What is the purpose of bed frame slats?

by Dylan Bowen April 20, 2022 3 min read

What is the purpose of bed frame slats?

What are bed slats?

Bed slats are long pieces of wood or metal. The slats are placed across the base of the bed frame and are set apart around 2- 2.75 inches away from each other to provide support for the mattress. The slats are made to distribute the body weight evenly and prevent the mattress from sinking. Some bed frames have bed slats that are conjoined like a ladder or a staircase. This type of bed slat usually covered in fabric to keep the slats joined and avoid slipping. You can also find bed frames that have individual slats that are not connected and are placed next to each other. 

The advantages and disadvantages of the bed slats:

Advantages-

  • Affordable- As slats are not made up of a lot of material, they are more cost effective then a normal box spring would be. If the bed frame you buy has bed slats that are around 2.75 inches apart then you will not need to buy a box spring alongside it. Majority of mattresses can be placed directly onto a slatted foundation.
  • Durable- Slats provide a lot more support to your mattress then a modern box springs would this is because the provide height but not enough support.
  • Simple construction- Wooden slats are light and easy to take apart, which makes them easier to move than cumbersome box spring as they are heavier.
  • Airflow- There is improved air flow when a mattress is placed on a bed frame that has slats, this is because the air can move freely. The open space stops heat from retaining and allows the sleeper to stay cool whilst they are sleeping.
  • Disadvantages-

  • Possible sagging- Bed slats that are placed more than 2.75 inches away from each other can cause specific types of mattresses to sag. 
  • Possible shifting- If the bed slats are not attached correctly, they may move around even fall throughout the night. This is dangerous and could lead to injury or damage the bed frame or mattress.
  • Bed slats have been available for many years as well as box springs, but in recent year the bed slats have started to gain more popularity than box springs. 

    Box springs:

    What is a box spring?

    Box springs are a metal or wooden box that is wrapped in fabric. Classic box springs contained coil springs for shock absorption and to evenly disperse weight. These springs were made to push the coils in the innerspring mattress directly above.

    Advantages and disadvantages of box springs-

    Advantages-

  • Additional height- Majority of bed frames that come with bed slats, have a lower profile and are closer to the ground. For individuals who favour a higher bed, the box spring is a good option as it raises the mattress.
  • Potential bounce- If the box spring contains spring coils, it will give a small bounce when combined with an innerspring mattress. But not all box springs contain coils.
  • Disadvantages- 

  • Difficult to move- Majority of box springs don’t collapse or disassemble for transportation, which makes the difficult and hard to move. 
  • Heavy- Certain bed frames won’t support the weight of a box spring, mattress, and the sleeper. Which will lead to damage to the bed frame and mattress. 
  • Lack of support- Box springs without spring coils give very little support. The outside of the mattress may be supported, whilst the middle may not be. This could lead to sagging and indentions, particularly with a foam bottom.
  • Dylan Bowen
    Dylan Bowen


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