* Prices may differ from that shown
We were originally very pleased with our double Aerobed and took it camping approx 4 times. On our last trip (the 5th time it was used), when we blew the bed up it had a huge bubble in the middle as it appears that one of the supports from inside has become detached. It makes the bed unusable and on emailing aerobed they were most unhelpful as the bed is 15 months old. We did point out that it has been in storage for 6 months and has only been used a couple of times but they were not interested.
My advice is not to buy one of these beds as they are very expensive and I would have expected them to be more supportive.
If they were prepared to repair the bed free of charge or even for a nominal fee we would have been satisfied but they weren't
We are a family of 5 who love camping; well although I do love camping I do like to be comfortable!! When we were away in Ireland last year, my son somehow ruined the old airbed he shares with his sister - being the generous parents we are, we gave them ours, then shot to Argos to get smoething better for ourselves!
We chose the double Aerobed, £79.99 and we are pleased with our purchase. It so quick and easy to inflate using the built in electric pump, it only takes 60 seconds - no more pumping for us! Once up you can adjust the amount of air in it by releasing the valve to your liking. We did find that every couple of days we would need to add a little more air as it had gone down just slightly; but we had to do that with our old airbeds as well, so think it might be a problem with airbeds in general. Both of us found the bed much more comfortable than our old one, and easier to get off, especially for me as I'm not very agile. The electric pump that it comes with has a battery unit that you can charge up at home and take with you, so no need for electricity when away from home. The bed is made of extra durable PVC and is puncture resistant, the layer you lie on is flocked. This item is not washable but I expect it could be sponged off.
The bed deflates very quickly, and all the air comes out making it easy to roll up. It is stored in its own bag. Ok it might be a bit bulky and heavy but its very comfortable.
Well, what can I add to the original review re useability and convenience? We bought a Premier Raised King-size Aerobed last year at £220 from John Lewis.
Yes, its highly convenient, though weighty to manoeuvre, as the first reviewer states. Yes, it is very, very comfortable to sleep on - providing that you inflate it sufficiently at the outset, otherwise it feels like a waterbed, and you tend to 'wallow' in it! It inflates and deflates very quickly (if noisily!), and the King-size, platform version we bought is comfortable for 2 people, and very easy to get on and off if you are a little physically challenged - like me.
Now for the down-side: The first one went back to JL after about 10 nights' use by our guests - my sister ended up on the floor in the middle of the night - somewhat embarassing for us! So we got an immediate replacement for her final night with us (from JL), which seemed fine. However on the 3rd night's use (by different guests) this new bed seems to be deflating too. I've emailed Aero Bed to ask their advice - do we just return this one and get a refund, or persist until our 5-year guarantee expires? In neither example are there any obvious signs of tears or punctures. The current one deflates slightly, but noticeably (according to our guests anyway). I'm wondering if anyone else has had this problem? All reviews I've seen seem to give glowing reports! I'll add to this review when I hear back from Aero Bed re my email.
In summary - if our experience is typical, then you can buy a deflating air-bed at a much lower price. (Please note: 5-year guarantee applies to the Premier King-size Raised model, not the Double!!)
Years ago when satellite TV shopping was all the rage, my parents had made mistakes buying several articles which never seemed to do the job as advertised does anyone remember the Rap Tou food chopper system,? Well we had two that didnt work and we were slow to respond whenever anything new and innovative came back on the market afterwards. The Aerobed however seemed to be different not just because a local friend of the family had one before we decided to get one, but also that it seemed okay by the adverts which backed the system initially. At the time, the Aerobed double low floor model started off with a rather expensive price tag of £160-00 including a cover which you would normally have to pay £20 for.
Now of course the price has dropped considerably but the more my parents watched the adverts, the more they were convinced that an Aerobed was the answer to the problem of not having a sofa bed for guests. I was however not convinced until the Aerobed was bought, signed, sealed, delivered and tested.
The whole premise of an Aerobed isnt just the fact that it has an electric pump stitched and permanently set at the top, but also the fact that the air can be released within a matter of minutes, folded up and put away easily into its own little carry sac and stored away or so the maker would have you believe. To a small extent it also means with air, the threat of allergies set off by dust mites contained in normal mattresses is lessened. So to go with the idea of visiting guests this product seemed a good idea at the time, because you can never know who has allergies these days.
** Nars Quick Skip Product Spec **
Available from Argos.
500 to 800 watt motor permanently built in.
One touch button to inflate or add firmness.
Quilted brand mattress cover and carry bag supplied.
Height 18cm, Length 188cm, Width 137cm.
Prices as of 2007 range from Kingsize Aerobed £99.95 Childrens £59-99 Kingsize classic raised aero bed £149-99. This product at £79-92 (Double classic unraised).
In reality Aerobed have now extended their range by offering a proper bed with a bigger drop down valance and gives standard bed types a run for their money, but as this review will try to explain whether you get the proper Valance style bed or the floor mattress model we have there is a bit more to the Aerobed than meets the eye.
** In use **
If you ever buy an Aerobed then there is minimal company crap speak for setting up, yes whilst it is light as a feather once it has been inflated, moving the initial product can be a bit of a bind on the account of its initial weight not helped by the motor which is permanently stitched into one side of the mattress itself. For the double bed style we have youre looking at just over 9kg of moving or lifting the bag before taking it out of the handy knap sack and lying flat on a floor. Just as the adverts show, an owner can easily plug the 6 metre power cord into an electrical socket, switch on and be amazed as the Aerobed unravels itself and starts to inflate with air. You can even lie on the bed itself whilst it is deflated. Or is it the case that nothing happens?
Well it could be down to the fact that the exhaust channel hasnt been locked in properly; a large opening the size of a car exhaust hole which has a thick hinged PVC door mounted on the outside at the other end of the mattress and needs to be locked in before the mattress can properly inflate. Whilst the exhaust channel is smooth and slippery on the external side, it can be tricky to release once the bed is ready to be packed away again and reveals rough plastic on the inside which can catch the back of your hand if youre not too careful.
Once plugged in, a handy remote control with a button can be detached from the main motor and activated. As it used to show in the adverts, it is infinitely possible to pump up the bed whilst you are lying on it although I usually just press the button whilst standing up waiting for the bed to rise and remarkably although the sound of the motor is quite noisy it does still inflate in around 15 to 20 seconds waiting time.
** Design & Accessories **
One accessory which may well be seen as marketing hype is the optional cover which we bought when we got our Aerobed. Claimed to be 100% hypoallergenic, the cover is fitted easily by way of elasticated sides much in the same vein as standard double mattress covers but appears to be padded at the same time.
Although the cover has their company name emblazoned all over at angles I find that this mattress cover, hypoallergenic or not tends to make me sweat badly and thus we put another mattress cover over it to stop heat build up whilst sleeping. Two ribbons are also supplied on either side of the cover to ensure that it doesnt come off during use and there has never been a time in eight years since we had the bed where the cover has loosened.
The design of Aerobeds are relatively fuss free, although the original floor design (without the raised valance) means you could easily stub your foot on the motor located at the bottom of the mattress as well as the fact that pillows can tend to fall off like most inflatable beds there is no actual head board fitted to stop pillows falling off but it remains to be a design fault that Aerobed could actually fit in later models to improve actual use rather than a comfortable rest it promises.
** Sleeping On it/Performance **
One of the finer aspects I love about the Aerobed is that once it is inflated it becomes lighter to slide across the floor. Dont try it when it hasnt inflated for heaven sake otherwise you may find its heavy weight disadvantage and it can become cumbersome unless it has been inflated FIRST before moving it to your desired spot.
Whilst I have tried other air beds before, the Aerobed is a comfortable mattress to sleep on and its design mirrors standard sprung mattresses by incorporating pockets just like the leather seat fasteners you find on standard mattresses. These however can be felt more if you dont attach Aerobeds exclusive cover and just use a top sheet.
Generally I do find the Aerobed very comfortable to sleep on, but at times being 6ft in height I find that with the lack of a raised section for the pillow I tend to either slip down the mattress or end up in the middle of the night reaching for the pillow which has fallen off the end. In this respect it is no better than a standard air bed which has no raised section where the pillows go and ideally the Aerobed should be placed beside a wall to lend a pillow like head board.
And it is very comfortable too; being used to an orthopaedic mattress I can confirm than the Aerobed does have a similar feeling, probably due to its air springs and the fact that I never slip off the actual mattress because all of the coils have uniform sides and have equal amount of air for overall support.
Generally Aerobed classic models such as this Double product can take up to 295kg.
** Downsides **
Unfortunately although it is possible to adjust the firmness of air which is contained within the Aerobed, there is only so much air you can pump into the bed via the remote control, and during some nights when I have had to sleep on the bed, I have found it to deflate at times, but only slightly. It is only afterwards when it comes to storing the bed away that it can become troublesome.
Remember the weight issue? Well elderly folk may certainly have problems rolling the mattress up and putting it back into the sac provided. The mattress weighs around 8 to 9kg no thanks to the fact that the motor is suspended at the bottom of the mattress (held together by snap fasteners) and takes forever to roll and compact up enough to fit it back into its company branded sac bag. Despite eight years of ownership we still find it takes a certain way to roll up and store the bed back into the knap sack provided with the end result being a very heavy and bulky bag which is difficult to carry and store away. That certain way means that if you dont roll it up from the motor side you may find that it wont exactly fit into the sac it was designed for.
No wonder my parents ask me to deflate and store it they just cant manage it because of the weight of the whole product; at least the sac can accommodate the additional top elasticated cover though which is a saving grace if the bed is taken away for nights away; and even at a push the bag can also incorporate a spare pillow by crushing it down into the middle of the bag. The sac is wash proof but not water proof and it does have an adjustable shoulder strap, but I have never felt strong enough to waltz out to the car as they show in the adverts with it around my back, and prefer just to minimise the strap and carry it like a normal shopping bag.
In other reviews I have read that one of the most universal faults that the Aerobed has is the fact that it doesnt come with an additional pump which would add a practical dimension to the design for camping. However I feel that apart from the sizes and designs available, the whole idea of the Aerobed is the fact that it has an electric pump and indeed as a result you can already buy beds which come with a manual pump anyway. With the Aerobed of course you dont have to, and if you have a caravan or a caravanette an Aerobed is a good product to consider since it can run off the same electricity as other appliances.
** Motor Noise **
Which brings me onto the final issue; the noise of the air pump; to save money a few years ago two friends and I travelled through to Edinburgh to see the Fringe festival and were offered a fantastic deal to stay in an executive suite at one of Edinburghs Holiday Inn outlets. The problem was that whilst there were three of us, there was only one double bed and a sofa located in the TV section of the room, but there was hardly any space according to the hotel staff when we pre-booked on the telephone and the sofa turned out to be two chairs pushed together useless for sleeping on unless youre an acrobatic!
This is where the Aerobed made its debut with my friends. However whilst two of my friends had retired to bed early, I came back at an ungodly hour in the morning only to have the joy of pumping up the Aerobed and waking up everyone because of the racket of the motor pump let it be said here and now, it may well only have 700 watts of power, but it is quite a high end pitch which screams out the moment the motor pump is activated!
** Construction **
Aerobed claim that all their beds are made of high intense strong thick PVC and I have no doubt to think otherwise. In use our Aerobed has been accidentally kicked, trampled on, dragged across a floor and at one point has been used on a standard bed with wooden rafters when my parents new mattress didnt arrive on time. It certainly doesnt reveal punctures and has withstood general abuse and use with the obvious fact that no scratches or dents have appeared in the rubber. So all that advertising showing a steam roller and a couple of wrestlers and even a classical ballet dancer working their magic on it has obviously paid off.
** Current Prices **
Argos has now begun to sell the Aerobed but there are several different designs to look out for. There are single beds available around £50 whilst the raised double king sized complete bed is now £140. Our floor level double size model is harder to buy now but has been reduced to just £100 or may be cheaper if you can source a more varied supplier.
** Conclusion **
As a mattress in lieu of standard sprung mattresses, an Aerobed makes a lot of sense if for example it is used by people who have dust allergies. On a level floor, the standard low floor model makes sense too if you are stuck for space or need a bed in an emergency the price you pay seems to be reflected purely for the electric motor. But what a great pity that the motor itself cannot be removed the Aerobed would make an ideal candidate for use on a beach or even perhaps in a swimming pool.
That aside there are other rivals on the market against the Aerobed, but this product is also appearing in other shops not just online and satellite channels, and for this purpose only on availability, it is worth seeking out. Its a hell of a lot faster than manual pumping by foot and whilst it may well be heavy, it is at the least transportable and really only needs the person who is using it to pump it up by means of pressing a button. And of course it is very comfortable to sleep on too! Thanks for reading. ©Nar2 2007.
Self-inflates in 60 seconds with a new and improved built-in electric pump. Machine washable, quilted mattress cover and carry bag included.