Therapedic Backsense II Sheffield mattress on Wayfair

First, thank you so much for all of the information that is provided here! Our current mattress is a one sided pillow top from one of the big “S” mattress makers that we bought at our local chain store for way too much money. We did everything wrong and the mattress quickly developed a dip in the middle and the topper skewed to one side. This time I am trying to learn as much as I can and maybe not get sold a lemon.

I have been searching for a couple of months and not found anything that makes me want to take the plunge. We live in Southern Maryland, far enough South of DC and North of Richmond that delivery is not an option and hauling a new mattress on top of our car at highway speeds would be nerve wracking. So I have been looking online. None of the out of the box mattresses are making me feel confident that the edges will hold up and the foam will not collapse. I am a plus sized person and I share the bed with my spouse who is also on the heavy side. In addition to that complication, I also have pretty severely arthritic knees. We currently have a 2.5 inch latex topper on our sad old mattress. It is keeping our mattress usable for now. We love the topper and will continue to use it on our new mattress.

I found the Backsense II mattress by Therapedic on Wayfair’s website. It has some of the qualities that I am looking for and the price is reasonable. Unfortunately, I have not been able to find any information about this mattress anywhere else on the internet. Wayfair gives some pretty basic stats, but they don’t even seem to be sure if all of the mattresses in the line are flippable or not. They give no details on the density or thickness of the poly foams used. I checked the Therapedic website, and they listed the Backsense, but I couldn’t find anything about the Backsense II. I have asked Wayfair for more information and if they reply with anything useful I will share it. I am wondering if you have heard anything about this mystery line of Therapedic mattresses? Also, will the addition of the latex topper give the foam comfort layer a longer life span? One final question. If I buy a mattress from this line, they offer a 13" firm and a 14" plush mattress. I understand that thicker, firmer mattresses are better for plus sized people. The number of coils is the same on both mattresses. (858 on the queen). Would the comfort layers on a plush mattress be more likely to compress or would the thicker mattress be a better choice? I will provide the links for both mattresses below. Thank you for any insight that you might be able to provide.®-II-Cambridge-Luxury-Firm-Mattress-THPC1013.html?piid[0]=17799231®-II-Sheffield-Luxury-14-Plush-Mattress-THPC1011.html

Hi faeriefolk,

Welcome to the Mattress Forum! :slight_smile:

You’re very welcome.

The only thing you did “wrong” was purchase the product. The dip and shifting of the pillowtop panel are a result of the poor quality of componentry and construction of the product, and not your fault at all, so please don’t blame yourself. However, you will want to make sure that you have proper center support in your frame, as you mentioned dipping in the center, just to make sure that you have proper support in that area.

Great plan!

There are some comments about edge support with foam mattresses in post #2 here and the posts it links to. All-latex mattresses will generally not have a firm polyfoam edge system glued around the perimeter, and while the edge will feel softer when seated, the latex will hold shape quite well. Steel spring edge systems are becoming quite a bit more popular in the industry and many manufacturers are going to these in place of the polyfoam edge systems. While an edge system does make the seating surface a bit firmer, the real benefit is to be able to sleep closer to the edge and have minimal roll off, effectively creating a larger usable sleep surface.

I’m sorry to hear about your arthritic knees. Your topper hopefully is helpful with that sensitivity, and some people also realize relief with a small pillow being placed between their knees.

Having a higher BMI or weight presents special challenges and generally requires firmer materials (in the support layers especially). This could be firmer latex or innersprings (the type of support component would be a personal preference and in the right design either could be suitable) or even a zoned construction. The same overall guidelines apply with higher weights though that PPP (Posture and alignment, Pressure relief, and Personal preferences) along with using high quality durable materials that will maintain their feel and performance for longer periods of time are the way to make the best choices. Heavier people in general will need firmer and thicker comfort layers and firmer support layers than those who are lighter and because no materials will last as long with much higher weights the quality and durability of the materials and components is even more important than normal. I wouldn’t “rule out” any types of mattress and base your choices on your own personal testing. Post #3 here has more information and suggestions about heavier weights that is worth reading.

The key will be finding componentry that will be of appropriate quality for your specific situation, which will then give you the best chance at have a successful comfort life, so I would always make sure that you find out the information listed here so you can compare the quality of the materials and components. For those in a higher BMI range, there is more information about selecting a mattress in the durability guidelines here. Specifically, if your BMI is 30 or higher:

Higher BMI ranges will need more durable materials and components in a mattress and in a BMI range of 30 or higher I would include any 1.8 lb polyfoam or 4 lb memory foam as a “lower quality/density” material (relative to a higher BMI only) and minimize their use to a total of “about an inch or so or less” in the mattress.

Polyurethane foam: If your mattress is one sided then I would look for 2.0 lb per cubic foot density or higher. If the mattress is two sided then I would use a minimum density of 1.8 lbs per cubic foot or higher.

Memory foam (or gel memory foam): If your mattress is one sided then I would make sure that any memory foam is at least 5 lb per cubic foot. If the mattress is two sided then I would use a minimum density of 4 lbs per cubic foot.

Latex toppers can be excellent at pressure point relief and at providing durable surface comfort. There would be nothing wrong with continuing to use this on a new mattress.

You’re correct, the “specifications” provided on the Wayfair site are anything but specific, and there is no meaningful information provided about these products. Both are two-sided (the information about the Plush not being reversible is incorrect). I checked with Jeff Scheuer at Mattress To Go, who is a large Therapedic dealer, and he confirmed that there are many different Therapedic licensees and they will create specialized lines for larger retailers, such as Wayfair, and these beds will quite often be different from the typical national Therapedic lines, so you won’t generally find these specification on the national Therapedic site. And generally speaking, the only line that Therapedic makes that would have componentry appropriate for people with a larger BMI would be their MediCoil HD line, and even though he isn’t aware of the specifications of this line offered by Wayfair, he doubts that it would contain foams of the appropriate density for your specific needs.

I’ll be interested in learning about any additional information that Wayfair might be able to provide you, but until you can get confirmation of every layer within the mattress and the density of those foams, I would “put on hold” considering this product. I’ll be happy to comment upon anything else you’re able to find out from Wayfair.

While the uppermost layers of foam go through the greatest mechanical stress, they won’t make up for lower density foams beneath them, so you’d still want to look for something appropriate for higher BMIs like I linked to earlier in this reply.

People with higher BMIs often do better with thicker layers of higher density materials, but a higher density foam doesn’t necessarily translate into a specific level of plushness. The level of overall softness would come down to your own personal comfort preference, and the thickness is more a by-product of the overall mattress design and comfort that the mattress company is attempting to achieve with that particular model.

I’ll be interested in learning about any other information you’re provided by Wayfair.


Thank you so much for your detailed reply! I have been waiting to see if I heard back from Wayfair, and I finally did! On the question that I asked about one of the mattresses at least. On the other one I get an email every other day or so to let me know that they are looking for the information that I requested. The reply that I got for the Cambridge model of the Backsense II mattresses that I was looking at indicate that the polyfoam density is 1.2 pounds and the polyfoam layer is 1/2 inch thick. Also, that mattress is flippable. I assume that these stats will apply to the Sheffield mattress as well. So the polyfoam layer is not very thick or very dense. No idea what the "lofted ther-a-pad support system that they refer to is, or how the rest of the layers break down. I appreciate you finding more information for me on this mattress. I agree that I should keep looking.

Having rotated our sad mattress to a point where both my husband and I are sleeping pretty well and having suffered serious information overload and frustration that so many people are out to make a buck by selling people a poor nights sleep, I have put the mattress search on hold for a few days. I will keep the information that you gave me in mind when I have the mental faculties to resume my search. Thanks so much again for all of your help. You have single-handedly renewed my faith in humanity.

By the way, those “H” shaped pillows for people with arthritic knees are brilliant! I wake up so much happier now that I am using one of those.

Hi faeriefolk,

You’re welcome.

I see they added the 1.2 lb density to the item description, but they still don’t list all of the layers within the mattress, as there is 1" in the quilt and I’m assuming something else beneath this besides some sort of a fiber pad. I don’t know that this is the same foam as is used in the Sheffield, but in that mattress there is 1.5" of foam in the quilt and convoluted foam beneath that, so there is plenty of polyfoam about which you’d still need information.

Unless you’re able to find out more information and the foams are a higher density than what they’ve already disclosed, I’d agree with you that it’s best to keep looking.

I’m glad I could be of assistance – don’t lose faith! :slight_smile: There are plenty of knowledgeable retailers and manufacturers who make quality products and are happy to help you find a suitable mattress.

Thanks for the feedback. I’m happy that pillow is working out well for you.


Hello! I have been meaning to contact you for a while now to thank you for all of your help, and to let you know what I ultimately decided on.

Since I really wanted flippable but I like the comfort of memory foam layers, I decided to build my own set up. I purchased a Spring Dreams 9 inch two sided pocket coil mattress from Dream Foam. I then topped that with a 4 inch 5LB ViscoMAX memory foam topper from Foam Factory. I kept my old latex topper and put that on top of everything else. Despite our old mattress being junk, the foundation and frame that it came with were still level and in great shape, so we just kept those. With everything enclosed in a fitted mattress pad it stays together well with very little slippage. I have numbered the corners on all three pieces so that I can rotate each piece on a regular basis. After ten months of sleeping on them, the two new pieces are still in perfect shape. The latex pad is starting to look a little sad but it is the top layer, and it is also several years old at this point.

My husband and I have both found this combination to be extremely comfortable. It has adequate support but has enough give to prevent pressure spots at our hips and knees. The memory foam is motion isolating enough that my restlessness doesn’t disturb him, but the latex allows for freedom of movement so that we don’t get that stuck in quicksand feeling. We spent about $420 on the mattress and the memory foam and we can replace any piece that breaks down pretty economically without having to replace the whole thing.

I should mention that all of these layers have added up to 15 1/2 inches of mattress. I am 5’3", so our bed ended up being quite tall for me. I have a small Rubbermaid stool next to the bed that I use to climb up. It was annoying at first, but I have gotten used to it and it is a small price to pay for a comfortable bed.

Once I got the new mattresses in place, I found that I couldn’t find anyplace to recycle my old mattress. It turns out that a box cutter, a scissors, a set of bolt cutters, and a couple of hours work make it possible to break down a mattress for recycling in the comfort of your own home. It was fascinating to take the old mattress apart and see the components. The fabric and foam went to the land fill, but all of the metal parts went to my local metal recycling center.

You provide such a valuable service to people with this website! Thank you for giving me the tools that I needed to find a good night’s sleep.

Hi faeriefolk.

Welcome back to our Mattress Forum! :slight_smile:

This is the “surprise” day on TMU … thanks for returning with an update and for your kind words. I much appreciate it!

I am happy to hear how well the DIY project turned out for you and your husband.
It looks like you had great fun in the process and are much enjoying the end result. This certainly is one of the happy TMU stories of a DIY.

Thanks again for sharing and for your creative recycling tip!