Serta Mattresses — Overview of the Serta Product Line

The Serta Mattress Company, which once stood at number three in sales behind Sealy and Simmons, now claims to be the leading mattress producer in the world with sales of over 1.3 billion in 2012. Serta has kept its slogan “We make the world’s best mattress” for over 10 years now, and one must admit it is rather appealing in its hyperbolic simplicity. The cute animated “counting sheep” have starred in their TV ads since 2001 and have become mascots for the company, with their own page and videos on the official website.

In addition, the company has partnered with the National Sleep Foundation, the large non-profit organization that promotes better sleep, bestowing a nice aura of credibility to the company. In summary, Serta has maintained good brand and marketing practices and it has certainly paid off for them.

And how might that affect the quality, durability, comfort and other essential components of the Serta mattress?

It doesn’t mean a thing. It is still up to you the consumer to research and test the mattress to determine if it is the right one upon which to spend your sleeping hours.

So let’s talk about the types of Serta beds available.

Types of Mattresses and their Product Lines

Serta produces three main types:

  • Innerspring – including these brands: Perfect Sleeper Essentials, Perfect Sleeper Smart Surface and Smart Surface Elite, Sertapedic, Hotel Mattresses, and Bellagio at Home.
  • Memory foam – Including these brands: IComfort, Icomfort Directions, Perfect Elements
  • Hybrid (combination innerspring and memory foam) – Here we have the ISeries line, which includes Perfect Day ISeries and Trump at Home Iseries.

Innerspring Collections

Let’s start with the Perfect Sleeper®, the most popular brand.

Perfect Sleeper® Essentials features…

  • Core Support: 520 Continuous Support Innerspring Support system (continuous coil design)
  • Padding: 1” Serta Support Foam (poly foam), Cool Twist Gel Memory Foam on the more expensive models, Comfort XD Foam (poly foam) on the cheaper ones. The Pillowtop versions have an additional upholstery layer on top.
  • Other features: Comfort Last® Construction to prevent roll-off or sag. Reinforced Edge System (steel border rod to strengthen edges)
  • Warranty: 10 year warranty against manufacturer’s defects (not a great warranty by any stretch)
  • Price Range: $600 to $700

Perfect sleeper SmartSurface™ Elite

  • Core Support: 814 Free Flex Coil System—this is a continuous coil design but with more coils than the Essentials line, and made a bit more, well, free flex.
  • Padding: First Serta Support Foam, with varying thicknesses and firmness/softness levels according to the “comfort level” of the mattress (firm, plush, pillowtop, etc.). On top of that, Cool Twist Gel Memory Foam, again in varying thicknesses. And on top of that, Smart Surface Fireblocker. Some models also have MicroSupport Gel body loft. Then the Anti-Microbial Fiber (that’s where the “smart surface” comes from) You might also get 1 inch Serta Pillow Soft Foam in the pillowtop models.
  • Other features: Total Edge Foam Encasement
  • Price Range: $750 to $950 on “sale”.
  • Warranty, 20 years against manufacturer’s defects, 10 years prorated (not great either).

Of course you might well be asking, if this is the SmartSurface Elite, what is in the Perfect Sleeper that’s NOT “Elite?” Well, it lacks the MicroSupport Gel – you get the “smart surface” and that’s it.

Sertapedic
The Sertapedic innerspring is the cheapest budget item in the Serta Line, and it would not be surprising if it were discontinued in the near future as it appears rather hard to find. The only ones I can find online currently are the poly-foam version, not innerspring. This is a bed you might buy for a young, smallish person who does not need great support.

  • Core Support: You’ll get a 420 coil count Serta-Flex innerspring.
  • Padding: Looks pretty certain that all padding is made from poly foam.
  • Price Range: $200 to $500

Memory Foam Collections—IComfort® Series

When you go online at serta.com, you will find a description of their newest and most sublime memory foam mattress. However, when you go to buy it, you may find an older version that does not contain all the updated “technology” described on the website. Here is where you have to be careful to ask questions and get the exact model you want.

Icomfort and IComfort Directions

  • Core Support: you will get a 6” ComfortLast Support Core in all forms. What is in this core, you might ask? Well, whenever they don’t tell you what goes into a foam core, you can assume it is polyurethane. This is not necessarily anything to worry about, however, as it is a durable, firm support material that will no doubt last as long as the memory foam layers sitting on top of it. But it would be nice to be told.

    On top of this core lies the Pods Gel Activated Support layer. It features firm gel disks inserted into foam to offer more support that combines firmness with the cooling abilities of gel.

  • Padding: Breaking news—the CoolAction gel memory foam of olden days (last year, perhaps?) has been updated to CoolAction Dual Effects Gel Memory Foam in the IComfort Directions line… but don’t expect to get the new and improved version in the less expensive models. Nonetheless, it is doubtful that the difference is so revolutionary that you can’t get by with the lesser version. We would have to go into the assembly plant to see what the difference actually is, as the explanations are hazy at best.

    The less expensive (not Directions) models might also have a 1-inch layer of Serta Support Foam instead of memory foam. This is another typical scenario of mattresses that are being marketing as being one thing but are not quite 100% that thing. The plush versions might also contain Serta Pillowsoft Foam, which is again, poly.

    This series will top the mattress with EverCool GFX Memory foam, another updated material that is supposed to eliminate the hot-sleeping problem of memory foam. Whether it performs as advertised will be discovered soon enough by the sleeper after a few nights.

    Serta offers 120 day trials of their IComfort memory foam mattresses. It is unknown at this time how the trial plays out, but you would be advised to treat your mattress VERY carefully in those 120 days.

  • Price Range: Expect to pay about $1600 – $2800 for an ISeries mattress on sale.
  • Other Features: Mattress thickness is about 11-13.5. So you can see that if you picture a 12” mattress and mentally subtract 6” for the support core, there will be 6” taken up with memory foam padding, top quilting and fabrics. It is your job as consumer to make certain that each layer contributes something important to the ultimate sleep experience and is not just there to make the bed look delicious and expensive.
  • Warranty: the typical Serta warranty on their memory foam beds include the first 15 years nonprorated, the last 10 years prorated, and the full 25 year warranty against manufacturers’ defects.

The ISeries Hybrid Collections

The ISeries Hybrid line features a mix of wrapped coil innerspring and memory foam padding. As you might imagine, this is a nice thick, expensive luxurious mattress. However, just like all other innersprings, it follows the

Perfect Day ISeries

  • Core Support: Here you get the Duet Coil-in-Coil system, with a coil count of 924 for a queen. The Duet has a small spring nestled inside a larger one, with the intention of producing a more comfortable and more durable mattress. The smaller coil absorbs weight up to a certain point with more “give” than the larger coil, which absorbs the heavier weight with less give, so combined… well, we have seen many other configurations, as the “Intelicoil” in the Stearns and Foster brand, and the “Micro-pocketed” coils from Simmons, all of which feature more than one coil inside the bed. This is designed to be a long-lasting, comfortable bed. Whether it lives up to that potential is a decision that is made by… yep, you the consumer/ sleeper.
  • Padding: As a base, you get one inch of CoolAction Gel Memory Foam. On the less-expensive models, you also get 1-inch comfort foam (plush) or 1” high ILD support foam (firm). With the more expensive models, you get 2 inches of KoolComfort Memory Foam, 1 inch of Comfort foam innerpanel, and an extra 1” CoolAction gel memory foam. Mattresses in this category range from 12.5 to 16 inches in thickness.
  • Price range: $1100 – $2300 on sale.
  • Warranty- 15 years nonprorated, 10 years prorated and 25 years manufacturer’s defects.

Hotel Mattresses and Bellagio at Home

Both of these product lines are designed to inspire people who have enjoyed some nice peaceful slumber in any of the many hotels furnished with Serta high-end innerspring mattresses to purchase a similar bed for home use. They are not widely available and considering the extra hassle of buying such a mattress, they can be safely ignored in favor of the Perfect Day series, which is easily accessible for testing in the showrooms and stocked in just about every mattress store in the country. In the case of Bellagio at Home, you would need to go on the Bellagio website to buy, and there seems to be no real purpose to doing that other than giving the Bellagio’s licensing department a bit more cash.

The bottom line on Serta Mattresses is, they sound quite wonderful, as do all name-brand heavily-marketed beds. After getting a good picture of what is inside each of them and how the coil structures and the padding compares, it’s time to go shopping.

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