May 19, 2014
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One common question I get is what a mattress warranty covers. Some customers remark that mattress warranties are never honored, and there is no point. Others don’t even realize that mattresses come with warranties. I hope to clear up a lot of this confusion in this post.
What does a warranty cover?
A mattress warranty covers physical defects in a mattress. The most common problem is sagging. If a mattress sags beyond a certain threshold when nobody is on it, that is a warranty issue. This threshold is 1.5 inches for most manufacturers, though it’s 3/4th of an inch for others, like Tempurpedic. This sag is usually measured by putting a string or other straight line across the surface of the mattress, and then measuring from the string to the bottom of the sag with a ruler.
Mattress warranties also usually cover coils breaking or popping out of the side, the foams up top bunching up, the seams coming out of the mattress, the boxspring breaking, or any other physical defect. If you suspect you have a warranty issue, contact the retail merchant first, and if you don’t get anywhere with them, contact the manufacturer.
What does a warranty NOT cover
Mattress warranties do NOT cover against comfort issues. If your mattress feels a bit lumpy, or it doesn’t support you properly, or it causes pressure to your body, you are out of luck. This is one reason some people claim that warranties aren’t honored. Warranties only cover structural problems, not a product that doesn’t maintain its comfort over time.
Things that can void a warranty
There are several things that can void an otherwise legitimate warranty claim. Here are some of the most common.
- Removing the law tag. The law tag is the tag on the back of the mattress that says “do not remove under penalty of law.” The “law” part only refers to the mattress retailer and manufacturer. The end-user is free to remove it whenever he or she wants, but this voids the warranty. It would be the equivalent of filing off the VIN from a car and expecting the warranty to be honored. There is no proof it’s the same mattress that you ordered.
- Stains. If a mattress is stained, the warranty is void. This even goes for problems in which the stain obviously didn’t cause the sag. Liquids can wear down the foams and cause them to deteriorate faster than they otherwise would. Additionally, stained mattresses are unsanitary, and no company wants to return those to the warehouse for a warranty claim. You can prevent stains to your mattress by using a waterproof mattress protector. These do NOT have to feel like plastic, and they are also NOT just for the incontinent. Even just perspiration, a little bit every night over the course of 10 years, can cause a stain and wear down the foams. Not to mention, there are other activities done in bed which can produce a wet spot… Protect-A-Bed makes a very popular mattress protector, but there are others as well.
- Improper support. You need proper support under your mattress. This can take several forms. The most common is the matching boxspring on top of a metal frame with a center support bar. Using an old boxspring will almost always void the warranty. If you don’t want a new boxspring, consider getting a platform bed with either a solid surface or slats which are very close together. If you use a frame, be sure that it has a center support bar with at least one leg going from the bar to the ground. It should look something like this.
I hope I have cleared up some of the confusion about mattress warranties. They only cover structural defects with the mattress (not comfort). They can be voided if you don’t take care of the mattress. Be sure to keep it properly supported by a frame or platform bed and protected with a mattress cover.
Thank you for reading!