If you made it here, you may already know what a bed frame is and how important it can be to get the right support under your mattress and box spring. There are a lot of different options out there, so how do you choose the frame that’s right for you? Here are some things to consider:
Bed Frame Size
If you already bought a mattress, or have a headboard you want to use, then you already know what size bed frame you need. If not, then you’ll need to decide what size frame you want. First, consider the size of the room since the bed is typically the largest piece of furniture in any bedroom. You’ll want to make sure it fits between any nightstands or other pieces comfortably, and that there’s enough space to easily get in and out.
Next, find out which size fits you. The most common bed sizes include Twin, Full (or Double), Queen, King, and California King.
- Twin: Twin bed dimensions are usually 38 inches wide by 75 inches long. Twin beds might not be long enough or wide enough for adults to sleep comfortably. This size is often used in kids’ rooms, but may also be a good choice for a spare or extra bed.
- Full: Most full bed dimensions are 53 inches wide by 75 inches long. A full-size bed is enough space for a single sleeper and can be a tight fit for two.
- Queen: Queen bed dimensions are typically 60 inches wide by 80 inches long. A queen-size bed is a good choice for couples who don’t need as much sleeping space or who want more living space in their bedroom.
- King: King-size bed dimensions are 76 inches wide by 80 inches long. A king-size bed is the best choice for couples who want maximum personal sleeping space. This size bed can take up a majority of space in your bedroom. Be sure to check your room’s dimensions before you purchase a king-size bed.
- California King: California King bed dimensions are 72 inches wide by 84 inches long. For a large bedroom, or an especially long bedroom, the California king can help fill the space and give you plenty of room to fall asleep comfortably.
If you are taller than average, you may also want to look for XL sized frames, which are a specialty size just to fit those with longer bones.
Bed Frame or Platform Bed?
The traditional bed frame requires a box spring and then the mattress, but a platform bed eliminates the need for the box spring. With a platform bed, the mattress sits directly on the support. This style is gaining popularity because it eliminates the cost and hassle of buying another piece for your bed. However, it can also mean that your bed is shorter, and you have to be careful about the quality of support underneath. Platform beds come in many styles and often already include the headboard. A bed frame can attach any headboards and footboards that you want (with the right hardware) making it easy to change your style.
Headboards & Footboards
If you want to add a headboard to your bed, you should make sure that the frame you pick matches up. Headboards can be bolt-on or hook-on style, and there are different brackets needed for each. Most bed frames include headboard brackets in one of the styles, so check your frame to see if it’s got the right hardware. You can order accessories to convert the frame to the other version, if needed, but it’s nice to know before you’re trying to get the headboard on. Footboard brackets often do not come standard with a bed frame, so may have to be purchased separately.
Bed Frames for All Situations
Standard bed frames provide options for most uses, but there are some cases where you may want something special. They still make frames for water beds, if you have one! Here are some other special situations to consider:
- Height: The standard height of a frame is about 7 inches tall, so if you need your bed to be lower to get in and out more easily, find a low profile design. Or, find adjustable feet to raise the frame if you prefer some height.
- Support: If you want to make sure you’re supported, whatever you put on top of your frame, choose a heavy-duty model made especially for extra strength. This will extend the lifetime of your bedding, for more years of restful sleep.
- Flooring: If you’re resting on vintage wood or expensive carpet, you want to make sure they’re not damaged. Choose feet that won’t scratch whatever’s underneath you. Glides are usually perfect for this.
- Mobility: You may want the option to roll your bed around to clean, or to pack up and move easily. There are mobility options for your bedding support. You can choose a frame with wheels for sliding around the room (they lock when rolling around is not preferred). If you expect to move around, you can choose a frame or platform that’s easy to take down and fold up. And for temporary bedding, such as for guests, you can look into roll-away beds or trundles (day beds), which are a whole separate category!
- Changes: You may be buying a frame for a fast-growing youth, in which case it’s nice when it can grow too so you don’t have to replace it later. Some bed frames can be adjusted to the different bed sizes so they can expand as your sleeper does.
- Non-standard sizes: If you have a custom or antique bed already, it may not fit the standard sizes. You can get an adjustable frame that fits more than the normal Twin/Full/Queen/King measurements. Another option might be a rail support system, which replaces flimsy wood or broken slats on an existing headboard/footboard/rail system.
You probably didn’t know there was so much to think about! Getting quality sleep is one of the most important things you can do for your health, and that all starts with the right bed. So before you click “buy” on the least expensive option, keep in mind the bed frame can make all the difference in giving you the sleep experience you want.