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Waterbeds have been around for centuries, going back as far as 3600 BC, when Persians filled mattresses made of goatskin with water. In the 19th century, hospitals used waterbeds made of rubber for patients. Fast forward to 1968, Charles Hall invented a waterbed that had a vinyl mattress, which he named “The Pleasure Pit.” He called it so because the waterbed was known to be better than other beds in quite a few ways, including in promoting proper sleep.
By the 1980s, waterbeds became increasingly popular, with 1 in 5 homes in the United States having one. However, they had fallen out of popularity once the 1990s came around – mainly due to the maintenance required. The good news is that anyone who wants a waterbed can still find them today. You can find waterbeds mostly online, but they are also available in some stores.
Types of Waterbeds
Before you find out the types of waterbeds available, you should know what exactly a waterbed is. Simply put, it is a vinyl mattress filled with water. In the 1980s, when waterbeds were at the peak of their popularity, consumers had to use a garden hose to fill up the entire bed with water. Today, tubes called “bladders” are the only thing you have to fill when you buy a waterbed. Some of the waterbeds you will find in current market can support themselves, doing away with the need for a separate frame. You will also find some innovative ones that come with temperature-control devices to heat the water.
Waterbeds come in many brands and sizes. However, you will find two main types of waterbed mattresses on the market today – Hardside and Softside.
This type of waterbed is designed with hardwoods or softwoods to help it hold its shape. In other words, Hardside waterbeds come with a frame. With bookcase-type or plain headboards, they look more like traditional beds than Softside waterbeds. This is why many consumers looking for aesthetics rather than comfort go for Hardside waterbeds rather than Softside ones. They look more sophisticated and can add to the visual appeal of a bedroom.
When you choose a Hardside waterbed, you will need to buy California-size sheets to go with it. This puts a limit on your choices when you go shopping for linens. But if you do not mind this small issue, Hardside waterbeds are the right type for you.
This type of waterbed is a popular choice among homeowners as it provides a comfortable outer edge. Softside waterbeds are designed with foam bolsters to help them hold their shape. In other words, foam surrounds the bed. A fabric casing covers the foam and is topped with a padded layer as well. All of these materials used in Softside waterbeds sit upon a well-designed upholstered box, a lot like a box spring.
Apart from the comfort they offer, ease of shopping for linens is one of the reasons that Softside waterbeds are popular among consumers. Regular-sized linen or sheet can be used with this type of waterbed.
Type of Maintenance Required for Waterbeds
The waterbed fell out of popularity in the 1990s due to a number of reasons, including the bed’s weight, the lengthy process of filling up the beds and the extensive maintenance required to take care of waterbeds and make them last as long as possible.
Although these problems are not as major as before, you do still need to perform some maintenance on waterbeds. To have and use a waterbed:
- You need to do the job of filling your waterbed yourself. When you buy one, you must bear in mind that it can be quite a tedious task to install a waterbed mattress. A king waterbed holds approximately 235 gallons of water. Installation is a drawback for many people because it is not always the easiest or most fun task to snake a garden hose into the bedroom.
- It is necessary to apply a waterbed conditioner every year. You need to do this to keep the vinyl of your waterbed supple and keep it from becoming brittle. Doing this annually helps in making the waterbed last longer.
- Although leaks are not as much of a problem as they were in the past, you do need to check and fix them from time to time. You can use a vinyl repair kit to fix leaks. These kits usually come with a vinyl repair patch and liquid cement. You can also use these kits to quickly fix and repair holes in air mattresses if you own one.
- It may be necessary that you set aside some time to drain the mattress now and then. Keep in mind that full waterbeds are extremely heavy – roughly 2000 pounds if it is a king size and slightly lesser if it is a queen. So, while the water in the mattress does not have to be changed, you will have to drain it if you are going to move a waterbed. You will need a garden hose to drain the mattress, similar to how you feel it.
Top 5 Waterbeds on the Market
Here is a look at 5 of the best waterbeds available on the market today.
This waterbed mattress comes with a 4-layer wave reduction system, which provides roughly 99% motion reduction while you are sleeping. The Boyd California King Comfort Supreme is made with a unique patented hi-loft thermal-bonded fiber coupled with a thermavinyl heat resistant bottom. It also features air-cushioned reinforced 4-layer corners to give you a long-lasting waterbed, regal foam waveless top comfort layer. The mattress also features revolutionary and 4-point memory stretch tether system. With the highest-quality heavy-duty vinyl, vacuum-molded impression top, this is one of the best waterbeds you will find nowadays.
Featuring a rigid side box frame, the InnoMax Sanctuary waterbed with full depth is a great choice. It comes with No Wave Reduction and a weightless feel that features full-motion performance and gravity-neutral fluid suspension to provide mid-body support. The T-corner lap seam construction and double reinforced corners ensure a durable waterbed mattress. The Low-Tension Mattress design of the InnoMax Sanctuary waterbed mattress combined with a zero-wave elimination system ensures that you have a comfortable waterbed that provides the support your body needs while sleeping. Go for this waterbed mattress if you are looking for a high-quality, durable waterbed that offers superior lumbar support.
Made by United States Water Mattress, this free-flow waterbed mattress will fit into a traditional California King hard side waterbed frame. The California King Free Flow Waterbed Mattress is designed to ensure comfort while you sleep. Made with heavy 100% virgin vinyl, the mattress features reinforced corners to make sure that it lasts many years. It features a Dura Heat bottom for heat transfer and an L-corner construction as well. This waterbed mattress also comes with a fill kit and conditioner to prevent bacterial and algae buildup. For a top-notch waterbed mattress, this is one of the best ones you can buy for your home.
InnoMax Genesis 800 Ultra Waveless Lumbar Support Waterbed Mattress
This waterbed mattress has many features that make it a fantastic buy, including near Waveless Performance, enhanced mid-body support system, gravity neutral fluid suspension, multi-layer wave elimination system and much more. It is puncture resistant and comes with a 4-way tethered support system. The InnoMax Genesis 800 waterbed mattress is designed for comfort and durability as well as to provide the crucial lumbar support you need while you are sleeping. Made with premium 24 mil paralyzed vinyl, this waterbed mattress is the perfect choice for anyone looking for a high-quality waterbed.
This Total Waveless waterbed mattress made with the highest quality heavy-duty vinyl is cut generously to give you contoured support. The Boyd Total Waveless Hardside waterbed mattress features double-thick corners that are reinforced to provide durability. The mattress has good lumbar support thanks to its three-layer design and a wave reduction system with two additional layers. This waterbed mattress also comes with a liner and fill-kit to help you maintain it and make sure that it lasts you a long time. When it comes to waterbed mattresses, the Boyd King Waveless Hardside Waterbed Mattress is one of the top ones available on the market today.
There are many high-quality waterbeds that you can choose from for your home. Contrary to what many people believe, waterbeds that are made nowadays are designed with your comfort and body support in mind. They are made with materials of the highest quality to give you a product that is easy to maintain and lasts a very long time. With the advanced and innovative technology used to make today’s waterbed mattresses, finding a top-notch waterbed with amazing features is not a problem at all. If you want a high-quality waterbed for your home, check out these top ones available on the market to get an idea of what you should look for and get great value for your money.