The Complete Adjustable Bed Buying Guide

March 7, 2019 Sleep Science & Tech Jared Sebastian

In recent years, sales of adjustable bed bases have grown exponentially. Yet, when it’s time for a sleep upgrade, many people still think only about mattresses. They remain unaware of the big difference in sleep quality that a power bed can provide, mistakenly equating them with hospital beds. With all the technology now infused into adjustable beds, nothing could be further from the truth.

An adjustable bed gives you the ability to control and tweak the position you sleep in, which can lead to longer and more restful sleep, as well as less snoring and greater relief of soreness. And then there’s the lifestyle perks like finally being able to read in bed comfortably with support under your knees, or drifting off to a massage every night, or programming the head of the bed to rise automatically in the morning to help you wake up. 

All in all, an adjustable bed is a life-changing upgrade. But with so many bed frames on the market, how do you go about choosing? Here are seven important things to consider.

1. How good is the engineering?

Perhaps no other piece of furniture is as complex as an adjustable foundation due to the fact that it moves. How many pieces of furniture do more than swivel or go up and down? In the case of higher end bases, they move in so many different ways. You’re ponying up a decent sum here, so take your time and check out different adjustable beds before you make a purchase decision. Lay in the bed and try every single function on the adjustable bed remote control. Does the bed move quickly on command? Are the motions jerky or smooth? Be sure to evaluate with your ears as well. A good base will operate quietly as a result of the high quality adjustable bed motors. Ask your salesperson a ton of questions and do some homework online. The importance of great engineering can’t be overemphasized.

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2. How much science went into the design?

So let’s assume the base has acceptable engineering. The next thing to ask is, how did they develop the positions and features? For example, lumbar support is worthless unless it’s specifically developed to align with the spine. Is the massage feature something that just shakes the bed, or is it a sophisticated, travelling motion? Did doctors or scientists give input into developing the bed? Inspect the edges, seams and all other aspects of the bed for nice finishes, solid materials, smooth joints and overall sturdiness. And while you’re at it, think about your personal design aesthetic. A lot of bases out there look like bulky fabric-clad pontoon boats rather than sleek pieces of machinery. Function is important, but style matters, too.

3. What features does it offer?

An entry-level base will usually allow you to operate the head and foot of the base. Make sure the operation is smooth and that those sleeping positions feel comfortable to you. More sophisticated adjustable beds also have additional desirable features like variable massage levels and enhanced neck support. Premium power bases let you control the bed through your smartphone and program multiple settings to run at specific times. You may even find some with under-bed nightlights.

4. Split adjustable base or not?

When you know that you'll be sharing your bed with another sleeper, a split adjustable base is something to consider, because it allows both people to adjust the bed independently. Make sure the manufacturer provides two bed remotes for that purpose, and that each of you can adjust the other side of the bed with your remote, not just your own side. This can come in handy for any couple dealing with snoring or sleep apnea. If you decide to go with a split adjustable base, your mattress becomes a part of the equation. You can order a Split King mattress, which allows independent movement on both sides and is essentially two separate twin mattresses with their own separate domains. If you like to sleep while cuddling, make sure any partially split mattress moves well with the base in the foot region. Split bases are sometimes offered in Split Queen size, but most manufacturers only offer them in Split King.

The complete adjustable bed buying guide

5. Do you want it to fit within an existing bed frame?

Already have a bed frame you love? The better adjustable bed bases have been specifically designed to fit within many standard types of bed frames. They have dimensions and certain compact crossbars to make that happen. They also come with different leg heights or adjustable bed risers that you can swap out to put your mattress at the right height. Ask the manufacturer for measurement specs to see if your bed will work. A serious maker of adjustable bases will have such bed size specs available for you.

6. Remotes and apps add to the experience

A good adjustable base comes with a remote that’s simple to use. If it’s back lit, that’s a plus. Ditto if it’s wireless. Some manufacturers also realize that you can never have too many charging stations and have gone to the trouble of creating a quality remote cradle that also charges your smartphone. If you’re into more sophisticated operations, ask your salesperson for a demo of the company’s smartphone app. A high-end app will let you easily program multiple positions and massage settings with timings.

7. Who made your bed? Warranties, service and reputation.

Many companies have gotten into the adjustable bed market in recent years, looking to make a quick buck without knowing much about power beds. Avoid them. A power bed is a complex piece of equipment. Like a car, it has moving parts, electronics and a motor. So be sure you’re dealing with a company that’s built a lot of electric beds and has a reputation for standing behind them. Also, a great bed warranty is the sign of a great power base. Check out some of the leading bed sellers, and you’ll find they’re pretty oblique about the warranties on their bases. That is because most of them farm out their power bases. Some even require you to ship the base back for service. A good company will clearly call out its policy: how long labor is covered, how long parts are covered and how long the motor is covered. 

And do yourself a favor before you buy: call the customer service department and see who answers the phone. Does the company care enough to handle customer service in-house? Or have they outsourced that, too? A good quality base will have few or no problems, but if you have questions about operation or installation, a well-trained customer service team is highly desirable.

Reverie has you covered

Wondering if there's any one company that meets all these requirements without compromising on quality or service? We've got good news for you—it's here, at Reverie. 

Not only do we make and sell power bases with the highest-quality design and engineering, capable of shifting into positions that open up your airway and improve your blood flow, but we also go even further to ensure that you truly have the best sleep of your life. Only at Reverie will you find a dedicated customer service team with sleep experts ready to help you find the bed that fits your needs and help you to get the sleep you've been missing. Only at Reverie will you find our patented 3D-Wave massage technology, proven by a university study to increase alertness in the morning.


Ready for a new bed? Let us help you upgrade! You can contact one of our Reverie Sleep Specialists at 888.888.5990, or download our free information kit below to read about our entire line of sleep products. 

Reverie bed and powerbase with white logo and potted plant in white planter.

Ready for a new bed?

Let us help you upgrade! Download our Free Information Kit below to read about our entire line of sleep products.