How Long Memory Foam Mattress Should Last

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The Ins and Outs of Memory Foam: Is It Worth the Hype?

April 10, 2017
Filed under: Shopping Tips

Memory foam mattresses have soared in popularity over the last decade. Memory foam pillows are a more recent addition to the product line. But what’s so great about memory foam? A lot, it turns out.

What is memory foam?

Memory foam material dates back to 1966 when it was developed by NASA to absorb shock in airplane seats. Since then, “slow spring back foam” (as it was initially referred to) has been used in NFL helmets, hospital beds, shoes, and prosthetics.

Memory foam has evolved in recent years, and technologically advanced foams are common materials in mattress construction. For example, Serta’s gel foam mattresses are made up of a combination of tiny cushioning chambers, each infused with millions of Titanium gel beads uniquely designed to relieve pressure points, provide added support and aid in temperature regulation.

Why do some sleepers prefer memory foam?

Memory foam is a great mattress material for many reasons. It evenly distributes weight and pressure over an area, giving many sleepers pressure point relief. The foam contours to each individual’s body shape, allowing for a high level of mattress personalization. Memory foam is also resistant to movement. If your bed partner gets up frequently or tosses and turns at night, the activity doesn’t ripple throughout the entire mattress.

Now, advanced memory foam technology helps keep you cool while you sleep. Serta’s iComfort mattress collection, for example, features EverFeel® Triple Effects™ Gel Memory Foam which provides a cool and comfortable night’s sleep.

How long does memory foam last?

Memory foam mattresses can last anywhere from eight to ten years, depending on how well they’re cared for. Typically, a memory foam mattress will last as long as any other type of mattress, whether it’s an innerspring or hybrid.

A liquid resistant mattress protector is a good way to keep your memory foam mattress clean and free from stains, which can impact the warranty. Our iComfort TempActiv mattress protector is a great choice for your memory foam mattress due to its cool-to-the-touch feel and water proof barrier.

What if I’m still not sure?

That’s okay! A new mattress is a big decision. If you prefer the traditional feel of an innerspring mattress, Serta offers the best of both worlds. Our hybrid mattresses mattress models combine gel memory foam with the most advanced individually wrapped steel coil innerspring systems. No matter your comfort preference, we’ve got you covered.

How Long Do Mattresses Last? The Results May Shock You!

Mattresses are pretty expensive — one quick glance at our buyer’s guide will confirm this fact. This is why many people do not replace them – not even after many years of use.

They do not want to spend a lot of money on a new one. Besides, now you can delay the process of buying a new one if you do an excellent job at maintaining your existing one.So, how often should you replace your mattress?

It doesn’t matter which type of bed you have. Most of them are ready for replacement within ten years to ensure a good night’s rest (old mattresses can hurt your sleep quality). Besides, it can last beyond ten years on average, if the owners maintain it properly.

Also, many different factors affect a bed’s lifespan. You can extend its life expectancy by following a few easy steps in the text below. We prepared and wrote down some tips to boost its longevity.

How Long Should a Mattress Last?

Quick Overview

The average mattress – regardless of firmness, thickness, or material composition – will perform for approximately seven years before a replacement is needed. However, a wide range of factors can affect the expected lifespan of an individual mattress model, making some much more durable than others.

This guide will look at how lifespans vary by mattress type, and also discuss ways to determine a bed’s longevity based on different variables.

Mattress Durability and Lifespan

When evaluating the longevity of a specific mattress, two key terms are ‘durability’ and ‘lifespan.’

  • Durabilityrefers to how well the bed withstands sagging, sinkage, and other forms of deterioration that can compromise comfort and support for sleepers. All mattresses eventually deteriorate, but some are much more durable and less susceptible to wear and tear.
  • Thelifespanis how long a mattress performs before it needs to be replaced. A mattress may deteriorate to some degree and still perform reasonably well, but if its comfort and/or support materials no longer function as intended then the bed is most likely due for a replacement.

Because durability and lifespan are technically different terms, they may not necessarily be linked. A mattress made from durable materials may not have a very long lifespan due to the way it is designed or configured.

Likewise, a mattress with less durable materials may have a reasonable lifespan if it is constructed in a way that promotes longevity. However, in most cases, durability and lifespan are directly correlated.

How Do Mattresses Deteriorate?

Mattress deterioration, otherwise known as wear and tear, comes in several forms. These include:

Sagging:Sagging normally occurs along the surface of the bed in areas that support the heaviest parts of the sleeper’s body, such as the shoulders/chest and hips. Excessive sagging causes the surface to become uneven. This can lead to aches and pains for sleepers. Sagging is particularly common with couples, since the bodies of both sleepers are usually aligned.

Body Impressions:Body impressions are a common issue with mattresses featuring foam and/or latex comfort layers and support cores. Over time, the surface will develop a semi-permanent imprint of the sleeper’s body. This may limit the sleeper to one position, since switching to a new position can cause the surface to feel uneven.

Softening:All mattresses soften to some extent after regular, nightly use. Normal softening will not affect the bed’s comfort levels or pressure-relieving abilities. Excessive softening, however, can cause the materials to sag and develop indentations more quickly. Softening is most noticeable on mattresses that feel ‘Medium Firm,’ ‘Firm,’ or ‘Extra Firm.’

Mechanical malfunctions:Mechanical malfunctions are an issue limited to airbeds, smart beds, and other mattresses with electrical components. These include issues with air pumps, manual and/or remote controls, and outlet connectivity.

Durability and Lifespan by Mattress Type

Material composition is usually the most telling factor when it comes to determining the durability and expected lifespan of a mattress. The vast majority of mattresses sold today fall into one of the following categories:

Innerspring

Most innersprings are constructed with foam-based comfort layers and steel, non-pocketed coils in the support core. These mattresses have the lowest projected lifespan among all mattress types because they are most susceptible to sagging – sometimes after only two to three years of use. The average innerspring has a lifespan ofsix to six and a half years.

For all-foam mattresses, longevity is often tied to foam density; low-density foams are considerably less durable than high-density, and even medium-density, foams.

Memory foam also has better longevity than polyfoam, but both materials will eventually develop prominent body indentations that restrict movement or position changes for sleepers. The average polyfoam/memory foam mattress has a lifespan ofsix and a half to seven years.

Latex

Natural latex – derived from the sap of rubber trees – is one of the most durable mattress materials available. Some latex mattresses use synthetic latex instead; this material is not as durable as natural latex, but tends to perform longer than mattress foams.

The chief issue with latex is softening, and some sleepers also report body indentations, but these issues normally do not affect the bed until after years of use. The average all-latex mattress has a lifespan ofseven and a half to eight years, with most natural latex beds outlasting mattresses with synthetic latex layers.

Hybrid

A hybrid, by definition, has memory foam and/or latex comfort layers and pocketed coils in the support core. Like innersprings, hybrids are particularly vulnerable to sagging and body impressions.

Hybrids may also soften rather quickly, depending on how thick the comfort layers are and which materials are used. The average hybrid has a lifespan ofsix and a half to seven years, with latex hybrids typically outlasting memory foam hybrids.

Airbed

Airbeds, when properly maintained, have longer-than-average expected lifespans. Most are constructed from durable materials that withstand sagging, body impressions, and other forms of wear and tear. However, airbed are uniquely vulnerable to mechanical malfunctions.

If addressed, these malfunctions may not impact the lifespan too much. Airbeds may also sag and develop body impressions if they have thick comfort layers. The average airbed has a lifespan ofeight to nine years.

The table below breaks down durability and lifespan expectations for these five mattress types.

Mattress TypeInnerspringFoamLatexHybridAirbed
Average lifespan6 to 6.5 years6.5 to 7 years7.5 to 8 years6.5 to 7 years8 to 9 years
Overall durabilityPoor to FairFair to GoodGood to Very GoodFair to GoodGood to Very Good
Sagging potentialPoor to FairFairGoodFairFair to Good
Body impression potentialGoodPoor to FairFair to GoodFair to GoodGood
Premature softening potentialGoodPoor to FairFair to GoodFair to GoodGood
Mechanical malfunction potentialExcellentExcellentExcellentExcellentPoor to Fair
Overall longevity scoreFairGoodVery GoodGoodVery Good

Warranty Considerations

All mattresses come with a manufacturer’s warranty that protects the bed against early deterioration and ensures owners will not have to pay hefty fees if a defect develops. Most mattress warranty coverage period begin on the date of purchase or delivery, but will not fully kick in until the bed’s sleep trial has ended. The sleep trial – a period during which customers can test out the mattress and return it for a full/partial refund if they are not satisfied – typically lasts 90 to 120 nights, though some span one year or longer.

A standard mattress warranty covers the product for 10 years, but 15-, 20-, and 25-year – as well as lifetime – warranties are fairly common. The warranty length is not necessarily tied to the bed’s durability or expected lifespan. In fact, because most mattresses need to be replaced within six to nine years, a warranty exceeding 10 years in length will likely be unnecessary. This is important to keep in mind because lengthy warranties can drive up the mattress price by a significant margin.

Additional warranty details to consider include the following:

Sagging/body impression depth

Nearly all mattress warranties specify a sagging and impression depth that is considered a defect and warrants repair or replacement. Though this varies by model, the depth usually falls between half an inch (1/2″) and one and a half inches (1 1/2″).

One thing to note: sagging and impressions that measure one inch (1″) or less are not associated with as much sleeper discomfort as those that exceed one inch in depth. Therefore, mattress buyers may want to think twice about models with warranties that only recognize sagging and indentations that measure at least one and a half inches deep.

Covered defects

In addition to sagging and body impressions, a mattress warranty may also consider the following issues defects that warranty repairs or replacements:

  • Physical flaws in the bed that cause materials to split or crack
  • Manufacturing flaws associated with the cover, such as cracked/broken zippers or loose seams
  • Coils or wires that protrude through the bed’s surface and/or sidewalls

Most warranties do not consider the following issues to be defects that justify repairs or replacements:

  • Sagging or indentations that do not reach the prescribed depth
  • Repairs or replacement requests that occur due to changes in the owner’s firmness, thickness, or material composition preferences
  • Physical damage that occurs due to misuse or improper support. This includes, but is not limited to, burns, cuts, tears, stains, and liquid damage
  • Mold, mildew, bedbugs, and other types of infestation
Repairs and replacements

In most cases, a mattress warranty will guarantee that the manufacturer will replace or repair a defective mattress for at least 10 years. The brand will cover the repair/replacement costs. However, owners may face the following charges for these services:

  • Mattress shipping and transportation costs
  • Mattress inspection fees
  • Upgrade costs if the mattress is replaced with a more expensive model

Some warranties promise the manufacturer will repair or replace a defective mattress for a long as the warranty is valid; others offer a one-time repair or replacement. Always read the warranty’s fine-print carefully to minimize costs associated with repairs or replacements.

Nonprorated vs. prorated coverage

Customers should read the warranty carefully to see if it is entirely nonprorated or divided into nonprorated and prorated periods.

Duringnonproratedcoverage, the manufacturer will repair or replace a defective mattress at no additional charge to the owner apart from the costs listed in the previous box. Nearly all 10-year warranties are completely nonprorated; longer warranties usually include at least 10 years of nonprorated coverage, as well.

Duringproratedcoverage, owners must pay for mattress replacements – and in some cases, repairs too. Prorated charges vary by warranty. In most cases, they are calculated by multiplying a certain percentage of the original product price by the number of years of ownership.

For instance, let’s say a mattress comes with a 20-year warranty that includes 10 years of nonprorated coverage and 10 years of prorated coverage. Once prorated coverage kicks in, the owner must pay 5% of the original price multiplied by the number of years they have owned the mattress. This means that, in Year 11, they must pay 55% of the original mattress price for a replacement; in Year 12, they pay 60%; and so on until the 20th year, when the warranty expires. Some prorated warranties max out the prorated charges at 90% to 95%.

Prorated coverage is primarily used for warranties that span 15 years or longer. Most include at least 10 years of nonprorated coverage before the prorated charges begin, but some only feature two to three years of nonprorated coverage. Customers should carefully read the mattress warranty before purchasing in order to determine if the coverage guidelines meet their needs.

Transferability

All mattress warranties are non-transferable, making them exclusively available to original purchasers who buy their bed from the original manufacturer or an authorized retailer. Those who buy the bed from a non-authorized retailer – or buy/acquire it from the original owner – do not receive warranty coverage.

Should You Replace Your Current Mattress?

Based on the information above, you may decide it’s time to ditch your current mattress and buy a new one. Use the following checklist to determine if a replacement is necessary; more than one ‘yes’ response probably means it’s time for a new bed.

  • You and/or your sleep partner notice sagging in the sleep surface that compromises support to a noticeable extent
  • You and/or your sleep partner cannot move or shift positions in bed easily due to deep body impressions
  • Excessive softening in the sleep surface affects how supportive and comfortable the mattress feels
  • You and/or your sleep partner experience added aches and pains after sleeping that were not an issue before
  • You own a bed with mechanical components that seem to malfunction easily
  • Your bed’s warranty has reached a prorated period that will result in expensive charges if a replacement or repairs are warranted

How Long Does a Memory Foam Mattress Topper Last?

A mattress topper is a bedding item designed to be used on the top of your mattress to provide extra comfort and support, improve cleanliness, and prolong the lifespan of a mattress.

Toppers can be made from various materials such asmemory foam,latex, down, etc. and there are many different designs and structures that can suit different needs and sleep preferences.

Your topper should improve the support for your entire body and complement any sleeping position. It should also act like an extra cushion for your entire body, especiallymemory foam mattress topperand allow you to sink into it to prevent the appearance of pressure points and provide you with the peaceful and restful sleep every night.

However, if it causes you to wake up in pain or felling more tired than ever, then it may be that your mattress topper is getting old and that you should get the new one.

Read our article and learn more about memory foam mattress toppers as well as when and why you should replace them.

Table of Contents

How Long Does a Memory Foam Mattress Topper Last?

You would think thatmemory foam mattress topperscan last as long as the beds made of the same material, but this is not the case.

The average lifespan of mattress toppers, including those made entirely of memory foam, is 3 to 5 years.This is only the case with high-quality mattress toppers, whereas those made of cheap materials will only last a year or two.

The longevity of a memory foam mattress topper will depend on other factors as wellsuch as the weight being put on it, frequency of use, the thickness of the topper, the condition of your mattress, and how well the topper is maintained.

Overweight

Heavier people may speed up the process by adding extra pressure to the memory foam topper.Memory foam mattressesusually contain a highly resilient core and high density base that make the top memory foam layers more durable, but the topper doesn’t have this.

Extra weight can also cause the open cells to crumble quicker than they would do under an average person.

Thickness

The thicker the topper, the longer it will last.Thinner toppers usually wear out quicker, while the thick memory foam will last longer as it takes longer to break down over time, and it will also provide greater comfort.

The Condition of Your Mattress

As toppers are generally laid over an existing mattress, if the mattress underneath is old and in a poor condition; if it is already worn out and sagging in places, your memory foam topper will simply follow that contour and make the sage even more pronounced due to its soft and contouring nature.This will eventually ruin your mattress topper.

If your mattress looks like new, but you still experiencepainwhile sleeping, even with the new memory foam mattress topper placed on top, then you still may need to replace the mattress.

If your mattress is over 7 years old then it’s time for a new one, even if it doesn’t show any signs of a long use such as cracks, sagging, protruding wires, etc. because, like we have already mentioned, an old and uncomfortable mattress will decrease the comfort of your memory foam mattress topper and shorten its lifespan.

Frequency of Use

Memory foam mattress toppers in guest bedrooms will last significantly longer than those used every night.

The reason why toppers don’t last so long in bedrooms is because they are used a lot more than toppers in guest bedrooms. Spending 6 to 8 hours a night on them each night puts a lot of pressure on them which is why they wear out faster than those mattress toppers used on beds in guest rooms.

Maintaining Your Mattress Topper

Memory foam may be difficult to clean and maintain, butthere are ways how you can clean them and prolong their lifespan.

You should clean them at least once or twice a year by vacuuming them, spraying them with water and detergent solution, washing them, spot cleaning or using topper covers and washing these regularly.

Well maintainedmemory foam mattress topperswill last longer and serve your better than those that are not maintained at all.

If you avoid cleaning your topper, stains from food or drinks, pet urine, dust and accumulated debris and odor will eventually ruin your topper and render it useless.

How Long Do Mattresses Last?

Mattresses aren’t exactly cheap, most people replace them very infrequently and consider buying a new one either a chore or a burden. It’s easy to delay or prolong this process simply by taking proper care of whichever type you own. As a general rule, most should be replaced within ten years for best results in sleep and health, however, the average life of a mattress can last beyond ten years or more if taken care of properly. While it is true that how long one lasts depends on different factors, you can easily increase its life expectancy by undertaking a small number of simple steps. Here is a look at a few of the factors that can decide how long should a mattress last, and possible ways to increase its lifespan:

Table of Contents

1. The Type

What type do you have? For instance, is it air, innerspring, memory foam or latex? Each one has its own life expectancy; air and innerspring being the shortest, memory foam being mid length, while latex types are known to last the longest.

  • Air mattresses will over time either develop leaks or generally become less effective at retaining air pressure. If they have a built-in pump that becomes faulty, this too can lead to premature replacement. Overall, the average air mattress life expectancy is placed at five years.
  • Spring mattresses are good for sharing couples who like a springy and bouncy surface, but unfortunately, due to the inner core being thin metal wire, this type does tend to sag and lose its support even if flipped and rotated regularly. Even ones which have been well cared for will most likely need replacing within 7-8 years.
  • Memory foam mattresses are less prone to sagging but not invincible. They too require rotating, and foam does eventually lose its support but after a long while. This type should be good for at least ten years if kept ventilated, clean, and rotated.
  • Latex mattresses are the creme de la creme and tick all the boxes for quality and longevity. The naturally hypoallergenic and anti-microbial properties add to the durable nature of latex rubber foam to combine a core which can last up to 15 years.

2. Regular Cleaning

Another important factor which determines mattress life expectancy is to do with cleaning.Howdo you clean it? Do you clean itregularly? Do you give it to aprofessionalcleaner? It’s essential that you clean your mattress regularly to prolong the life. If you do not, it won’t last long at all. This is due to the invisible bacteria, mildew, and mattress mold that can slowly eat away at the materials involved. Moreover, it may be better if you could have it cleaned professionally from time to time, as mattresses are home to bacteria and germs in plenty, which might not get adequately cleansed with household cleaning products and methods.

3. Amount of Use

As you can imagine, anything that is used more will last less. However, there are two things that need to be kept in mind. Whichever type you own, it wouldn’t last as long in cases of extreme use, for example sharing couples who use for 10+ hours per day, and secondly on the other hand, if it has been left unused and uncleaned for prolong periods of time. Mattresses that are moderately used, where people sleep on it for around 7-8 hours a day, and then cleaned regularly are the ones that have the longest life.

4. The Cleaning Products

The question of how long do mattresses last really is to do with many supporting factors, but quite often depends on the cleaning methods used to clean them. For instance, in case of blood stains, you might have to use hydrogen peroxide to get rid. Too much of this chemical (and other heavy duty stain removers) would lead to a reduction of mattress life as these are not made to withstand such chemical uses.

5. Proper Precautions

It is always nice to have kids around the house. However, if your kids want to use your bed as a trampoline, it seriously isn’t a good idea. You would rather have them play elsewhere since this can seriously damage your bed. Imagine you have an innerspring, the springs will become too soft and compressed in no time at all and will leave you with a creaky and sagging surface. Additionally, whether it’s latex or memory foam, soon there will be indentations which are beyond repair. To prolong its life, you can also rotate and flip it from time to time, but that’s only if it’s double-sided and permits you to do so. You could perform this every few months for the duration of its life, which will significantly improve how long a mattress can last.

When Do You Know You Cannot Use Your Mattress?

Usually, mattresses that are over seven years old do not provide the comfort and support you need on the bed. Once you see there are signs of the surface and support wearing out, or you’re feeling uncomfortable in the bed when you are sleeping on it, you would be better off changing it. Some of the common visible signs of wearing are sagging, holes and tearing. If you cannot get a full night’s sleep and feel that you’re having a better slumber elsewhere than your bed, you need to start looking for a replacement.

You might buy the most expensive mattress, but if you do not care for it properly, it might not even last ten years. On the other side, ones which are taken care of correctly are known to last more than 15 years.

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