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What To Look For When Buying a Mattress in South Africa

Updated: Jan 17, 2023

The South African bedding industry is very dynamic. A large number of local bed manufacturers offer products equal in quality to internationally known brand.

Some on the other hand supply products which are not only a waste of money, but also a serious health concern.

How to assess the quality of a mattress?

The quality of a mattress is hard to assess. What constitutes the structure and strength of a mattress, the spring unit, foam and various support systems, are hidden behind the material that covers it.

Many customers lift the mattress, using its weight and thickness as an instrument of measure. Others push a fist through to check the resistance it offers. Unfortunately, none of these techniques are an accurate way of determining the quality of a mattress. In fact, there is no physical way of finding out.

What should I look for?

The fabric used to cover the mattress is called ticking. The use of cheap ticking such as spunbond or stitch bond is an indication of poor quality.

of the and the stitching could be a indication of the

What should you be looking for then?

First of all it is common practice in SA from all reliable manufacturers to sew a label on the bottom right hand corner of the mattress with information such as the manufacturer's name, the brand, the name, the warranty and the weight restriction of the product. The absence of this label or part of the information it should contain is a warning.

I recently saw a label that only bares the name of the product and a mention of "8 years"... 8 years of what? This is a trick to confuse the customer into beleiving it refers to the warranty. Together with all missing info, the label should clearly read "8 years warranty".

Secondly, manufacturers that offer a service warranty on their products have to provide the buyer with the terms and conditions of such warranty; either in a form of a leaflet that accompanies the bed or made available online on their website. Again, in the absence of written T&Cs... beware.

Finally, do not hesitate to ask as many question as possible to the sales consultant, including comparison between products on the floor. Mattresses are technical products unlike most furniture; a sales person should be able provide you with clear information. If vague or incoherent it is a sign that he/she either does not know the product or is trying to hide something. In both instances, walk away!

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