Sleep on air for ultimate comfort

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You can truly sleep on air by using these tips for buying an air bed

Air beds feature an advanced internal system that adds or removes pressure with just the touch of a button. These sophisticated sleep solutions allow users actually "sleep on air" by creating a firm and supportive sleep surface, simply by using a remote to add pressure to the internal chamber of the bed.

Pressure is just as easily removed from the chamber when a softer and more plush sleep surface is desired, making air beds the only specialty sleep solution that conforms to your personalized desire for mattress firmness each night.

When it comes to purchasing a brand new luxury air bed, there are many manufacturers and models from which to choose. Not all of the mattresses are made equally, however. It is important to understand the available materials, internal construction, comfort layers, and warranties prior to purchase.

The tips here will help you determine the best sleeping solution to meet your unique needs.

Step 1: Select an air bed with an air chamber that will not crack.

At the core of every mattress is a chamber, a large hollow space to which air may be added or removed. When it is added to this space, the chamber expands and the surface of the mattress becomes incrementally firmer. When it is removed, however, the size of the chamber becomes smaller and the surface of the mattress becomes softer.

Most air bed mattresses feature a chamber made of nylon, PVC plastic, urethane, or vulcanized rubber. It is very important to choose mattress with a chamber that is made with a material that is highly resistant to pressure-induced cracks or tears. Industry experts recommend chambers made of vulcanized rubber because it has the longest life span and is more resilient than other materials like PVC, urethane, and nylon.

Step 2: Choose an air bed with internal construction that promotes comfort&health.

Most issues that consumers have are the product of the mattress's internal construction. Pay close attention to how each is made on the inside, and you will be able to choose a model that will promote a healthy and restorative night’s sleep. Generally speaking, there are 4 areas to consider: The side rails, center barriers, the pump, and the moisture barrier.

Side Rails

Choosing a bed with sturdy side rails is critical. Side rails keep the mattress from “bowing out” at the sides, and they often help to reinforce the internal chamber. For the most sturdy and reliable construction available, choose a mattress with “Sling Rail Design.” Whereas ordinary models have side rails that are joined together by plastic fittings at the corners, those with a Sling Rail Design feature rails that are connected beneath the chambers for added strength and durability.

Center Barriers

Some manufacturers may include a center barrier in dual-adjustable models. These are made with a separate chamber for each side, and they are designed to give couples the ability to independently control the firmness of their own side. It is wise to choose a model that does not have a center barrier, however, because center barriers create a firm “hump” that may be uncomfortable to lie on. Instead, consider choosing a dual-adjustable model in which the chambers lie directly next to one another. Such models provide dual-adjustability for each side without creating a firm and uncomfortable center region.

Air Pump

There are three important factors to consider when assessing the pump of the adjustable bed: Speed, sound, and location. First, choose a model with a pump that will quickly add or remove air from the internal air chamber. This will make it easier and more convenient to find the ideal comfort setting just before bedtime. Next, choose a pump that is whisper-silent so adjustments can be made at any time, without disrupting those around you. Finally, select a model that has the pump located on the outside of the mattress. This construction method is preferred as it will provide the pump with ample ventilation.

Moisture Barrier

A moisture barrier stops dust mites, humidity, and bodily fluids from permeating through the mattress and into the internal chamber area. It is absolutely critical that the model you purchase has a moisture barrier to effectively prevent the formation of mold, nesting of dust mites, and the growth of other harmful bacteria. Unfortunately, very few manufacturers produce mattresses with moisture barriers. It is highly recommended that shoppers check with the manufacturer anyways, and always opt for models that have a moisture barrier over those that do not.

Step 3: Find a comfort layer that will provide an ideal level of support.

Air beds are available with two main types of comfort layers: Memory foam and latex foam. Choosing one with a memory foam or latex foam comfort layer has the potential to drastically improve the overall feel of the mattress, but it is important that the comfort layer be no more than 5 inches tall. The adjustments you make to the chamber may not be felt if the comfort layer is taller (or thicker) than 5 inches.

Memory foam is among the most popular material used in high-end air beds, and it has a unique ability to conform to the curves of the shoulders, lower back, and hips. For this reason, memory foam comfort layers are the best choice for individuals who seek a mattress that will provide optimal spinal support and pressure relief.

A latex foam comfort layer is the preferred choice for those who desire a material that is more natural and long lasting. Latex foam has a more resilient feeling than memory foam that most individuals describe as “springy,” comparable to more traditional innerspring mattresses. Latex foam is known to provide better total body support than innerspring mattresses, however, and users typically experience fewer aches and pains when sleeping on latex foam.

Step 4: Take control.

The remote control connects you to your air bed, putting firmness-adjustability in the palms of your hands each and every night. It’s important to choose a model with a remote that provides the usability you desire.

First, determine whether or not the remote provides a digital read-out of the pressure within the air chamber. This number will be your “comfort setting.” To get the most out of the firmness-adjustability of your mattress, it is recommended you have at least 25 personal “comfort settings.” Some offer up to 50 settings, and the more settings the greater the degree of adjustability. Remotes also come in wired and wireless varieties. The wireless variety is recommended for consumers who prefer a more functional and aesthetic remote. Consumers who feel somewhat restricted by a tight budget may opt for a wired remote, as wireless remotes are a premium feature that adds to the overall cost of your purchase.

Step 5: Choose an air bed with a good warranty and complimentary Free Trial.

There are a variety of manufacturers out there, and it is important to follow the steps above to find a reliable mattress that will perform well and last long. All else being equal, the final step in your purchase is to find a manufacturer or retailer who will provide you with an industry leading warranty as well as a free trial period.


A warranty of no less than 10 years is recommended. Do not be fooled by manufacturers who offer limited warranties for only a few years.

Free Trial Period

Trial periods are great because they allow you to experience the product for a number of days before you are required to purchase it. Free trials are offered by a number of specialty mattress retailers, and they are the perfect way to determine whether or not an air bed is the best sleep solution for you. Free Trial periods are also a prime opportunity to compare a memory foam mattress with a latex foam model.

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