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a new topper for a sleep number bed? 14 Sep 2015 09:58 #1

My husband and I have been sleeping happily on our sleep number bed for 16 years (a long time, I know!) but the pillow top was way overdue for a change. I managed to remove it without destroying the envelope of the bed and I know that one option is to send it to a company in PA that makes new pillowtops for sleep numbers. BUT, I don't really want a new, attached pillowtop that will eventually wear out and stain and need to be replaced. I'd much rather add a topper that can be flipped and changed by itself. I actually bought a Leesa mattress to try but we truly did not like it. It initially felt too soft and by morning felt too hard, if that makes any sense. When I was dismantling the sleep number to try the Leesa, I noticed that the pillowtop was the only component that was truly worn out. Everything else is pretty much like new. So, rather than try yet another mattress, I thought I'd try to salvage the sleep number. We tried sleeping on the bed with just a new, fluffy mattress pad but it was really too hard that way. We are not fans of memory foam at all, too hot and we don't like the sinking feeling. It seems that a latex topper might be just the thing but I've also seen a microcoil topper at IKEA that looks interesting. My husband sleeps hot so whatever would keep him cooler would be best. Plus our small dog sleeps at the foot of the bed and he's a little furnace as well. Both the latex toppers I've looked at and the microcoils are around $250.so neither is a better deal than the other. Any wise thoughts?

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a new topper for a sleep number bed? 14 Sep 2015 12:40 #2

Hi Amity,

I noticed that the pillowtop was the only component that was truly worn out. Everything else is pretty much like new. So, rather than try yet another mattress, I thought I'd try to salvage the sleep number. We tried sleeping on the bed with just a new, fluffy mattress pad but it was really too hard that way. We are not fans of memory foam at all, too hot and we don't like the sinking feeling. It seems that a latex topper might be just the thing but I've also seen a microcoil topper at IKEA that looks interesting. My husband sleeps hot so whatever would keep him cooler would be best. Plus our small dog sleeps at the foot of the bed and he's a little furnace as well. Both the latex toppers I've looked at and the microcoils are around $250.so neither is a better deal than the other. Any wise thoughts?


The upper layers of a mattress are usually the weakest link in the mattress and will tend to soften and break down before the deeper support layers or components of the mattress so your experience certainly isn't unusual so it makes a lot of sense to try replacing the top layer of your mattress before replacing the entire mattress.

The first "rule" of mattress shopping (or topper shopping) is to always remember that you are the only one that can feel what you feel on a mattress (or a mattress/topper combination) and there are too many unknowns, variables, and personal preferences involved that are unique to each person to use a formula or for anyone to be able to predict or make a specific suggestion or recommendation about which mattress or topper or combination of materials and components would be the best "match" for you in terms of "comfort" or PPP (Posture and alignment, Pressure relief, and Personal preferences) or how a mattress or mattress/topper combination will "feel" to you based on specs (either yours or a mattress) or "theory at a distance" that can possibly be more accurate than your own careful testing (using the testing guidelines in step 4 of the tutorial) or your own personal sleeping experience (see mattress firmness/comfort levels in post #2 here ).

While it's not possible to make specific suggestions because of all the many variables involved that are unique to each person and your own experience is the only way to know for certain whether any mattress/topper combination will be a good "match" for you in terms of PPP ... there is more information about choosing a topper in post #2 here and the topper guidelines it links to that can help you use your sleeping experience as a reference point and guideline to help you choose the type, thickness, and firmness for a topper that has the least possible risk and the best chance for success. It also includes a link to a list of some of the better online sources for toppers I'm aware of as well.

Assuming that the quality/durability of a topper is suitable for your body type ... the choice between different types of toppers would be more of a preference and budget choice than a "better/worse" choice.

Latex is certainly a high quality and durable material that would be well worth considering and a microcoil topper is also be a durable component as well if you prefer the more "springy" feel of microcoils. You can read more about microcoils in this article and in post #8 here and post #2 here .

Again ... I would always keep in mind that the only reliable way to know for certain whether a topper you purchase will be a good "match" for you in terms of PPP (Posture and alignment, Pressure relief, and Personal preferences) in combination with your mattress will be based on your own personal sleeping experience so the return/exchange policy with any topper purchase can be one of the most important parts of the "value" of a topper purchase.

Phoenix
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Last edit: by phoenix. Reason: Updating link to https: status

a new topper for a sleep number bed? 15 Sep 2015 08:56 #3

Thanks for your detailed replay, Phoenix. Sources for the microcoils seem to be quite limited and I haven't seen one that has an actually return policy. Lots more options for latex. In the mean time, I am experimenting with layers we already own. I unzipped the top cover of the mattress and removed the polyfoam egg crate that covered the air bladders. I added a 3" memory foam pad that we already owned (and hadn't liked sleeping directly on). That got zipped inside. Then I covered the mattress in a temperature regulating pad from IKEA that is not plush at all, almost more like a mat but it's definitely cool. On top of that I've got the puffy quilted new mattress pad. That arrangement worked well last night. The memory foam is far enough under other layers as to not be hot and we can still feel the changes in firmness in the air bladders through the foam. The puffy pad gives me the pillowy feel I like without feeling like a sinkhole. We'll see if this works. I assume all these comfort layers will eventually wear out but they are easily replaced and not too expensive. I was surprised at how well the sleep number components had held up, there is no reason to replace them as long as the pump doesn't die or the bladders don't leak. I personally really like the option of changing the firmness of my mattress at will so I like the sleep number. But it's all very individual, isn't it?
Thanks again!

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a new topper for a sleep number bed? 15 Sep 2015 11:10 #4

Hi Amity,

Thanks for your detailed replay, Phoenix. Sources for the microcoils seem to be quite limited and I haven't seen one that has an actually return policy.


Microcoils are a much more limited choice for a topper and I also haven't seen one that has a return policy either.

Thanks for the update ... and it's good to hear that your experimentation and trial and error seems to be improving your sleeping experience :).

Phoenix
Researching for a mattress?... Be sure to read The Mattress Shopping Tutorial.
Click here for TMU Discount Codes if purchasing from Our Trusted Members.
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Last edit: by phoenix.

a new topper for a sleep number bed? 18 Jan 2018 09:52 #5

Amity,
I am very curious to know of your feelings on your revitalization of your Sleep Number bed.
Your sleeping arrangement is mine! However, we are currently on a traditional coil spring mattress that we will be abandoning. OUR THOUGHTS.. Buy a NEW Sleep Number Bed!
However, they have Good - Better - Best. The BASE-Air Bladders are all the same. The rise in Modle/Cost is; 1. The Top (that you replaced). The entry level C2 has only 1" of foam under a quilted zip open top. C4 2" or 2 1/2" of foam... a couple more layers at p5. Then in i8 some additional foam upgrades under/around/on top of the base bladder. 2. TECHNOLOGY! Electronics! Feedback from the Air Control System from Model C4 and up to the NEW introduction of their 360 line of beds.

My thought, to not go broke $$$, 1. Buy the C2 or C4 and immediately put my own TOPPERS on it.
Or Buy a p5 or i8 with there Toppers built in, and as needed replace later.

What to do?

What specific modle of Sleep Number Bed do you have? How thick is/was the foam you initially removed/replaced?

Thanks, mjvr2c

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a new topper for a sleep number bed? 18 Jan 2018 10:40 #6

Hi there mjvr2c,

Our "new and improved" sleep number bed didn't last long in our bedroom. The first foam I bought was WAY too firm, a high density poly with ILD 36 or so. I also tried 4" of memory foam (hated it) and 2" of something called "serene foam" from Costco. Nothing worked for us. The hubs and I decided to go to a king bed and we bought a hybrid with a zip open top that I have endlessly tweaked since buying it but have finally found the right combination of zoned latex and fiber batting.

That said, the air bladders and pump on the sleep number were in perfect condition and I thought about selling them since they didn't seem like trash. My younger teenage son decided he wanted the queen bed and that he'd be more than happy with whatever foam we could put on top. So he's been sleeping on it for the last few years with the 2" of the high density foam zipped into the envelope over the air bladders (original 1" foam discarded, it's a tight fit but it works), then the 4" of memory foam, then a cheapy egg crate, then a couple of mattress pads to try to create some distance from the sweaty memory foam. He loves it. It's way too squishy for me but he's an athlete so he loves sinking into it at night. I didn't actually replace the pillow top, I was able to remove the old foam and batting and top layer while keeping the very thin lining layer that was attached to the zipper. But you can buy replacement pillow tops.

All that said, if I were to buy a new sleep number (and I've thought about it when my coil/foam wasn't working for me), I would buy the cheapest one, then add my own topper consisting of soft latex zipped into a topper cover that was quilted with wool. I have found a wool mattress pad to be amazingly better than anything else I've tried in terms of getting overheated at night. I would also look into the air beds that have a separate lumbar adjustment but that's just me. I have to assume that the foams you pay so much for with sleep number are middling, not awesome, and I personally like to be able to flip/rotate/replace whenever I want to so I'm firmly in the topper camp now. But, like I said, that's me and my experience and yours could be totally different.

Good luck with it!

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a new topper for a sleep number bed? 18 Jan 2018 20:02 #7

Hi mjvr2c.

Welcome to our Mattress Forum! :)

You may have seen this already, but just in case you didn’t here are some of my thoughts and comments about air mattresses here and in this article. which you already visited. While any mattress can be a good match for a specific person because each person's needs and preferences or the criteria that are most important to them can be very different ... in general terms I would tend to avoid them unless there is a very compelling reason that an airbed would be a better choice in "real life" (outside of the many "marketing stories" that you will hear about them) than the many other options or types of mattresses that are available to you.

Fixing a broken topper on a an existing air bladder is one thing, but as air bladders go this is not something that I usually recommend and again adding a topper to it is a process of trial and error. If you chose to go this way and are committed to an airbed and are convinced that there are no other types of mattresses that will meet their criteria then there are some other airbed options that are listed in post #3 here that may be much better quality/value choices than Sleep Number/Select Comfort.

As far as instructions for selecting a topper, there is more information about choosing a topper in post #2 here and the topper guidelines it links to, which along with a conversation with a reliable and knowledgeable supplier (that can provide you with good information about how their toppers compare to each other or to other toppers they are familiar with that are available on the market), can help you use your sleeping experience as a reference point and guideline to help you choose the type, thickness, and firmness for a topper that has the least possible risk and the best chance for success.

Because of the uncertainty involved with purchasing a topper where you can't test the combination in person ... a good exchange/return policy can also reduce the risk of an online topper purchase so I would also make sure you are comfortable with the options you have available after a purchase to exchange or return the topper and any costs involved just in case a topper you choose also doesn't turn out as well as you hoped for. There are links to topper suppliers and some with return policies in the link I provided in the previous paragraph.

I deleted your duplicate post from another thread because posting the same question in multiple threads on the forum and it makes it quite difficult to manage, reference input, keep track, and accurately answer your questions.

I hope this helps and I look forward to hear what you decide.

Phoenix
Note to Amity: Thanks for sharing your insights and experience with your system. I am glad that the old Sleep Number with all the additions and adjustments work well for your son and that you gained enough experience and understanding to tweak your new mattress to suit your needs :)
Researching for a mattress?... Be sure to read The Mattress Shopping Tutorial.
Click here for TMU Discount Codes if purchasing from Our Trusted Members.
For any mattress questions Ask An Expert on our forum

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Last edit: by phoenix.

a new topper for a sleep number bed? 20 Jan 2018 12:09 #8

Phoenix,
Thank you for your reply and welcome! The detail in your response was greatly appreciated and convincing. Now I have a problem that I hope your expertise in this industry could help me with. Some years ago when my wife and I first explored a new bed we were leaning toward a sleep number. We found them too cost prohibitive. So budget kept us from making the decision teo years ago. So we stayed in our old mattress. For Christmas or children all put some money together, recalling that we were looking into sleep number beds, they gave us a $1600 gift card to Sleep number. Again, after hearing from you and doing some research of my own here and at sleep like the dead.com, I have decided that a sleep number bed is not the best option. Especially since we would need to add about another 1000 to 2000 to get into a comfortable/acceptable model of Sleep Number. However in contacting sleep number, they refused to refund the $1600! I have apesled all the way to what is called CAM corporate account management at sleep number. On one occasion I was told they would refund, but then we attempted to get the refund only for someone else to interview and stop it. They said there are no refunds on gift cards! The appeal was exhaustive, frustrating, and very angering. They are HORRIBLE to deal with. As I now feel held hostage with a $1600 Gift Card, what are my options? Given your expertise in the industry what alternatives do I have?
Mjvr2c

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Last edit: by mjvr2c. Reason: Corrections and additions.

a new topper for a sleep number bed? 19 Jan 2020 13:17 #9

Hi,
I'm a new member, and I am adding to this thread since the New Topic option is currently unavailable and this topic seems most like my question.

Some background:
We have been in search for a new mattress for a few years. We have tried an all foam (Tuft and Needle), and some hybrids (Amore Bed and another one I can't remember). We didn't like any of them. My husband prefers firm, I prefer soft, so we were considering some dual sided mattresses before we finally splurged (for us) on a Sleep Number. We bought the cheapest model because our budget was only about $1K. My husband was done with mattress shopping so we went ahead and bought the clearance model that we can't return. We almost instantly regretted it! We got a 4" topper at Sams (3" memory foam, 1" down alternative) that helps a little with comfort. Now that I've done a little research on here and learned about the core and comfort layers, I feel like, for me, I need a better or more comfort layers to relieve pressure points. The topper we bought doesn't cut it. I also sleep hot, but that's not as big of a deal for me as the pressure points.

So - should we find a better topper or more to relieve pressure points?
Or - should we try to sell/scrap the sleep number and try something different? If you have any suggestions for what might work for us with our dual preferences, please share!

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a new topper for a sleep number bed? 19 Jan 2020 13:50 #10

Sorry to hear about your issues and I have some suggestions for your consideration. Since you and your husband have such different firmness preferences and you've already committed to the non-returnable Sleep Number I would try to address the pressure point issues with a better topper. Sam's Club has an excellent return policy for their members so first you should try to return the memory foam topper.

You'd likely be better off with a latex topper which also breathes much better than memory foam so you should sleep cooler on it. There are several suppliers of latex toppers who are members of TMU forum and would be best qualified to recommend what height and ILD rating would be best for you and your husband. You can each set the Sleep Number to your preferred firmness and then the topper can provide comfort to relieve pressure point pain. I'd suggest working with a seller who can accommodate an exchange or return in case you have some trouble finding the right match for your preferences.

Hope this helps, and you can contact specific sellers shown in the member list of TMU or in their Expert sections of the forum to discuss your needs and get their specific recommendations.

Best of luck! - Bill

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