There is no worse feeling than tossing and turning in bed only to have the frame squeak and squeal with every slight movement. How about that feeling when you’re getting out of bed only to have one of the legs on your frame bend out of place or bust off. These are just a few of the many problems that arise with the typical bed frames being sold today. You’re probably wondering, what causes these problems? Which types of frames help prevent such issues? Let’s take a look at a couple important keys to strong bed frame support.
Feet or Wheels
The two types of frames available to consumers include feet for stability or wheels for mobility.
Frames with wheels tend to be the most popular and they usually offer a variety of wheel sizes. Some smaller which attributes to lower cost and less durability while others include larger size wheels called rug rollers that are more durable. Whatever the wheel configuration there will be one located on each of the four corners. This allows for the frame to be moved to clean under the bed, get behind it to plug something in, or mover the bed away from a wall to make in smaller rooms. Roller castors offer people the ability to move the frame easier than ordinary flat feet; however due to design most can weaken the overall strength of the frame over time compromising their durability and their freedom of movement. Your bed frame is only as strong as its weakest part and many do include plastic rug rollers and plastic inserts which can be vulnerable to cracking, breakage, and other annoying problems that can lead to failure.
Most bed frames even those with wheels really are best if they are not moved. Why? Because scooting, sliding, or pushing any frame can cause the feet of the center support to become unstable and kick out or be knocked out of a straight up and down/vertical position. This is especially true if the center support is bearing weight or has settled into a rug or carpet flooring. When a leg has taken set into carpeting for example and the bed is relocated to another place it is likely to become caught in the pad and carpet imprint and then bent from sliding the bed left or right and bending or breaking the leg. While the idea is a commonly a selling point by sales people the fact is even the simple idea to rearrange the room or clean under the bed can bed a costly mistake and is usually one that consumers are not aware of until damage has occurred and it is too late.
Center Supports are a Must
Feet do a better job of getting the weight down the floor. Multiple feet are recommended as it’s of great importance to have plenty of added support in the middle of a frame, but also at the head, foot regions of the bed as well. Feet reduce the amount of pressure not just on frames but head and foot boards which can be the most vulnerable areas located at the connection points of the four corners of the bed. This is why standalone bed frames with only four wheels/feet on the corners and no center support in the middle are more vulnerable to breakage because the weight is only dispersed over 4 wheels or feet instead of 6 or 9.
Also, feet close to the edge of the frame help provide much needed support as many individuals bust their frames while attempting to get in and out of bed. This happens because during this motion all of the body weight is being concentrated in one area which causes great stress on the frame. This repeated motion day after day is extremely hard on the bed frame; especially one that doesn’t have the proper edge and middle support.
Key Holes Notches vs Bolts & Nuts
A majority of frames are held together using keyhole notches or little holes that allow you to quickly snap the frame into a preset desired position; twin, full, queen, or king. They often times come with plastic inserts or nuts and bolts that keep the frame locked into place. Other ways to quickly assemble bed frames is by using C-Clamps to hold together the center supports. C-Clamps allow the steel cross bars to telescope to various bed widths but must be measured to determine proper frame width.
The heaviest duty frames are held together using bolts & nuts. Although you may give up some versatility of not being able to do multiple sizes if the frame does not have numerous holes for various bed widths or the cross bars come in a predetermined size. Owners of solid nonadjustable cross support bars will receive the extra strength rarely found in one size fits all frames.
Type of Steel
Depending upon which frame you purchase domestic or imported, you can expect a variety of different quality steel. Bed rails are like a box of chocolates “You never know what you’re going to get”. High carbon steel is used here in the US and is designed to endure extremely high pressures from the steel wheels of rail cars. This same steel is recycled and made into the bed frames that support you and your family. You may also have or receive wooden slats with your frame. We often recommend removing any wooden center supports instead replacing and substituting them with steel slats which are a much stronger alternative for cross supports than wood.
The best frames use high carbon, as the carbon percentage content rises, steel has the ability to become harder and stronger through heat treating; recycled railroad steel is typically used for bed frames. These frames are extremely heavy duty. In fact, they require a special drill bit, drill press, or saw in order to cut or drill through the hardened metal.
Weight Limits on Frames
We receive multiple calls asking for the weight limit on certain bed frames. Due to liability reasons, manufactures rarely put specific weight limit ranges on their frame packages. If the weight is in an issue or you’re just looking for a heavy duty frame, a frame strong enough to hold a softside waterbed will do the job most of us would want or need. A waterbed weighs over 1000lbs. These frames will be more than strong enough to withstand use and abuse of daily use by bigger people or physically active couples.