How to Replace a Murphy Bed Mattress (with Tips!)
Murphy beds are a great option for sleep, especially when you’re short on square footage. They're also a great choice for studio apartments and RVs or if you want to use your home exercise room as a guest bedroom too. One huge benefit of Murphy beds is that you can use any type of mattress with them; it all depends on your sleeping preference. Some people choose firm mattresses, whereas others prefer a softer type. Also, Murphy beds can be expensive, so you want to make sure you choose a cost-effective mattress as well.
To replace a murphy bed mattress first measure your existing mattress and get the dimensions. Next, remove sheets, pillows, and bedding. At this point, you can take the mattress off, store it, or transport it to the garbage dump. Next, you can purchase a new murphy bed mattress and air it out. Finally, move the murphy bed mattress onto the frame and lock it in with straps.
Getting the right Murphy bed mattress is crucial to getting comfort and support while you sleep. Unlike futons and sofa beds, Murphy beds don’t use foldable mattresses. The most suitable types of mattresses for Murphy beds are standard innerspring or memory foam mattresses. These mattresses can even stay in place, fully made up, when the bed is closed.
Over time, all mattresses wear out and begin to sag. A Murphy bed is constantly pulled down for use and lifted up when not needed, which causes more strain and wear on a mattress than usual. A worn-out mattress will undoubtedly have a negative impact on your sleep. Therefore, it is important to know when to replace your mattress, and to try to prolong its lifespan by taking care of it and protecting it.
Murphy Bed Mattress Requirements
Investing in a suitable mattress for your Murphy bed is vital. It offers comfort and a good night’s sleep, as long as the bed frame’s depth and size are able to support it. Before purchasing a mattress, make sure it matches with all the following requirements so that both bed and mattress are well-paired.
Murphy bed mattress requirements include a standard innerspring or memory foam mattress, a minimum weight of 55 pounds, a maximum thickness of 12 inches, a lack of box spring, and straps to keep the mattress secured to the Murphy bed frame.
Murphy bed mattresses should be standard innerspring or memory foam mattresses, which are comfortable, yet durable. Innerspring and memory foam mattresses can last up to ten years or longer, if well-maintained. An innerspring mattress distributes your weight evenly, while a memory foam mattress conforms to the shape of your body. Here’s an innerspring memory foam hybrid mattress that should work with Murphy beds.
Even a Tuft and Needle Memory foam mattress like this one from Amazon will work (according to the manufacturer’s instructions). The trick is to make sure the mattress doesn’t bunch up when in the vertical position and that it stays flat as much as possible.
A Murphy bed mattress should have a minimum weight of 55 pounds. The mattress should be heavy enough to ensure that the Murphy bed stays down when opened. However, make sure that you will still be able to lift the bed up. Bear in mind that Murphy beds can support up to 2500 lbs. Take a look at our Murphy bed weight capacity guide for more information.
A Murphy bed mattress should have a maximum thickness of 12 inches, and a minimum thickness of 9 inches. This depth allows enough space for your sheets to stay on your bed, even when it is closed. If your Murphy bed is not too deep, then a foam mattress will work best because it is thinner than other types of mattresses. Here’s a highly rated hybrid mattress on Amazon that fits the thickness requirements.
A Murphy bed mattress does not require a box spring. Murphy beds are equipped with a strut framework, which ensures support, stability, and even weight distribution just like a box spring. Therefore, you don’t need a box spring.
A Murphy bed mattress requires protection to prevent sliding and damage. The mattress needs to stand on-end when the bed is lifted up, and to remain in place when the bed is folded down. Use straps to keep the mattress attached to the frame and prevent swaying. To prolong the life of your mattress and protect it from wear and tear, make sure to rotate it regularly and use a mattress protector. A simple mattress protector like this one from Linenspa should do the trick.
Tips for Choosing the Best Murphy Bed Mattress
Before purchasing a mattress for your Murphy bed, consider the size and depth of the bed frame and the level of comfort you are looking for. The mattress you choose should be compatible with your bed.
In order for the mattress not to lose its shape, your best option is a memory foam mattress like this one from Amazon. Memory foam mattresses tend to be more solid and their material holds its shape longer. Make sure to take a look at these tips and tricks to using a Tempurpedic mattress with your Murphy bed.
You must also make sure that the mattress needs to fit in your Murphy bed not only when it’s unfolded, but also when it’s lifted up. Consider the dimensions of both the mattress and the bed. The height of the mattress is a critical factor in determining whether the mattress fits in the bed or not. As a general rule of thumb, Murphy beds cannot support a mattress with a thickness greater than 12 inches. Always check your specific Murphy bed requirements before purchasing a mattress. Also, be sure to check out our guide to Murphy beds for rooms with low ceilings and choosing the right Murphy bed for your tiny house for more ideas if you're still looking for the right one.
Once you know which type and thickness of mattress you need, narrow your search to specific extra features that you like or need. Mattresses come with different firmness levels, cooling technologies, or motion separation. Make sure you pick something that works best for you and your lifestyle.
How to Replace a Murphy Bed Mattress
Before replacing your Murphy bed mattress, consider its age. If it is 8 to 10 years old, sagging, or uncomfortable, you will need to replace it. However, a mattress is heavy and floppy, and may not be easy to move. You may need another person to give you a hand to lift and carry your mattress away or to lay a mattress on top of the bed frame.
Step 1. Measure your existing Murphy Bed mattress so you know its dimensions
Make sure to measure your mattress before you dispose of it. Know the exact dimensions of your mattress and get a cover with matching dimensions to protect your old mattress from dust and infestation. Then get a storage bag with adequate dimensions and store your mattress inside. Here’s a simple mattress storage bag for $20 from Amazon. Make sure that the wrapping material covers the mattress tightly and completely.
Step 2. Before Replacing Your Murphy Bed Mattress, Remove Sheets, Pillows, and Covers
Before removing your old Murphy bed mattress, make sure to remove all pillows, sheets, and covers from your Murphy bed. Then remove your Murphy bed mattress from the frame. Some mattresses have straps that help them stay tight to the bed whenever it opens or closes. Free your mattress from the straps and lift it clear of the bed frame.
Step 3. Lay your mattress flat on its side and stow it away or transport it to the garbage yard
Lay your mattress flat or on its side inside a moving vehicle to transport it away. This one’s pretty simple
Step 4. Purchase your New Murphy Bed Mattress and Air it Out
After purchasing a new mattress, you should unpack it and air it out for a couple of hours before placing it on the bed frame. Here are some tips on expanding a new memory foam mattress.
Step 5. Place your Mattress on the Murphy Bed and Lock it in With Bed Straps
Set the mattress in the frame so it’s tight against each side of the frame. Place one strap on each corner of the opened bed. Then place the straps over the mattress to hold it in place against the bed and prevent it from swaying or leaning back towards the wall when the bed is closed. This allows you to keep all your bedding in place, day and night. We've discussed how to secure a mattress to a murphy bed with straps in our article.
Tips to Replace a Murphy Bed Mattress
Tip 1. Evaluate If Your Murphy Bed Mattress Needs Replacement By Noting Any Lumps or Sagging
There is no way to prevent a mattress from deteriorating over time. On average, mattresses last 8 to 10 years.
As the mattress nears the end of its lifespan, you will start noticing signs of wear and tear such as sagging, lumps, and deteriorating coils. The constant motion when you open and close a Murphy bed causes the mattress to lose its support. After some time, your mattress will conform to the shape of your body, making it difficult to roll around or sleep in a different position. This can make you wake up tired and uncomfortable, with stiff and sore muscles. If your dust allergies are getting worse than before, this is another indication that your mattress may need to be replaced.
Signs your mattress needs to be replaced:
- Deteriorating coils
- More backaches than before
- More stiff and sore muscles than before
Make sure to also take a look at some additional tips on Murphy bed mattress size, frame size, and bedding.
Tip 2. Determine What Type of Murphy Bed Mattress You want
In general murphy beds can support mattresses of thicknesses up to 12 inches. Frames tend to be about 15 inches deep on average (unless you have a custom murphy bed frame or you’ve converted another bed like a platform bed into a murphy bed).
Besides that, any material will work well for a murphy bed mattress. See above for Murphy Bed Mattress Requirements and for tips on which materials to choose.
Tip 3. Once You’ve Replaced Your Mattress, Maintain It to Avoid the Need to Replace it Prematurely
Caring for your mattress is important if you want to protect your investment for as long as possible.
Murphy beds do not require a box spring to support a mattress; the bed’s installation and framework should be sturdy enough to support a mattress. Make sure to check the bed’s hardware and the mattress’s foundation every year so that nothing can negatively affect the mattress. Additionally, air out your mattress every few months to dry excess moisture and prevent the growth of dust mites. Because sweat, hair, skin cells, food crumbs, dust, and dirt can all get into your mattress and encourage bacterial growth, one of the best ways to protect your mattress is by using a mattress protector.
Furthermore, keep your mattress healthy by cleaning it regularly, according to the manufacturer's cleaning directions. Do not exceed your Murphy bed’s weight limit, as extra weight might damage the mattress more quickly. Make sure to rotate your mattress 180 degrees every two to six months to help promote even wear and reduce the occurrence of mattress depressions.
Summary of Mattress Maintenance Tips:
- Evaluate your mattress every year
- Air out your mattress frequently to prevent moisture build-up and dust mites
- Rotate your mattress every 2-6 months to distribute the wear and tear
- Use a mattress protector to protect against sweat, hair, skin, dust, etc.
- Clean your mattress regularly
- Do not exceed a mattresses weight limit