6 Expert Tips To Choose An Adjustable Bed

Adjustable beds provide your body and spine with the correct support that normal beds often lack. They are a great way of relieving various aches and pains that are usually caused by poor posture and uncomfortable mattresses, all while putting a unique twist on standard bedroom furniture.

It is incredibly important to choose an adjustable bed that will suit your specific needs. By following the advice outlined below, you’ll be sure that you made the best decisions!

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What size should my adjustable bed be?

This should be the first thing you consider when planning to purchase an adjustable bed, as the size of the bed will dictate some of the features such as the mattress and motor type.

  • If you plan to use this bed alone, you will probably prefer a single bed or a double bed that moves as one unit.
  • If you plan to share this bed with a partner, go for a double or king-size that operates as two separate sides; this way both of you will be able to adjust your individual sides exactly to your liking.
  • Adjustable beds tend to push the user down the mattress a little as they are being adjusted, so make sure the bed is at least 6 inches longer than the tallest user’s height.
  • To make sure the bed will fit in your bedroom, use masking tape to outline the approximate dimensions on the floor; make sure to leave at least 15 inches of clearance space between the sides of the bed and any walls or other furniture - you don’t want getting into bed to become a struggle because of a lack of space!

What type of mattress should my adjustable bed have?

The type of mattress you use with your adjustable bed will determine how comfortable your night will be, especially because not all mattresses are suitable for an adjustable base. Remember that if purchasing for a single or combined double bed, you will only need one mattress, but if purchasing for a dual bed, you will need two smaller mattresses so that the bases can move individually of each other!

Memory foam

  • Memory foam mattresses conform to the shape of your body and easily flex to match the contour of the base.
  • This means that they can evenly support your entire body weight, alleviating any pain and pressure points.
  • It also means that these mattresses will last longer, as constantly changing their shape will not wear them down as quickly as other types of mattresses.

Latex foam

  • Latex foam mattresses are very similar to memory foam mattresses as they also prevent pain and pressure points.
  • However, latex foam is more rigid than memory foam, meaning that the mattress will need to be thinner to adjust to the base contour properly, which may prove too thin and uncomfortable for some people.
  • Also, latex foam mattresses can be significantly more expensive than any other type of mattress, so they are not recommended for those with a tight budget.

Spring

  • The combination of coiled springs and a padded top makes spring mattresses much more rigid than foam and latex mattresses, which may cause pressure points on certain areas of the body; this goes against the main goal of adjustable beds, which is to make sleeping more comfortable, not painful.
  • These mattresses also have limited flexibility, so they will require replacement more often as changing shape will wear them down quickly.
  • However, spring mattresses are usually a much cheaper option than memory foam and latex foam, and so it may be the only option available to some people.

Air

  • Only very specific models of air mattresses can be used with adjustable bases.
  • If choosing an air mattress, opt for a model with multiple chambers as single chamber air mattresses will usually be too rigid to conform to the adjustable base.
  • Air mattresses are usually not recommended for adjustable beds, as changing their contour can impede airflow and reduce support, effectively going against the goal of these types of beds.
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How thick should the mattress for my adjustable bed be?

Your mattress mustn’t be too thin or too thick for your adjustable bed; if it’s too thin, you will be uncomfortable throughout the night, while if it’s too thick you will be unable to adjust the bed properly.

The ideal thickness for adjustable bed mattresses is between 6 inches and 12 inches. The more rigid the mattress, the thinner it should be:

  • Memory foam mattresses are very flexible, and so should be between 10 inches and 12 inches.
  • Latex foam mattresses are a little more rigid than memory foam mattresses, so they should be between 8 inches and 10 inches.
  • Spring and air mattresses are the most rigid and should be between 6 inches and 8 inches.**

What kind of motor should my adjustable mattress have?

Motors are what power your adjustable bed and allow it to change shape without manually having to rearrange it. It is important to know the advantages and disadvantages of both cheaper and more expensive motors so that you can make an informed decision based on your specific needs.

AC Motor

  • AC (alternating current) is electricity that is most commonly used in homes.
  • Motors that use AC are usually quite loud and expensive but are very durable.
  • They are a great option for those looking for a longer-term investment with their adjustable bed.

DC Motor

  • DC (direct current) is electricity that is most commonly used in cars.
  • Motors that use DC are usually smaller, quieter, and less expensive but less durable than AC motors.
  • These are a good choice for people who are still undecided about whether they want to keep an adjustable bed for a long time and would rather not spend a fortune on it.

Whichever type of motor you choose, try to purchase one with a long warranty. This is because the longer the warranty, the more likely the motor is built to last.

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What sort of controls should I pick for my adjustable bed?

The hand controls are what will allow you to adjust the contour of your bed base and mattress, so they need to be readily accessible and easy to understand. There are three types of adjustable bed controls that can suit different needs.

Wireless

  • Wireless remotes are great if you prefer a more discreet look in your bedroom as there are no annoying wires to worry about.
  • However, wireless signals can sometimes interfere with other household appliances like microwaves and phones.
  • Also, these remotes are quite easy to lose, and the bed will not move without the remote.

Wired

  • Wired remotes are attached to the side or the back of the bed by a wire.
  • Instead of using wireless signals, the remote will send signals to the motor through the wire, so there will be no interference with other household appliances.
  • It is practically impossible to lose wired remotes, so you won’t have to worry about accidentally misplacing them.

Built-in

  • As the name suggests, this type of hand control is built into the bed, either on the side or on the headboard.
  • Although built-in controls may look great, they are stationary and so you may have to move down the bed to access them, which may prove inconvenient to some.
  • Beds with built-in controls are also quite expensive, so treat this as a more luxurious option rather than a practical one.
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What other features can my adjustable bed have?

Apart from the basics of an adjustable base, there is a range of features you can choose to have added to your adjustable bed. Here is just a handful of available options, and what benefits they bring about.

Zero-gravity

  • Although this sounds like something from a science fiction movie, the zero-gravity function is something very real and very useful!
  • By elevating the backrest and leg rest at the same time, it will simulate the feeling of complete weightlessness.
  • This will help to reduce pain and pressure points in the body, as well as help you relax.

Anti-snore

  • Adjustable beds can help to significantly reduce your or your partner’s snoring if they have a tilting head/neck section.
  • This section will keep the head tilted slightly up while sleeping, opening up the airway and preventing you from snoring.

Massage

  • A massage function is a great option for those looking to ease back strain and joint pain.
  • Make sure to purchase a mattress with a massager built into it, as a massage unit that simply attaches to the bed will only make the bed vibrate, without soothing deeper tissues in your body.

Bed base storage

  • The majority of adjustable beds come with a divan-style base, which allows for drawers to be installed to create extra storage space.
  • This space can be used to store anything, from spare linens, to winter clothes, to old books.
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Jessica started out as an interior photographer, but her love of pretty settings took her to the field of interior design, where she can combine two of her greatest passions, creating and then capturing the beauty of homes.