(National) Dec. 30, 2004 - Consumer Reports' Maxine Siegel tested four air mattresses to see how well they work, "We had 18 people try them in the lab and at home to see how comfortable they were and how easy they were to use."
All four beds come with a plug-in electric pump that inflates the mattress in a couple of minutes. Maxine found the one mattress from Simmons was harder to inflate than the others, "You actually have to hold the pump in place while the bed inflates."
The other three beds from Aero have built-in pumps, which make them much easier to inflate and deflate.
In the end, Consumer Reports says two beds from Aero are better choices. The first, called the Aerobed, has a vinyl surface and costs $180. The second one from Aero, called the Pillowtop Aerobed, has a fabric surface that may help keep sheets in place. It costs $200.
Either is a good option if you don't have enough beds when company comes.
Consumer Reports says when you're not using the inflatable mattresses, they're easy to store. They deflate to a bundle that can fit on a shelf or in a closet.