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Air Mattresses For Temporary / Occasional Use

Unbiased Review & Ratings Based on 32,766 Owner Experiences

July 1, 2017


This page reviews air mattresses for temporary use, not those for regular use.

THE GOOD: Often well suited for short-term, limited use • storable • lightweight • generally affordable • adjustable firmness • little or no break-in period or heat retention.

THE BAD: Durability and longevity often fair at best • fast air loss possible • high maintenance • non-elevated models difficult to get up off.

THE MATTRESSES: Air mattresses are made of vinyl and often have a flocked top for warmth. A hand-powered or electric air pump is used for inflation. The mattresses are designed mainly for guest use, sleep overs, travel, and camping.

THE COMPETITION: See the mattress price comparison for ratings on other low-priced mattresses that are often used on a temporary / occasional / light basis.

Air Mattress Ratings: Overall As a Group

The ratings – based on 32,000+ consumer reviews – show how temporary-use air mattresses compare to the average conventional mattress.

Owner satisfaction C Air mattresses overall have 73% owner satisfaction. Satisfaction is higher among owners who use them occasionally or for a short time than among owners who use them regularly or for an extended time. Satisfaction for the many brands / models can vary considerably.
Affordable a $10-$180 depending on size / model / features. Some come with an air pump, others do not. Despite the low price, 20% of owners say value is poor because of durability / longevity.
Comfort B- About 75% of owners describe comfort, pressure point relief, and support to be good or better. The rest say their mattress is uncomfortable due to an inability to hold air or due to excessive firmness. Some owners add a topper to improve comfort.
Durability / longevity d About 25% of owners report durability / longevity problems, mainly air leaks resulting from punctures, splitting seams, and or valve problems. Air mattresses have a lifespan on average of no more than one year with regular use; with occasional use, 1-4 years.
Easy to get on and off D Getting on and up off a standard elevation air mattress placed on the floor can be difficult. Height tends to range 8 to 22 inches.
No initial odor / off gassing c+ A significant chemical or plastic-like odor is reported by 8% of owners. The odor can last for several days or even weeks in some cases and can make sleeping on the bed unpleasant during this time.
No noise C- Moving on the bed may produce some noise, say about 9% of owners.
Temperature neutral B- About 6% of owners report sleeping cold, while virtually no owners report sleeping hot.
Adjustable firmness B Firmness can be adjusted by adding / removing air. However, filling to maximum firmness may increase risk of developing air leaks.
Fast break in A- Unlike most conventional mattresses, air mattresses require little if any break-in period.
Heavy person friendly D+ Air mattress weight capacity tends to be around 400-500 pounds, but high weight appears to negatively affect longevity.
Couple friendly D+ Air mattresses are generally not well suited for couples. The movement of one person will often disturb another person on the bed with an up and down motion.
Easy to maintain D- The need to regularly add air is often required as the mattresses tend to lose a significant amount of air daily.
Easy to move, lift, handle a Air mattresses typically weigh 8-20 lbs making them easy to transport carry and store, unlike conventional mattresses.
Warranties d- Warranties tend to range from no warranty to one year. Successfully filing a claim is often difficult.

Top-Rated Air Mattresses

The table below compares air mattresses that have 78% or higher owner satisfaction based on a sample of 1000+ owner experiences.

AeroBed Inflatable Bed for Kids Sound A sleep Dream Series InstaBed Raised with Never Flat Pump Intex Pillow Rest with Built-in Electric Pump Intex Classic Downy
Owner Satisfaction (sample)        
93%
(1,047)
90%
(14,728)
82%
(4,449)
80%
(8,055)
78%
(4,487)
Price        
$80 $95-$120 $90-$148 $40 $12-$38
Size        
50 by 25 inches twin, queen twin, queen twin, queen twin, full, queen
Height        
10" 18" twin
19" queen
18" 16.5" 8.75"
Retailer        
amazon amazon amazon

overstock .com
amazon walmart .com

amazon
Comment        
has 4" surround safety cushion. above average customer service. has second pump to monitor and maintain air pressure. built-in pillow. pump often not included unlike other models listed here.

Standard Elevation Vs Raised Air Mattresses

Standard elevation air mattresses are 10 inches or lower in height, while raised air mattresses are over 10 inches high.

Raised have the advantage of being more like a conventional bed in terms of height which makes getting on and up off of the bed easier. Raised have the disadvantage of being up to three times more expensive than standard elevation. Raised can also be somewhat wobbly and lack stability due to their elevated height.


About Our Temporary-Use Air Mattress Ratings and Research

Ratings are based on 32,000+ consumer reviews of air mattresses including Aerobed, Sound A Sleep and Intex brands.

Data was gathered using an unbiased, accurate methodology.

Remember

– About 25% of temporary-use air mattress owners report quality issues, mainly air leaks from punctures, splitting seams, or valve problems. Air leaks usually cause the mattress to be unusable.

– Air mattresses tend to have little or no warranty protection.

– Most owners say their air mattress is easy to use at least initially because inflating and deflating is simple and fast.

– The mattresses are often considered high maintenance as air must be added on a regular basis.

About 75% of owners describe comfort as good or better. The rest say the bed is uncomfortable mainly due to an inability to hold air or due to excessive firmness.

At Amazon: A Top-Rated Air Mattress

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