How to Fill a Bean Bag Chair? – DIY Guide

Sometimes beanbag chairs can lose their fill over time for a variety of reasons (like a curious child unzips one). Or, maybe you just want a firmer bean bag chair. Either way, refilling a beanbag chair at home may seem like a daunting task, but it’s quick and easy if you follow just five simple steps.

Before moving further, just watch this video. Then you can get an idea of what we are going to do here.

Table of Contents

Refilling a Bean Bag

There are a few things you will need to make the refilling process easier:

  • A friend or two: Refilling a beanbag chair is a two-person job, though technically it can be done alone if necessary.
  • A room without a fan or open window: The fill material in beanbag chairs is lightweight and can easily be blown around by a fan or even the gentle breeze of an open window. So close the windows and turn off any fans you may have running to minimize this annoyance.
  • Refill Beanbag chair on a clean floor and have a vacuum on hand: Again, the job can be messy if any mishaps occur, so refill your beanbag chair on an already clean floor and have a vacuum cleaner ready in case of spills.
  • A funnel: You can purchase or make one; this tool reduces spill potential.
  • A safety pin: This will help you unzip the beanbag chair.
  • Bean bag filler: You can buy bean bag filler online or at retail stores. Most bean bag filler is polystyrene, so it’s inexpensive and pretty easy to find.
Read our Guide on how many bags of beans are needed for your bean bag.

Step 1: Prepare your work area

refill beanbag chair

Turn off fans and close windows to minimize airflow. Remember that polystyrene bean bag filler is exceptionally lightweight, and wind can easily blow it everywhere. Also, work on a clean surface; if possible, choose a hard floor to work on as opposed to carpet because cleanup will be more comfortable.

Finally, have a vacuum ready in case there are spills. A handheld vacuum will suffice as there won’t be much mess.
And make sure all the items you required are accessible easily in the work area. Because once you started to empty or refill the bean bag chair, it is challenging to hold your work and go to grab any item or tool you required.

So make sure at least the below-mentioned list of things are ready and accessible easily in your work area.

1. The Funnel
2. Safety Pin
3. Your partner to hold the bean bag chair
4. Container or sack to empty the bean bag chair and move the old filler
5. If you are using a sack, make sure that another person or a tool which can hold the sack properly, is ready
6. A rope to tie up the sack or the lid to close the container
7. New filler for the bean bag chair

Step 2: Grab a partner

refill beanbag chair

Grabbing a partner is one of the most basic but crucial steps because it pretty much makes the whole beanbag refill process go by much quicker and with way less mess than if you try to do it yourself. Simply grab a friend or family member; it won’t take more than a few minutes of their time, and if they love you or your beanbag chair, they’ll do it.

But if you are using a sack to collect the old filler of your bean bag chair, you will need another person. So plan accordingly.

Step 3: Unzipping and Emptying the beanbag chair

refill beanbag chair

Most beanbag chairs come with a zipper, but that zipper may not have a tab that you can grip, making the unzipping process infinitely trickier than it has to be. (However, the purpose of this is to prevent you from accidentally unzipping it and spilling the filler everywhere, so it is kind of necessary.)

To get around the lack of zipper tab, simply insert an open safety pin through the zipper hole and then secure the safety pin. Voila! You’ve made yourself a functioning zipper. Unzip the beanbag with the zipper side up. If all goes well, the remaining filler inside should sink to the bottom and not spill everywhere.

How to Empty a Bean Bag Chair?

And here comes the Bean bag chair emptying step. You should do this step with special care. Normally the beans are very lightweight and can be spilled everywhere if you make any mistake here. Get a big container (it can be either plastic or any other material.), which is dried well. And it better to have a small mouth compared to the body of the container. And it should have a perfectly close-able lid.

If you are unable to find such a type of perfect container, it is completely ok to go with a big sack. But make sure it is at least have the size of your bean bag as you are going to empty your bean bag chair and move it’s filling to the sack or the container you choose. Make sure the container or the sack does not have any damages.

Now place your container or the sack you choose at the ground with a proper balance. To place the sack, you might want to get help from a third party any other tool which could be helpful. Now place the funnel into the mouth of the container or the sack properly. With the help of your partner, you can lift the unzipped bean bag chair so that it’s unzipped mouth should place the downwards, and its direction should be the upside of the funnel.

If you did this perfectly, you could see that the filled beans of the bean bag chair moving flawlessly to the container or the sack you placed at the ground through the funnel. If it is not moving flawlessly, you can shake the bean bag chair a bit or adjust the funnel with the bean bag.

Shake the bean bag chair softly until all the beans are moved to the container or the sack completely from the bean bag chair. Now close the lid of the container perfectly as if the container fell over accidentally it will spill the beans everywhere, and it won’t let you clean your work area for a few hours. If you used a sack, make sure it ties it up perfectly.

Now you can hand it over to a company that recycles polystyrene beads or whatever you had in your bean bag chair. You should dispose of the removed filling properly as it is not environment friendly. Now the 1st hardest part is over. You have successfully emptied your bean bag chair.

Step 4: Refill beanbag chair

refill beanbag chair

Have your helper hold the beanbag chair open with the unzipped opening upward. They only have two jobs; this is the last one. They can do it. The first one was to help you when emptying the bean bag chair.

With one hand, place your funnel inside the opening with the narrow spout of the funnel actually inside the bean bag chair so that when you pour the filler, it doesn’t go everywhere. Once you’ve positioned your funnel, use your free hand to pour the beanbag filler inside.

Continue filling your beanbag chair until you have achieved the level of firmness you desire. You can shake the bean bag slowly while you are filling the bean bag chair so that the new filler you position themself correctly in the deep of the bean bag chair.

(Note: The funnel may make things go slower, but it saves you time in the long run due to its mess mitigating factors.)

Read more about Bean bag fillers

Step 5: Close the beanbag chair

refill beanbag chair

Use your MacGyver’d zipper to close the beanbag chair opening. If there was a patch covering the zipper, close that as well. Now clean your work area with the help of the vacuum cleaner as it might have spilled some micro pieces of the EPS beads, which will go into your lungs when you are Breathing. It is dangerous for your health.

In some cases, it takes just a few days for the new beans to make its proper shape. So if the bean bag chair you just refilled is not in the perfect shape, do not be scared. Just have patience. Wait for a few days. And the proper shape will come back to it. Meanwhile, do the shakes to the bean bag regularly.

You now have a refilled beanbag chair. Try it out! This is the best way to fill a bean bag at home.

(Note: If you’re unsatisfied with the amount of fill, simply repeat steps 4 and 5 until you get the fill level you desire.)

Frequently Asked Questions

When Should I Refill my Bean Bag?

You should refill your bean bag when it is no longer providing a firm, stable and comfortable seating surface. When you sit on the bean bag, and you feel like it’s going flat in certain areas, then it’s time for a refill. Usually, this occurs after about three years after purchasing the bean bag. But for hard-using bean bag chairs, you would need to refill them more frequently.

How do You Fill a Bean Bag Chair Without Making a Mess?

It is possible to refill a bean bag chair without spilling or losing any of the beans. The primary requirement for this is an airflow-controlled room. You could get a room without running fans or opened windows. If you do not have running airflow, you can fill the bean bag without making a mess.

What is the Best Filler for Bean Bags?

The most common types of fillers for bean bags are foam, beads, and beans. Foam is a popular choice because it is soft, and often more sturdy than beans or beads. Beads are also very popular because they are uniform and come in varying sizes. Beans are a less popular choice for bean bag fillers because they tend to be less sturdy, but are often cheaper than beads or foam. Another less common option is fiber fill. When we consider about the lightness and comfortability, EPS beads are the best fillers for bean bags.
Please read our expert guide on Bean Bag fillers from here.

How to Recycle Bean Bag Filler

There are several ways to dispose of bean bag filling. If you used a synthetic filler like EPS beads, you need to hand them over to a proper recycling center if you can not use it further or some other task. You can read our complete guide on how to dispose of bean bags from here.

How Long does a Bean Bag Last?

It really depends on how often you or your family will use the bag.
The more you use it, the faster the beans inside will start to break down and become less dense. The lifespan of your bean bag will depend on how quickly this process happens. Usually, bean bags last for about three years with regular usage.

How to Remove Static from Bean Bag Filling?

Removing static from bean bag filling is not a difficult task. You can either spray an anti-static spray over the beans or spray water over the bean ban filling. These sprays will remove the static from bean bag filling.

Read full article on how to remove static from bean bag filling.

Is Bean Bag Filling Toxic?

Bean Bag filling is treated as a non-toxic, recyclable fill. It’s made of expanded polystyrene beads most of the time, the same material that can be found in disposable styrofoam cups or even packing peanuts. The beads are recycled and treated with a fire retardant agent to ensure the bean bag stays fire-resistant. But they are not environmentally friendly.

Do I necessarily need to take old beans out to refill my bean bag?

You do not need to take old beans out to refill your bean bag. You can fill the missing amount of beans in the bag till it is tight to the necessary level. But if you could eradicate the old filling and refill the bean bag with a new filling, you can get the exact comport you had before.


Refilling bean bag chair is a straightforward 5 steps process. Some people just throw away their bean bag chairs just after they go flat and buy a new bean bag chairs. It is completely a waste of money. You could save hundreds of dollars if you refill your bean bag chairs at home, which is just a few minutes’ tasks.

After following those five steps, you should have a fully functioning beanbag chair that you refilled at home all by yourself (with your helper). Congratulations!

Sarah Williams

I’m Sarah Williams. A true fan of Bean Bag Chairs. The story of Bean Bags Expert goes to beginning of 2016. At the mid of 2016, I have planned the web site and bought this domain. Slowly this grew up like a little kid.

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