6 Signs of a Bad Mattress

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6 Signs of a Bad Mattress

Mattresses don’t last forever! If your mattress is over six years old, it’s already through more than 50% of its life. Upgrading is worthwhile when comfort levels drop, but you might be best off upgrading now if you notice degradation.

Most mattresses last for around ten years, with some high-quality pocket spring mattresses lasting up to 15 years. You get a longer lifespan from a better mattress, but only some have several hundred pounds to spend.

This article explores six signs of a bad mattress to help you figure out if it’s time to replace it or stick with it for a while.

Let’s jump in!

  1. It has lumps/bumps

When mattresses degrade, the materials deform and separate. Springs can pop and penetrate the foam layers, and foams and fibres can separate because adhesives wear away, creating lumps and bumps.

If your mattress has lumps and bumps, there’s a strong chance it’s old – probably around a decade old. However, if your mattress is less than a year old and has lumps and bumps, it has a manufacturing defect.

  • It sinks at the edge or in the middle

Mattresses have a support system to resist your body weight, and this resistance keeps the mattress from deforming when you lie on it. If the support system is gone, your mattress will sink in the middle or at the edge.

Middle sinkage creates a roll-together effect, where you and your partner (or just you) feel like you are rolling toward the bed’s middle. Edge sinkage makes it feel like you will fall off the bed’s edge.

  • It is suddenly uncomfortable

If comfort levels have changed rapidly, this is a vital sign that your mattress is past its best. The deterioration in comfort can be instantaneous – one night, you feel fine; the next, your mattress feels like a bag of spanners.

Sometimes, the change can be slow. Many people start by tossing and turning and changing their sleeping position. These are the signs that your mattress no longer provides the support or cushioning you need to sleep.

  • It squeaks and pings

Squeaking and pinging (the sound of metal springs springing back) are common problems with open coil mattresses. Open coils are intertwined springs that make a support bed – a cheap and cheerful system that provides good support.

However, the springs can pop out of the system over time, and even when new, some mattresses have cheap, poorly damped springs. If your mattress squeaks and pings, it is past its best and should be replaced immediately.

  • Visible defects

Your mattress might have visible dips, sagging, bumps, lumps, popped springs, and significant soiling/staining. If these defects translate to issues impacting comfort and support, it’s time to get a new mattress.

Another problem with visible defects is that they make recycling your mattress with second-hand charities impossible. You will need to dispose of it at a recycling facility – read our guide to mattress disposal and recycling to find out more.

  • You no longer get a good night’s sleep

Sometimes, a bad mattress might have no physical symptoms. It could be that you just no longer sleep well on it – mattress comfort is a finely tuned thing, so even minor changes can make it uncomfortable for how you like to sleep.

If you no longer get a good night’s sleep on your mattress, try a different mattress (such as at a friend’s house or in a hotel) and see how you get on. If you sleep well and find the other mattress dreamy, it’s time to upgrade!

If you enjoyed this article, read our guide to taking care of your mattress.

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