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Can You Buy a Great-Quality Sleeping Pad for Under $50?
You could spend hundreds of dollars on big-name pads like Therma-A-Rest or Sea-To-Summit, but are you really getting your money’s worth? I put an off-brand name to the test to see if it delivers a good sleeping experience as advertised!
It is very possible to get a great quality sleep pad for less than a quarter of the price of big-brand names that use the same materials and manufacturing processes. The Hibern8 EcoTek mattress is an example of an off-brand name that offers a good quality mattress with no big-name hype or big-name price tag, and it should last as long as any.
I’ll show you the details of this little trooper of a mat and tell you its weight, size, options, comfort factor, and if it actually holds air long enough to keep you comfortable. Stick around and I’m sure you won’t be sorry!
Why Would I Choose the EcoTek hibern8 sleep pad?
First off, please know that I bought this mattress with my own money and it was not given to me and I was not incentivized in any way.
The hibern8 pad caught my attention given the look of it on Amazon. It looked exactly like the big name brands and it looked to be made the same way too. But of course, I’m not naive, and I realized looks can be very deceptive, so I continued my research.
The promo material said certain things that I wouldn’t expect from a really cheap Chinese knock-off company. For example, it said it was built to last, it had a customized blend of polyester and nylon that is not available in other brands.
The feature list was written in legible paragraphs that sounded like someone whose first language is English. So far, so good!
I wasn’t expecting a well-written feature list with so many positives.
- 10-breath inflation
- 1-finger deflation placed near your head
- Heavy duty 70D woven polyester
- Self-isolating baffles to resist heat loss
- Air spring cells for added support on pressure points but minimal weight
- Mummy bag shape for easy insertion inside your sleeping bag
- Hammock-friendly design
- 18-ounce weight
- Customized material blend
- Non-slip bottom
- Reduced noised design
- Folds to smaller than a 1-liter water bottle
- Pack size is 10″ x 3″
- Inflation size is 74″ x 22″ x 2.5″
- “Zero compromise on quality” statement is pretty bold for a cheap, knock-off product
No matter what the company says about its own products, I tend not to fully trust any of them until I can put it through my own testing process. So, how did it stack up to the stated feature list?
It actually did take less than 10 breaths to fill up, so that part is true. However, I would suggest not using your hot, moist breath if you use it often since that just fosters an environment of mold growth. I’d suggest using a pump of some sort, and if you’re backpacking or wilderness tripping with a canoe, that means using a dry bag pump.
The deflation was extremely easy as stated and the 2.5″ air pods actually did keep my bones off the hard ground. It easily fit into a sleeping bag and it’s nearly imperceptibly light. It does fold down to a size smaller than a 1-liter water bottle. It also did not move around on the tent floor.
See the Full Video Review
EcoTek is committed to outdoor education and environmental responsibility. Here’s a statement from EcoTek Outdoors pertaining to their commitment to the environment:
- Very Good Price
- Very Easy Inflation & Deflation
- Doesn’t Deflate Overnight
- Small, Light, Tough
- Eco-Friendly Company
- Comfortable for its size
- Even with 2.5″ air pods, you may still feel hard ground if you’re heavier or have big hips
- As with any pad, there are verified customers who experienced premature deflation issues
- Not exceptionally wide
So far, our experience after a few nights has been nothing but positive. I’ll report back with any changes to this if the pad does not hold up during the rest of the camping season.
If it holds up over even 2 seasons of about 4 canoe trips lasting 3-5 nights each, I’ll be happy. In the past, I would have expected a mattress to last a lifetime of light/medium use without any accidents, but it seems my expectations have been lowered over the past few decades of cheaper quality products.
I hope my worst fears won’t be realized with the longer-term use of this EcoTek Hibern8 sleeping pad.