Some day, sooner or later, you are going to purchase a new mattress and box spring. Maybe even more than one set. Before you go shopping we want to lay it all out for you and explain the consumer benefits of innerspring sets. We want you to be a well-informed consumer and wise shopper. We want you to choose a bedding set that best suits your needs, comfort, and support requirements and helps you rest comfortably.
We have no doubt based on generations of manufacturing, testing, and research and development that an innerspring mattress with matching box spring is the optimum choice for proper sleep support and unsurpassed comfort and durability. This fact is emphasized by the millions of innerspring sets in use throughout the world today providing restful sleep for only pennies per night after night year after year.
How can a few pounds of steel wire evolve into such a comfortable surface? Basically, it translates into many small parts working together as a whole. The hundreds of machine formed coils are held together in rows by lacing helicals (much like the spirals you remember from school notebooks) through the tops and bottoms of each coil. A heavy gauge border rod makes the outer, rectangular perimeters (upper and lower), to which the helicals and outermost coils are either clipped or helically attached. All together, this is a basic innerspring design, and is the heart of the finished mattress.
After the innerspring units are assembled, they are tempered by heat or electricity to assure that all of the formed wire retains its shape even after years of use. Tempering removes the stresses set up during the manufacturing process. From this point, the mattress manufacturer has the option of adding enhanced support to the borders, perimeters, inner zones, and building-up the comfort layers.
The coils used to make these inner-springs can take on a variety of designs, depending on the desired support and price point. You may have heard of a mattress coil count. This is the number of individual coils that make up a full or double bed size. Generally, the higher the coil count and higher the gauge of steel, the better the support and comfort. The shape of the coil determines its performance. There are five basic coil designs the bonnell, the offset, the open offset, the marshall, and the continuous.
The bonnell coil is one of the most widely used in the mattress industry. It has an hourglass shape and is cylindrical at the top and bottom, tapering towards the middle. The offset coil is a less tapered version with squared-off heads that hinge when helically laced together. The open offset coil is un-knotted, its shape a modified version of the offset coil. Marshall coils are barrel-shaped coils enclosed, each in a separate flexible fabric pocket. The pockets are all attached to the pockets surrounding them. The continuous coil consists of entire rows of coils formed from a single strand of wire.
The History of Bedding
Mankind has always sought a better surface upon which to sleep. From the dawn of history, and for thousands of years thereafter, these surfaces were made up of grasses, leaves, twigs, furs, Spanish moss, corn shucks, or anything at hand that was softer than the ground. Later, in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, mattresses became manufactured items. These sleep products were filled with horsehair, feathers, or cotton and were held in shape by an outer cotton fabric covering, or ticking, usually sporting a striped design.
During the late nineteenth century, the steel spring coil bed, held together with a border rod, was invented and patented. The bed spring offered a new dimension of comfort that had not existed before. Now there was an action surface upon which to place those primitive mattresses. The two together offered the finest sleeping surface discovered up to that time.
Further development of the bed spring resulted in a modern box spring mounted on wood slats and covered to match the innerspring mattress. Today’s box spring is designed as a working partner with the innerspring mattress. Box springs, as well as mattresses, enjoy a versatility of design characteristics that enhance the comfort and life of the bedding set. You will receive the greatest sleeping comfort when you buy bedding sets that have been manufactured with this in mind.
Today’s Choices in Bedding
When shopping for a new bedding set you will find that there are many options available for your consideration. Four basic categories include innerspring, foam, waterbeds, and airbeds. The majority of the world prefers the innerspring design.
An innerspring bedding set consists of an innerspring mattress and matching box spring unit. This combination out performs all other types of bedding from the standpoints of comfort, support, and durability. Innerspring units are constructed of hundreds of spring wire coils of various gauges, depending on the design. The gauge relates to the wire thickness. The lower the number, the heavier the wire.
Innerspring bedding has many advantages. For instance, the mattress and box spring have free air circulation throughout. There is no heat buildup and the air passing through it constantly refreshes the sleep set.
Inner-springs buoy up the body. The gently upward support of an innerspring allows the body to relax completely, resulting in deep, restful sleep. With active, buoyant support where it is needed most, the spine remains relaxed. No hammock curves or bottoming out.
Inner-springs conform to body movement. The hundreds of steel wire springs that go into each mattress move as the body moves yet maintain even support as they cushion. Press down on an innerspring mattress, you will note the give and take action as the coils readily adjust to contour and movement. The more weight, or pressure exerted, the greater the coil response. No other sleeping surface offers this unique reserve support that allows every body, from lightweights to heavyweights, to receive equal comfort from the same bed. This controlled resiliency makes inner-springs the leading choice for most buyers.
Spring Air Back Supporter Mattresses
The Spring Air Back Supporter mattress series offers you a combination of exceptional back support and pressure-relieving comfort.
Exceptional Back Support: The Spring Air Back Supporter offers a superior center-support design that begins with a patent pending carbon neutral Eco-friendly base. The center zoning delivers longer lasting back support, whether by high density coils or the body contouring individually encased coil design, there is a Back Supporter mattress that will deliver the right support for you.
Pressure Relieving Comfort: The latest Spring Air Back Supporter beds each feature various levels of foam designed to relieve pressure in the shoulder and hip area. Using natural latex, and unique surface modification designs, Back Supporter beds provide pressure relief and balanced weight distribution. From the very beginning of Spring Air more than 86 years ago, pressure relief, proper spinal support, and alignment has been a fundamental focus in all of our bed designs.
Hybrid Plus Sleep Sense Mattresses
Sleep Sense innovation incorporates an inner core construction of varying heights at the most critical body points – the shoulders, hips and back. This patented encased coil design provides relief to the body’s high-pressure areas and give lower back support for a comfortable and restful night’s sleep at a great value. This superior core construction combined with your choice of gel-infused memory foam or natural latex and gel-infused memory foam provides a more supportive and comfortable nights sleep. The Sleep Sense patented high-low design provides pressure relief in the shoulders and hip area, and additional support in the back where it is needed, giving you a more comfortable night’s sleep.
Latex – The cell structure of Latex distributes your body weight evenly and eliminates the pressure points that cause a restless sleep. No more aches and pains caused by poor, insufficient support or inadequate pressure relief. Latex is naturally hypo-allergenic, antimicrobial, and mildew proof and it conforms to the curves of the body to alleviate areas of high pressure that cause tossing and turning.
Bedding sets are available in a variety of sizes because people come in a variety of sizes and have different sleeping requirements. Making sure your bed fits properly is an all too often overlooked practice by a number of people. Most of us would never attempt to wear a pair of shoes that were two or three sizes too small, but those same people might sleep eight or more hours every night in a bed that just does not fit.
For many years the standard bedding size for two adults was the double, also known as a full size. This is truly old-fashioned sleeping. In fact, two average sized adults in a full size bed only have about 27″ of sleeping width. That is the same amount of space they probably had in their cribs as infants. Furthermore, the 76″ length is too short for anyone taller than 5′. A good rule of thumb is to allow about 9″ of pillow space.
The following is a listing of today’s most popular mattress standard sizes. A twin size is 39″ wide and 76″ long, while a twin XL is 39 wide and 80″ long. A full size is 54″ wide and 76″ long and a full XL is 54″ wide and 80″ long. A queen is 60″ wide and 80″ long, and a king is 78″ wide and 80″ long, and finally a California king is 72″wide and 84″ long.
Two average size adults should have at least the 60″ width and 80″ length of a queen size sleep set. Favorite headboards need not be discarded if you currently are using a full size mattress. Special converter bed rails are available to adapt your existing furniture to accommodate a queen size sleep set. For those who can afford the bedroom space, a king size sleep set would be recommended. A room as small as 12′ x 14′ can comfortably house a king set with room for other necessary bedroom furnishings. So, do not discount the possibility of stepping up to the best possible bed you can acquire. Remember, almost one-third of an average human life is spent sleeping. Your quality of sleep directly affects your health and the quality of your sleep surface directly affects your sleep.
To date, there are more than 27 million innerspring sleep sets that are more than sixteen years old. That means that these mattresses, no matter what their quality level at purchase, are not providing the proper support and comfort needed for restful sleep. Many of these mattresses have been passed from one family member to another. Sleep sets should never be used past their life expectancy, usually eight to ten years.
It makes little sense that we replace our $20,000 and up vehicles after 3 to 5 years, buy our kids $100 shoes every year but attempt to use our mattress until it falls apart at the seams. Passing your worn out mattress to your kids is not acting in their best interest. In fact, you are sacrificing their health.
Box spring Composition
The box spring begins as individual coils or modules and other components that are assembled into finished products to meet the needs of bedding manufacturers. The better box springs have a grid top that covers the entire top surface. One of the best grids contains wire that is welded at all intersections and wrapped around and welded to the border rod. Thus, the grid becomes one piece. The grid is then attached positively to the coils and/or modules attached to a substantial wood frame at the bottom. The result is a one-piece box spring construction ready for a bedding manufacturer to finish.
Choosing the Finished Sleep Set
Now that you are a well-informed consumer with regard to the innerspring and box spring units, you are faced with an infinite number of comfort layer options and support enhancements. The endless possibilities of combinations make comparing models, especially between brands, nearly impossible. But, if you understand the basic materials used, you will better understand the features and benefits that enhance the better designs.
Number one, the only effective way to try out a mattress is to try it on. Lie down on it. Maybe even curl up like you would at home. The point is to get a real feel for the mattress. Your opinion means more than any long list of features and benefits. A salesperson can only explain how the mattress set is intended to work and feel. Let your body tell you if it is the right choice for you.
A basic innerspring mattress consists of the coil unit, layered with some type of insulator to help prevent the comfort layers from sinking into or between the coils over time. Most are heavy fiber, felt layers. Additionally, some manufacturers use nylon netting or similar designs to further protect from layer breakdown. Above the insulator, various foams, fibers, and cotton batting are layered to create different mattress cushioning effects. The quality and amount of these layers usually increase with the price tag. All of these materials are encased with a quilted ticking. This is the layer you see. Ticking comes in almost every color and pattern imaginable. Some are nearly flat, while others offer a plush finish. Pillow-tops, often a higher end feature, offer the plushest finish yet with a big pillow of soft foam or fibers attached to the mattress top. However, be careful not to judge the mattress based on its exterior alone. Ask the salesperson about what is inside, and again, try it out for yourself.
Childhood is the formative developmental period when you bodies are growing and need the best support you can afford. An unsound mattress is not conducive to the development of healthy young bodies. Each year, you should examine your families sleep sets. Assess their condition and allow ample time to shop around for a replacement sleep set when the time comes. As an informed consumer, you will be able to ask knowledgeable questions, understand what features you desire, and be able to sleep well knowing the sleep set you choose is the best choice for you and your family.
Here is more information on why you should purchase a new mattress. Why you may need a new mattress.