Top 10 Problems With Adjustable Power Bed Bases

August 11, 2017
In the Bedroom

What was once considered old is new again. What are we talking about… hospital beds. Now, wait! Before you say NO WAY, they are much much more than an old uncomfortable medical bed for the sick and ailing. Today they have become one of the coolest bedding options to hit the retail market in a long long time. The features and benefits are endless and the rhetoric from salespeople seems to be just as boundless. In our previous article Adjustable Beds, What You Need To Know dives into that topic, but today we are going to cover the top 10 problems with adjustable power bed bases.

Problems With Adjustable Power Bed Bases. Wooden adjustable bed frame.

Top 10 Problems With Adjustable Power Bed Bases From STL Beds

1. Noise- There are many causes of noisy adjustable foundation motors. Motor placement on the steel framing under the adjustable or hospital bed type bed can cause vibrations or rattling of the steel frame, amplifying the sound of the motor. This would be due to poor engineering and motor placement. Also, what is the adjustable base sitting on? Almost all adjustable bases come with their own legs that screw into the bottom of the base. These are always recommended over simply placing the adjustable bed foundation on an ordinary steel bed frame. An adjustable bed on a steel bed frame, wooden bed frame, wooden supports, or steel supports can cause excess noise due to the vibration of the framing. Eliminating as many points of contact as possible will cut down on excess noise.

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2. Mattresses Wear Out Faster- It is a fact that your mattress will break down faster on an adjustable platform. There are no ifs, and, or buts about it. While motorized beds have provided lots of benefits in terms of pressure reduction, medical benefits, lifestyle benefits, etc, the big downside is bending the mattress and concentrating all our weight in one area (in a seated position) of a bed. This is perhaps the most problematic thing you can do to it.

There is a reason we don’t encourage people to sit on their mattresses including the sides; taking all our weight and slamming it down in one area works that part of the bed very hard. When we use an adjustable bed, we are lifting the head and feet of the bed, forcing our weight down into one specific spot of the mattress. The best way to reduce excess wear is to avoid extreme positions such as elevating the head or feet all the way to the max. A slight head and foot elevation will be easier on the bed than elevating into an upright seated position. The goal is to sleep better. If an adjustable platform allows helps you to sleep better then the tradeoff is a lower life expectancy of a mattress. However, there are some mattresses that work for adjustable beds.

3. Motor Burnouts- Adjustable base motors are designed to run for short periods of time. Most people adjust their beds in a position where they are comfortable and stay in that position for the night or a few hours. If the bed is continuously used, motor burnouts can occur. For example, as a rule of thumb, you don’t want to run the motor for more than 2 minutes over an 18-minute period. (Please read your manual for the exact details regarding your exact base). Since the motors are not being used frequently, you should expect a long life expectancy on your adjustable base motors. Please be sure to hide the remotes from children or educate them on the proper use so you too can experience a long adjustable bed life.

4. Weight Limits- Many bases have weight restrictions on their bases which, if exceeded, void the warranty. Some adjustable beds are fit for heavy people. These can vary depending upon the manufacturer, but usually, they average around 450 lbs per Twin XL (2 Twin XL bases= 1 King), Full 500 lbs, Queen 600 lbs. For example, let’s take the Queen size. If you have memory foam, latex, or Tempurpedic bed (these are usually the heaviest) and it weighs upwards of 150 lbs., this gives you only 450 lbs of play (or 225 lbs per person) before you would technically void the warranty of the product (again this would depend upon the manufacturer, please read your warranty)

5. Cleaning Under and Moving an Adjustable Platform – Adjustable bases can be extremely heavy. With most models weighing upwards of 150 lbs to 200 lbs, these things are not designed to be moved once they are put in place. Not only are they heavy, but they are usually not easy to carry as they lack places to grab onto. It will be worth the $100 average delivery charge for most people to have their adjustable bed delivered.

6. Warranty- While most adjustable foundations seem very attractive at first glance, it is best if you investigate the warranties for more detail. Most adjustable bed warranties are prorated, meaning they are not covered fully for the full length of the warranty. An example would be that for a certain length of the warranty it is fully covered, for another length parts/labor are covered, or just parts only. Shipping of parts or labor costs may have to be paid by the customer. It’s always important to ask for details of the warranty before purchasing the product so that you will know exactly what it’s covering before making a purchasing decision.

7. Limits your choices for mattresses- When you decide to purchase an adjustable base, the mattress you purchase must be adjustable-friendly. This normally limits you to an all-foam bed or some hybrid mattresses. Certain mattresses such as memory foam, latex, some Tempurpedic mattresses, as well as online beds such as purple, ghost bed, tuft, needle, Casper, and some hybrid beds are adjustable friendly. It’s best to check with your salesperson before moving forward with the purchase to see if it can be used on an adjustable platform.

8. Pets under the bed- If your cat or dog likes to hide underneath the bed, it is a clever idea to have some type of blocker to eliminate their path of access. This would prevent a cat or dog from getting their paw or part of their body caught in the moving base parts of the deck when it is moving up and down during operation. While I have personally never run into an issue, it’s a great idea to keep an eye on your pets to make sure they are not harmed while using an adjustable base.

9. New Sleeping Positions- Sleeping on an adjustable bed does wonders for people. However, it can take some time to get used to. Sleeping with your feet and/or head elevated can be a foreign position for some. It may take time to get accustomed to your adjustable bed. I compare it to buying a new pair of running shoes. It takes time for your body to adapt to a new sleep position; like how it takes time for your foot to adapt to a new pair of shoes.

10. Fabric Bunching– When a bed is used on an adjustable base, the fabric can bunch up on the mattress surface and sides when the bend takes place. Depending upon the body type, the cover will sometimes bunch up in areas that may lead to discomfort. Fortunately, most mattresses that are used on adjustable beds use a stretch knit cover or spandex-type material allowing for such flexing. In summation, such materials permit the cover to be outstretched or flattened once the bed is placed in the desired position.

We hope these top 10 problems with adjustable power bed bases have helped you with your bed search.

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