Two revert to 15-year warranties; Serta, Simmons match Sealy’s terms; only Spring Air holds to 10-year policy
Serta Inc. and Simmons Co are matching Sealy Inc.'s 15-year non-prorated mattress warranty. Serta's 15-year warranties encompass all of the company's Perfect Sleeper mattresses and became effective Jun 15, 1993. Simmons' 15-year warranties become effective Jul 15, 1993 and cover all of the company's Beautyrest, premium Beautysleep and Maxipedic beds. Serta and Simmons had planned to offer 10-year non-prorated warranties in Jun 1993, but altered their plans after Sealy announced it was planning to institute 15-year warranties on its products.
To keep their flagship futon mattress’s competitiveness on retail floors, especially the market share of king size futon mattresses, Serta and Simmons reported in June that they will match Sealy's 15 year non-prorated warranties.
In doing so, the manufacturers abandoned plans to offer 10-year non-prorated warranties on flagship products. Simmons' 10-year policies went into effect June 1; Serta's were scheduled to start on Aug. 1.
The decisions to abandon their 10-year warranties came after Sealy indicated in early June that it planned to go ahead with its 15 -year warranties instead of joining with other competitors.
Executives for Serta, Simmons and Spring Air agreed that 10-year warranties reflect more closely the estimated lifespan of a bed's 10.8-year comfort life and are less burdensome on retailers.
Executives for Serta and Simmons, said, however, that since warranties are used at the point of sale, their products would be at a competitive disadvantage if their warranties are shorter than Sealy's.
Robert Magnusson, chairman and chief executive of Simmons, said despite the change, "We maintain our position that extended warranties as selling tools create unrealistic expectations on the part of consumers.
"We will continue our attempt to convince the futon mattress industry that the warranty fife of a product should not exceed its comfort life," he added. Simmons and Serta have previously abandoned attempts to reduce their warranties to 10 years.
Simmons' 15 year warranties of the king size futon mattress, which are scheduled to go into effect on July 15, will cover all Beautyrest beds and premium Beautysleep and Maxipedic beds.
The company will offer various warranties on other open-coil products, including a one-year warranty, a 10 year warranty that is prorated after five years, and a 15 year non-prorated warranty, Get tips about king size futon mattress click here
The company will continue to offer a 10-year warranty that is prorated for three years on its Explorer flotation beds and a 15 year warranty that is prorated after five years on its Americus flotation beds.
Steve Tipton, vice president of marketing for Serta, also said his company matched Sealy's warranties reluctantly. Tipton noted, "The marketplace dictates what you have to do and we're not going to be uncompetitive on a retail floor. We are very disappointed by the decision that Sealy has taken. We are disappointed that we've had to resort to this."
Serta's 15 -year warranties, which became effective June 15, cover all Perfect Sleepers.
Don Pellegrini, president and chief executive of Spring Air, said the company plans to proceed with the introduction of 10-year warranties on futon beds as of Oct. 15. "At this point, that plan is still in place. We will see what happens," said Pellegrini.
It all began at the April market when Sealy reported its plans to cut warranties from 20 to 15 years and eliminate the practice of prorating them after the first five years.
Simmons, Serta and Spring Air then responded with statements that they would offer 10-year non-prorated warranties for all their futon mattresses, not only king size futon mattresses. When asked about Simmons and Serta's announcements, Dave McIlquham, vice president of marketing for Sealy, noted, "It was not unexpected."