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Durability testing of beds and mattresses

Bed designers and manufacturers often turn to SATRA for assistance during the design and product-proving process.

Image © Colleen Coombe | Dreamstime

Before new beds are released onto the market, designers and manufacturers are often interested in the durability of the prototype product and how it performs during simulated use. To supply such information, SATRA uses a variety of test methods to provide data which can then be used to give answers or judgements on the performance or characteristics of the bed.

Durability assessments

Durability of the mattress is assessed using a fatigue test machine incorporating a large round roller, which is operated according to the test method laid down in BS EN 1957:2012 – ‘Furniture – Beds and mattresses'. Test methods for the determination of functional characteristics’. This ‘rapid bed test’ in BS EN 1957:2012 ensures that products are ‘fit for purpose’ before they reach the showroom by subjecting the mattress and/or the bed base to 30,000 cycles at a rate of 16±2 cycles per minute. The firmness and hardness of the sleeping surface is determined by calculations from a special force-measuring indentor before and after the main mattress rolling part of the test (figure 1). The overall bed construction is assessed for the occurrence of any problems, including broken springs, broken stitching and tufts, displaced fillings and rucked or loose ticking. The whole process can be completed within one week after suitable conditioning has been carried out.

Figure 1: The BS EN 1957:2012 bed test

BS EN 1725:1998 – ‘Domestic furniture – Beds and mattresses. Safety requirements and test methods’ includes test requirements to ensure the safety of beds and, in particular, that the bed base is fit for purpose. The tests can be applied to the bed base with a standard mattress or with the mattress supplied with the bed base. Depending on whether the bed base and mattress are supplied as a set or separately, a series of impact and static tests are applied to the frame, mattress support structure (including springs, slats, webbings and sheet material), and various points of the mattress, to assess the strength and durability. Particularly useful is the ‘durability of bed edge test’, carried out for 5,000 cycles and which determines whether sitting on the edge of a product will, over time, have a detrimental effect on performance. This test method can be adapted to help with the evaluation of beds where the designer has been concerned about the effects of prolonged sitting on the bed while watching television. Here, both static and fatigue loads can be carried out in the areas specified by the client.

How can we help?


Please click here for information on SATRA's furniture testing services. SATRA can provide help, advice and consultancy for most bed testing and complaint issues – email to discuss how we can help your company.