Do I Need to Buy a Box Spring?

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Dog in bed (Photo: @hellomikee via Twenty20)
You may think box springs are on their way to extinction, which might be true when it comes to some mattress types. But, box springs are still very much alive and kicking. In fact, you may need one.
If you’re wondering whether or not you should purchase a box spring. Here are some things you should consider.

Foundational support

Box springs were originally designed to give a mattress foundational support. That being said, mattresses were not always as sturdy as they are now. If you have a strong bed foundation like a slat bed, you probably don’t need to buy a box spring; however, having one can extend the life of your mattress and you will not need to replace it as often.
If you do not like traditional box springs, there are low-profile alternatives available:
Platform bed frame: Platform bed frames provide a solid surface to adequately support the mattress like a box spring.
Wooden slats: Wooden slats are placed evenly across the bed frame to provide even weight distribution and support for your mattress.
Floor: Depending on the type of mattress you own, placing it on your floor is a perfectly good option. However, there are a couple of things to remember when your mattress is on the ground. For instance, you’re more likely to track dirt and crumbs onto it, so it may require more cleaning. The airflow to the mattress also might be limited, especially if you place it on wood in a high-humidity environment, which could potentially lead to a mold problem.


A box spring adds height to your mattress; therefore, if your bed frame is low to the ground then you may want to add a box spring so getting in and out of bed is easier. And, depending on the bed frame, a mattress without a box spring may look too short.

Type of mattress

Depending on your mattress’s material, it may require a mattress foundation like a box spring. Sturdy options like memory foam mattresses and latex mattresses probably won’t require a frame; whereas, if you have a thin spring mattress, you will probably require a box spring for adequate support.

Type of frame

If you have adjustable beds or collapsible bed frames, a box spring is required to provide support for the mattress as well as the frame. This keeps it from collapsing inward and causing damage. However, if you have a reinforced bed frame, then there should be enough support to evenly distribute the weight of your mattress.

Your mattress warranty

When determining whether or not you need a box spring, keep in mind, some manufacturer’s warranties are contingent on buying a box spring. That means, if you decide to go with a box spring alternative and your mattress is damaged, your warranty may not cover it.