Best RV mattress

Going out and about in an RV carries a certain thrill with it – you’ve decided to go off the beaten path, and explore the world on your own, rather than being assisted by a tour guide. You’ve foregone five-star hotels and restaurants to live independently in unknown places.

One thing that doesn’t change among all the constants in an unknown place is the need for sleep – the quality of your sleep will play a huge role in how much you enjoy your adventure. Your bed, and more specifically your mattress, is the most important determinant for sleep quality.

Choosing a mattress is a crucial stage in making up your bed in a regular home – but for an RV, you have to be even more judicious in your selection because of the added space constraints. This guide will assist you in choosing the best RV mattress possible so that you don’t have deal with muscle aches that detract you from your outdoor escapades.

Table of Contents

Best RV Mattress Comparisons

BRAND

DETAILS

OUR RATINGS

Zinus Memory Foam 6 Inch Green Tea Mattress

Sizes Available: Narrow Twin, Twin, Full, Short Queen, Queen, King

Firmness Level: Medium Firm

Overall Heigh: 6”

CertiPUR-US Certified: Yes

Warranty: 10 years

Zinus Sleep Master Ultima Comfort Memory Foam 8 Inch Mattress

Sizes Available: Twin, Twin XL, Full, Short Queen, Queen, King

Firmness Level: Plush

Overall Heigh: 8”

CertiPUR-US Certified: Yes

Warranty: 10 years

LUCID 10 Inch Gel Memory Foam Mattress

Sizes Available: Twin, Twin XL, Full, Full XL, Queen, Olympic Queen, Short Queen, King, California King

Firmness Level: Medium Firm

Overall Heigh: 10”

CertiPUR-US Certified: Yes

Warranty: 25 years

AirDream Hypoallergenic Inflatable Mattress with Electric Hand Pump

Sizes Available: Full, Queen

Firmness Level: [variable]

Overall Heigh: 11”

CertiPUR-US Certified: n/a

Warranty: 3 years

Parklane Mattresses “The Explorer” Short Queen RV Mattress

Sizes Available: 34” x 74”; 49” x 74”; 54” x 74”; 60” x 74”; 60” x 79”

Firmness Level: Firm

Overall Heigh: 8”

CertiPUR-US Certified: Yes

Warranty: 1 years

Why Do You Need A Special Mattress For An RV?

Regular Mattresses Won’t Fit

Since the space of a camper is restricted – you are basically packing an entire household in a truck – the bed is smaller than that in a regular bedroom. Correspondingly, a regular mattress won’t fit, so you have to look for a size that is smaller than usual.

Certain RV bed frames may have cuts at specific parts of their edges to accommodate for other pieces of furniture, which means the mattress you get will have to compensate for that too. And in any case, these bed frames are smaller than regular ones, so the height of the mattress is normally six inches shorter.

The Pre-Included RV Mattresses Aren’t Very Comfortable

RV manufacturers tend to prioritize economy and lightness when installing a mattress in the vehicle, to maximize energy efficiency and minimize their own cost. This translates into low density foam that isn’t very supportive or pressure relieving and is the chief reason why sleeping on the default mattress can take its toll on your back.

It is therefore smart to consider a replacement mattress for RVs if you’re not accustomed to sleeping on a relatively hard surface.

What Options Are Available To You?

Innerspring

Spring coil mattresses are pretty much the cheapest bedding option – camping or otherwise. They consist of metal coils that are woven together to create a somewhat stiff, springy support surface that pushes back.

Innersprings are used in conjunction with polyurethane foam (discussed next), and are quite durable provided that the foam layer is sufficiently thick. Make sure that you air the mattress out in the sun from time to time, as they can develop black mold if kept for long in a damp environment.

Polyurethane foam

This is another cheap type of mattress available to you that offers a respectable degree of comfort, especially at densities closer to 2lbs./cu.ft., but in spite of that, don’t expect the comfort to last with regular use.

However, if you’re using the RV infrequently, the mattress will last you quite some time. One thing to keep in mind is that most of these foams are petroleum based, so they aren’t that environment friendly (unless you go for the really high-end ones that use eco-friendly soy).

Memory Foam

Memory foam mattresses are a balance between price and performance: the foam is still primarily polyurethane, but it has special viscoelastic material inside that reacts to your body heat and shapes itself according to your posture.

It costs a couple hundred bucks more than polyfoam, but the upgrade in comfort and pain relief is quite considerable, especially for those who suffer from back and shoulder aches – indeed, it is one of the most popular materials around for RV bedding. Go for a density close to 5 lbs./cu.ft. for maximum durability and comfort.

One thing to keep in mind with viscoelastic foam is that it is quite heat retentive. Newer, higher end products tend to remedy this with cooling gels, but the cheaper (and older) ones will definitely cause sweating in hot, humid climates.

Latex Foam

If you’re looking for a bed that supports and conforms to your structure, but also gives you a springy response each time you move, you’ll want to look for a natural latex mattress. Although this is the costliest option of the lot, it offers comfort, support, responsiveness and decent breathability – a thorough package that wouldn’t look out of place in a luxury camper.

Air Mattress

Inflatable air mattresses are compact and portable (when deflated), and come with advantage of an adjustable firmness level. Some may even have a layer of soft foam on top for added cushioning, while others may have individually adjustable sides for sleeping partners with different preferences.

The obvious flipside is that air mattresses are prone to puncturing, so you’ll need to carry a repair kit with you during your trips. Further, if you’re trekking through high altitude terrain, you may have to reduce the air pressure inside to keep it from bursting, as the external pressure starts decreasing and the inside air pushes harder against the walls.

What If I Don’t Have Space In My RV For A Whole Mattress?

If you’re short on budget or space, getting a mattress for your motorhome may not be a viable option. As an example, you may have a folding couch / sofa bed for sleeping in your RV, but not enough room to store the mattress elsewhere when you fold it up.

In such a situation, a mattress topper is your best bet at improving the comfort (and partial support) of whatever furniture you plan to sleep on. If you intend to keep the topper on top of the folding bed even when you’re collapsing it, make sure it is thin enough to not get stuck in the frame.

Some Other Factors To Consider

What Mattress Do You Sleep On At Home?

It is important that you choose a mattress with a comfort and support level that is similar to the one you use at home. Our bodies are sensitive to change in bedding, and one too drastic may lead to aches and strains.

Even if you’re unable to imitate the exact same bed, try out the mattress before hand – you will most likely be able to tell if the change is too much for you.

Make Sure It Fits

The most popular size for RV bedding is the short queen, but there also other sizes such as three-quarter queen, and RV king. These are different from their regular bedroom counterparts, so make sure you have the dimensions right before you place your order.

Here’s a demonstration of how you queen sized bedding differs from short queen bedding:

Also, as I’ve mentioned before, some campers may have beds that are cut out to accommodate other pieces of furniture – they will not fit with even a standard RV mattress. You will either have to cut your mattress out to match their shape precisely on your own, or order it custom built.

There are a number of manufacturers that craft mattresses to match the exact specifications of a particular RV bed, but as you may have already guessed, that’s an expensive option. Regardless of what you do though, it is important to ascertain beforehand that the mattress you’re buying will be able to go with your RV setup.

Check For CertiPUR-US Rating

CertiPUR-US is a non-profit organization that certifies foam products for environmental and health safety. A CertiPUR-US certified foam will be free from ozone depleters, flame retardants, heavy metals, formaldehyde, unregulated phthalates, and will have low VOC emissions to maintain the quality of air indoors.

Since an RV is already a cramped space with lesser air than a proper bedroom, it is recommended that you pick a product with a CertiPUR-US rating so the internal environment of the vehicle remains healthy throughout your excursion – this is especially important for people going on trips that will last more than a few days.

Top Rated RV Mattress Reviews

Zinus Memory Foam 6 Inch Green Tea Mattress

Key Points

    • Sizes Available: Narrow Twin, Twin, Full, Short Queen, Queen, King
    • Firmness Level:  Medium Firm
    • Support Layer:  5” airflow HD polyfoam
    • Overall Height:  6”
    • CertiPUR-US Certified: Yes
    • Warranty: 10 years

Consisting of an inch of memory foam supported by 5 inches of airflow HD polyfoam, the mattress may seem underwhelming as a regular bedding component. However, its compactness becomes a positive attribute when considered from the perspective of a camper.

The viscoelastic top layer combined with the polyfoam base yields an initially soft surface that still offers some firm deep support. Furthermore, the foam is infused with green tea extract and castor oil to counter odors, bacterial growth and allergens.

Since the foam is CertiPUR-US certified, you don’t have to worry about inhaling harmful substances, even though it has been largely derived from polyurethane. The outer cover is made out of polyester, which is nothing special really.

The product has been commended for the comfort it provides at its meager asking price, but has accrued some criticism from people who were expecting the plushness of typical high-end viscoelastic. There have been some complaints of manufacturing defects too, but those can be covered by the included 10-year warranty.

Pros

    • Inexpensive.
    • Memory foam and polyfoam combine to provide reasonable conformity and deep support.
    • Infusion of green tea extract and castor oil lends anti-bacterial and hypoallergenic properties.
    • CertiPUR-US certification.
    • 10-year warranty.

Cons

    • Not as soft as pricier viscoelastic mattresses.
    • Some complaints of manufacturing defects.

Recommended For

This is an affordable option for people in search of more contouring support for their RV bed than what regular polyurethane foam can achieve.

Zinus Sleep Master Ultima Comfort Memory Foam 8 Inch Mattress

Key Points

    • Sizes Available: Twin, Twin XL, Full, Short Queen, Queen, King
    • Firmness Level: Plush
    • Support Layer: 2” comfort foam; 4” HD polyfoam
    • Overall Height: 8”
    • EertiPUR-US Certified: Yes
    • Warranty: 10 years

It uses 2” inches of memory foam, followed by 2” of pressure relieving comfort foam, and 4” of HD base support foam. While the topmost viscoelastic layer carries some extra value by incorporating plant oil infused BioFoam inside it, the other two are regular polyurethane based support layers with merely fancy names.

Still, these layers gel together well to provide serious contouring comfort in addition to the support needed to hold your entire body weight; this is also reflected in consumer feedback, but since the manufacturer does not disclose the densities of the materials used, nothing more can be said about the durability.

Complaints about the product focus on heating (typical of a cheap memory foam mattress) and chemical odor (again, to be expected at this price). Some users have also reported excessive plushness – but in all fairness, this has a lot to do with personal preference and let’s face it – memory foam is well known for its soft, cradling qualities so you shouldn’t expect much spring the first place.

In any case, a 10-year limited warranty accompanies the mattress, so you’re covered in the event of a genuine fault (although these have been surprisingly few).

Pros

    • Affordable.
    • Thick viscoelastic layer offers extra-plush, contouring pressure relief.
    • BioFoam replaces some of the traditional polyurethane foam for environment-friendliness.
    • CertiPUR-US certification.
    • 10-year warranty.

Cons

    • May be too soft for some.
    • Tends to heat up.

Recommended For

This mattress is geared towards people who want plushness in their RV comparable to expensive luxury bedding, but at a significantly more affordable price point.

LUCID 10 Inch Gel Memory Foam Mattress

Key Points

    • Sizes Available: Twin, Twin XL, Full, Full XL, Queen, Olympic Queen, Short Queen, King, California King
    • Firmness Level: Medium Firm
    • Support Layer: 7.5” HD polyfoam
    • Overall Height: 10”
    • CertiPUR-US Certified: Yes
    • Warranty: 25 years

Thanks to a 2.5” gel-infused ventilated viscoelastic layer on top, the mattress is able to achieve the signature plush, sinking sensation nicely. The gel beads absorb and transport the heat away from your body, so that mattress works well even in warmer climates.

A 7.5” deep high-density polyurethane foam support layer is incorporated to achieve a medium-firm overall feel. LUCID have also decided to use a TENCEL lyocell / polyester blend for the cover instead of regular polyester – TENCEL is known for its breathability and moisture wicking quality, which further improves the mattress’s performance in hot, humid weather.

The foam is CertiPUR-US certified, so the indoor air quality of the motorhome isn’t compromised. While the majority has been pleased with how comfortable, supportive, and cool the mattress is at its cheap asking price, there have been interspersed complaints with regards to durability.

These have been from individuals using the mattress continuously every night, so I suppose it isn’t meant for people who plan to live in a camper more permanently. It should also be noted that the 10” depth may make it difficult to fit in smaller vehicles.

The product is covered by an exceptionally generous 25-year limited warranty.

Pros

    • Reasonable price.
    • 2.5” thick memory foam top layer provides superb contouring / cushioning.
    • Memory foam is gel-infused to yield better cooling.
    • TENCEL/polyester blend cover for better breathability.
    • CertiPUR-US certified.

Cons

    • May not fit smaller vehicles.
    • Not durable enough for long-term continuous usage.

Recommended For

You should consider the LUCID 10” Gel Memory Foam Mattress if you want the conforming support of memory foam but without having to deal with the typical heating concerns that go with this material.

AirDream Hypoallergenic Inflatable Mattress with Electric Hand Pump

Key Points

    • Sizes Available: Full, Queen
    • Firmness Level: [variable]
    • Support Layer:.5” thick innerspring coils
    • Overall Height: 11”
    • CertiPUR-US Certified:n/a
    • Warranty: 3 years

Featuring a patented air-over-coil technology, the mattress is able to provide you the springy support of innersprings and a uniformly cushioned surface feel that is not marred by the lumps and bumps that develop in a conventional mattress.

It uses a handheld electric pump, powered by mains electricity, for rapid and easy inflation. Of course, you can shut the pump off at any point during the inflation to achieve the perfect balance of comfort and support that you seek.

The mattress can be deflated in the morning, and in its deflated form, can fit into standard sofa beds when you fold them up. This eliminates the hassle of putting on a bulky mattress / mattress topper each night, then taking it off each morning, which makes the AirDream great for campers with lesser real estate.

That said, some people have had issues fitting it inside their folded sleeper sofas – so make sure that the provided dimensions are compatible with the sofa you have in your motorhome.

The overall feedback about this product has been extremely positive, but there have been a few complaints of units that ended up developing leaks relatively quickly. This could be due to mistreatment on part of the user though, but you can always use the 3-year warranty if you end up with a defective product.

One point to note here is that this isn’t just an air mattress – it is an air mattress / innerspring hybrid, so it is significantly more expensive than regular models that only use air.

Pros

    • Air-over-coil technology provides springy support with uniform, bump-free cushioning.
    • Easy to use electric pump lets you set the comfort level as needed.
    • Designed to fit folded sleeper sofas once deflated, hence convenient storage.
    • 3-year warranty.

Cons

    • May have trouble fitting non-standard sofa designs.
    • A few potential QC concerns.

Recommended For

This mattress is addressed towards sofa bed users who are looking for better comfort and support than what their default mattress can provide.

Parklane Mattresses “The Explorer” Short Queen RV Mattress

Key Points

    • Sizes Available: 34” x 74”; 49” x 74”; 54” x 74”; 60” x 74”; 60” x 79”
    • Firmness Level: Firm
    • Support Layer: 360 count innerspring coils (short queen)
    • Overall Height: 8”
    • CertiPUR-US Certified: Yes
    • Warranty: 1 year

An extra soft foam EuroTop surface exudes a feeling of luxury that is typically associated with hotel bedding. This is backed by 360 innerspring coils for firm support that is meant to alleviate stiffness / pain in the back and shoulders.

The coils and EuroTop create a durable combination that is specifically intended for people who will be using their RV for extended periods of time. This has been attested to by dozens of satisfied users who have slept on the product for many months without any change in the level of comfort/support offered.

However, it should be noted that it offers the best compatibility with back and stomach sleepers, whereas side sleepers may find themselves sleeping on an excessively firm and unyielding surface because of their awkward posture.

On the flipside the product is a bit expensive, and comes with a somewhat stingy 1-year limited warranty.

Pros

    • Soft, luxurious surface feel thanks to foam EuroTop.
    • Firm, springy back support through innerspring core.
    • Coils and EuroTop offer excellent durability.
    • Available in other narrow sizes that go well with RV beds.

Cons

    • A bit expensive.
    • May not work with side sleepers.

Recommended For

This mattress may be worth considering for your RV if you prefer firm, springy support that pushes back on your body, instead of sinking, soft comfort offered by viscoelastic beds.

Now that you’ve reached the end of this guide, you will have started to appreciate that in spite of the limitations that an RV introduces, there are still quite a few mattresses for motorhomes that are up for consideration – and they address a wide range of consumer demands between them.

This means that you can’t really have a single best mattress for RVs: Finding the best camper mattress for yourself requires deciding on criteria such as comfort level, sleep style, expected temperature conditions, sizing, frequency of use, storage constraints, and so on, and these simply can’t be the same for everyone.

Having said that, my pick for the top spot, keeping in mind the needs of the average RV user, would be the Zinus Memory Foam 6 Inch Green Tea Mattress with its affordable price tag and compact 6” profile:

The 1.5” memory foam layer couples with the 4.5” polyfoam layer to provide a decent balance of comfort and support; and it ups the value by including Green Tea Extract and Castor Oil inside the foam for countering bacterial growth and odor development.

The foam is CertiPUR-US certified, and the product itself comes with a respectable 10-year warranty. All these features, at such a price-point, make this a compelling buy indeed for all but those who plan on using their vehicle as a permanent home. 

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