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Air Bed Sleep System

Is an Adjustable Air Bed Mattress
Right for You?

You may want to consider an air bed sleep system if you are looking for a bed to relieve pain and provide customized support. Discover why an adjustable air bed mattress may be able to help your aching back, but why you need to be careful to find the best air mattress beds.

Airbeds are different than traditional mattresses because the primary support used inside the mattress is air instead of foam, water, or coiled springs.

According to consumers, the best feature of an airbed is the ability to adjust the firmness of each side of the bed independently of the other side.

Airbeds can be simplistic with a single air chamber and an air pump or they can be complex with many additional features such as remotes, memory foam layers, and more. Price ranges reflect the complexity of an airbed too, but keep in mind that more money doesn't always buy the best and most comfortable airbed.

Benefits of Air Bed Sleep Systems

  • Customizable comfort - dual air chamber airbeds allow each spouse to control the firmness they desire

  • Firmness can be increased or decreased by allowing air in or out of the mattress

  • Increased longevity and durability with air as the support

  • Easier to repair if anything goes wrong - can replace parts rather than the entire bed

  • No real need to flip or turn the mattress unless you have a topper - then the topper should be rotated and flipped now and then

  • Lightweight - much easier to make the bed and move the bed

  • Dual chamber airbeds have decent motion isolation

Drawbacks of Air Bed Sleep Systems

  • Dual chamber airbeds can develop a trench in between the chambers, which can limit snuggling or intimacy between spouses unless they utilize only one side of the bed. This is especially true when spouses have very different firmness levels set

  • Airbeds have chambers, input and output valves, air pumps and more to maintain - more chances that something can go wrong

  • Price - can be perceived as high given that you're purchasing air rather than solid materials!

  • Consumers say that airbeds can be very noisy in the way of movement by each spouse and pump operating noise

  • Some people have had a problem with mold developing in their airbeds

  • If you have chemical sensitivities you may have trouble with many air bed systems which contain memory foam

Types and Brands of Air Bed Sleep Systems

SAT - Self Adjusting Technology by Natural Form

The technology of this self-adjusting mattress is pretty ingenious. Inside the mattress are individual air cylinders, each outfitted with a patented valve system. When you lie down or move on the mattress, the air valves allow air to move in and out until just the right support is provided for each area of your body.

Your body is supported automatically without any work from you and without disturbing your sleep. The top layer of the bed, an organic wool layer, is removable and washable.

What do consumers say about Nature Form's SAT?

  • Never slept better!

  • Love that I can wash the top layer

  • My back pain, joint pain, neck pain is gone

  • Better than memory foam

  • Good support

  • Good quality for the price

  • A few consumers say the wool top makes them sleep hot

  • Nature Form's customer service received mixed reviews


ComfortAire airbeds feature patented, 24-gauge latex and cotton air chambers, which provide adjustable and comfortable support. Each side of the mattress can be adjusted to your comfort level.

ComfortAire offers a warranty on their airbeds that is twice as long as any of their competitors - that's how confident they are in their airbed construction and durability.

Some Comfortaire models contain memory foam which some people love, but others find that the chemical smell is too much, or that their health problems get worse when using them.

What do consumers say about ComfortAire?

  • Customizable firmness for each side of the bed is wonderful

  • Relieves and prevents pain

  • Great customer service

  • Durable and comfortable

  • Noisy air pumps

  • Memory foam tends to sag and get impressions

  • Some consumers say it's too firm

Habitat AirBeds

Habitat airbeds are custom designed and crafted using air chambers manufactured from natural rubber. The air chambers are then covered with a densely woven fabric. The combination of these two factors alone make Habitat airbeds claim to be two of the most comfortable airbeds on the market.

Habitat airbeds are designed to help avoid the problems of sagging in the middle that are a challenges of many airbeds. These also contain memory foam.

You can only find Habitat Arise(r) and Habitat Ascend(r) airbeds at www.habitatfurnishings.com, which means you don't have to pay the middleman!

What do consumers say about Habitat airbeds?

  • Excellent comfort and support

  • Bed is built to customer's specifications

  • 180 day or 6-month trial period is generous

  • Customized settings for each side of the bed

  • 20-year warranty

  • Excellent customer service

  • Price is less than anyone else - no middleman or retailer

Select Comfort or Sleep Number Bed

Select Comfort beds allow each person to adjust their side of the bed for firmness with a remote control. The specially designed air chambers support the pressure points of your body.

You can experiment with the controls to find your ultimate sleep number. They offer a 30-day trial.

What do consumers say about Select Comfort?

  • Very comfortable

  • Love the adjustable firmness

  • Excellent customer service

  • Some consumers reported maintenance trouble, air loss with no explanation, noisy air pumps, and sagging in the middle of the bed

Consumers looking for less expensive options in the way of an air bed sleep system might consider the Aero Bed or the Wenzel Airbed. These brands offer a simpler, more straightforward airbed that seems to work well for some people.

Tips for Buying an Air Bed Sleep System

  1. Keep it as simple as possible! Opt for airbeds with the fewest moving parts and simple air chambers.

  2. Air pumps should operate quietly. You should not hear loud noises when the pump clicks on or off. A quality pump is UL rated, quiet when in operation, has few moving parts, and has the ability to fill an airbed from completely empty to full in around two minutes.

  3. Memory foam toppers should always be near the top of the mattress, not layered underneath the air chamber. Purchase high quality memory foam for the most comfort.

  4. Educate yourself about the potential health concerns about memory foam before you invest in an air bed sleep system that contains memory foam.

    This may not be the best option if you have allergies, chemical sensitivities or a compromised immune system.

  5. Side rails are essential if you'd like to sit on your bed without falling out of it!

  6. Simple remote controls are best, so that you don't need to think too much to operate them.

  7. Save money by assembling it yourself - shipping is significantly less expensive this way.

  8. A pillow top on an airbed need not exceed 2-inches or else it could compact and become uncomfortable.

  9. Always read the warranty and the return policy carefully on your air bed sleep system, to make sure you understand exactly what is provided.

›› Air Bed Sleep System

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