Your bed is one of the most essential pieces of furniture in your household and this is a known fact. As an average human being spends 1/3rd of his life sleeping, it’s worth noting that beds play a crucial role in the lives of all people. While choosing a mattress, the perfect sheets that go with it can be a mundane task, but choosing the right bed and what goes under it might be extra confusing. Do you need a box spring? Or are you going to be fine with a bed frame? And by the way, what does box spring mean in the first place?
To be honest, the concept that goes with the box springs is pretty simple. Box spring is a base that supports the mattress. Box springs first came into the picture in the 19th century and were made with springs entirely to provide plush to the mattress. These box springs, back then, featured thick springs, but since then the traditional springs are replaced by sturdy wooden slats, which are masked with a cloth.
Although different types of foundations are already replacing the box springs, some mattress companies do recommend box springs as the best solution to providing support and enhancing the comfort of their mattress. And thus, today, we have brought to you the best box spring guide, so that you can have a complete understanding of the foundation and choose the appropriate one for your bed. Keep scrolling because the content gets better!
Box spring can wear out - yes or no?
Yes, box springs sag with time, just like a mattress does.
Maybe you are experiencing a distressing sleep pattern for a couple of days/weeks and are struggling to identify the culprit responsible for your messed-up sleep! Or you may have observed that your mattress is sagging, which should not be the case, considering that your mattress is relatively new.
So, what might be the cause then?
We point our fingers towards your box springs because, as we mentioned earlier, a box spring can sag with time (well, not necessarily the box springs, but the coils inside them). And the reason the coils in the box spring sag is due to the constant use of the box spring that eventually weakens the coils, thereby reducing their ability to perform as shock absorbers and provide the required support for the mattress.
Now, how do you identify if your box spring is worn out and pretty much useless?
Here are three unmistakable signs:
- Creaking or squeaking noises made by the box spring when subjected to normal pressure or weight.
- If the steel springs used in the box springs are aged 10 or more and are wearing out due to time.
- If you observe sagging and bowing across the platform or bending and damage to the steel grid (We will delve into this later in the chapter), it’s a sure sign that you need to chuck your box spring for good.
While a low-quality box spring may not last long, a good quality box spring can be used for more than 20 years. But depending on the use, most box springs can last on an average of 8 to 10 years. So, box springs do have their time limits and have to be changed just like we do with a mattress.
Purpose of box spring
Here are a few purposes served by the box springs:
- They provide additional support to the mattress.
- They provide life to the mattress to match a comfortable height helping the sleeper to get in and out of the bed easily.
- Reduced wear and tear by protecting the mattress (Box springs absorb impact thereby promoting the longevity of the mattress)
- Improves airflow and breathability of the mattress, which leads to a cool night’s sleep.
- Prevents mould and mildew growth outside the mattress and/or beneath the floor.
Apart from the above-mentioned benefits, the primary purpose of a box spring is to support a mattress. A box spring is made of a wood frame filled with metal grids or the most popular springs. Later the box spring is encased in fabric. They’re designed to match the sizes of traditional mattresses (from twin to king)
Over a decade ago, box springs were sold as an integral part of traditional innerspring mattresses, but with improving technologies and innovations in the mattress market, box springs are not necessarily needed.
It’s not that they are completely disregarded, because some mattress brands still recommend them. But most others suggest the use of platform beds or adjustable foundations or even orthopaedic foundations, which are the new game-changers in the market.
Is box spring necessary?
There is no straightforward answer to this question because opinions on ‘box springs’ vary. But here’s the thing, every mattress needs a support system to enhance comfortability for the sleeper. But it need not be a box spring because there are better alternatives for the same. Platform beds, foundation, adjustable bed, bunkie board, wooden slat bed supports, and many more are replacing the need for the box springs. Some people also prefer to sleep on a bed placed on the floor.
So, box springs highly depend on the mattress type, brand, and necessity. Sure enough, you might already have a box spring and might be searching for an alternative. We will go over the signs you might need a new box spring in the next section of the guide.
Signs you need a new box spring
As you might have already read, time is a great indicator if you might need new box springs or not. If you have a box spring older than ten years or more, you might want to consider replacing them, primarily if you feel uncomfortable and that your mattress is new. On average, a good-quality box spring may last about 8 to 10 years. But time is not always a dependable factor. Because while a low-quality box spring lasts only a few years, a high-quality box spring can last up to 20 years or more.
So, the time factor can vary depending on the mattress.
Here’s a quick look into some of the signs you need to look for, which may expose that your current box spring might need a replacement:
What are slats?
Slats are bed bases (a kind of them) made from wood. Slates are wood bars that help to prevent the mattress from slipping and sliding. Besides, they also help distribute the weight evenly and prevent sleepers from sinking.
So, why would slats break?
Slats break because woods rot over time and might need a replacement. Broken slats are a fair enough reason to replace your box springs. Although you can manage the problem by placing a pad between the box-spring and the bed frame, it is only a temporary fix and should not be relied upon for a long time.
Broken steel grid
Broken/bent steel grids cannot be unbent or reversed. Broken or bent grids cause the box springs to sag and can give an uncomfortable feel to the sleeper. While steel grids can offer main support to the mattress, they can deteriorate over time. A bent steel grid does not promote proper weight distribution. So, this should be the second main reason for you to consider buying a new box spring.
Sagging or bowing
Frequent weight and pressure applied to the coils can assure the coils wear out and collapse as time goes. Over time, this will cause the coils to lose their ability to support the mattress and henceforth, a reduced comfort due to sagging and bowing. Reduced comfortability leads to a disrupted sleep schedule, and thus should be considered as an immediate sign to replace your box spring.
Should I get a new box spring for a new mattress?
The quick answer is ‘No’.
But let’s look at the big picture for a better understanding.
There are certain exceptions where you should consider looking for a new box spring if you’re buying a new mattress. If your box spring is old and squeaky to the pressure or if the mattress manufacturer recommends that you should go for a different base altogether for genuine concerns like their mattress underperforming on an old box spring, you should consider the advice.
But if the new box spring is relatively new and you have reviews that your new mattress works perfectly fine with your box spring, then it’s totally fine to proceed with the same.
What can I do with my old box spring?
This is a great question and of course a nagging doubt for many box spring owners who might have decided to replace their old one for a new one or are in search of a new kind of mattress support. (That’s for another guide)
The obvious answer would be to dispose of the box spring somehow. But, that’s not a better solution as of now. With time better options arrive, like upcycling the box springs. Reducing waste and reusing old items is a great way to preserve nature, and many people are opting for these methods in the modern era.
We thought about looking out on Pinterest for some ideas and found a ton of good ones, but, for this guide, we have compiled the best ones for you:
- Use your box spring as a bookshelf (DIY idea)
- Use a section or all of your old springs to create beautiful crafts, like pinboards.
- Turn your box spring into a convenient shelf for your kitchen or bedroom.
- Repurpose your box springs into DIY furniture.
Do you know any more great ideas to upcycle an old box spring? Or have any topic ideas that we need to cover? We would love to hear your ideas. Please consider leaving a comment below.