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Mattress News Tempur-Sealy's Warranty Change & What It Means to You

Published on January 18th, 2014 | by Mattress Journal

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Tempur-Sealy’s Warranty Change & What It Means to You

One of the biggest mattress brands in the country, Tempur-Sealy, just announced a big change to their product warranties. While framed as an improvement, the change intends to scale back coverage by up to 15 years. See what Tempur-Sealy is planning, how this will affect consumers, and what it means for the mattress industry.

Tempur-Sealy Warranty Changes March 2014

On January 16th, the Tempur-Sealy corporation announced that all premium brands will be seeing big warranty changes in the coming months. The change is intended to affect the Tempurpedic, Stearns & Foster, Sealy Optimum, and Sealy Posturepedic lines, and will be implemented on March 1st. Any beds sold prior to that date will have the current warranty terms, and products that currently have less than 10 years of warranty and adjustable frames will remain unchanged.

The most significant adjustment is that all four lines will now have only a 10 year-full replacement warranty, rather than the 20-25 year prorated warranties currently offered. Tempur-pedic mattress cover warranties will also increase from 2 years to 10 years.

Currently, the brands have the following warranty terms:

  • Tempurpedic – 25 Year Limited Warranty with 10 years full coverage and 15 years prorated coverage on impressions over 0.75” and quality defects. Mattress cover materials have 2 year warranties.
  • Tempur-Choice – 25 Year Limited Warranty with 5 years full coverage and 20 years prorated coverage on quality defects.
  • Stearns & Foster – 25 Year Limited Warranty with 10-15 years full coverage and 10-15 years prorated coverage on impressions over 0.75” for memory foam and 1.5” for latex and innersprings as well as quality defects.
  • Sealy Optimum – 25 Year Limited Warranty with 10-15 years full coverage and 10-15 years prorated coverage on impressions over 0.75” and quality defects.
  • Sealy Posturepedic – 10 to 25 Year Limited Warranty with 10 years full coverage and up to 15 years prorated coverage on impressions over 1.5” and quality defects.

How Tempur-Sealy’s Change Affects Consumers

Tempur-Sealy North America’s vice president said in an article announcing the change that the new warranties were designed to improve brand trust, simplify terms and reduce consumer confusion. Admittedly, the wide range of warranty terms can be pretty confusing to research, however, what is left out is that rather than make warranties clearer or simply standardizing the prorated period, Tempur-Sealy chose to drop them altogether. First, here’s a quick primer on warranty lingo:

Full Replacement/Full Coverage – The cost of replacing or repairing the bed is covered in entirety, barring any shipping or other fees outlined in the manufacturer’s policies. Typically applies to a certain degree of sagging or impressions, and may be limited as to what is covered and what is not.

Prorated – The cost of replacing or repairing the bed is partially covered, based on how long the product has been in use, and can include the same limitations mentioned above. For example, let say your bed 11 years old and has deep sagging. If you have a 20 year warranty with 10 years full/ 10 prorated, you would be responsible for about 55-60% of the cost. If you have a 10 year warranty, you will be responsible for 100% of the cost or for buying a new bed.

Average mattress lifespan for memory foam mattresses and latex beds is around 7-10 years, and for innerspring beds around 5-8 years. This means that the 10 year coverage that Tempur-Sealy will provide should be sufficient to cover the average length of intended use.

What this change means is that at 10 years and one day, the bed will no have zero coverage against defects or wear, whereas previously, repairs or replacement would have been covered at up to 50-60% of the cost. With each year of prorated coverage, the portion covered decreases which can be complicated to understand hence the confusion, but paying 80% for a mattress still beats paying 100%, to most people anyways. One way Tempur-pedic hopes to allay fears and further boost profit margins is by selling extended warranty options, which would be available around summer or fall.

Additionally, it should be noted that this will reduce the full coverage warranty on some models in the Stearns & Fosters and Sealy Optimum lines, which previously had 15 year full warranty periods. One positive change will be the inclusion of Tempurpedic mattress covers in the 10 year warranty period, though, which is a bump up from the previous 2 years. Although it is not addressed specifically in the press release, if the warranty program includes the Tempur-Choice line, it would also increase the full coverage period for those models to 10 years from the original 5 years.

Warranties & The Mattress Industry

Warranties in the mattress industry have a reputation for being difficult to understand and full of unclear restrictions and limitations, so there is a point to be made about simplifying product guarantees. However, one motive for reducing warranty coverage mentioned in the Furniture Today article is to encourage more frequent replacement and thus generate more frequent sales. And while 10 years covers the length of time the average consumer keeps their mattress, Tempur-Sealy’s reduction of warranty does not appear to be coming with any added value such as stronger coverage or better pricing, though details have not yet been rolled out in full.

Tempur-Sealy is the first major brand to announce such a change, so it is too early to tell how consumers will react or whether other industry giants will follow suit in order to bolster the bottom line and encourage more sales. In fact, the trend over the past few years has been the opposite, with brands offering longer and longer warranties to extend the perception of quality and value. Time will tell whether or not this harkens a shift in trends or a big misstep for Tempur-Sealy, but here is a quick overview of how their new policy will compare to other leading brands once the new warranties are in place.

New Tempurpedic & Sealy Warranty Terms Versus Other Brands

Warranty

Price Range

Owner Satisfaction

Memory Foam

Tempur-Pedic

10 Years Full

$1099-$7499

81%

Sealy Optimum

10 Years Full

$1299-$3899

82%

Serta iComfort

10 Years Full, 15 Prorated

$1074-$2774

80%

Amerisleep

10 Years Full, 10 Prorated

$849-$1899

92%

Simmons Comforpedic

10 Years Full, 10-15 Prorated

$1100-44500

82%

Costco Novaform

10 Years Full, 10 Prorated

$599-$1299

80%

Innersprings

Sealy Posturepedic

10 Years Full

$599-$2500

64%

Stearns & Foster

10 Years Full

$1399-$3999+

59%

Simmons Beautyrest

10 Years Full, 10-15 Prorated

$620-$5600

65%

Serta iSeries

10-15 Years Full, 10-15 Years Prorated

$1050-$3000

64%

Kingsdown

1-10 Years Full, 0-9 Years Prorated

$800-$3000+

62%

Latex

Stearns & Foster

10 Years Full

$1999-$5999

65%

Habitat Furnishings

10 Years Full, 10 Prorated

$1599-$2599

84%

Astrabeds

10 Years Full, 15 Prorated

$1599-$2849

91%

Englanders Nature’s Finest

5 Years Full, 5 Prorated

$2100-$3000

66%

Data from retailer websites and/or SleepLikeTheDead.com.

With the new warranty terms, Tempur-Sealy’s products will have considerably less overall warranty years than other premium and mid-level competitors. We looked at a few of the top brands in memory foam, innersprings, and latex, and nearly all carry similar levels of full coverage of 10 years, and some as much as 15 years. Quality of materials aside, Tempur-Sealy brands also appear more expensive than competitors, particularly for memory foam and latex.

Consumers will likely weigh in on this change online as word spreads and with their wallets in coming months, so it will be interesting to see whether this will be viewed as a net positive or a as a disadvantage for the brand. While there are a few improvements with Tempur-Sealy’s new warranties, overall most of their beds will have significantly less coverage than before, though the 10 year period will cover the average time most people keep their mattresses. We’d love to hear your opinions about Tempur-Sealy’s warranty changes in the comments below, and in our poll!

Would you rather have no prorated warranty period and a lower price, or a longer full warranty at a slightly higher price?

View Results

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    2 Responses to Tempur-Sealy’s Warranty Change & What It Means to You

    1. Jonathan says:

      As a mattress salesman I can only think that this is a HUGE mistake!! The fact that they had a 25 year warranty, even if it was prorated (which seems more than far to me) was a way for me to show consumers that they had some protection and real assurance that the bed they are looking at will actually stand the test of many years of use. I hope that they reverse this decision. I also was not aware that they were changing all of the warranties. I only received information about Tempur-pedic specifically changing, and nothing at all about the other Tempur-Sealy beds. I do think that having an easy and straightforward warranty policy is a good thing though. I just wish the company would continue to back up its longevity claims with a warranty that supports it!!!

    2. David Parrish says:

      I did not respond to the survey. The problem with the question is that I’ve already visited Tempurpedic’s website to see their new beds. The prices on the new mattress models are unchanged, not lower. So unless the company has decided to allow for markdowns from the sellers off of these grossly over-inflated prices, this is a BIG mistake on their part. Longevity is one of the few reasons my family could rationalize the purchase of such a highly expensive product. We kept our previous mattress for 15 years before just recently purchasing a Tempurpedic. The change in policy makes me nervous about the company honoring ANY warranty.

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