The quality of a mattress is largely determined by its springs, a crucial component in providing both comfort and longevity. Selecting the appropriate springs can be intricate as it depends on various factors like the type of mattress and individual user preference. It is important to understand the different types of springs and their effect on comfort, along with how to select them for distinct design scenarios. The wrong choice of springs can lead to issues like improper weight distribution, which can reduce a mattress's lifespan. By focusing on appropriate spring selection, engineers can create a mattress that not only satisfies comfort requirements but also ensures reliable performance over time.

Types of Springs in Mattresses

In mattress production, the kind of spring utilized directly ties to characteristics such as comfort and performance of the final product.

Bonnell springs, an older design, demonstrate an hourglass shape and are linked using metal mesh. Such springs are frequently used in less expensive mattresses because they offer adequate longevity at a lower production cost. Nevertheless, their support structure is general and not as specific as other springs types.

Alternately, pocket springs, also known as Marshall coils, are individually wrapped in fabric. This structure enables each spring to operate independently, thus providing motion isolation and area-specific support. Mattresses that require specific support often use these springs. However, the more complicated manufacturing process results in a higher price tag for pocket spring mattresses.

Continuing, continuous coils are created from a single wire formed into rows. The simpler production process and high durability of these springs make them a popular choice for sturdy, cost-effective mattresses. Yet, they do not offer the precise support that pocket or offset coils offer.

Lastly, offset coils resemble Bonnell springs but have squares at either the top or bottom to increase a mattress's responsiveness to body shapes. They offer a combination of both responsive support and durability. Similar to pocket springs, offset coils require more resources for construction, resulting in a potentially higher cost for the final mattress.

How Mattress Springs Affect Comfort

The nature of springs in a mattress has a direct effect on the comfort level provided. Pocket springs are a type to note, as they are individually encased and have the ability to move independently. This independent movement creates a high degree of motion isolation. This means that motion on one side of the mattress does not significantly affect the other side, an aspect beneficial for bed sharing. The independent nature of the pocket springs facilitates a more precise conformity to the body's contour and weight distribution, leading to improved support and pressure relief.

Nonetheless, Bonnell and continuous coil mattresses incorporate a distinct spring type. These springs are interconnected by design, forming a more robust, stable structure. The structure imparts a buoyant quality to the mattress and results in increased motion transfer, an attribute less favored by those who share a bed. Using a unique combination of hourglass-shaped springs and a hinged design, offset coil mattresses make an attempt to offer a blending of the solidity of Bonnell springs with the conformability of pocket springs. The comfort level these mattresses provide, therefore, may vary among users according to individual sleep requirements and preferences.

How to Choose the Best Spring for Mattress Engineering

The process of selecting an appropriate spring for mattress engineering requires attention to several factors. These include consumer preference, market trends, financial parameters, and the intended feel of the mattress. For example, customers who are willing to pay more may prefer pocket springs. These springs are effective in adapting to body shape and limiting movement transfer, attributes that are particularly valued by those focusing on comfort.

To cater to customers who prioritize longevity and firmness in a mattress, Bonnell or continuous coil springs could be a good option. However, these types of springs might not provide the same comfort and movement isolation as mattresses that are equipped with pocket springs. This highlights a balancing act between the longevity and firmness of a mattress and its comfort features.

Engineers also need to focus on specific characteristics of springs, including coil gauge, coil count, and spring arrangement. These can be described as follows: Coil gauge refers to the thickness of the wire - thicker wires, associated with lower gauge numbers, result in a firmer mattress. Coil count, or the total number of springs, affects mattress support and contouring - a higher number generally leads to improved support. On the other hand, an irregular spring layout can provide specific support to different body parts, thus enhancing comfort.

It is important to align these technical considerations with the preferences and needs of the target consumer group. For example, a mattress designed for older individuals may require a higher gauge to provide firmer support, which can help alleviate back pain. Matching component selection with user needs can lead to better performance of a mattress in the face of market competition.


Selecting and using springs in mattresses involves analyzing various factors. Key considerations include the type of spring, its characteristics, along with its contribution towards the comfort and support of a mattress. Engineers should take into account the preferences of potential users. A holistic understanding of a spring's effect on a mattress's comfort and support can help in creating mattresses that meet user requirements.