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How To Fix A Squeaky Bed On Your Own?

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Written By Alex Petrović

Certified Sleep Consultant

Featured image of how to fix a squeaky bed.

29 April 2024 8 min read

Squeaky bed is probably the most frustrating and annoying thing you can face in the bedroom. Almost every part of the bed can be the culprit for the sound you hear every time you move in bed, even after the slightest move. In this article learn how to fix a squeaky bed.

The bedroom should be an oasis you can’t wait to get to at the end of the day. Once you have completed all the tasks for the day, you want your bedroom to be completely quiet and the atmosphere to be calming. That way you will fall asleep easily and have a good night's sleep.

But when you hear a persistent sound such as bed squeak, it will irritate you much more than hearing the same sound during the day. And the most common annoying sound in the bedroom is a squeaky bed. Squeaky bed will keep you from falling asleep. Every time your partner moves during sleep, it will wake you up, especially if you are a light sleeper.

Also, squeaky bed makes sexual intercourse much more complicated for all those couples who do not live alone. Fortunately, you can fix a squeaky bed. While it may be a little more complicated than just removing too loud clock from the bedroom, fixing a noisy bed is simple in most cases.

Why is my bed squeaking in the first place?

Sometimes it can be tricky to find out why your bed is squeaking in the first place. This is often consequence of wear and tear, but it is not uncommon for a new mattress to squeak too. So whether you have a new or old bed, you should first check the bed frame and mattress.

An image of a young man trying to determine the reason of bed squeaking.

Also, it can happen that friction of bed against the floor causes an unpleasant sound. It is up to you to determine. In some cases you will very quickly determine where the squeaky sound is coming from. However, there is a possibility that you will have to test all parts of the bed.


If you have an all-foam or latex mattress, then it is very unlikely that the mattress is one to blame. But in all other cases, you should start with the mattress. Check each part, not just the middle of the mattress. Although you may think you are not using the entire sleeping surface, it is possible that you put the weight on the corners during the night, for example. If the mattress squeaks, you will probably have to buy a new one. That's because there is no point in changing squeaky spring.

An image of Dormeo Wellsleep Hybrid mattress.

Box spring

If you checked the mattress and found it to be quiet, the next thing you need to check is the box spring. Box spring, whether made of metal or wood often squeaks, even when it is relatively new. Unlike springs in a mattress that you will not change, but have to buy a new mattress, box spring is very easy to repair even if you only have basic tools and knowledge. Or you can just buy new box spring if you won't to be sure squeaky box spring won't wake you up any more.

An image if a man assembling box spring and checking if it is squeaking.

Bed frame

If you find it difficult to determine whether mattress or bed frame is the cause of the noise, then it is probably bed frame, because it often happens that the bolt loosens. It's the easiest thing to fix, because all you have to do is tighten the bolt and to solve problem with squeaky bed frame. Some bed frames have only a few bolts so you can easily locate loose bolts, and for some bed frames, such as ottoman, which has a lot of bolts you will need a little more time.

an image of opened eve storage bed frame

Friction of bed against the floor

Friction of bed against the floor is not the cause that comes to your mind first, but it is actually very common. If your floor is slippery and bed legs do not have anti-slip protection, then the whole bed will move every time you move causing unpleasant sound. Uneven floor may be the reason too, so you have to take care of that to reduce noise.

An image of a leg of a bed on the floor.

Fixing a squeaky bed

To fix a squeaky bed you usually do not need the help of a carpenter or many different types of tools. You can solve most problems in just a few minutes, after locating where the frustrating sound comes from. Also, be aware that the mattress or bed frame may be damaged beyond repair and you will need to purchase a new one.

Inspect where the sound comes from

As we mentioned before, in order to solve the problem, you have to inspect the whole bed. Sometimes it will take a minute, and sometimes you will need more time. But keep in mind that the cause must exist since you hear a squeak because when the bed is in good condition then it is silent. So keep looking until you find it.

Try rotating your mattress

You should rotate your mattress every 4 to 6 months, whether it is squeaky or not. This will significantly extend its service life. If the mattress is two-sided, then not only you should rotate it but also flip it. Rotating of your mattress can be the simplest solution if the mattress becomes noisy. That way you may avoid putting pressure on squeaking part of it.

Replace cushion with plywood under the mattress

Many bed frames have a layer of plywood over basic construction. Plywood under the mattress makes you even more comfortable, but plywood is not always the most durable material. So check the condition of the plywood and if you notice signs of wear and tear, replace the plywood. It is a very cheap and effective way not only to prevent squeaking bed frame but also to regain comfort.

Check all the joints thoroughly

When we talked about the bed frame as the cause of the problem, we mentioned that what we hear is probably a loose bolt or more of them. There is a high probability that the loose bolt is in the joint. The bolt rarely loosens in stable parts, but this often happens in joints that are moving parts of bed frame. You should tighten loose bolt and also apply WD-40, which is a product that lubricate and prevent rust. This way you will avoid the same problem happening anytime soon.

An image of a man assembling and checking corners of a bed frame.

Use a rag/shirt as a cushion for squeaky slats

The new, premium bed frames have sliders on the slats that allow you to adjust the tension and also prevent slats from rubbing against one another. But if you do not have such a bed frame, you can solve the problem by using a towel, old socks, old t shirt or even some thin fabric materials to prevent the slats from rubbing against the frame. This should neutralize the sound you hear.

Use a cork

Piece of cork can act as the above-mentioned slider on slat, at least to prevent slats from rubbing against one another. Also, you can put a cork between any squeaky parts on bed frame. This is not always a long-term solution because it happens that the cork falls out during the night when you toss and turn, but you should try.

Get a floor padding

This is a solution for friction of bed against the floor. You can put anything under the bed that you think will make the surface on which the bed stands stable and even. These can be rubber feet that you will stick to the legs and prevent bed from sliding, as well as floor damage, and you can use carpet or towel.

An image of a woman unrolling a floor pad.

Buy a new mattress if needed

If you have exhausted all other options, buy a new mattress. If the mattress is worn out, more precisely springs, then there is no other choice but to buy a new one. The same goes for the bed frame although an experienced carpenter can fix almost any bed frame, the only question is whether it is more cost-effective than a new one.

Do wood or metal bed frames squeak more?

Maybe wooden bed frame squeaks a bit more often, but the quality of the material and the craftsmanship are much more important than just the difference between metal and wood. Bed frame made of solid wood is very durable and strong, so it is very likely that you will not hear it. Also, craftsmanship and quality of bolts are very important factors.

An image of a black metal bed frame.

The same goes for the metal bed frame. Bed frame made of high quality steel will be stable for decades. On the other hand, if the bed frame is made of low quality metal that is not protected from rust, you can expect to hear the grinding of two metal bars against each other within a year.

Should all new beds squeak?

No, there is no good reason for a new bed frame or mattress to squeak. You need to make sure all the bolts are tightened. Some may have been deliberately loosen due to transportation. Or if you assembled the bed frame yourself, you may fail to tighten all the bolts properly. In case you can't find a reason, contact the seller from whom you bought the mattress or bed and ask for a new one.

How often is it recommended to replace the mattress?

It is much easier to say how often you should change the pillow than the mattress. The pillow should be changed approximately every 2 years, except for top quality pillows that can last longer, 3 to 4 years.

Mattresses on the other hand, can last 3 years, but some of them can last 15 or more years. Latex mattresses have the longest service life, followed by high density all foam mattresses. Innerspring and hybrid mattresses have a slightly shorter service life, usually up to 10 years. 

an image of inofia latex memory foam mattress in a bedroom

But longevity largely depends on other factors too. Most mattresses manufactured by well-known sleep companies come with a 10-year warranty, which means you can expect them to last longer than that. Also, your body weight as well as whether you rotate and flip mattress regularly will affect service life.

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About the author

Alex Petrović
Sleep Consultant
A CPD certified Sleep Consultant with more than 2000 hours of research into all the different ways we can get a great night's sleep. As a former insomniac, I know how difficult life can be without a nightly recovery and I love that I get to share everything I've learned with you all. So hopefully we can all sleep soundly!
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