There are two types of lift mechanisms used on Murphy Wall Beds, the spring-loaded type, which in almost all cases, is made in the Peoples Republic of China, and the Piston Lift Mechanism, which is American made. Both systems do what they are supposed to do, which is to assist in raising and lowering a wall bed. Rosie and I prefer the piston type for these reasons:
1) The Piston-Lift Mechanism requires less space than the spring system.
2) The Piston-Lift Mechanism is 'counter-balanced' and is designed for daily use. The piston lift system is not subject to 'metal fatigue'.
3) The Piston-Lift Mechanism is self-adjusting, it does not need to be adjusted for mattress weight. (no need for adding or replacing springs over time.)
4) Pistons allow for a very smooth, silent, finger-light transition when raising and lowering the bed.
5) Our piston wall bed mechanisms are extremely durable and are backed by a lifetime warranty.
6) Our piston mechanism can lift any mattress up to 12 inches deep, and our beds can be ordered to accommodate a mattress up to 15 inches deep.
The Piston-Lift system is so reliable and maintenance-free, that it is used in almost every major hotel corporation in the world such as : The Hilton Hotels, The Hyatt Regency, Best Western, The Hampton Inn, Walt Disney World and The Walt Disney Land Resorts.
"Installing a spring system is generally considered to be more difficult and can be dangerous. It involves pulling back springs and attaching them to a mechanism. A piston system is generally easier to install.....this is much easier than the spring style installs and you avoid the risk of pulling on springs and injury. The piston system is generally easier to lift and lower and they are easier and safer to install. We think the piston mechanism is better for most people".
"Until now, adjusting a murphy bed that was too heavy or too light meant taking the murphy bed apart in order to add or remove one or more springs. It's one of the many reasons manufacturers and customers prefer state of the art pistons instead of metal springs."
So, why do most wall bed manufacturers use spring mechanisms??
Wall Bed Furniture(wallbedfurniture.com)
"The piston lift mechanism is rated for every day use. Wilding Wallbeds trusts this mechanism enough to sell it into sleep centers where it's opened and closed multiple times every day! With this mechanism you arn't looking at a clunky metal frame(which is the case with spring mechanisms) or flimsy slats. You see a fully finished all-wood murphy bed."
"Frankly, we like the piston systems, because they are so quiet, so simple and so user friendly. Springs can be difficult, they can fatigue over time and they are not always that user friendly. Besides, the newest piston systems now can be fine-tuned to the weight of the mattress and have a life-time guarantee."
Some Independent second opinions:
Our Wall Bed Mechanism
Murphy Wall Beds Unlimited
"unlike a spring mechanism, a piston mechanism experience much less fatigue and sagging."
Bob Vila Home Advice
5265 Edna Road
San Luis Obispo, CA 93401
Angi Super Service
"...if your looking to build a new Murphy bed, you will definitely choose pistons over springs. Gas pistons are much better and reliable, and you will have a more even pull on the bed."
Murphy Bed HQ
(Murphy Bed HQ is an information website only
and is not in the business of manufacturing
or selling Murphy Wall Beds.)
The main reason why other manufacturers use the spring lift system, is due to the fact it requires far less wood and labor to make a wall bed, as it uses an inexpensive metal frame which comes in several pieces from China, then assembled by the builder. Many parts are used, and the mattress, instead of resting on a flat wood platform supported by a solid wood frame,rests on metal bars. These metal bars make indentations on the bottom of the mattress which could damage it, and the person using the bed may feel them.
Our piston system, on the other hand, uses a hand-made solid wood frame with a flat wood platform to support the mattress and the people sleeping on it.
(We are more interested in the long-term quality of our product than to save a few hours in the manufacturing process or dollars spent on raw materials.) The cost of the piston and spring systems are the same, The extra cost in wood is only about $50.00
We believe the extra time and cost in our manufacturing process is well worth the end quality and longevity of our finished products.