What you need to know about mattress flame retardants


We’re often contacted by prospective customers who are doing their research about flame retardants (FR) in mattresses. We applaud anyone who is doing their due diligence to make sure the products they purchase are safe for them and their families.

So, we wanted to take a moment to talk about what they are and how we comply with these laws. All of our products are built with you in mind, so you can rest assured that the flame-retardant materials we use are safe.

Flame retardant standards

There are currently two federal standards for mattresses or mattresses and box springs:

16 CFR 1632 ~ Cigarette Ignition Standard is the federal standard that requires mattresses to pass a Cigarette Ignition Test. This standard was put into effect in 1974 and revised in 1984.

16 CFR 1633 ~ Open Flame Standard is an additional federal standard that requires mattresses or mattress sets (mattress and box spring) to pass an Open Flame Test. This standard was put into effect on July 1, 2007.

These standards are not intended to make a mattress “fire-proof,” but they slow a fire that comes in contact with the mattress or box spring. While neither of these standards are perfect, we believe that they are important for consumer safety. All of our products are thoroughly tested by a third party in order to ensure their compliance with these laws.

Why consumers may be concerned about flame retardants

While OMF does not believe in this practice, some mattress manufacturers may opt to use chemicals in order to comply with these laws. Some safety advocates have expressed concern about some of these chemicals and their potential long-term effects on consumers.

Mattresses made in the U.S. are subject to strict health and safety standards, but cheap foam mattresses from overseas have flooded the market in recent years. These mattresses are widely available from popular online vendors. We always recommend that customers do their research when it comes to buying a mattress — find out where and how it was made.

How we comply with flame retardant laws

In order to meet the requirements of these federal standards, we incorporate a flame retardant barrier just below the fabric ticking on all of our products.

We have purposefully selected barriers that utilize inherent-FR fibers to use in the sleeping surfaces of all of our products. Inherent-FR fibers are fibers in which the flame retardant properties are part of the fibers themselves — the fiber is not coated or chemically treated after it is produced.

We use two different inherent-FR fibers: para-aramid (Kevlar® is a type of para-aramid you may have heard of before) and inherent-FR rayon. Both materials have been used to manufacture specialty clothing for military personnel, firefighters, etc.

We don’t spray or treat the sleep surfaces of our products with any chemicals or coatings to meet flammability regulations. We also don’t use any internal components that are treated with FR chemicals or coatings of any kind.

If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to reach out to us directly at info@originalmattress.com. We happy to discuss this matter further.

Check our Mattress Shopping 101. 

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