Published On: Wed, Apr 19th, 2017

The Lies Beneath: Mattress Scams to Avoid

Going shopping for a new mattresses?

It’s easy to get fleeced by retailers and manufacturers if you don’t know anything about beds except how yours need to be replaced. If you’re not overwhelmed by the vast amount of choices in the mattress market, you might get intimidated or confused by the jargon and names used in the industry. You get beds with names like the Sealy Posturepedic Crown Jewel Fletcher Ultra Plush Pillowtop and the Simmons Beautyrest Do-Not-Disturb Royalty Ultra. You get descriptions that include “super-soft cell” and “Microtek foundations.” But don’t give up and just make do with your unforgiving bed. You can still find the mattress match of your dreams. You just have to know what scams the mattress industry is running and how to avoid them.

Lie #1: Mattress Names

You’ve probably noticed that it’s hard to do comparison shopping with mattresses because retailers seem to be offering different ones. But you shouldn’t get caught up on the names used by brands and retailers because they actually mean nothing. A mattress brand typically uses the same factory for all its beds. These identical mattresses are then given different names, depending on the retailer they are going to. What does this mean? You can find the exact same mattress in two different retailers; they just don’t have the same name.

Lie #2: Mattress Designs

Most mattresses, no matter what brand, are composed more or less the same four materials – latex, foam, springs, and/or air. Only the configuration of layers would differ. And these are usually subtle variations. Also, mattress makers and retailers make use of jargon that are highly confusing. You get “medical grade foam,” but you’re never told what that is. You hear about their innovative “super-soft cell,” but you never get the exact composition of a mattress to enable you to do true comparison shopping. And don’t get us started on coil count and wire gauges in innerspring mattresses. Some mattress makers use more coils but thinner wires while others have thicker wires and fewer coils. And then there are the varying coil designs. What it all boils down to is this – design isn’t as important as comfort. No matter how “innovative” or outwardly aesthetic a mattress is designed, the only thing that you should consider is whether it feels comfortable to lie down on. And that’s something that you can only find out when you test the mattress for more than 10 minutes in the showroom. More on that later.

Lie #3: Mattress Reviews

Reviews have a huge influence on a product’s popularity. Obviously, mattress reviews will and should have an impact on you select a product online and even in a physical store. Unfortunately, you can’t believe everything you read online. Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you should have heard about the fake reviews that could be bought on Fiverr which have infiltrated Amazon. What this means that you should take anything said online about a product (such as a mattress) with a grain (or a handful) of salt. Be particularly wary of the phrase “best mattresses.” There is no such thing as the best mattress because comfort is highly subjective. What’s perfect for one individual could be the worst possible bed for another. There is no one-size-fits-all bed, and you shouldn’t believe anyone who tells you any different.

photo Ecowalker/Canada via pixabay

Lie #4: Mattress Returns

The only way you can truly find out if a mattress is perfect for you is if you test it out. And we don’t mean lying down on it for 5-10 minutes in a showroom. This isn’t a good way to test a mattress. You won’t really know how a mattress will hold up in the long run unless you’ve slept on it for a while. And when we say “a while,” we mean at least a month of sleeping on it. This means that you’ll invariably be looking for a mattress with at least a 30-day trial and a money-back guarantee. But do you really get your money back? In most cases, you don’t. You either are asked to choose a different mattress of the same value or store credit if you don’t find a mattress that you like. The credit may even be reduced because you were charged a restocking fee (which can get pretty steep) or delivery fee. If you’re going to try out a mattress, make sure that you clarify what their return policy is.

Lie #5: Mattress Warranties

Mattress warranties that offer a 20-year coverage or more aren’t worth the paper they’re printed on. They are just marketing gimmicks used to sell beds to unsuspecting consumers. When a mattress eventually breaks down due to normal wear and tear, it is often no longer covered by the warranty. There are also plenty of restrictions in the fine print that consumers fail to read. Moreover, the National Sleep Foundation recommends that you replace your mattress if it’s 7-10 years old, well before the warranty expires, because it likely is no longer providing you with adequate support and comfort.

Shopping for a mattress can be a frustrating, hair-pulling experience. And despite the amount of research you’ve done, you may still end up with a bed that will only give you sleepless nights. Why’s that? Because mattress myths abound – lies that prevent you from finding the mattress match of your dreams. Don’t fret though because we’re debunking these for you – exposing the lies beneath.

Author: Sophia Moore

photo courtesy of somtex

On the DISPATCH: Headlines  Local  Opinion

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