If you’ve slowly noticed the comfort of your RV mattress deteriorating, don’t assume it’s simply your age! Factory-installed RV mattresses are notorious for being flimsy and unsupportive—a quality that certainly does not improve with time. If you are seeking a better night’s rest while traveling, and especially if you or your loved ones have back pain or arthritis, it might be time to replace the mattress in your RV.
All About RV Replacement Mattresses Types
There are many diverse mattress options available on the market today. Since sleep comfort is so highly personal, it’s important to find what’s right for you. Here are four types of mattress you’ll encounter:
Traditional Coil Mattress
Made of interior steel coils layered with various foam paddings and finished with a quilted top.
Traditional coil mattresses are relatively affordable and readily available in standard sizes.
With this style of mattress, weight-bearing firmness is achieved by the number of coils, the length of wire in each coil, and wire gauge utilized. Sometimes, these mattresses have special features such as thicker pillow tops and various specialized foam layers (Latex, memory foams, & polyurethane foams).
Most of us have encountered coil mattresses in homes or hotels; quality and comfort can vary greatly, so it’s important to try before buying.
Advantages: Cooler sleep as a result of the open space throughout the coils allowing for better air circulation.
Disadvantages: Odd sizes/shapes; may result in added labor costs and limitations on coil heights.
Also known as viscoelastic (a type of polyurethane foam), memory foam is known for its slow release cushioning and contouring ability while reacting to heat and pressure.
Memory foams come in various densities (quality) and feel; while being assembled in combination with more conventional foams in mattress applications. They can be made in diverse sizes and shapes.
Memory foam mattresses are well known for reducing motion transfer, its stabilizing effects, alleviating pressure points, and is frequently preferred by individuals for its unique sensation to touch.
The density of memory foam material is a key indicator of its longevity.
Most mattresses, including those used in RV applications, tend to fall within the 2.5 to 5 lb density range. Lower density foams (around the 2.5 to 3 lb range) tend to lose their elasticity and break down more quickly; whereas densities above 4 lbs provide more durability. The right density level and firmness vary for everyone, so it is important to become familiar with various the options.
Advantages: Excellent for seating & stabilization.
Disadvantages: Heat builds up regardless of gel additives. (Typically, gels are initially cool to touch and for a period of time…until your body temperature increases the gel temperature).
Latex is another superior type of foam material used in RV replacement mattresses.
Latex is a natural material derived from the rubber tree and is considered a more eco-friendly option than memory foam, which is petroleum-based.
Natural latex is known for its cushioning, contouring properties, exceptional durability and is resistant to mildew and dust mites.
Synthetic and blended varieties of latex are also available and can offer greater consistency utilizing today’s advanced manufacturing techniques; while maintaining resistance to mold and mildew.
Advantages: Natural, exceptional pressure reduction qualities, greater durability.
Disadvantages: Weighs more than conventional foams (All foams increase in weight as quality is enhanced).
Air Support Mattress
Mattresses with air chambers have gained in popularity in recent years. They have various foam layers and quilted covers as conventional mattresses so they do resemble their more conventional mattress cousins in feel.
Air mattresses have an adjustable chamber or separate chambers that allow the firmness to be adjusted to your weight by the usage of an air pump.
Note: Air support mattresses do not change surface softness as often implied in marketing. If you enjoy the surface feel you will most likely enjoy your product. If you do not, adjusting the air pressures will not get you to the level you are trying to achieve.
Advantages: You do have the ability to change the weight bearing level of the mattress core and the mattress is light in weight.
Disadvantages: Odd sizes or shapes of mattresses are limited greatly and elevations while traveling will alter mattress feel and can cause air leakage (decompress your core prior to crossing those mountains).
Staying comfortable while traveling is one of the major reasons people buy an RV, yet mattress quality is a detail that often gets overlooked in standard RV designs. That’s especially problematic for people who suffer from a bad back.
RV replacement mattresses could help you enjoy your time on the road again. The most sure-fire way to find the best mattress type for your needs is to visit showrooms that allow you to handle materials and test various options in-person; with help from trained sales representatives.