Air mattress

Air mattress

An air mattress is an inflatable mattress/sleeping pad. [ [ Air mattress] (definition on Princeton WordNet. Accessed 2008-08-10.)] Due to its buoyancy, it is also often used as a toy flotation device.

For sleeping

An air mattress, also known as an airbed is an inflatable mattress, usually made of plastic or textile-reinforced plastic or rubber. The deflated mattress can be rolled up or folded and carried or stored relatively easily, making them a popular choice for camping trips and for temporary bedding at home for guests. They are inflated either orally by blowing into a valve, or with a manual foot-powered or electric pump. Some are even automatically inflating (up to a certain pressure - some additional inflation is also needed) just by opening the valve.

The three main categories for use of air mattresses are camping, temporary home use (guests) and full time permanent use (in the bedroom). Some air mattresses are specifically designed to perform both functions (camping and guest use) while others are specifically designed for one purpose alone(permanent use in the home or RV).

Lightweight, reduced-size air mattresses specifically intended for camping and backpacking are sometimes called sleeping pads, especially when a layer of foam insulation is added under the air chambers. Better quality air chambers, that are designed for permanent use in the home, are constructed of vulcanized rubber, covered in canvas or of polyurethane. These chamber(s) are then installed into a cloth shell or tic. Permanent air beds will look almost like conventional beds with the exception of having a hose (1 air chamber) or hoses (2 air chambers) coming out of the head of the bed. These hoses will be connected to an Air Inflator, with 2 outlet valves, that will have a remote control(s) so that each person can adjust the firmness of their side to ones own exact needs. The firmness can be adjusted up or down, with the simple push of a button, on the remote(s).

Some government safety agencies have warned against letting infants sleep on air mattresses, because they can be too soft and suffocate smaller children (especially those below the age of 8 months) within folds or while entrapped between the mattress and the bed case. [ [ Deadly Danger: CPSC Urges Parents To Not Place Infants on Air Mattresses] (from the Consumer Product Safety Commission government website, United States. Accessed 2008-08-11.)]

Air beds

Larger, more elaborate air mattresses ("air beds") have come on the market in recent years that are intended for guest use in the home, or as permanent beds, in the bedroom. Brands that are designed for guest (temporary) use include, but are not restricted to AeroBed, Intex, Coleman, Air Cloud and Wenzel. Sizes range for temporary air beds range from twin to king, however few guest bed manufacturers offer king, as the majority of guest air beds are sold outside of the United States, where king size mattresses are not standard. Permanent or fulltime air beds are available in all the standard bed sizes, which are (in inches), Twin 38"x75", Twin XL 38"x80", Full 54"x75", Queen 60"x80", Eastern or Regular King 76"x80" and Cal. King or Western King 72"x84". Most permanent air beds can use conventional (standard) sheets and bedding, which are very easy to find, for purchase. Cal. King or Western King sheets and bedding may be more difficult to find as this size was originally conceived for the waterbed industry.

Raised guest or temporary beds are typically 20-26" (50-66 cm) off the ground to keep users away from the floor and offer a more traditional mattress experience. Though "raised" air beds are off the ground they are not designed for full time use, as the base of the bed is an air chamber and not a solid foundation.

As a water toy

The term air mattress may also refer to a certain inflatable swimming pool or beach toy, which has an air-sac "pillow" and several (usually four or five) tubes running its length. Also called a "lilo" (UK), "pool air mat", "air mat", "pool lounge", or "float(ing) mat(tress)", it is used to recline on the water surface. Although it bears some resemblance to an air mattress, it is typically not built as strongly and may not reliably stay inflated all night long, making it impractical for use as a bed.

ee also



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Look at other dictionaries:

  • air mattress — n. a mattress or pad, as of plastic or rubber that is filled with air and later deflated, used for camping, an extra bed, etc …   English World dictionary

  • air mattress — air′ mat tress n. cvb a mattress, usu. of plastic or rubber, that can be inflated for use and deflated for storage • Etymology: 1925–30 …   From formal English to slang

  • air mattress — noun A mattress that is inflated with air, and used as a temporary or permanent bed. Syn: air bed …   Wiktionary

  • air mattress — inflatable rubber mattress that is pumped full of air and is used as a bed or water floatable, airbed …   English contemporary dictionary

  • air mattress — noun a mattress that can be stored flat and inflated for use (Freq. 1) • Hypernyms: ↑mattress • Hyponyms: ↑Lilo …   Useful english dictionary

  • air mattress — noun Date: 1851 mattress 1b …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • air mattress — a mattress, usually of plastic or rubber, that can be inflated for use, as in camping, and deflated for storage. [1925 30] * * * …   Universalium

  • air mattress — /ˈɛə mætrəs/ (say air matruhs) noun → air bed …   Australian English dictionary

  • air mattress — noun N. Amer. an air bed …   English new terms dictionary

  • regimental air mattress — Canadian Slang see Ground Sheet …   English dialects glossary