Therapedic® – Foundation Talk

We’re going to talk today in terms of comfort support and durability from the Therapedic® foundation. Therapedic is just one of the several brand names that fall under our manufacturer’s production & licensee rights. Our manufacturer is The Bedding Group.

In terms of durability and strength, it used to come from what we once called the box springs. Essentially they were springy shock absorbing platforms designed to support the mattress. However, for the most part they have become a product of the past. Industry wide, box foundations have become the primarily replacement support base.

The Bedding Group has been a big promoter of these foundations rather than box springs for a long. Box springs are notorious for changing and giving inconsistent support to your mattress over time and you never know what they are going to do, which makes them very unpredictable at best. In the case of foundations you always know what you have. A foundation is a solid ridged base that it is going to be extremely supportive, durable, and will give you many years of consistent dependable service.

The Different Types of Foundations

Amish Made FurnitureThe Bedding Group facility in Rock Island, Illinois, has their foundations made nearby by the local Amish Community. The first of 3 different standard foundations types that STL Beds offers include support for the Innergy 2 Two Sided Mattresses, Back Sence, and Natural Sensations beds. This foundation has been extremely successful and is used under the majority of the beds The Bedding Group produces.

In addition, they also offer a semi flex box which is a metal and wood base. This is used under some of the Laura Ashly offerings.

Finally, their best foundation is the Medicoil HD Heavy Duty originally introduced to support weights of 350 lbs. per side.  This mattress footing is similar to their standard foundation but has been significantly beefed up to hold and support greater weights and to be more durable than the standard foundation for several very specific reasons.

Build Specifics

The standard foundation is built from thick seasoned Canadian Pine. There are 2 anti-sway braces, 2 staggered cross braces, and head to toe center supports.  The perpendicular Buffalo Designed support edge blocks are used for added strength which makes the joints stronger and flex less.  The system is assembled using deluxe firm gripping nails with barbs on them rather than traditional smooth nails. The purpose of this is to help eliminate squeaking. The barbs in the deluxe firm gripping nails grab and anchor firmly in the wood staying tight and secure. This is a better solution to the problem than using the traditional smooth nail. This isn’t the only way The Bedding Group works to eliminate squeaking in their foundations.

Often times, squeaking in a foundation comes from a cardboard corrugated insulator that rests on top of the foundation slats. The Bedding Group uses special glues which are not as stiff and there is no cardboard used on these foundations. They are also more elastic and flexible to help deal with this frustrating issue. In the end, the goal is to not have pops, squeaks, or any other kind of irritating noise.

The warranty on Bedding Group built foundations follows the warranty on the mattress it will be used with. In other words, the same base foundation that we use under our 1 year product they also use on their 15 and 20 year mattresses.

It doesn’t matter which bed you buy from The Bedding Group, the foundation is designed to perform.

There is a lot of scuttlebutt on the Internet saying that steel systems are stronger than all wood bases. We can honestly say from our experience that we’ve had no problems throughout the many years we have sold this base.

Consider this: they use steel to build skyscrapers rather than wood but the metallurgy, doping, and composite can be factors on durability.  Finally, thickness or steel gauge of the steel all comes into play. What all of this means is that using quality building materials assures us that if we build a good, solid product to it will hold up for the time that we expect it to. We don’t necessarily need to build a sky scraper to do what a standard subdivision home can do.

HD Medicoil Heavy Duty Foundations

The Medicoil HD foundation is the same technology that’s under the standard wood foundation – but on steroids. This super heavy duty foundation is built from thick seasoned Canadian Pine. There are 20 closely-spaced slats for extra strength, durability, and less sagging. There are 2 anti-sway braces, additional staggered cross braces, 2 extra-strong head to toe center supports, and extra perpendicular Buffalo Designed support blocks for added strength on the seat edges. This is assembled using deluxe firm gripping nails with barbs.

This foundation is guaranteed to hold up in all the circumstances that we expect it to in quality level of bases. The HD is guaranteed to hold 2 people up to 350 pounds each for 20 years. In order for the manufacturer to make that kind of promise, they really have to give the consumer a whole lot more. This foundation on average in queen size costs about $220.00 whereas the foundation under the typical run of the mill queen is about half the cost at $120.00

Many people ask since it’s so good, why couldn’t the builders of this foundation put this base under every mattress they sell? The answer is a matter of costs. Consider what it would do to the buyers final cost. In most cases a beefed up foundation just isn’t necessary or needed.

Why Doesn’t The Bedding Group Use Box Springs?

The thinking that we must have steel construction and steel springs as the supporting mattress base is old school thinking. The Bedding Group’s support bases are not the cheap foam foundations of the past that were used under a low quality low budget mattress.

In the past it was thought that we needed a shock absorber. We used a box spring because of the action of a person being on an innerspring mattress with daily use needed to displace weight and move some of that motion down through to something below that could handle the energy. These box springs had larger coils and thicker steel but not nearly as many as inside the mattress. Old box springs were designed to take the punishment. The down side is they were bouncy and added to the springiness of the sleep system. It also added to another troublesome issue – motion disturbance as sleepers repositioned or moved. The “springiness” transferred across the mattress like a wave of water.

The biggest reason The Bedding Group decided to do away with the box spring is because when a box spring fails you don’t know it has failed. It can take up to 6 months before the mattress develops sag. Mattress sag is something that we don’t hear much about anymore. The buzz word today we hear about is body impressions.  The fact is we don’t have problems with sagging because when a box spring would fail it would cause this huge cave-in. You could get off the bed and the box spring looked fine, but the metal had fatigued underneath from the daily use of being pounded.

The innerspring of the mattress eventually follows the sag created within the box spring within 6 months or so. The outcome is you have to replace your mattress set because the set has failed. Chiropractors and mattress builders recognized that sleepers would start experiencing back problems within those 6 months. Many consumers where sleeping on a bed with a bad box spring during that time and didn’t realize it. You start waking up in the morning and wondering where this pain is coming from.  It’s now 6 months later and you start seeing some sag in your mattress.  The failure within the box spring was what was going on during this time you weren’t getting the support you needed; now it’s degraded so bad you’re beginning to see it in your sleep set. This is why foundations are preferred over box springs.

Foundations are more predicable which makes them more reliable.  Chiropractors believed and recommended doing away with flexible box springs and replacing them with a reliable, flat, and solid predictable surface. If you have a failure in a foundation, it’s because a board broke and person can immediately tell there is something wrong with the system. The truth is you’re saving yourself from damage to your back from an unpredictable box spring. In today’s technologies we are able to build a better more reliable and predictable box and we no longer have a need for a “box spring”.

Failure Is Not an Option

The Bedding Group strives for success. Fail is a four letter word at the 68 year old Rock Island facility. This comes from the third-generation of the nearly 100 year old company started by Jeffrey Sherman. I was assured that he is a huge stickler concerning mattress and foundation quality. He says their company will take back anything that is bad; they don’t want to make a bad product so they take great pains to make a quality product that goes out but doesn’t come back.

Because of this, we are excited to offer their lines of products on our showroom floor and website.

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