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Mattress Ratings > Innerspring / Coil Mattress Reviews

unbiased Innerspring Mattress Reviews, Ratings and Comparisons

Based on 7,892 Owner Experiences Gathered From 832 Sources

May 3, 2015

What You Need To Know

THE GOOD. Innerspring beds have been the most popular mattress type for many decades due mainly to three factors: 1) People are familiar with them; 2) they are widely available, and; 3) they come in a variety of price, firmness and comfort levels.

Also, support is often somewhat better than that of foam beds, and innerspring beds may be more suited for romantic activity than other mattress types.

THE BAD. Innerspring beds overall have lower owner satisfaction than most other mattress types due mainly to below-average durability and longevity. They tend to provide only fair long-term pain and pressure-point relief. Some models may produce noise.

THE MATTRESSES: The beds use innerspring coils for main support. Comfort layer material often consists of regular foam and perhaps memory foam. Innerspring beds with memory foam – especially those with at least two inches of the material – may also be referred to as hybrid mattresses.

THE COMPETITION: See how innerspring beds compare to other mattress types in the mattress type comparison.

Contents

Video Summary
Innerspring Mattress Ratings: Overall As a Group
Innerspring Mattress Ratings: By Brand
Innerspring Mattress Owner Satisfaction by Year
Analysis of Main Owner Complaint: Sagging
Hybrid Mattresses
Coil Type Comparison

Coil Count: Does It Matter?
Coil Gauge: What Is It?
Comfort Layer Material Comparison
Innerspring Mattress Buying Tip

About Our Innerspring Mattress Research

The innerspring / coil mattress ratings and research findings are based on over 7,800 consumer experiences collected from diverse and credible sources. Learn more about our unbiased and accurate research methodology.

Video Summary of Innerspring Mattress Research

Innerspring Mattress Ratings: Overall As a Group

The ratings below show how innerspring mattresses as a group compare to other mattress types as evaluated by owners. For information on specific brands, see the following section.

Owner satisfaction d Owner satisfaction among innerspring mattress brands can vary somewhat, but overall they have 63% owner satisfaction when used by an adult regularly / everyday. (Satisfaction is often at least 80% when used only temporarily / occasionally / lightly.) By comparison, other mattress types – memory foam, air, latex – all have 78% or higher satisfaction when used regularly / everyday. Learn more about innerspring bed owner satisfaction.
Durability / longevity d+ 25% of owners who use their innerspring bed regularly / everyday report within three years of ownership sagging occurring to an extent that undermines comfort and support. No other mattress type has as high a sagging rate. Learn more.
Price c Prices can vary widely – $100 to $10,000+ – mainly due to design type and amount / type of material used. The average price paid is around $1,600 for a queen not including a foundation.
Less (back) pain c Initially, innerspring mattresses often provide relief from pain, including back, hip and shoulder pain. Mattress sagging, however, may cause significant discomfort and pain, including back pain, for about 20% of owners. See mattresses and pain for more analysis.
Comfort potential C Initially, innerspring mattresses of medium and soft firmness often minimize pressure points. Age and wear, however, often result in comfort layer compression which increases pressure and discomfort.
Supportive B The beds often provide a more supportive feel (less sinking in) than foam mattresses. Sagging, however, can undermine the ability of the mattress to properly bear the weight of the sleeper.
Conforming C- A conforming mattress is one that molds and contours to the sleeper's body resulting in a cradling, cloud-like, pressure-point-free sensation. Innerspring beds overall rate below most other bed types on this issue.
Firmness variety B Brand names (such as Serta, Sealy, Simmons) offer a variety of firmness options. Off-brands tend to offer only medium to firm models.
Easy to move on / get up off b- Those models with a thick comfort layer have potential to provide some resistance to movement including the changing of positions. Sagging can also impede movement.
Motion isolation c+ Motion isolation refers to how well the bed keeps movement made by one person from being felt by another. Motion isolation for innerspring mattresses can vary from poor to good depending on the coil system and materials used. Pricier models tend to provide at least somewhat superior motion isolation than cheaper models.
No noise c+ Noise problems – squeaking, creaking, clunking – can range from significant to nearly nonexistent depending mainly on coil type used. Pocketed coils, which are increasingly common, have very few noise complaints. Learn more.
Large person friendly C The durability of low-priced innerspring mattresses (under $600 for a queen) is not well suited for large people (220+ lbs) especially over the long term. Large people also tend to report more noise issues and lack of edge support from their innerspring mattress than lighter people.
No initial odor / off gassing c+ About 10% of innerspring mattress owners complain of off gassing, which is the release of a chemical-like odor that occurs when the mattress is new. Those models with a thick foam comfort layer tend to have the greatest off gassing potential.
Not a heat trap c+ 10% of owners of models with a memory foam and or latex layer report sleeping hot at least some of the time.
Good for sex b- On this issue, innerspring mattresses can have attributes that other mattress types lack. Mattress sagging and a resulting lack of comfort can, however, undermine romantic activity. See mattresses and sex for complete analysis.
Short break in period B- Innerspring beds tend to have a shorter break-in period than foam mattresses – with less difference in comfort before and after break in.
Low mainten- ance c+ Most models are "no-flip." To combat sagging, owners often report the need to rotate their bed fairly regularly which can be difficult given the weight of many innerspring mattresses.
Easy to lift, move, handle c The mattresses can weigh 35-150+ lbs with the average queen weighing about 93 lbs. Pricier, thicker models weigh the most.
Warranties c+ At least 15% of owners say that warranties lack adequate coverage for sagging. Warranty lengths tend to range from 5-25 years. See mattress warranties: what you should know.
Return policies c Policies depend on the retailer, but most returns are accepted for 20-90 days and usually only for exchange. Return fees are fairly common. See returning a mattress: what you should know.
Availability A Innerspring mattresses, unlike some other bed types, are widely available in stores for both "test driving" and buying.

Innerspring Mattress Brands: Ratings and Comparison

The table below rates and compares (in alphabetical order) many of the more popular innerspring mattresses. Select a mattress for a full ratings report. Many of the following mattresses can be compared in detail in the mattress comparison.

Owner Satisfaction (Sample) Price Distinctive Advantage Or Trait SLTD Rating Thick- ness Best Use Retailer War- ranty
Aireloom / Kluft              
75% (55) $1600- $20k+ often luxurious C+ 11-16"* regular Macys, Bloom- ingdales 10-20 year
Duxiana (Dux)              
74% (52) $3700 - $12k+ prestigious C+ 9.25-12.5"* regular Duxiana stores 20 year
Denver Mattress              
62% (76) $130 - $1900 strong return policy C+ 7.5-14" regular, temporary Furniture Row 5-15 year
Englander              
62% (41) $400 - $1700 -- C 9-12"* regular limited avail. 10 year
Hastens              
74% (27) $3300 - $20k+ ultra prestigious C+ na regular Hastens stores 25 year
Heavenly Bed              
64% (103) $1000 - $1900 hotel mattress C 13" regular Nord- stroms 10 year
Ikea              
64% (67) $80 - $1000 value potential C+ 6-13.4" regular, temporary Ikea stores 20 year
King Koil              
63% (85) $250 - $2700 few BBB complaints C+ 9-16"* regular Sleepys 5-20 year
Kingsdown              
63% (217) $500 - $5700 diagnostic avail. C 9-17"* regular Sleepys 10 yr- lifetime
Restonic              
64% (91) $415 - $2500 -- C 9-13"* regular, temporary many retailers 10-15 year
Sealy              
65% (906) $270 - $2400 largest global mattress mfg. C 8.5-16" regular, temporary many retailers 10 year
Serta              
63% (708) $350 - $3200 largest US mattress mfg. C 9-17" regular, temporary many retailers 10 year
Signature Sleep              
75% (1240) $105 - $310 low price B- 6", 8", 13" temporary Amazon, Walmart .com 1 year
Simmons              
63% (632) $300 - $5100 since 1870 C 10-17" regular, temporary many retailers 10 year
Spring Air              
60% (184) $450 - $2250 -- C 9-17" regular, temporary limited avail. 10 year
Stearns & Foster              
58% (274) $1100 - $3200+ luxury brand of Sealy C 12-17.5" regular many retailers 10 year
Zinus              
76% (1841) $125 - $360 low price B 6-13" temporary Amazon, Walmart, Sams 5-10 year

* estimate

Innerspring Mattress Owner Satisfaction by Year

The graph below shows that after the first two to three years, innerspring bed owner satisfaction overall is somewhat lower than that of all mattress types overall (innerspring, memory foam, latex, air, water). This is mostly due to innerspring beds in general having somewhat worse longevity / durability than the other mattress types.

innerspring mattress vs all


Main Owner Complaint: Mattress Sagging

Compared to other bed types, innerspring mattresses have the most problem with sagging. Sagging is the loss of a level and supportive sleep surface. Sagging can include the development of body impressions, "sink holes," and "peaks and valleys." About 25% of innerspring mattress owners in our research report the problem. Sagging is the top innerspring mattress owner complaint.

spring mattress sagging comparison

* estimated to be at least 1.5" depth


Causes of Sagging

A lack of mattress rotation is not likely a main cause of sagging because many people who report sagging claim to rotate their mattress regularly.

In addition, a person's weight does not appear to be the main cause of the problem since many people who weigh less than 170 pounds report sagging.

The cause of the problem seems to be at least partly related to the comfort layer. Thick pillow top / comfort layer models tend to be at least two times more likely to have sagging / compression than those models with a thin or no comfort layer. See the truth about pillow top mattresses. Also see the buying tip for a way to possibly minimize comfort layer problems.

Other causes of sagging may include: 1) one-sided designs which cannot be flipped to avoid uneven wear / compression; 2) king-size models that lack the construction strength needed to properly support two people especially in the middle; and 3) an inadequate, sagging or poorly assembled foundation.

Don't make 'em like they used to?

While most of our innerspring mattress data is based on owner experiences of the past ten years, a limited amount goes back further. This older data suggests that innerspring mattresses of earlier decades had, or at least were perceived to have, superior durability / longevity compared to those of today.

The data suggests that in the 1990s innerspring mattress durability / longevity may have taken a turn for the worse. Possible reasons for this include cost cutting and the introduction of both no-flip designs and thick but less-than-resilient comfort layers.

Possible Improvement

Our most recent collected owner experience data suggests that the durability of innerspring mattresses overall may be improving somewhat. In addition, the number of Better Business Bureau complaints filed against innerspring mattress companies has fallen quite dramatically in the past three years. This may suggest improved durability or it may be due to some other factor such as improved customer service. More data will need to be collected as it becomes available to determine if durability is indeed improving.


Hybrid Mattresses

Innerspring beds with memory foam – especially those with at least two inches of the material – may also be referred to as hybrid mattresses. These hybrid mattresses often have many of the characteristics, pros and cons of innerspring beds. Learn more: hybrid mattress ratings.


Coil Types

There are seemingly countless coil types, but almost all of them fall under one of the four types below. Each coil type has its own advantages and disadvantages.

1. Bonnell (Open) Coil. Bonnell coils or open coils are hour-glass shaped and have a simple design. They are typically found in a limited number of low-priced mattresses. They are generally supportive, but they tend to have below-average durability / longevity and motion isolation.

2. Offset Coil. Offset coils are often used in mid- to higher-priced mattresses. They are similar to Bonnell coils but have better spring action and supportiveness. Some variations have good motion isolation. Durability / longevity, however, can be a weakness as the mattress may sag toward the middle as the coils wear and age.

3. Pocket Coil. Pocket coils are individual coils wrapped in fabric. The coils tend to provide consistent distribution of support as well as good motion isolation. The use of pocket coils is becoming widespread in mattresses of all price points. Pricier mattresses, however, often feature a more advanced pocket coil design. Consumers seeking a highly "springy" mattress may want to avoid this coil.

4. Continuous Coil. The system consists of coil rows made of continuous wire that run head to toe. This system is often present on low- to mid-priced mattresses. While it is durable because each coil gets support from ones next to it, the system tends to not be especially supportive. In addition, because the system consists of one piece, it tends to provide no better than fair motion isolation making it a less-than-ideal choice for couples.

Coil Type Comparison

The following comparison (based on actual owner experiences) shows what tends to be true; a particular brand, model or individual mattress may go against these findings.

  Offset Pocket Continuous Bonnell / Open
Owner satisfaction C+ b+ C D
Supportive B B d+ C
Durability / lifespan C- C C+ D+
Motion isolation B- B+ D C-
Bouncy C- D B B+
Romance Friendly* C- d+ b+ b
Price d+ B B a-

* Our research shows that a mattress with significant bounce is often preferred for love making.

Coil Count

Coil count refers to the number of coils in the mattress. Most queen innerspring mattresses have a coil count of 450-900 with 725 being about average. Mattresses with a higher coil count are more expensive than mattresses with a lower count, all other things being equal.

Our research, however, shows little correlation between coil count and owner satisfaction or coil count and mattress longevity / durability overall. Nevertheless, heavier persons may want to consider buying an innerspring mattress with a high coil count as this may result in improved supportiveness and mattress strength.


Coil Gauge

Coil gauge is a measurement of how large the coil wire is in diameter. Mattress coil gauge often ranges from 12 to 15. The higher the gauge, the thinner the coil wire and the softer and springier the feel of the bed. Coil gauge in conjunction with the thickness and composition of the comfort layer largely determines the firmness level of a mattress.


Innerspring Mattress Comfort Layer Material Comparison

In addition to supportive coils, innerspring mattresses have a comfort layer which can consist of any number of the following materials.

Comfort layer materials

1. Polyurethane (regular) foam. This material is widely used, and its purpose is to provide softness. Its durability tends to be questionable; those mattresses with a thick layer of regular polyurethane foam tend to have an above-average number of sagging / compression complaints. This foam can also off gas, that is, release a chemical-like odor when it is new. A greater quantity / thickness of foam present on the mattress means a greater likelihood of noticeable and potentially bothersome off gassing.

2. Gel-infused polyurethane (regular) foam. This foam is used on a limited number of innerspring mattresses and usually in small quantity. The foam is infused with tiny gel beads – beads which are touted to allow the foam to sleep cooler longer than regular foam. The effectiveness and durability of this foam based on owner experiences is undetermined.

3. Memory foam. This material is often widely used on innerspring-based mattresses – especially hybrid mattresses – and provides softness as well as a contouring and cradling effect for the sleeper. It can be effective in minimizing pressure points and, to a lesser extent, reducing motion transfer. Memory foam is more likely than regular foam to off gas. A greater quantity / thickness of memory foam present means a greater likelihood of noticeable and potentially bothersome off gassing. In addition, a mattress with memory foam, especially memory foam which is high density, is two to three times more likely to act as a heat trap than a mattress without memory foam.

4. Gel-infused memory foam. It is increasingly common for mid- to higher-priced innerspring-based mattresses – especially hybrid mattresses – to have at least one layer of gel memory foam, that is, foam infused with tiny gel beads. This material is touted to sleep cool longer than regular memory foam, and it does tend to reduce heat trap complaints by about 30%. The amount of gel foam in a mattress also seems to be a factor. Beds with two inches or more of gel foam, especially at the top of the mattress, tend to sleep cool longer than those beds with less than two inches.

5. Graphene-infused or diamond particle-infused memory foam. A small number of innerspring mattresses use memory foam infused with tiny graphene or diamond particles – both conductors of heat. Their effectiveness, however, in reducing heat trap complaints is unknown at this time given their currently limited use.

6. Latex. This material is not widely used. Its purpose is to provide pressure relief similar to that of memory foam. The latex used is often blended latex, that is, a combination of natural and synthetic latex. The durability of latex that is often used in innerspring mattresses is questionable as it can develop body impressions. The latex may also off gas and act as a heat trap.

7. Fiber. Polyester material or cotton is often used to provide softness. Durability tends to be highly questionable; those mattresses with a thick layer of polyfiber tend to have the most sagging / compression complaints from owners.

Comfort Layer Comparison

  Regular Foam Gel Regular Foam* Memory Foam Gel Memory foam Blended Latex Fiber
Durability C C B B C+ d
Comfort C+ C+ A- A- B D+
Not a heat trap C B- D C C- A-
Motion isolation D+ D+ B+ B+ C+ d-
No off gassing C C D+ D+ C- A
Availability A D b B D C
Affordable B- C+ D+ D D a

* Ratings are estimated.

Buying Tip

Instead of buying a mattress with a thick comfort layer, consider buying the mattress and comfort layer separately as described below. This buying strategy often minimizes both potential durability problems and cost.

How to do it

Purchase a firm innerspring mattress, that is, one with minimal padding. (Just about any mattress brand offers at least one "firm" model.) The advantage of this is that firm models tend to have fewer and less severe sagging problems than do models with thick comfort layers / pillow tops. Firm models also tend to be highly affordable because they lack significant padding.

Then, if you wish to soften the mattress, purchase a mattress topper and place it on the mattress. (The thicker the topper is, the softer it tends to make the mattress.) The advantage of this is that if the topper deteriorates, compresses or sags, then only it needs to be replaced as opposed to the entire mattress.

While this buying strategy is not widely practiced, those consumers who have used it tend to report good comfort, durability and money-saving results.


At Amazon: Top-Rated Value-Priced Innerspring Mattress

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About Our Unbiased Innerspring Mattress Reviews and Research

Ratings are based on over 7,800 innerspring mattress owner experiences collected from diverse sources.

We receive NO compensation of any kind from any company, organization or individual to affect in any way or degree the content of our mattress research and ratings.

Learn more about our research methodology.

At Amazon: Top-Rated Value-Priced Innerspring Mattress

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