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Mattress, Proposed fix for sagging latex mattress, will it work? 28 Jan 2021 08:33 #1

We have a 10yo latex queen size mattress that appears to be in good shape. However I have been having a backache every morning for the past few months, and I suspect the mattress is to blame. My husband has no problems, but he is very slim, and I am not.
There is no obvious sagging, but when we press down on various areas, the center parts feel quite a bit softer. We have rotated and flipped this mattress regularly over the years, as we were advised to do.
I might also add that we have an adjustable base, and it’s used almost daily. It bends the latex foam at the hips and under the knees, which I suppose puts some stress on the latex foam.
If it weren’t for the pandemic we would just go out shopping and buy a new mattress, but of course we can’t do that right now.
So, I am thinking of cutting the mattress crosswise, rotating each half 180 degrees, and glueing the two halves together. That should place the firmer areas (formerly the head and foot areas) in the center where our hips would then be, and the sagging areas at each end, head and foot, where it shouldn’t matter.
I would like to remove the mattress from it’s cover (casing) first but I’m not sure we could compress it easily to put it back in the casing. The alternative would be to just cut through it with the cover in place, rotate, and fasten the two pieces back together somehow.
What do you all think? Will this work, or should we do something else?
Any comments or suggestions most appreciated.

Maggie

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Mattress, Proposed fix for sagging latex mattress, will it work? 31 Jan 2021 10:28 #2

Hey Maggie,

Welcome to the Mattress Underground :) ! Thanks for your question.

We have a 10yo latex queen size mattress that appears to be in good shape. However I have been having a backache every morning for the past few months, and I suspect the mattress is to blame. My husband has no problems, but he is very slim, and I am not. There is no obvious sagging, but when we press down on various areas, the center parts feel quite a bit softer. We have rotated and flipped this mattress regularly over the years, as we were advised to do.


Ten years is a good life span for a quality latex mattress:) ! I'm sorry to learn of your recent backache development over the past few months, Maggie, that must be quite trying for you. Perhaps if you could share a few details of your personal stats, they will help describe a bit of your background: what are both of your weights, heights, body profile type and preferred sleep position(s)? Also, what brand and model latex mattress do you have? It's good that you've followed the manufacturer's suggested maintenance schedule for your latex mattress and likely that's been helpful for the "good shape" it appears to be in.

I might also add that we have an adjustable base, and it’s used almost daily. It bends the latex foam at the hips and under the knees, which I suppose puts some stress on the latex foam.


Latex mattresses pair quite well with adjustable bases and as one of the most highly durable mattress materials , daily use of the adjustable base should not "stress" the mattress in a noticeable way. What adjustable base are you using and did you buy it the same time that you bought your latex mattress?

If it weren’t for the pandemic we would just go out shopping and buy a new mattress, but of course we can’t do that right now. So, I am thinking of cutting the mattress crosswise, rotating each half 180 degrees, and glueing the two halves together. That should place the firmer areas (formerly the head and foot areas) in the center where our hips would then be, and the sagging areas at each end, head and foot, where it shouldn’t matter.


Indeed, the current pandemic environment makes mattress shopping challenging. Showrooms are doing there part by offering appointment only services, sanitizing and other best practices, but definitely stick to limiting your shopping trips to what you and your husband are comfortable with. Phone calls with a respectable manufacturer will go a long way with your DIY questions. If you were happy overall with your current latex mattress, reaching out to that resource could be a good starting point.

If you want to cut into the latex layers, you will need a specialized saw for that task. Your latex mattress of ten years would consist of layers of varying firmnesses of latex that are glued together, and combined with the sewn cover, cutting through the mattress to rearrange the lesser used halves differently may not only harm the mattress functionally but would not necessarily "refresh" the feel of sag you are looking to avoid. For example, if the support core of the mattress uses any type of zoning, your process could actually work against you as the head and foot areas of a zoned core are softer and the mid section is zoned firmer, creating an even softer/ less supportive hip and lower back area than you have now. It does sound tempting in theory to try, but the mattress is not designed to be surgically modified by a consumer this way.

I would like to remove the mattress from it’s cover (casing) first but I’m not sure we could compress it easily to put it back in the casing. The alternative would be to just cut through it with the cover in place, rotate, and fasten the two pieces back together somehow.


Unless you are working with a zippered cover, cutting through a sewn cover could be problematic without knowing what's "under the hood", so to speak, in terms of the upper cover design. If there are comfort materials tufted into the cover, for example, their feel could be compromised when attempting to rejoin the cover as you wouldn't be able to achieve the same machine-sewn result as the manufacturer created. Also, sewing the cover back together requires a specialized machine and skills in that process. You may consider checking with one of our trusted members who specialize in mattress DIYs on how to purchase a zippered cover to replace your current one, if you do decide to go that route. And again, use of a different cover could either add firmness or a softer feel to the mattress.

What do you all think? Will this work, or should we do something else?
Any comments or suggestions most appreciated.


These are only my thoughts, Maggie. If you feel adventurous and want to take on dissecting your mattress, please do it with the caveats of (1) once it is opened, it is impossible to predict with any certainty how things will go and (2) the mattress would likely not function correctly on your adjustable base and could impair whatever warranty coverage the base may still carry. Perhaps others with a few DIY capers in their "rear view" mirror may speak up and share their thoughts with you. Good luck and let us know how things go ;) .

Sensei
Sensei(@ TMU Team)
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Mattress, Proposed fix for sagging latex mattress, will it work? 01 Feb 2021 20:05 #3

Thanks very much for your post.
To answer some of your questions.... my husband and I are both seniors, both rather tall, 5’11 and 5’8””, and weigh 145 and 150 lbs. We both sleep on our sides.

Our mattress was purchased in 2013 from ikea, here is a link that shows its composition.

www.ikea.com/us/en/p/mausund-natural-latex-mattress-medium-firm-natural-90386093/

Our adjustable base is a Leggett and Platt S-Cape. We have been very happy with it theses past 8 years.

I’m thinking we could cut into the side panel, at a corner (and tape it back together), to see just what’s inside.

Thanks again for your interest on our problem. I’ll be watching for any further comments you might have,

Maggie








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Mattress, Proposed fix for sagging latex mattress, will it work? 02 Feb 2021 05:30 #4

Just to build on what Sensei said, you can certainly do this but you will likely want to buy yourself a proper foam saw like this to do this because it looks like a 6" latex core inside the mattress which is not easy to get through otherwise and the cuts may end up very ugly (not straight or perpendicular) without it. Make sure to mark the foam well with a straight edge and marker before cutting. I would also make sure you don't put any cuts under areas where pressure is highest (stay away from the shoulder and hip areas). I would also suggest adding at least a 2" soft (18-22 ILD) talalay topper over this setup once cut to make sure you don't feel any of the areas where the foam is not joined. There's no need to glue them back together after, just fit them back into the cover and that should hold everything fine. The cover is also going to be toast once you open it so plan on needing to buy another zippable cover and don't forget to add height for the topper if you do decide to go that route. This will allow you to adjust the mattress later should you find that it doesn't quite do what you had hoped it would. Let us know how you make out.

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Mattress, Proposed fix for sagging latex mattress, will it work? 02 Feb 2021 11:28 #5

Thanks for a. Helpful response.
First, I read many times on the ‘net that Ana electric bread knife does a good job of cutting latex foam. So I ordered one. I hope it’s not too small for the job.

We did an experiment last night. We rotated the mattress, on the base, 90 degrees. That put the bottom part,, where our feet were, along the left side, where I sleep.
That left a big gap all along the bottom, where our feet rest. So we had to fill it with folded blankets and pillows, for our feet to rest on, which worked ok.

When I got up this morning.....guess what?....NO BACKACHE! I was thrilled and now I know that the sagging mattress was the problem. So I’m going to go ahead with our plan to cut and rotate the mattress, but not sure yet just how. Have to think about that. Any ideas about what would be the best way to do it?

Maggie

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Mattress, Proposed fix for sagging latex mattress, will it work? 02 Feb 2021 12:13 #6

Maggie, if you don't care how the cut looks then yes you can do the job with an electric carving knife too. I don't suggest it when dealing with latex foams over 3" because the blade gets stuck and does more vibrating than cutting and it's hard to know when the blade is perpendicular or not just by eye. It will be helpful to have someone assist you by gently opening up the cut side to allow you work the knife through the latex. If you planning to just do this the cheapest way possible and skip all the toppers and covers then I would glue the two opposite ends back together with some 3M Foam Fast 74 which comes in a spray can. You'll wan tot glue the factory edges (ie edges facing head/foot board will now be glued in the middle). It's quite aggressive so make sure you have it lined up well before pushing the two halves back together (focus on getting the outer edges lined up first then push the middle closed). Given your experiment it sounds like it will likely fix your issue so let us know how you make out.

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Mattress, Proposed fix for sagging latex mattress, will it work? 03 Feb 2021 15:05 #7

We’re still considering just how we’re going to do this, but in the meantime I have another question.
After we cut the foam, rotate it and are ready to join it back together, glueing it or not, i think I would like to use some kind of strong tape on the seam, something like masking tape, but stronger and heavier.
I know nothing about tapes like this, so would appreciate some suggestions on what to buy.
Thanks,
Maggie

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Mattress, Proposed fix for sagging latex mattress, will it work? 04 Feb 2021 09:23 #8

Maggie, unless you planning on making football pads out of your mattress then I would stay well away from using any sort of tape on foam at all. That spray adhesive I mentioned is very aggressive / strong (likely well stronger than the original foam itself). Most fabric stores carry a foam adhesive that will likely work just fine in this application as well. Specialized latex glue would be ideal but unfortunately but I haven't found any good non-commercial suppliers at all (maybe Phoenix or Sensei might know of some available to retail consumers). Make sure to follow the directions on the can and be sure you don't touch the two adhesive coated pieces together until you are sure they are lined up because once it's tacked up there is usually not much rework time after contact. Also be sure you use something to cover (an old bedsheet or cut garbage bags works well) the non-joined foam surfaces from any adhesive overspray because it's very sticky stuff.

You can see how the spray adhesive works in this video.

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Mattress, Proposed fix for sagging latex mattress, will it work? 05 Feb 2021 08:38 #9

The spray adhesive sounds like the best type to use, but we’d have a problem with that. I don’t think we could use spray anything in our apartment, and there’s is no way we could get this (very heavy) mattress outside.
Is there anything like it that we could brush on?

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Mattress, Proposed fix for sagging latex mattress, will it work? 05 Feb 2021 09:33 #10

HappyHunter wrote: The spray adhesive sounds like the best type to use, but we’d have a problem with that. I don’t think we could use spray anything in our apartment, and there’s is no way we could get this (very heavy) mattress outside. Is there anything like it that we could brush on?


There are brush on adhesives but it's quite hard to get a nice clean edge and even application (often heavier/lighter in some areas and can drip, very strong but really messy stuff to work with). You'll likely have some initial fumes from the suspension materials which allow the adhesive to be sprayable but those should flash off very quickly as the surface gets tacky. Unlike spray paint there is no residual materials floating around the room so there's no worry there at all. Make sure to put on a fan and crack a window after you have sprayed everything so any solvent are quickly dissipated.

If I were doing this in an apartment there's a couple things you need to work out first. Normally you would put down some cardboard underneath the joint area then flip both pieces of the mattress core on top of one another (lining the edges to be sprayed up with each other so they both face you). Then when spraying put a sheet/towel/cardboard on top so you can spray right to the edge without getting any adhesive on the top or bottom sleeping surfaces. Next once the adhesive is tacky you would flip them back so both joints now face each other in the correct orientation and then begin with the outside edges to start slowly pushing the joint together being sure to line everything up well, work carefully and slowly because you can't redo this process. If you are lacking strength to move the pieces around after they have been sprayed (since you don't want the adhesive touching anything until it's lined up again) then I would spray each side individually using the same technique as above except now you can simply push the two halves together. It may help to place new cardboard underneath after spaying the edges since the overspray on the cardboard may make it hard to push the ends together otherwise.

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