Mattress warranty is a confusing thing. Warranties can be prorated and non-prorated, they can be lifetime and they can last 10 years (and the latter isn't always worse), you can void them without even knowing, etc, etc. You can't just skip this part and buy a mattress without learning about the warranty — well, technically you can, but you shouldn’t do it if you want to protect your investment.
The good news is you don't need to learn all this yourself. The SleepingChoice experts have already put all the useful info about mattress warranties together. Here, you will find a full guide on mattress warranty types, on mattress defects, on what is covered and what isn't covered by a warranty, and on how to file the warranty claim. We'll also provide you with some useful tips to make your mattress last longer and talk about the warranty policies of the most popular brands, so this is definitely the guide that is worth reading. Let's start it.
Mattress warranty types and length
As we’ve just said, the mattress warranty can be prorated and non-prorated. We’ve also talked about the length of the warranty — and here, we’ll cover these two topics in depth.
P.S. We are not talking about the implied warranties here (e.g warranty of fitness/merchantability) — all the products you buy go with such warranties and these warranties work in all 50 states, so there's no point in describing them. What we'll talk about is written warranties — the ones that promise to replace/repair the product in case of certain defects of new products.
Prorated vs non-prorated
To describe non-prorated warranty is simple: if the mattress must be replaced or repaired for a reason, you don't need to pay for that repair or replacement — the only thing you pay for is transportation and mattress inspection. If you've bought a mattress that has a non-prorated warranty and you find out it has certain defects, you'll only be responsible for the shipping fee, that's all. The non-prorated coverage can be only a part of the mattress warranty — for example, some manufacturers have 15 years warranties where only 10 years are non-prorated and the other 5 years are prorated.
The prorated warranty is the one that implies you have to pay for repair/replacement. The percentage you'll need to pay typically depends on how long the warranty has been active — it's 50% after 10 years of warranty, 55% after 11 years, and 60% after 12 years of usage.
Most mattresses have 10-15 year warranties, but of course, it’s possible to find both a mattress with a 5-year warranty and a 20-year warranty mattress. As we've already said, the length of the warranty doesn't always mean that the mattress will be replaced for free up to the very end of the guarantee period — most mattresses come with a certain combination of prorated and non-prorated warranty.
Another thing you need to understand is the length of the warranty is not the same thing as the lifespan of the mattress. The manufacturer can offer a 25-year guarantee but it doesn't mean the mattress will not give out after 20+ years of usage. The same goes for the so-called “lifetime” warranties. Yes, “lifetime warranty” sounds great in terms of marketing, but in reality, it usually means that you'll be able to replace the mattress for free during the first 8-10 years, and then you’ll have to cover a certain part of the replacement cost. As always, the more years there are, the more you'll have to pay — so that “lifetime” warranty thing is actually not that perfect.
Instead of the length of the warranty, we highly recommend you pay attention to the very structure of it. In general, there are two simple rules: the longer the non-prorated coverage is and the lower the percentage is (when it comes to prorated coverage) the better the warranty terms are.
5 most popular mattress brands and their warranty policies
Each mattress brand has its own warranty policy, and you should check them before purcase. Usually, brands establish spesific warranty details either for a particular group of their mattresses or for each mattress they produce/sell. Beow you can find the general warranty conditions for some products by most famous mattress manufacturers.
Improper support (slats must be spaced less than 4 inches apart, queen and larger size frames must have center vertical support). Damage to the mattress (if it's burned, abused, or tampered with). Not the original purchaser. Removing the law tag.
Replacing the mattress is free during the first two years but it will cost $99 during the years 3-15 (transportation costs).
Fairness Replacement Option — you keep the original mattress and get a new one for 40%-80% of the original price (depends on how long have you been using it).
Commercial use, purchasing from a non-authorized retailer, physical damage, improper foundation, removing the law tag.
The Casper mattresses are protected only when purchased through Casper official website or from authorized retailers. Buying a Casper mattress (even the original one) somewhere else will void the warranty.
If you’ve just bought a defective mattress and want the manufacturer to replace it, you don’t need to worry about voiding the warranty. If you’ve been using the mattress for some time, however, things are a bit different. In short, there are a lot of factors that can void the mattress warranty — and here, we'll talk about the most common ones.
No "law tag". This tag is the proof of your purchase and the mattress guarantee will be immediately void if you remove it. It reads "do not remove" for a reason, after all.
Stains. First of all, that's because the mattress with stains is considered "unsanitary". The second reason why stains void the warranty is that some liquids can ruin the material the mattress is made of. This works even if we’re talking about the best mattress warranty!
No rotation. Some mattresses have to be flipped over every 3-6 months (it depends on the care instructions printed on the label). Obviously, if you don’t rotate such a mattress according to the instructions, your warranty claim will be rejected.
Improper support. The absolute majority of the mattress manufacturers provide instructions for the proper mattress support. In some cases, the manufacturers even provide the slat gap measurements and the necessity of extra leg support in the center of the bed, so if your bed base doesn’t meet the requirements, the warranty shall be voided. Of course, putting the mattress on the floor will most likely void the warranty, too.
Commercial use. Typically, the damage caused by commercial use (e.g in hotels or hostels) is not covered by most mattress warranties. Using the mattress commercially always leads to a warranty void — if you're going to use the mattress for such purposes, you need to register as a trade customer.
Leaving the mattress in the box. Some mattress manufacturers insist that the mattress must be unpackaged quickly and if you leave it in the box for 2-4 weeks, the warranty will be voided.
Selling the mattress to another person. As long as you buy the mattress from the authorized retailer, everything is ok. If you, say, buy it from the original owner, that will void the warranty, too.
Mattress warranty: what is covered and what is not
Most often, it's two things that are covered by the warranties: sagging and defects. However, it's not that simple — not all defects are enough to get the mattress replaced, and not every sagging mattress can be replaced or repaired. Let’s find out how it works.
Sagging. Mattresses, especially memory foam mattresses, start to sag in the long term. That's a fact and you just can't do anything about it. However, the manufacturer has to replace the mattress only if the mattress sags below a certain level of sagging. Most manufacturers will replace the mattress if the depth is 1-1.5 inches, but some warranties cover the sagging depth of 0.75 inches. The so-called "minor" sagging (0.5-1 inch) is typically not covered by the manufacturers.
Defects. Broken or loose coils (if it's an innerspring or a hybrid mattress), the coils that protrude through the fabric, bunching (this problem is more common when it comes to memory foam mattresses), torn handles — all these manufacturer defects are covered by the absolute majority of the mattress warranties.
As we've just told you, sagging that doesn't reach the minimum level is not covered — the depth may depend on the manufacturer but it's typically 1-1.5 inches. Natural tear caused by years of use (discoloration, lumpiness, etc) is not covered by most warranties, as well as scratches that were made during the transportation or by the owner.
Another thing that is not covered by the warranty is comfort. If you feel uncomfortable on your new mattress, it's sad, of course — but you can't get it replaced because of discomfort only. However, it doesn't mean you need to suffer if you don't feel comfortable on a new mattress. The thing is, most manufacturers offer a trial period which means you can return the mattress for free (sometimes, you'll have to pay for the transportation, but that's all). Typically, trial periods last about 100-150 nights, but some manufacturers, such as Nectar and DreamCloud, offer a 1-year trial period!
Filing a mattress warranty claim: step-by-step guide
To get your mattress replaced or repaired, you need to file the mattress warranty claim first. Here, we’ll tell you how to do it.
Check if your mattress warranty is still valid(if it's not a new mattress) and if it covers your issue. If everything is ok on this step, take several photos of the defects, contact the manufacturer, and send these photos. If you bought the mattress from the retailer, you'll need to contact the retailer first. If the problem is lack of support, here's the shortguideon how to make the mattress sag test to explain the situation.
Initiate the claim itself. You'll need to file some papers on this step — read everything carefully and pay attention to how much it will cost.
Wait for a mattress inspectorto come to your home to check the mattress condition. The cost depends on the inspection service — usually, it costs about $50. Don't worry about the inspection — the specialist just assesses the problem, checks the condition of the mattress (stains, improper support), and evaluates if the mattress looks defective (they measure the sagging depth to understand if the mattress sagging warranty covers this particular case). But they don't make a determination — they only provide the information to the manufacturer.
After the visit of the mattress inspector, there are two ways this situation can play out. If everything is ok, the manufacturer will replace the mattress — you’ll probably have to pay for transportation, but it depends on your warranty terms. If the manufacturer refuses to resolve your claim and you are sure that the warranty covers the defect of your mattress, contact Consumer Protection — they’ll explain how to solve this problem.
Top 4 tips to make your mattress last longer
Number one tip is to read “how to use mattress” instruction on the product you’ve bought or the instruction to the item you are going to buy. There you will find all the needed steps to take to save your mattress from quick sagging or any other common problems. Below we describe the most frequently recommended actions to prolonge the lifespan of your mattress. Check them to finish our article and have a look at the FAQ at the very end — it will answer some of the specific questions we didn’t cover above.
First of all,always use a mattress protector. It’s a must-have if you want to save your warranty. The thing is, any stain is a red flag for the mattress inspectors — stains void the warranty and that’s definitely not what you want. Well, even if we aren't talking about the warranty, buying a protector is still very important — you know, accidents happen all the time, no matter how careful you are, and purchasing a waterproof mattress protector is the best thing you can do to protect your mattress from accidents and from wear.
Use the foundation that works best with your mattress. Again, it's not about warranty only — it's also about prolonging the lifespan of your mattress. Read the instructions to understand which type of bed foundation is better in your case.
Rotate your mattresseven if it's not mentioned by the manufacturer. The thing is, rotating the mattress will help you distribute weight better on a mattress thus protecting the mattress from deformation.
Clean everything— typically, you need to clean the mattress and bedding every 2-3 weeks, but it depends on the type of mattress. Vacuuming the mattress is extremely important, too — that's how you'll protect it from dust mites, and dust mites are one of the most common reasons why people replace their mattresses. No dust mites = longer life of your mattress, that's what we're talking about.
Frequently Asked Questions
How can a mattress have a lifetime warranty?
Lifetime warranties are typically prorated after the first 8-10 years — you’ll have to pay a certain percentage (from 50%) for the replacement of your mattress.
How to claim mattress warranty?
Contact the manufacturer and make photos to explain the situation. Meet the mattress inspector, file the warranty claim, and wait until the problem is solved.
How long should a mattress warranty be?
10-15 years are enough — but length isn’t the most important factor. The warranty structure (length of the prorated and non-prorated period) is much more important.
What is limited warranty for mattress?
If only certain parts of the mattress (like only the mattress, without a cover) or only certain defects are covered, such warranty is called "limited".
How long is the warranty on a Tempurpedic mattress?
TempurPedic mattresses are covered by a 10-year warranty. There's no return or refund option, only replacement (upgrade is possible).