A netizen recently asked, Why don’t people have waterbeds anymore? The responses below made the most sense to us.

They’re A Headache 

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“They are kind of a pain. For starters, when filled, they weigh a metric ton, so they better be on the ground floor and solid. If they spring a leak, get ready for the flood. Also, it’s water, so it can get cold. You ideally need to heat the water which is another expense. They are also hard to get out of, so count out the elderly. 

That said, there are still people that buy and use them.”


They Used To Leak

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“I used to live in a high rise in Alexandria, VA. The waterbed of the guy above sprung a leak and my bathroom ceiling came crashing down just hours before my weekend guests arrived. That was fun. And it was Friday night, so the maintenance dudes couldn’t come until Monday.” 


They Hurt Your Back

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“My back hurts just thinking about sleeping on one again.” Said one. 

“My parents had one from the 80s to the early 00s. There were about 5 years my dad would kick me out of my bed cause he couldn’t handle the waterbed with his back. 

When it sprung a leak and mum couldn’t find another one, guess who no longer had a bad back.” Another added. 


Better Alternatives Are Now Available 

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“They invented memory foam. Before that, mattresses were basically interlinked padded coils. Whenever anyone moved, even a little, the whole mattress moved with them.

Memory foam is very comfortable, and individually wrapped springs plus memory foam means water beds aren’t any more comfortable. And they’re a LOT more expensive and annoying to manage.” 


They’re Ridiculously Heavy

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“Waterbeds can easily weigh over 2000 lbs, that’s why. Water is crazy heavy, weighing roughly 8 pounds per gallon. Aside from the possibility of the thing popping, they’re damn near impossible to move once filled.” 


Cumbersome & Uncomfortable 

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“They’re not good to sleep in, very hard to move and will screw you up if they break. Really no upsides.” 


They’re A Huge Mess

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“They can leak and they can start to grow mildew. Really no back support. They were a fad for a while because they were supposedly good for certain ‘activities’ due to the supposed rocking motion of the water in the mattress. 

They quickly became viewed as a bit tacky.

If trying to move (to a new residence) or get rid of it, it has to be drained and disassembled. But I heard a fair few stories of the water mattress rupturing and causing a huge mess. Also, it could be an electrical hazard if it leaked enough.” 


They Can Make You Cold

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“If the heater dies you’re just laying on a room-temperature water balloon.” Said one. 

“Which will probably make you cold after laying on it for a while.” Another added. 


Apartments Enforced The “No Waterbeds” Clause

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“I’m going to guess it’s because many apartments came out with no waterbed clauses in their leases. 

I got a waterbed for, like, my 15th birthday, and yes there’s all the associated hassles of filling, leaking, etc. But you just dealt with it, you didn’t get rid of the bed. 

No, I got rid of mine when I moved into my second apartment, on the second floor of the building, and the “No waterbed” clause was in my lease. I got rid of it, and never went back.” 


They Weren’t Pet-Friendly 

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“My cat zoomed across mine as I was putting the sheets on. So many little pinholes in her claws

I didn’t have a transfer or sump pump & had a basement apartment. I spent hours draining it into a bucket & bringing the bucket up the stairs to dump it.

We’ve got a sleep number now. So much better.” 


They Were A Pointless Gimmick 

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“Because they are a pointless gimmick. Hard to get in and out of. Hard to move. Literally, serve no purpose over a regular bed. It’s just something different to sell people.” 


They Made Lovemaking A Task

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“Because if you don’t know how to get a water bed to work when you’re making love, it is life and you never get one. You are the guy. Back when I was a young adult people did have waterbeds.

If I start seeing a guy and he had a water bed, always ask him how long have you had the water and how many relationships have you had in this water bed. He needed to have the water bad for a good little period of time.

If he said he only had it for a week, I would not be getting in that water bed with him. And it’s not so much how many relationships but did you get a lot of experience getting the water beds to work for when you’re making love? It is very very frustrating to be trying to make love when the guy couldn’t make it work right because he could never keep the rhythm going long enough for either one of us to get off.”


Come With Heat Leaching Issues 

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“There’s a heat leaching issue.  When it comes to winter, you heat your house, and the water in the bed absorbs a lot of the heat.  This means you have to heat your house, even more to make that room warm.” 


More Maintenance Issues, More Restrictions, And No Significant Pros

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“They aren’t “strictly better” than conventional beds, and at the same time they also have more maintenance issues, more restrictions on where they can go, and they cost more both to buy and to operate. So, without a cultural fad boosting them up, they have naturally declined in popularity. But they do still exist!

And they’re not bad! You just have to actually enjoy them for getting one to be worthwhile.”


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