Adjustable Bed Reviews

The term ‘adjustable bed’ refers to any bed base that can be raised or lowered to create different sleeping positions. Adjustable beds were first used in hospitals to accommodate patients with injuries that required an angled sleep surface. They also promote circulation and help reduce pain and swelling, making them optimal for people recovering from medical procedures.

In recent years, a number of mattress manufacturers have started selling customizable bed bases that share the same properties as those used in healthcare settings. Standard adjustable models can be inclined or declined at both the head and foot of the bed, resulting in multiple profile options for the sleeper’s upper and lower body. Other functions may include massaging, zero-gravity presets, anti-snore settings, and silent alarms. Most adjustable beds sold today come with remote controls, and some models can be adjusted using apps on wireless devices.

This guide will discuss the benefits and disadvantages of purchasing and using an adjustable base, some important buying considerations, and our picks for the best models of 2018. First, let’s discuss some common features of today’s adjustable bed bases.

Functions and Characteristics of Adjustable Beds

By definition, an adjustable base is segmented in at least one place with hinges controlling the position changes. Although adjustable bed construction and performance varies significantly by brand and model, most adjustable bases sold today are designed to do the following:

  • Incline the head and torso by roughly 58 to 80 degrees.
  • Incline the lower body by roughly 30 to 45 degrees, though lower body adjustment is not available with some models.
  • Support at least 400 pounds, though some models can support up to 800 to 850 pounds.
  • Adjust settings using either a connected, wired remote or wireless remote control.

Additionally, an adjustable bed may include the following features:

  • Customizable height: Some models can be adjusted at the legs to increase or decrease the overall height. In some cases, leg extensions are sold separately.
  • Dual adjustment: The bed may be split lengthwise down the middle to provide customizable settings for both sides of the bed.
  • Zero-gravity preset: In the zero-gravity position, the legs are elevated higher than the head to create an S-shaped sleep surface that simulates zero-g conditions. This position is associated with enhanced pain and pressure relief, and may be ideal for people with conditions like lower back pain or high blood pressure.
  • Anti-snore preset: Many sleepers snore because their head is not elevated. An anti-snore preset allows sleepers to automatically raise the head to their desired profile at the push of a button.
  • Timed adjustment: This feature is ideal for sleepers who tend to adjust their position throughout the night. Adjustable beds with a sleep timer will readjust to an even surface after the preset number of minutes or hours have elapsed.
  • Memory position: With one-touch remote technology, some adjustable beds will immediately shift to the sleeper’s favorite position. Adjustable beds may offer as many as four different memory position presets.
  • Retention system: Retainer bars are often affixed to various points of the bed to keep the mattress from slipping off the base. Most adjustable beds have four retainer bars, two at the head and two at the foot or one at each corner, while others have a single bar at the foot of the bed. Additionally, some models forego the retainer bars completely, and instead use an internal hook-based system to keep the mattress in place.
  • Wall-hugging technology: This feature eases the transition into bed by gently lowering the sleeper’s body as the bed inclines. The amount of space between the wall and the bed remains the same.
  • Headboard brackets: The adjustable bed may come with metal brackets that can be used to attach a headboard to the base, or the brackets may be purchased separately.
  • Built-in massage: The base is designed to create a rippling wave effect on the surface. Most models with this feature allow users to adjust the strength of the waves.
  • Silent alarm: Rather than using loud noises or music to wake up sleepers, some adjustable beds feature silent alarms that wake sleepers with gentle vibrations or wave-like sensations.
  • Lighting: Some adjustable beds feature lights beneath the base that can be turned on or off using remote and wireless controls.
  • A/C plugs and USB ports: An adjustable bed may feature as many as 10 built-in plug outlets and/or USB ports that allow sleepers to charge various devices while they sleep.
  • App accessibility: Although remote controls are standard, some adjustable beds allow users to program settings using apps on their phone, tablet, or other wireless devices.

Pros and Cons of Adjustable Beds

Some notable benefits of using an adjustable bed base include the following:

  • Pain relief: Adjustable beds are often able to alleviate pain and pressure throughout the body, due to their customizable comfort, support, and massage settings. This makes them highly suitable for sleepers with physical conditions that cause chronic pain, including arthritis, fibromyalgia, scoliosis, and restless legs syndrome. By elevating the head and legs, adjustable beds may also help improve circulation.
  • Reduced snoring: Customizable head elevation can significantly reduce snoring, and may be particularly helpful for people with sleep apnea and other disorders that are linked to snoring. Some mattresses feature a dedicated ‘anti-snore’ setting that can adjust the head to multiple positions and angles.
  • Universal comfort: Because they can be programmed into many different positions, most adjustable beds provide profiles and surfaces that are comfortable to any sleeper regardless of their height, weight, or preferred sleep position.
  • Dual adjustment: Bed bases that are split down the middle are ideal for couples with different profile preferences. Most adjustable beds are available in a Split King size, which is essentially two Twin Xl-size bases joined together. Split Queen and Split California King sizes are available for select models, as well.
  • Wireless controls: Whether programmed with a remote control or wireless app, most adjustable beds sold today allow users to customize and adjust without using cords or outlets. Very few models sold today feature wired remotes.

Disadvantages and drawbacks associated with adjustable beds include:

  • High cost: Although some models are available at low price-points, most adjustable beds cost anywhere between $1,000 and $3,500. The quality of the base, as well as the number of settings and built-in features, typically increase with price.
  • Short lifespan: Due to their electrical components, malfunctions and breakdowns are fairly common among adjustable bed owners. Repairing these bases may also be costly and time-consuming due to warranty terms (see next section).
  • Noise potential: Although some models are fairly quiet, most adjustable beds feature electric motors and metal hinges. These components, when used together, can produce a fair amount of noise while adjusting positions.
  • Heavy weight: Adjustable bases typically weigh at least 100 pounds, and some weigh 300 pounds or more. This makes them fairly difficult to move and maneuver.
  • Compatibility issues: Some mattress model types, such as innersprings and hybrids, may not be used with certain adjustable beds; other mattress types, such as memory foam and latex, are generally compatible with most adjustable bases.
  • Owner assembly: Putting together an adjustable bed can be difficult and time-consuming, although a few brands offer White Glove delivery that includes in-home assembly.

Return Policy and Warranty Considerations for Adjustable Bed Shoppers

In addition to the other cons listed above, return policies and warranty coverage are two common complaints among adjustable bed owners.

Return policies: Most mattresses sold today offer a ‘sleep trial,’ which allows purchasers to test out the bed for a certain length of time (typically 90 to 365 nights), and then return the mattress for a refund or exchange it if they are not satisfied with how it feels or performs.

Adjustable base brands, on the other hand, do not typically offer sleep trials, and many also prohibit returns. Some allow buyers to exchange the base for a different model, but this often results in expensive shipping and handling fees, as well as possible upgrade charges. If returns are allowed, the buyers should still expect to pay a restocking fee. This alone can cost hundreds of dollars.

Warranty coverage: The warranty of an adjustable bed may span anywhere from three to 40 years in length. Longer warranties seemingly provide a better financial cushion for owners, but many owners are misled by coverage terms like ‘nonprorated’ and ‘prorated.’

Nonprorated warranty coverage means that the bed manufacturer will repair or replace a defective base at no cost to the owner, apart from shipping and handling fees in some cases. Prorated coverage, on the other hand, means that the owner must pay a certain percentage of the original base cost in order to repair or replace the product when a defect arises. Prorated charges often increase with each year of ownership. In some cases, a 20-year warranty may only feature one to two years of nonprorated coverage.

For example: let’s say an adjustable base that costs $2,000 comes with a 20-year warranty. The first three years are nonprorated. Beginning in year four, the owner is required to pay 20% of the original price ($400) in order to have it repaired or replaced. This prorated charge will increase by increments of 5% for each passing year. In year five, the owner will pay $500; in year six, they will pay $600; and so on. By year 15, the owner will be required to spend 75% of the original price to repair or replace their defective base.

These charges can add up to a significant financial investment for owners. Bottom line: adjustable bed shoppers should make sure their selected brand and model have return policies and warranty coverage plans that are acceptable to them before finalizing their purchase.

Best Adjustable Beds: Brands and Models

Now that we have discussed how adjustable beds look, feel, and function, let’s look at some of the top-rated adjustable bases according to owners.

BrandAmerisleepBeautyRestLeggett & Platt
ModelAmerisleep Adjustable BedSmartmotion 1.0Smartmotion 2.0Smartmotion 3.0Prodigy 2.0S-Cape 2.0Falcon 2.0+
Cost (est.)$1,800 to $3,600Starts at $1,000Starts at $1,500Starts at $1,800$1,500 to $2,900$1,100 to $2,100$800 to $1,500
SizesTwin XL
Full
Queen
Split King
Twin XL
Queen
Split King
Twin XL
Queen
Split King
Twin XL
Queen
Split King
Twin
Twin XL
Full
Full XL
Queen
King
Cal. King
Twin
Twin XL
Full
Full XL
Queen
Split King
Split Cal. King
Twin
Twin XL
Full
Full XL
Queen
Split Queen
Split Cal. King
Base Weight (est.)N/A120 to 280 lbs140 to 290 lbs160 to 300 lbs140 to 280 lbs135 to 290 lbs120 to 220 lbs
Weight Limit700 lbs650 lbs850 lbs850 lbs700 lbs850 lbs850 lbs
RemoteWirelessWirelessWirelessWirelessWirelessWirelessWireless
Head Lift58°60°60°60°60°58°58°
Foot lift44°45°45°45°45°44°44°
Leg AdjustUp to 4″3″, 6″ or 9″4″ to 8″3″, 5″ or 8″6″ to 10″6″ to 10″6 to 10″
Dual AdjustYesYesYesYesYesYesYes
Zero-GNoYesYesYesNoYesNo
Anti-snoreYesNoYesYesYesYesNo
Timed AdjustYesNoNoNoYesNoNo
Memory Positions4023620
Retention SystemHooksHooksHooksHooks1 bar at base1 bar at baseHooks
Wall hugYesNoNoYesYesYesYes
Compatible w/ Headboard brackets?YesYesYesYesYesYesYes
MassageYesNoYesYesYesYesYes
Silent AlarmYesNoNoNoYesNoNo
LightingYesNoNoNoYesYesYes
Plugs/Ports8 ports0044 ports00
AppYesYesYesYesYesYesYes
Sleep Trial?NoNoNoNoNoNoNo
Warranty Length20 years1 to 10 years1 to 10 years1 to 10 years25 years25 years25 years
Nonprorated/Prorated10/10VariesVariesVaries3/223/223/22
Customer Satisfaction Rating91% (208 customer reviews)92% (28 customer reviews)89% (22 customer reviews)97% (16 customer reviews)90% (133 customer reviews)92% (192 customer reviews)91% (26 customer reviews)
BrandLucidMantuaPurpleReverie
ModelL300Rize Contemporary IIPurple PowerBase5D9T
Cost (est.)$600 to $800$1,400 to $2,500$1,400 to $2,800$1,200 to $2,400$1,900 to $3,000
SizesTwin XL
Queen
Split King
Twin XL
Full
Queen
Split Queen
Split King
Twin XL
Queen
Split King
Twin
Twin XL
Full
Queen
Split Queen
King
Split King
Cal. King
Split Cal. King
Twin XL
Full
Queen
King
Split King
Split Cal. King
Base Weight (est.)120 to 145 lbs160 to 250 lbs115 to 230 lbs165 to 330 lbs150 to 300 lbs
Weight Limit750 lbs850 lbs850 lbs850 lbs850 lbs
RemoteWirelessWirelessWirelessWirelessWireless
Head Lift60°70°N/A70°N/A
Foot Lift45°47°N/A47°N/A
Leg AdjustNoNo3″, 5″ or 8 1/4″3″, 5 1/4″ or 8 1/4″No
Dual AdjustYesYesYesYesYes
Zero-GYesYesYesYesYes
Anti-snoreNoYesYesYesYes
Timed AdjustNoNoNoNoNo
Memory Positions132+22
Retention SystemHooks2 head bars, 2 foot barsHooks4 corner barsHooks
2 bars included
Wall hugNoYesNoYesYes
Compatible w/ Headboard brackets?NoYesNoYesYes
MassageNoYesYesYesYes
Silent AlarmNoNoNoYesYes
LightingYesYesYesNoYes
Plugs/Ports4 ports2 plugsBoth02 ports
AppNoNoNoNoYes
Sleep Trial?NoNoNoNoNo
Warranty Length10 years20 years20 years20 years20
Nonprorated/ProratedAll nonprorated5/155/153/175/15
Customer Satisfaction Rating93% (123 customer reviews)90% (17 customer reviews)88% (299 customer reviews)93% (36 customer reviews)91% (19 customer reviews)
BrandSaatvaSleep Science (Costco)Tempur-Pedic
ModelLinealAdjustable BaseQ SeriesTEMPUR-Ergo PlusTEMPUR-Ergo PremierTEMPUR-Up Foundation
Cost (est.)$1,200 to $2,500$1,000 to $1,600$530 to $1,000$1,200 TO $2,400$1,900 TO $3,800$700 to $1,400
SizesTwin
Twin XL
Full
Queen
King
Split King
Cal. King

 

Twin XL
Queen
Split King
Split Cal. King
Twin XL
Queen
Split King
Split Cal. King
Twin
Twin XL
Full
Queen
King
Split King
Cal. King
Split Cal. King
Twin
Twin XL
Full
Queen
Split Queen
King
Split King
Cal. King
Split Cal. King
Twin
Twin XL
Full
Queen
King
Split King
Cal. King
Split Cal. King
Base Weight (est.)140 to 185 lbs135 to 265 lbs90 to 180 lbs110 to 140 lbs170 to 235 lbs115 to 150 lbs
Weight Limit700 lbs700 lbs600 lbs650 lbs650 lbs600 lbs
RemoteWirelessWirelessWirelessWirelessWirelessWired
Head Lift58°N/AN/A70°70°55°
Foot Lift44°N/AN/A40°37°Lower half cannot be elevated or lowered
Leg Adjust6″ to 10″3″, 6″ or 9″No2″
Leg extensions sold separately
No
Leg extensions sold separately
No
Leg extensions sold separately
Dual AdjustYesYesYesYesYesYes
Zero-GYesYesNoNoNoNo
Anti-snoreNoNoNoNoNoNo
Timed AdjustNoNoNoNoNoNo
Memory Positions320240
Retention System4 corner bars2 side bars, 2 foot bars1 foot bar1 foot bar1 foot bar1 foot bar
Wall hugYesNoNoNoYesNo
Compatible w/ headboard brackets?YesYesYesYesYesYes
MassageYesYesNoNoYesNo
Silent AlarmNoNoNoNoNoNo
LightingYesNoNoNoNoNo
Plugs/Ports000000
AppYesNoNoNoNoNo
Sleep Trial?NoCan be returned anytime if purchased at CostcoCan be returned anytime if purchased at CostcoNoNoNo
Warranty Length25 years1 year in-home
Lifetime on mechanism
1 year in-home
Lifetime on mechanism
25 yearsLifetime15 years
Nonprorated/Prorated5/205 years nonprorated1 year nonprorated3/225 years nonprorated5/10
Customer Satisfaction Rating92% (66 customer reviews)87% (32 customer reviews)85% (17 customer reviews)93% (27 customer reviews)93% (53 customer reviews)84% (35 customer reviews)

Conclusion

Now that you’re ready to browse and compare different adjustable bed brands and models, here is a final checklist of factors and features to consider:

Construction

  • How much does the base weigh?
  • How much sleeper weight can the base support?
  • Does the base offer dual customization for couples?
  • Is the base available in a size that corresponds to your current mattress?
  • Is the base compatible with your current mattress, or will you need to purchase a new mattress?
  • Is the remote control wired or wireless?
  • How many degrees will the bed incline at the upper and lower body?
  • What is the base height (including legs)?
  • Can the leg height be adjusted, or are the legs fixed?
  • Can leg extensions be purchased?
  • Is the base sold with or compatible with headboard brackets?
  • Does the base use retention bars or internal retention hooks to keep the mattress in place?

Features

  • Does the adjustable base include:
    • Zero-gravity presets that elevate the legs higher than the head?
    • Anti-snore presets that elevate the head?
    • Re-adjustment presets that return the base to a flat surface after a certain amount of time has elapsed
    • One or more memory position presets?
    • Wall-hugging technology that eases the transition in and out of bed?
    • Built-in massage capabilities using wave sensations?
    • Silent alarms for gentle wake-up?
    • Lighting beneath the bed?
    • A wireless app that can be used to adjust the settings, in addition to remote controls?

Buying considerations

  • How much does the base cost?
  • Is the base available through more than one manufacturer or retailer — and if so, do the prices vary by vendor?
  • Is owner assembly required, or is White Glove delivery with in-home professional assembly available?
  • Does the manufacturer or retailer offer a sleep trial?
  • Will the seller accept returns?
  • What is the warranty length?
  • How much of the warranty is nonprorated/prorated?