markets. It is one of our favorite past times!
 We love finding a discarded piece of furniture, giving it some love and turning it into a treasure. It’s the perfect DIY!
I found a pair of chairs at a yard sale for $5. The patina on these chairs was absolutely amazing! Keeping the natural wood finish, I just cleaned them up and changed the upholstery on the seats. However, over time some of the joints on one of the chairs became loose.
As wood ages, it dries out and contracts. Because of this, often joints of old wooden furniture become loose. This is what happened with my chair. The side stretchers became loose where they join the legs. However, these joints can easily be repaired.
These chairs have been in use in my craft room for awhile, even though one really needed repair. Luckily I didn’t end up flat on the floor! 🤣
As you can see, the joint is loose where the side stretcher fits into the leg. It had also begun to separate up by the seat.
I knew it was time for a repair. I don’t know why it took me so long to get around to it, because the actual re-gluing only took about 10 minutes.
Don’t miss the video tutorial!
See the chairs transform from start to finish.
For this furniture repair project you will need a couple of items:
  • Wood glue
  • Small old paintbrush
  • Straps, rope or clamps
  • Damp cloth

Examine the chair for any other loose joints. You will want to repair them all at the same time.
Pull apart the loose joints of the chair. Apply wood glue into the hole, then push the piece back into the hole.
With a damp cloth wipe off any excess glue.
Note: Don’t let excess glue dry, it is very difficult to remove once dry. Believe me, been there, done that.

There was an area near the seat that was starting to separate. In fact, the joint itself was still tight enough that it would not come fully apart. Nevertheless, I wanted to secure this area while I was repairing the chair. With this in mind, I used a small paint brush, then worked the wood glue into the joint.
Once again, remove any excess glue with a damp cloth.
Now secure the joints either with straps, rope or a clamp while the glue dries. The side stretcher joints were easily secured with a strap.
However, it was difficult to get the strap tight enough to pull the joint near the seat together. I tried tapping it with a rubber mallet and I still couldn’t get it tight enough. So, in order to pull that joint together I used a 24″ clamp.
Leave the straps or clamps on the piece until the glue is cured. Let it sit overnight before removing the straps.
This really is a quick fix! It only took about 10 minutes to apply the glue and secure it with the straps.
The next day, I removed the straps and clamp. I now have a perfectly sturdy chair!
If you would like to see how we refreshed the finish and reupholstered the seat click here.
It is so rewarding to repair and refinish furniture pieces that might have ended up in the trash. We love the way this chair turned out!
Do you have a chair that needs a little repair? Are you going to try this technique?
For more furniture refinishing ideas click here.
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Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!


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4 of 14 comments
  • Jessica
    on Feb 16, 2020

    This is exactly what I needed to see! Thank you for this super tip!

  • Debra Perry
    on Mar 13, 2020

    Thank you,thank you,thank you. I have my parents kitchen chairs (4) that are solid wood, that are all very wobbly.This may have just saved their lives for a very long time.

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