Do sleepers really know how often they should change their mattress?


carbon footprint

Carbon footprint conscious sleepers may not necessarily be aware of their mattresses’ actual life span.  With so many types of mattresses being used, we have compiled a guide to some of the main types of mattress structures and their typical life spans with the hope of demystifying any misconceptions that will lead to avoiding the premature disposal of many sleepers’ existing mattresses.

The Sleep Council advises replacing a mattress as frequently as every seven years, due to the average mattress having been subjected to more than 20,000 hours of usage. That’s an equivalent of 2,555 nights, especially considering other factors beyond the expected wear and tear where on average adults lose approximately 250 millilitres of fluid every night and shed approximately 450 grams of dead skin cells each year. But the best mattresses can last up to a decade without softening, sagging or becoming less supportive. This contradicts the notion of 7 years.  If a good mattress is initially purchased, and cleaned regularly, a 10 year life span can be facilitated where the objective of premature disposal can be achieved.

What sleepers can expect from a pocket sprung mattress?

A good quality pocket sprung mattress should provide comfortability for a period of at least between 8 and 10 years.

Previous tests of mattresses applying laboratory testing methods where a simulation of up to a decade’s worth of sleep were applied by use of rolling a heavy barrel over the mattress 30,000 times. A mattresses’ supportiveness and firmness were put to the test and revealed how pocket spring mattresses that are more towards the higher end of the pricing spectrum do in fact achieve a 10 year life span.

 As with any furniture item it’s pertinent that manufacturer’s instructions are abided by when it comes to rotating and turning the mattress.

Can similar expectations be realised with memory foam mattresses?

Just as pocket spring mattresses’ testing methods, memory foam mattresses too demonstrate a similar 8 to 10 year life span, of course this also applies to the higher end of the pricing spectrum.  However latex mattresses do show to have a longer lifespan than that of the memory foams.

Again, similar manufacturer guidelines should always be adhered to, again foam mattresses too require regular rotation and turning over.

Are open coil mattresses just as durable?

Unfortunately, the same tests that demonstrated pocket sprung and foam mattress’ longevity, failed to show open coil spring mattresses providing similar life spans. With an average of just 6 to 8 years, open coil mattresses are prone to disposal more frequently than that of their counter parts.

Things to consider when trying to establish The Lifespan of a Mattress

It may sound quite obvious but we feel awareness is key and the following considerations have to be taken into perspective. 


Frequent cleaning can help minimise harmful bacteria, dust mites and other insects that can damage a mattress.  A simple regular vacuum can be all that’s required to help prolong a mattresses’ life span.

Body weight

Quite a sensitive area of discussion, but relevant to the life span of a mattress, body weight does impact a mattresses’ life span significantly.  Heavier bodied people exert more pressure to the mattress creating a lot of compressions reducing the lifespan of a mattress. Conversely, lightweight or average weight sleepers exert less pressure on a mattress providing a longer lifespan.

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