What happens if you put too much weight on an air mattress?

William Adams
 min read

What happens if you put too much weight on an air mattress? From a structural point of view, the mattress would lose shape at best, and at worst, it could explode.

What happens if you put too much weight on an air mattress?What happens if you put too much weight on an air mattress?Deformation

In this case, it would lose its shape and ability to properly support a person. The inevitable sag would cause the material to deform.

The air chambers won’t distribute air evenly throughout the mattress, and all this will affect the mattress’s capability to support the weight.

While prolonged exposure to a too-heavy load may not lead to breaking, the supportive properties would deteriorate until the mattress isn’t really much of a joy to sleep on. You’ll have to throw it away.

Are you in that position? Then, check out our other post How do I choose an air mattress? to get started properly.

What happens if you put too much weight on an air mattress? Rupture

An inflatable bed is not without its limits. It’s made out of a material that has been stitched and glued together, creating air chambers that can hold an air volume under a certain amount of pressure.

The air pressure is what determines the weight limit. Namely, the more the weight on the mattress, the higher the pressure in the air chambers.

The higher the air pressure inside the air mattress, the higher the stress on the seams and the more chance of rupture.

How much can you go above an air mattress’ weight limit?

Manufacturers usually factor in some margin of safety. For example, an air mattress capped at a weight limit of 300 lbs will not immediately burst if there’s a weight of 301 lbs.

You won’t know the exact safety margin for your air mattress, as it is probably left to the manufacturer’s discretion.

The only way to know is to perform a destructive stress test, meaning that more and more load is piled on the air mattress under laboratory conditions until it bursts.

Try this out with air mattresses from different production batches, and this will give you an idea of the actual safety margin.

Obviously, no consumer will go through all this (think of the expense!), nor should they.

The weight limits on air mattresses (or any other product for that matter) are there for your safety, so don’t play around and stay within the guidelines.

Have a look at the best heavy-duty air mattress for heavy person sleeping if you’re looking for an air mattress that can easily support a plus-size guest.

Other practical tips for using an air mattress

When not in use, deflate the air bed and store it away

Inflatable mattresses are pumped up within minutes by using electric or battery-operated pumps; however, they will take longer to deflate.

It might be tempting to unplug the air valve and push the air out of the mattress before storing it by simply rolling it.

We certainly advise against it because pushing the air out in this manner stretches it at weaker points and could cause the seals to burst.

Disconnect the valve, and allow the bed mattress to deflate entirely before storing it away.

Even if your bed mattress features a rapid deflation setting, let the air escape properly.

Put your ear near the valve; if there is a faint hissing sound, the bed mattress is still deflating.

Keep sharp things away from the inflatable bed

It can be challenging to patch up any holes in your blow-up mattress. Even duct tape and vinyl patch sets are short-lived at best, so you’d just have to change the mattress altogether.

Keep it away from pencils, safety pins, needles, paper clips, or sharp items that can damage it.

When moving, empty your pockets of any items that might ruin it; be careful of any jewelry you may be wearing, and remove high heels.

Keep the blow-up mattress far from stairs and windows with sharp corners.

Leave the air mattress inflated if using it regularly

Continuously deflating and re-inflating your blow-up mattress subjects the joints to unneeded stress.

For example, if you are blowing up the mattress for a houseguest who is remaining for several days, leave it in place throughout the stay rather than inflating and deflating it daily.

Related: Can you sleep on an air mattress permanently?

Keep family pets away too

Even if your household pets are used to sleeping on beds, it’s not a good idea to have them on an inflatable.

Any animal with sharp claws can puncture holes in the air mattress, which are infinitely tricky to repair.

Animals are also inclined to jump off furniture, which means their claws will push on the surface and are pretty likely to puncture it.

Be careful when filling

If air mattresses are filled to the brim, they are subjected to excess tension on the joints.

We suggest that your air mattress be inflated to about 90 percent of its full capability, especially when you’re using it for the very first time.

Avoid over-inflating your mattress because that will make it more likely to rupture.

What happens if you put too much weight on an air mattress? Conclusion

Don’t go over the weight limit of the air mattress, it’s really not worth it since your costly purchase could easily deform or rupture.

When putting up visitors at home, an air mattress will do the trick.

These bed mattresses can also be a lifesaver if you try to find a comfy night’s rest on an outside camping trip since they’ll keep you off the ground.

To get your money’s worth and lengthen its lifespan, stay within the guidelines for usage and storage standards that come with it.

About William Adams

I’m an engineer and a happy plus-size individual myself. I love to blog online if I can have a positive impact on the lives of others. I help other plus-size people with in-depth product guides to make shopping for products and services less stressful in their busy lives. Read More