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Inflatable Mattresses and Air Beds

An air mattress can be a handy sleeping option, providing your guests with a place to sleep, saving you money on a hotel room, or helping you get a full night of sleep while camping. Plenty of high-quality options are available that provide good support, comfort, and maintain their inflation level while in use. There are a number of factors and features that are important to consider when selecting the perfect mattress because each air bed has its own strengths.

What size air mattress do you need?

Air mattresses are available in a variety of different sizes, including twin, extra-long twin, double, queen, king, and California king. Each of these mattresses has comparable dimensions to a regular mattress of the same size. Sometimes, an air mattress may be slightly smaller, so it is important to look at the individual mattress dimensions to be sure. Consider how many people will be sleeping on the mattress and how much space you have available for it, especially if you are using it in a tent while camping.

How is an air bed inflated and deflated?

There are a few different ways to inflate an air mattress.

  • Manual: Each air mattress comes with a manual valve, and while this works effectively, it does take a bit of time.
  • Electric: Many air mattresses are compatible with an electric pump that quickly fills the mattress. These pumps often plug into an electric outlet, which is ideal for indoor use and saving time. If you are utilizing your air mattress for camping outdoors, it is important to have an alternative method to fill the bed with air. Some pumps have converters that utilize the cigarette lighter in a car.
  • Self-Inflation: Some models incorporate built-in pumps that are self-inflating and self-deflating, providing an easy set up and take down in just a few minutes.
  • Deflation: A large valve generally opens to allow for quick deflation, and these beds often fold or roll compactly for easy storage.

How do air beds vary in comfort?

  • Bedding: A good topper can make a substantial difference in comfort. A velvet or softer material can eliminate the feel of the rubber-like mattress, aiding in a better sleep for you and your guests. These toppers can also be water resistant, preventing mildew from night sweats.
  • Multiple Chambers: Many air mattresses utilize separate coils and pockets to increase comfort. These chambers help to increase the bed's support and provide a more comfortable and natural feel.
  • Height: The height of an air mattress can make a difference when getting into or off of the bed, especially for older guests. For some individuals, it can be difficult to get down to or up from the floor, so consider who will be using the bed when looking at height.
  • Material Thickness: The thickness of an air bed material plays a role in both comfort and durability. Quality construction will result in prolonged air retention, which maintains shape and which lengthens the time needed between inflations. A thicker material also helps protect against punctures and other damage, which can substantially shorten the product's life and lead to more frequent replacement.
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