Why Innersprings May Not be the Best Mattress Option

Outmatched & Outdated – Innersprings No Longer The Best Mattress

Why Innersprings May Not be the Best Mattress Option

At one time, innerspring mattresses were essentially the only bedding option available to the average consumer, but with recent innovations the standard spring bed has moved down the list of best mattress options.  The reason for this is simple: innerspring mattresses are not leading the way in many of the top consumer concerns like price, comfort, or durability. While spring mattresses remain the most popular in the marketplace, specialty mattresses continue to grow and outrank the status quo.

Innerspring Mattresses Fall Short of Best Mattress Rating

A majority of people own innerspring mattresses and continue to buy them, so it may surprise you to know that they are not the best mattress type according to reviews and ratings. In fact, according to several polling reports, owner satisfaction for innerspring mattresses hovers at only 60-65% on average.  This is a drastic drop in comparison to owners of latex and memory foam mattresses who have a satisfaction rate of 80-86%. Consumers are naturally curious to know why there is such a drop in contentment with this particular mattress. The reason for this can be broken down by the top innerspring mattress complaints.

Pros of Spring Beds

First, we will consider what innerspring beds do have to offer. Areas that spring beds tend to equal or exceed specialty mattresses include pricing, availability, variety, and initial comfort. Entry-level coil mattresses can be purchased for a few hundred dollars, and are available in mattress stores across the country. There is a wide selection of brands, firmnesses, and types, and initially people do report comfort on new beds. Owners of innerspring beds are also less likely to report off gassing and heat issues (by about 2-8%).

Not the Best Mattress for Comfort

  • Innerspring beds are the lowest rated mattress type compared water, latex, memory foam, and futon mattresses.
  • Owners of innerspring beds are most likely to report pain.

One of the primary reasons that innerspring mattresses are not considered the best mattress out there is because they lack proper support. Innerspring mattresses utilize a system of metal springs or coils covered by layers of padding and/or foam. Metal springs create an awkward shape for the spine and place pressure against critical points like hips and shoulders. The result is more aches and pains due to unnatural alignment, and less restful sleep. The padding layers are designed to cushion sleepers against the metal coils, though these often compress within a couple years to the point that springs can be felt through the topper, further reducing comfort.

In comparison, latex and memory foam are recognized as the best mattress options for back support and pressure-point relief. High quality foams conform to one’s body shape and preserve natural alignment.  Mattresses made with foam, latex, or water do not have issues with metal springs as they use different materials for support.

Least Durable

Average lifespan reported by mattress type:

  • Innerspring: 5-6 years
  • Latex: 8-10 years
  • Memory Foam: 7-8 years

Durability is always a primary concern for consumers, as a mattress than needs to be replaced often can get expensive. When it comes to innerspring mattresses, they simply fall short in comparison to other types of beds such as memory foam and latex. Many innerspring mattresses come with pillow tops to help offset some of the comfort issues that come with this type of bed. However, pillow tops generally breakdown after only a couple of years of use. Eventually, the pillow top will fail to cushion sleepers from the springs underneath. The coils themselves will eventually lose resiliency, leading this type of mattress to slump and sag at a faster rate than other mattress types. The longevity averages around five to six years while others can last 2 to 5 years longer on average. Reduced lifespan reduces the value of the coil bed significantly.

Not The Best Mattress for Intimate Moments

Ranked order of best mattress for sex based on ease of movement, comfort, durability, discretion and other factors.

  1. Latex
  2. Innerspring
  3. Memory Foam

People like that innerspring mattresses prove bouncy and easy to move on, but dislike the noise, lack of comfort, and durability.  In contrast, owners of latex mattresses report ease of movement as well as comfort and quietness, but dislike the lack of “bounce”. Latex beds receive the highest overall scores. Memory foam falls behind as people report difficulty moving, especially on higher-density beds.

Bouncy and Squeaky

  • Innersprings rank behind memory foam and latex for motion isolation, only exceeding waterbeds.
  • About 2/3 innerspring owners report loud to minimal noise, zero percent of foam mattress owners report noise.

Due to their construction, innerspring mattresses will by nature be bouncy, and often squeaky. While the bounciness may be desirable at times, motion transfer is typically seen as a nuisance at night, as every time on partner moves the other can feel it. Memory foam and latex absorb motion and prevent partner disturbances. Squeaky springs can also be headache when trying to sleep or be discrete. The composition of foam mattresses contain no components that cause noise.

Prices For Mid-Range Models Not Competitive

As specialty mattresses become cheaper to manufacturer and innerspring struggle to compete by adding layers of luxury materials, mattress prices are becoming fairly similar. While basic models may be a few hundred dollars, others are reaching into the several thousands of dollars. Discount models also tend to provide very little comfort and longevity.

The average price consumers are paying for spring beds is about $1300-1500, which proves similar to or even more expensive than higher rated specialty mattresses. For example, Best Mattress Brand’s article on “Mattress Brands to Watch in 2013” profiled several mattress brands, and two specialty retailers stood out for affordability: plant-based memory foam mattresses from Amerisleep.com starting at $649 and organic all-natural latex mattresses from Astrabeds.com starting at $1299.

The problem with this is that innerspring mattresses have far fewer perks than other mattress options and do not last as long. Because the prices are so similar, consumers are often disappointed to discover that innerspring mattresses do not offer more benefits. In fact, according to Consumer Reports, as many as 40% of consumers report buyers’ remorse when it comes to mattresses. Less comfort and faster wear  makes innerspring mattresses fall short of being the best mattress option for buyers.

Health Concerns

In addition to facilitating chronic back and joint pain, innerspring mattresses offer the perfect environment for dust mites and bed bugs. These pests cause serious health problems such as allergies and asthma. These types of beds also contain adhesives of petroleum-based foams, all of which introduce chemicals into the home, including toxic volatile organic compounds. Those sensitive to chemicals or odors may prefer to opt for more natural options like latex or plant-based foams.


Innerspring mattresses are common and even popular because they have been available in the market for such a long time. However, consumers have expressed that with so many other options, innerspring beds fall short of expectation and results. As reflected in owner surveys and reviews, these types of beds offer the lowest chance of satisfaction, comfort, and durability, and fall short in scores on noise, motion, intimacy and healthiness. Overall, innerspring mattresses may be familiar and easy to buy, but they do not have the same advantages that more innovative beds do even when they may incorporate similar materials. For this reason, an innerspring mattress simply may not the best mattress option for many consumers.

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