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"Longevity" or "lifespan" in our research refers to how long a useful life a mattress is likely to have when used on a regular basis. Longevity / lifespan often has the same meaning as durability, but not always.
The chart below shows how the mattress types compare on longevity / lifespan based on actual consumer experiences. Keep in mind that the chart shows what is often, but not always, the case. A particular brand, model or individual mattress may go against these findings somewhat.
|Average Longevity / Lifespan|
|0 years||5 years||10+ years|
Due to the design, construction and mechanical nature of air beds, durability and longevity / lifespan must be evaluated separately.
"Durability" in our research refers to how well a mattress avoids developing problems when used regularly. Air beds are more mechanical in nature than other types of beds, and, as a result, more can conceivably go wrong with them, such as leaks and air pump breakdowns. Consequently, air beds tend to have only fair durability.
Although air beds tend to have fair durability, they tend to have good longevity. This is because any part of an air bed, including its air bladder, air pump and comfort layer, can be easily fixed / replaced with a new part. This is a longevity / lifespan advantage, in fact, over non-mechanical types of beds. Non-mechanical types (namely innerspring, memory foam and latex) usually cannot be easily fixed – or fixed at all – when they develop a problem and, consequently, they need to be largely if not totally replaced.
|Longevity / lifespan|
Latex mattresses overall have good longevity. All-latex mattresses tend to have better longevity than both latex-over-foam beds and foam-over-latex beds. As a latex mattress ages and wears, it may develop body impressions and compress.
Memory foam mattresses generally have respectable longevity. Higher density (more expensive) brands and models tend to have better longevity than lower density varieties. As a memory foam mattress ages and wears, it tends to become softer and in some cases excessively softer. In some instances the mattress may – in addition to softening – sag or develop body impressions.
Waterbeds tend to have good-to-fair longevity. Like air beds, if something goes wrong with a waterbed, such as a puncture or broken heater, the problem can often be fix without having to buy an entirely new bed system.
Futons have about average longevity. The more expensive brands / models tend to last longer than the less expensive ones.
These beds generally have less longevity than other types of mattresses because of their tendency to prematurely sag and develop body impressions. Those models with thick comfort layers / pillow tops tend to have the most problems with longevity and durability.
IN THE NEWS: Sleep Like The Dead's research findings have appeared in such news publications as Barron's • Toronto Star • St. Louis Post-Dispatch • Edmonton Journal • Woman's World • The Consumerist • The Gazette • Ottawa Citizen
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