Hot Melt Adhesive Revolutionizes Bed-in-a-Box Mattress Manufacturing

Bed-in-a-box mattresses are becoming more popular than ever as customer purchasing behaviors shift from brick and mortar mattress stores in ecommerce-based mattress retailers. Instead of worrying about physically driving to a mattress store, enduring sales pitches, wondering if you’re getting a good deal, and then dealing with transporting your mattress, these bed-in-a-box companies are simplifying the process for all parties involved.

The bed-in-a-box mattress industry has exploded over the past five years, but the concept actually dates back to 2007 when a Nashville-based entrepreneur named Bill Bradley built the first machine designed to compress and tightly roll foam mattresses for simple shipping. This piece of equipment was key in the founding of Bradley’s mattress business, Bed in a Box, and it was long before other major bed-in-a-box companies — like Casper and Tuft & Needle — threw their hat in the ring.

Fast forward to 2019 — there are now nearly 200 online mattress manufacturers that follow the bed-in-a-box model for compressing, rolling, and shipping foam mattresses direct to customers. These companies represent about 12 percent of the mattress market (it was only 6 percent in 2014). As this niche market grows in dominance, bed-in-a-box mattress businesses are looking for new ways to innovate their product assembly and improve the experience of customers.

One way bed-in-a-box companies are streamlining their manufacturing process is by switching from water-based adhesive to hot melt adhesive for adhering the mattress’ multiple foam layers. How? Well, it all comes down to curing time.

Bed-in-a-box mattresses are often built to order, which means that when a customer orders a mattress, the company immediately gets to work on constructing the mattress before compressing, rolling, and boxing it up to be shipped. If a company is using water-based adhesive during the construction phase, they must wait a minimum of 24 hours for the adhesive to fully cure before it can be compressed and rolled. This poses two problems. First, water-based adhesive slows down foam mattress production. Second, water-based adhesive requires a bed-in-a-box manufacturer to have enough space to store multiple mattresses while they undergo curing process. Given how large mattresses are, that’s a lot of space if you’re flooded with hundreds of customer orders per week.

That’s where hot melt adhesives come in to save the day. Unlike water-based adhesives, hot melt adhesives cure incredibly fast. When applied to mattresses, hot melt adhesive will dry within a few seconds, as opposed to a day or more. This means bed-in-a-box mattress companies are able to construct, compress, roll, and ship a mattress within several hours of receiving a customer’s order.

Ready to maximize the efficiency of your bed-in-a-box mattress manufacturing process? A hot melt adhesive system is the way to go. Sure Tack Systems is an industry leader in hot melt adhesive application equipment. Our hot melt glue systems are reliable, simple to operate, and easy to maintain. Contact Sure Tack Systems to learn more about implementing hot melt adhesive into your bed-in-a-box manufacturing process.