How can you troubleshoot common issues with a massage chair, such as a malfunctioning remote or motor?

For many massage chair owners, it’s only a matter of time before the occasional issue arises. Fortunately, with a little patience and some basic know-how, many common massage chair problems are surprisingly simple to fix.

From malfunctioning remotes, to a flagging motor, this comprehensive guide will provide insight into the steps needed to troubleshoot and repair common massage chair issues.

Testing Power Sources

The absolute first step in troubleshooting any malfunctioning massage chair should be to establish whether the problem is caused by an electrical power source. Check that the power source is turned on. If you are using an extension cable, make sure that is also plugged in correctly. If you’re using a power board, flip the circuit breaker switch off and then back on again.

Unplugging and Resetting Cords

Chances are if your massage chairs “power” button isn’t working, the issue may be simply related to a connection fault. Try unplugging, and then replugging in, the power cord.

Similarly, the issue might lay in the connections of the remote control. Unplug, and then replug, the cord from the remote control into the massage chair.

Taking Apart the Control Panel and Remote

At times, the unplugging and resetting of power cords might not be enough to fix the issue. If this is still the case, you will likely need to proceed and open up the remote control and/or control panel of the chair.

The key to successful panel and remote disassembly and assembly is being highly organized. Take a picture of how each component is wired when it is first open, to help you identify the correct wiring configuration when putting it back together.

Identifying & Replacing Motor Problems

Assuming the chair plug-ins were all the correct way around, it is likely you may have a problem with the motor itself. To check the motor, you need to first go through the safety protocols – unplugging the power cord from the wall and from the massage chair itself.

Take off the power panel and locate the motor. If it is noticeably damaged, you’ve identified the problem and you will need to order a replacement.

If the motor isn’t damaged visually, flip the switch. Attempt to start the massage chair again. If the motor still does not work, it is likely you will need to order a replacement motor to fix the issue.

Cleaning and Maintenance

To reduce the risk of your massage chair having recurring issues, regular maintenance is essential.

For a quick clean, use a soft damp cloth to wipe off the surface of your chair.

For a more thorough clean, check out the manufacturer’s guidelines as to the correct procedure on how to strip down and clean the chair. This should include pulling the massage chair apart, using a vacuum cleaner on all the areas, and using mild cleaning detergent to wipe it down.


When faced with a malfunctioning massage chair – whether it’s related to the motor, the remote or a power source – the most important step is to take the time to correctly diagnose and identify the problem before attempting a fix.

In most cases, the most likely culprits are a result of a power source problem, a malfunctioning remote cord, or a damaged motor. However, through an organized and patient approach, most massage chair issues can be quickly identified, and subsequently solved, to get you back to enjoying a relaxing massage experience.
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What tools should be used when troubleshooting common issues with a massage chair?

Regular maintenance of a massage chair is highly recommended and includes cleaning, inspection, and lubrication. Cleaning should consist of wiping down the chair with a soft, dry cloth and removal of any dust or debris from the chair’s crevices. An inspection of the upholstery, frame, and components should also be done while keeping an eye out for any loose screws and worn parts. Lubricating the massage chair’s mechanisms is also important, as any increase in friction could lead to decreased performance of the chair. Lastly, regular checks of the massage chair’s user manual and accompanying documents should be done to ensure proper use, so as to best exploit its potential.
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How do you fix a massage chair remote?

Reset your massage chair if unplugging and plugging it back in didn’t get it working. Some massage chairs will reset from being powered down and up again. Other massage chairs have a reset button on the remote. Some have a button sequence such as holding the tapping and kneading buttons down for a few seconds. If none of these work, a technician should check for any hardware issues or a blown fuse.
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How do I reset my massage chair remote?

Take your massage chair’s remote control device and press the ‘Power’ and ‘Kneading’ button simultaneously. Keep the buttons pressed for 7-10 seconds. The massage chair should reset to its factory settings. If this does not work, consult your massage chair’s user manual for more detailed instructions.


BME. Wajih Habrah

BME. Wajih Habrah

I'm a passionate biomedical engineer with a love for writing about medical and wellness equipment. I have been fascinated by the intersection of engineering and wellness, and pursued my education in biomedical engineering to learn how to design, develop and maintain medical devices that improve patient health and well-being.

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