on 12 August 2012
I bought two of these beds for a 7 days camping trip and they were generally very comfortable but I have a couple of issues with the product, paricularly with the pump.
The rechargable pumps dont have any indication of when they are fully charged so although I set my alarm for the recommended 12 hours charging period, this didn't put emough charge into the pumps to inflate the beds adequately. There is a feature that allows you to inflate the beds using using a cable that attaches to your car cigerette lighter direct to the pump which is a very effective way of inflating them and without that feature these beds would have been useless on my camping trip as the pumps dont seem to hold enough charge to inflate them fully.
Whilst you can use the car cigarette lighter direct you cant use the mains cable direct, only to charge the pump, which means if I want to use these beds as overnight beds at home then I will have to drag them out to my car to inflate them properly and as I only have street parking which is 50 yards from my house then this is going to look pretty stupid and is going to be a real drag.
My other slight issue is the integral pillow which is not high enough to be supportive on its own but too high if you have to put a pillow on top of it which effctively shortens the length of the bed as you have to slide down the bed to get below the pillow line. As I am 6 feet tall it meant the bed wasn't long enough for me to do that without curling up onto a ball. My 13 year old son who is a lot shorter had no problem with this and just used the built in pillow and slept well but I am old with a bad back and would have preferred a completely flat surface.
With a decent pump that showed when it was fully charged and had an effective charge, these would be 5 star beds but the weak pump is a real problem that could have ruined my camping trip and stops these beds being useful at home too.
on 13 November 2013
I've had a good few airbeds in my time and most of them have been total crap. They're uncomfortable, they collapse at the edges and they deflate faster than a flasher's boner when being nicked by the fuzz. But my other half and I decided to have one more stab at finding something that would work and we'd heard good things about Aerobeds.
We went for two singles because I'm a big, tall lad and they don't seem to do the active (which comes with a rechargeable pump) in anything bigger than a double. The singles are full size so a single fitted sheet will go over it perfectly, plus they come with a storage bag, pump, mains lead and car charging lead which seems good value.
They're a doddle to inflate and even easier to deflate and stow thanks to the excellent valve design, they're robust and they're very comfortable (for an airbed - it'll never be quite as good as a real mattress but it's not that far off). For me, the main thing is that they don't collapse at the edges and dump you off if you get near to them and whilst they do lose a bit of air - no airbed ever made is completely immune to this - it really isn't a significant amount and a quick top up with the pump every three or so days, which takes just seconds, is hardly a big price to pay for a comfy night's sleep in a tent.
Seriously, I reckon these are the kings of the airbed world. Well worth the cash.
on 12 December 2009
Review updated after 16 months experience (see below) and one star removed.
I tried the dearer mains version of the AeroBed before I bought this, and, although this is cheaper, it's actually much better. For a start it's longer (the mains version is 6' in theory, but in reality you lose an inch or two at each end due to the curve of the top of the bed - for me, at 6', it was too short). This bed is also wider, in fact it's a whole 1m wide! (Despite this, a normal single fitted sheet still fits - just about.) This version also has a slightly raised/angled bit at the pillow end, which is surprisingly comfortable - you don't really need a separate pillow.
Also, although you can just plug the mains inflated version in (no recharging), the battery inflator is more convenient, as you can inflate the bed anywhere (there is a 12v car lead as well). It's also, surprisingly, a lot quicker to inflate - it only takes half a minute, it really is amazingly fast. The battery seems to hold enough charge for several inflations as well (3, so far, but other reviews report as many as 7). The only drawback is a long initial charge (24 hours is recommended), but I found you could inflate the bed perfectly well after just a few hours initial charging.
In summary, this bed is bigger than the more expensive one, inflates (and deflates) more quickly, more conveient, and more comfortable. It's only downside is the colour (why on earth did they choose this awful shade of brown??), but it's not quite as bad as it looks in the photos.
It also doesn't have the strong plasticy smell the mains version does!
Update, 16 months later:
My comments on size and comfort still stand, but, after several nights spent on this bed - due to sick children sleeping with mum! - I am a lot less impressed with the battery powered inflator. The problem is that since the initial review I have had my long awaited back surgery and now find I need to inflate the bed much longer to make it as firm as possible (it carries on getting firmer for at least half a minute after it appears fully inflated). This means that the battery in the pump is drained a lot quicker than before and now typically only holds enough charge to properly inflate the bed a couple of times.
The battery also doesn't seem to hold its charge as well as it used to, typically not retaining enough charge for even a single full firm inflation after being idle for a few weeks, even though I always ensure it's fully recharged before putting it away. This means that several times I have had to wait a couple of hours before being able to go to bed, while the battery has been recharged (and my neighbours have had the pleasure of listening to me pump the bed up at 1 or 2 in the morning!).
So, in summary, if you're 6' like me, you still don't have any choice, you have to go for the longer, battery inflated bed, but, if you're less than 6', my recommendation would now be to go for the mains inflated model, unless you particularly need the flexibility of battery power.
on 26 July 2009
Bought this for a camping trip as i was sick of paying out for air beds that dont last and leave you sleeping on the floor in the morning. This airbed has a cordless pump and does blow up to full pressure in a very short time, it also has the adaptor for pluging it into a car socket. It then tells you only to inflate the air bed at room temperature and its not suitable for outside use????? Anyway I used it for camping and it stayed fully inflated all night, was comfortable and I didnt feel sea sick during the night as i have done on many other air beds. All in all a good air bed, Im giving it 4 stars as it is very expensive.
on 20 August 2012
I have updated this review after a year.
The bed was comfortable the first few times. But like other reviewers I have found that after a few uses, it does not stay inflated overnight. I have found a partial solution in putting a small square of clingfilm under the sealing cap and closing it. Presumably the leaks are cause by faulty seals. There was no advantage in putting the clingfilm under the large release valve.
After two camping trips we binned this since it was 1. always deflating in the tent causing sore backs, 2. Really cold and you had to take extra blankets. In respect of this mattress being cold, I can only assume that the thicker air cushion allows convection that carries away the heat. So we ended up carrying an extra layer to use as a sheet. Never done this with any other air mattress.
Finally, after a years use the re-chargeable pump stopped holding charge. Eight hours would give five minutes of pumping.
All these things have been mentioned on the UK and USA websites.
on 30 June 2014
Heard some reviews stating it's not very robust and it doesnt inflate to a very high pressure.
I used this bed camping for 3 nights to test, and I think the vinyl is about the thickest I have ever encountered in an aerobed. Its stiffeners also do an excellent job of keeping it stable and keeping wobble and bounce to a minimum!
It held pressure for the whole trip, didnt even need a top up from the blower. It also gets very firm with the blower alone, don't believe the reviews stating that it doesn't blow up fully, I would guess these reviewers didn't charge their pump properly before inflating!
on 21 December 2009
Years of pumping up beds with a foot pump had given me a pathological fear of blow up beds. But a camping trip and impending visit of many relatives meant needs must and I needed to buy an airbed.
After much research I decided on this one. It blows up in minutes using the rechargeable electric pump and deflates in even less time as you roll it up. Very easy to use and practical for camping as you don't need to worry about mains power. Also very comfortable. Air bed technology has certainly moved on!
A few things to note....
You need to fully charge the rechargeable pump at the mains for 12 hours before using. You cannot charge and pump at the sametime from the mains. This is an issue if you plan to use the bed straight out of the box. If you do, you will need to use the alternative method of using the car lighter socket to give power to the pump. Not ideal, unless your first use is camping or you have easy access from car to house!
Secondly, it says in the instructions that it takes 60 seconds before you hear a high pitched wail that indicates it is fully inflated. I haven't heard the wail and after 90 seconds I usually stop the pump. It says you cannot over inflate, but I didn't want to risk it.
on 31 December 2011
After the birth of my new daughter, this bed has given me many restful nights allowing me to function at 100% while not taking up any extra space in the flat. It is really easy to fold away and inflates really quickly with the help of the included charger. The only issue is that when you change position, there are popping sounds as the bed re-adjusts itself; but I think that these are more from the wooden floor than the air bed.