Do you Need a Box Spring for your Bed? The Reasons For and Against - isense

Do you Need a Box Spring for your Bed? The Reasons For and Against

When buying a mattress, you try to ensure it is comfortable enough to help you get a good night’s sleep. A premium quality mattress will also help you drift off quickly and sleep soundly when catnapping. But did you know that your mattress needs to be supported, too?

With the advancement in mattress technology, you don’t necessarily need a bed base for comfort. Nowadays, there are various bed options that don't need a box spring for support, like platform beds, adjustable beds, foam mattresses, air mattresses, and water beds. Yet, some folks like to stick with box springs for looks or extra height. The majority of platform beds feature wooden slats, drawers and legs that raise the frame to a height where the addition of a box spring would make it too tall. To know if your mattress requires a box spring, think about the type of mattress and bed frame you own. Nevertheless, all mattresses will, of course, benefit from a firm, concrete foundation on which to rest. This is particularly important for people who are overweight and who may need a larger sized bed.

Box springs are designed to offer a supportive foundation for your mattress to rest on and absorb the impact; therefore, reducing wear and tear on the mattress. So, do you need one or not? Whether or not to use a box spring ultimately depends on several factors, including your mattress warranty.

In this article, you will find in-depth information on whether or not someone needs box springs for their mattress and why. But before we dive into that ...

What is a box spring?

The name doesn’t give a clear description of what we are dealing with. Essentially, a box spring is a supportive rectangle that makes a foundation for your mattress. It is usually designed to be the same size as your mattress.

Box springs are usually constructed from a wooden frame, filled with springs, and covered with a cloth. They provide support for your mattress and absorb the weight of your body. The springs of a box spring make significantly firmer mattresses feel softer for better rest.

With that said, box springs serve these basic but essential purposes:

  • They provide a solid base for your mattress.
  • They keep your mattress elevated off the floor.
  • They help meet the requirements of most mattress warranties.

Do you need a box spring?

Traditional box springs complement innerspring mattresses because the coils in the box spring align with layers of metal coils in your mattress; therefore, enhancing shock absorption and isolating motion. This will undoubtedly make your mattress feel softer than it is.

All the same, this simplicity does not answer the question of whether or not someone needs it. So, who needs a box spring?

  • People using traditional metal rail bed frames or collapsible metal frames designed to hold box springs.
  • Those who use a collapsible metal frame may lack reinforcement slats.
  • Those who just want to elevate their mattress off the floor to make it easier to get in and out of bed.
  • People with a traditional innerspring mattress designed for use with box springs.
  • People whose mattress warranties require them to use the mattress on a box spring or platform bed. Most mattress warranties include some sort of requirements that specify the acceptable base. Ignoring either requirement by the manufacturer can void your warranty.

A box spring will minimize sagging and reduces wear and tear, ultimately increasing the life of your mattress.

Why you might not need a box spring

The time has passed when box springs were a must if you wanted to bring comfort to your bedroom.

With advancements in mattress technology, modern mattresses provide unprecedented comfort without a box spring. Indeed, many foam and latex mattresses can get damaged when used with a box spring.

So, you may not need a box spring if;

  • For whatever reason, you prefer the style and functionality of other bed bases.
  • You have the most recent latex, memory foam, or hybrid mattresses.
  • You most likely won't need a box spring if you use an adjustable bed frame, a platform bed frame, or a metal bed frame with slats.
  • You prefer sleeping with your mattress directly on the floor, provided it does not void the warranty from your mattress manufacturer.

A traditional box spring is designed to use with an innerspring mattress. This means they are not compatible with most modern mattresses, which gives other bed bases an advantage. Some companies or brands are creating their own box spring alternatives to support their mattresses.

Simply put, different styles of mattresses are designed to benefit from different bed frame types or bed bases. As if that is not enough, mattress warranties are straightforward with the kind of foundation to use for your mattress; otherwise, you render the warranty void.

Is it OK to put your mattress directly on the floor?

Unless your mattress comes with some sort of requirements, there are no restrictions on where to put your mattress. In many situations, you can certainly put your mattress on the floor without experiencing any adverse effects. That way, you will save money that you would otherwise spend buying a bed base.

However, there are several reasons why you might want to avoid having your mattress directly on your floor.

  • If you live in a moist or humid environment, placing your mattress on the floor risks getting mold. The mold not only ruins your mattress but can be a serious health hazard.
  • Placing a mattress on floors reduces airflow. It is a no-brainer that a mattress sitting directly on the floor will not breathe or expel air as it could from the top of a box spring or any other bed base.
  • If your mattress warranty stipulates that the mattress should be on a bed base, putting it on the floor risks voiding the warranty. It is advisable to double-check warranty terms before deciding on whether to use a box spring, the floor, or a platform bed.
  • It is less hygienic to sleep on a mattress put directly on the floor. When placed on the floor, your mattress attracts dust, dirt, mites, bed bugs, and allergens, which can severely impact your health, especially if you have underlying health issues.
  • Getting in and out of bed will be more difficult. This issue is serious for older people.

Before placing your mattress on the floor, make sure to weigh all these factors and decide accordingly. With that said, it is completely fine to have your mattress sit directly on the floor. If you live in a humid environment, it is a good idea to add a mattress encasement to reduce the risk of mold.


Putting your mattress on a box spring raises the bed off the floor while providing the reliable support system that your mattress needs. Whether or not to use a box spring will depend on your preferences, mattress manufacturer warranty requirements, and your mattress type. When buying a new mattress that requires you to use a box spring, it is good to buy them as a set rather than each part individually.

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