How Long Does a Memory Foam Mattress Last?

One important consideration people have when shopping for a new bed is the usable lifespan of the product. Memory foam mattresses tend to last longer than average, but there are several factors such as product quality, density and care that can impact lifespan. Keep reading to see how different bed types compare and how to choose the most durable memory foam mattress.

Memory foam mattress will last a lifetime

Memory Foam Mattress Features & Lifespan

The materials a mattress contains directly relate to durability. In memory foam beds, the density of the material and core are perhaps the biggest predictors of longevity, though understanding warranties also proves important when shopping.

Density vs. Durability

Foam density refers to the weight of one cubic foot of material. Denser foams have more tightly spaced cell structures that affect the feel and performance of the end product. Low density foams are those between 2.0 and 4.0 lbs; medium density is between 4.1 and 5.5 lbs; and high density foams are those over 5.5 lbs.

Because there are more cells to conform to and support the sleeper’s weight, memory foam mattresses with higher density will typically last longer than their low density counterparts. However, the highest densities may not be comfortable for a majority of sleepers due to their increased viscosity. The “goldilocks” range for most people falls between 4.0-5.3 lbs, medium density foams which provide exceptional comfort and durability. On average low-density foam tend to last about 4-6 years, while medium and high density foams last upwards of 8-10 years or more on average, depending on use and care.

Ideal range for comfort and durability of memory foam density
Mattress Brand
Amerisleep
Tempur-Pedic®
iComfort® by Serta®
Memory Foam Density
4.5 - 5.3 lb
2.5 - 7.0 lb
4.0 lb

Data collected from Amerisleep.com, Tempurpedic.com and Serta.com.

Support Base

The second component of a memory foam mattress is the core or support foam layer which rests beneath the actual memory foam. This is the part responsible for supporting your body, and low-quality cores can affect mattress longevity. High-resilience foams are considered ideal, and quality beds will have core densities over 2.0 lb (usually between 2 and 2.5 lb). Low-density cores, those under 2.0 lb, will be quicker to break down, soften and compress - compromising support and longevity.

Ideal range for support and durability of memory foam base core
Mattress Brand
Amerisleep
Tempur-Pedic®
iComfort® by Serta®
Core Density
2.0 lb
2.2 lb
N/A

Data collected from Amerisleep.com, Tempurpedic.com and Serta.com.

Warranties & Longevity

It is often thought that a mattress’s warranty is indicative of its longevity, however this is often not the case. While there is certainly a distinction to be made between a company offering a 1 year warranty and one offering 20 years, the most important factors to consider are the full coverage lengths and stipulations.

Most mattress warranties are limited, meaning a portion of the coverage is prorated or limited to certain aspects of the product. A good quality memory foam mattress should have a minimum of 10 years of full coverage, since this is seen as the actual average lifespan. The main issue that can arise with foam beds is compression, so the degree of coverage here is also an important predictor of expectations. Warranties should cover sagging at 1” or less, as impressions over this depth can affect comfort.

How to measure a sagging memory foam mattress
Mattress Brand
Amerisleep
Tempur-Pedic®
iComfort® by Serta®
Full Coverage
10 years
10 years
15 years
Impression Depth
0.75"
0.75"
0.75"

Data collected from Amerisleep.com, Tempurpedic.com and Serta.com.

Memory Foam Mattress Lifespan

The two factors to consider when assessing longevity and cost of ownership include both the overall lifespan and the durability of the product. Innerspring beds have the shortest lifespan as well as poor durability as padding layers tend to compress fairly early and non-replaceable springs lose support. Waterbeds and air beds both have good overall lifespans, but poor durability since both have parts that may require replacement during the product lifespan. Latex and memory foam mattresses both have similar life spans as well as good durability since quality materials hold up well and there are no parts to replace.

Lifespan of different mattress types
Bed Type
Lifespan
Durability
Memory foam (4.0lbs +)
10 years
Good
Innerspring
6 years
Poor
Waterbed
8 years
Fair
Air Bed
9 years
Fair
Latex
15 years
Good

Getting the Most Out of Your Mattress

In addition to choosing a bed with quality foam density and materials, product care can also shorten or extend the lifespan of a mattress. Exactly where a specific mattress falls within the range of life expectancy depends on the amount and type of use – and abuse – it receives. Those who take even marginal care to protect and maintain the mattress will enjoy years more satisfaction. Here are a few tips to ensure you get the most for your money:

Use a Mattress Cover

Water resistant and waterproof covers extend the life of your bed by protecting it from spills and dust. Even if you think you are careful as can be when it comes to food and drinks, you never know when an accident will occur. Liquids and solvents can affect the performance of memory foam, in addition to presenting concerns of odors and mildew. The average person also sheds an estimated 30,000 or more skin cells per hour, in addition to sweating. Without a washable mattress cover, all of that can go into your bed which can create an unhealthy environment. Plus, several manufacturers may actually require a mattress cover to preserve the warranty, and stains can void returns and warranty claims.

Waterproof mattress protector for memory foam

Use Proper Support

How your mattress is supported can also affect its lifespan. A memory foam mattress needs solid, firm support such as a platform bed or solid wood foundation. Using a box spring or slats spaced too widely apart can lead to quicker deterioration. As with mattress covers, some manufacturers may have specific foundation requirements stated in the warranty terms.

Amerisleep memory foam mattress and foundation

Rotate Your Bed Occasionally

Memory foam beds should not be flipped, but occasional rotation can help ensure even wear. Every six months or so, simply rotate the bed 180 degrees to extend it’s life span. Rotation every 6 to 12 months can be helpful for even wear, but is not essential.

Rotating a mattress to increase lifespan

Memory foam is truly a revolutionary material. Not only does it excel at pressure relief and full-body support, it has a life expectancy that far exceeds that of most traditional mattresses. Learning about density and quality can help you choose a durable mattress and taking care of your purchase will help ensure comfortable sleep for years to come.

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