Metal Bed Frames vs. Wood: Here’s The Best Option

You’ve spent countless hours researching the best mattress, so why would you spend any less time on the bed frame. Don’t worry though, we’ve spent the time, so you don’t have to. We’ve done the analysis comparing wooden and metal bed frames and we’re excited to share our results with you.

Metal Bed Frames Vs. Wood

Which is a Better Bed Frame, Wood or Metal?

Metal frames are the best. They are less expensive, adjustable to multiple mattress sizes, lightweight and durable. Wood bed frames are also treated with formaldehyde which is a known carcinogenic.

Metal Bed Frames: What to Know about a Metal Frame

Although metal bed frames come in a wide array of sizes, design options, and materials, they all share a few characteristics.

All metal frames will typically be lighter than their wooden counterparts as the parts usually have a hollow core. The weight of your bed is essential to consider, especially when you add the bedding, two adults, and a pet or two on top of it.

Metal frames will also be cheaper. Metal frames are usually made from either steel or aluminum, which are quality materials you can trust.

Finally, metal frames are typically easier to put together or move. This ease of assembly is due to their reduced weight and the fact that manufacturers have tools at their disposal that they lack on wood frames.

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Myths: Are Metal Bed Frames Quality?

One of the most prevailing myths about metal bed frames is that they lack quality. Most of us think about the cot we slept on at summer camp when we think about metal frames. It may have been true that metal frames were built with less quality in mind in the past, but modern metal frame designs are not only well made, but they are also beautiful.

Which is Better, a Steel or Aluminum Bed Frame?

Steel is the best metal they use to manufacture metal bed frames.

Steel is a well-balanced metal with incredible structural integrity and the lightweight a metal bed frame promises. Aluminum is not a terrible option, but aluminum tends to be easily malleable. It is a fantastic quality for baseball bats and cooking equipment, but malleability may result in a bent bed frame and an unexpected wake-up on the floor.

Advantages of a Metal Bed Frame

We have already covered some of the common characteristics of a metal bed frame, but there are some clear advantages you can find on the metal bed frame market.

  • Cheap materials result in cheap consumer goods. In this case, the metals used to produce metal frames are generally more affordable to make than anything wooden.
  • A lighter weight means less pressure applied to your floor or foundation. Houses aren’t built like they used to be, and a concentrated heavyweight is a great way to test your floor’s structural integrity.
  • Flexibility as it is easier to make a metal frame adjustable to different mattress sizes
  • Sturdy and safe

Disadvantages of Metal Beds

  • Loose nuts and bolts can cause a metal frame to be squeaky and noisy while you sleep.
  • Limited design options as metal is a more complex material to get to exacting design specifications.
  • Less repairability. Suppose your leg snaps or your cross beams break. In that case, you will need to get a replacement part from the manufacturer, as refitting a piece of metal to the manufacturer’s specifications is extremely difficult without the technical package they used in the first place.

Don’t be discouraged when we say design options are limited. There are still some breath-taking pieces in the metal frame market. Click here to see five of our favorite frames.

How Long do Metal Bed Frames Last?

It is safe to assume your metal bed frame will last up to 15 years before it needs replacement. However, some metal frames can last even longer than that.

Metal Bed Frame: Queen Sized

The queen-sized bed in America for single adults or couples is the most common bed size. With that in mind, it is critically important that you know the standard specs of a queen-sized bed before committing to a metal bed frame.

A standard queen-sized bed is 60 inches wide and 80 inches long. This size in feet equates to five feet across and 6 feet 8 inches up and down.

Although metal bed frames are more flexible than wooden ones, you still need to consider a range of sizes instead of individual sizes. Metal frames usually come in queen to king options or twin to full options.

A California queen is more extended, 60 inches by 84 inches and an Olympic queen is more expansive, 66 inches by 80 inches.

Metal Bed Frame with Headboard Options

The headboard options can be wide depending on the metal frame you selected. Because of metal frame design limitations, it is easier to find a headboard that matches your frame. Because of this, there is more “mixing and matching” you can do until you find the right combination for you.

Be advised that if you want a headboard, make sure the frame you buy has that option. Attaching a headboard to a frame whose design doesn’t support a headboard is exceptionally challenging.

Wood Bed Frames: What to Know about a Wood Frame

Similar to metal frames, wood frames have a few characteristics they all have in common.

Design superiority is chief among them. A classic ornate wooden bed frame is a staple of western interior design that isn’t going anywhere. Wooden frames can be painted, altered, and painted again if the exact piece you’re looking for isn’t available in stores.

Wooden frames are also most likely going to be your most silent options. After a few uses, the wood will settle into place, and it is unlikely to move for the frame’s lifespan. This integrity means you’ll be able to sleep soundly through the night without an interruption from a squeaky bolt.

Finally, wooden bed frames are almost always more complicated to put together and take apart. There are more pieces involved when integrally securing two pieces of wood, and as such, a wooden frame will require more tools and may even have a small skill cap.

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Myths: Do Wooden Bed Frames Break Easily?

The answer comes down to the quality of the wood used during the manufacturing process, but typically a wooden bed frame will not start breaking down until it reaches the end of its life cycle anyway. However, it won’t be a snap in a significant component when it starts breaking down. Much more likely is that you’ll start to see wood splitting or splintering long before the item critically fails.

What Is So Good About a Solid Wood Bed Frame?

Solid wood bed frames are one of the most reliable and beautiful products in your bedroom. When an item is “solid wood,” its subcomponents are from singular boards instead of a wooden composite like particle board. The quality of a singular board makes it incredibly durable if you provide the proper maintenance.

Solid wood is also less likely to degrade over time, and a solid hardwood bed that is maintained can last a lifetime.

Advantages of a Wood Bed Frame

Wood frames have some areas where they are dominant. We’ve mentioned some of them already, but we want to go into depth.

  • Sturdiness is a hallmark of a well-built wooden bed frame. Once the wood “settles,” a process by which the wood stops the micro-movements it sometimes needs to do, it’s not going anywhere.
  • Repairing a wooden bed is also much more manageable. For example, if you have a leg snap-off, you may not even need to replace it. All you may need to do is apply some wood glue and a few extra screws.
  • Eventually, your wooden bed will need replacement, but you won’t need to have someone haul away the scrap when it does. Instead, it will biodegrade and become fuel for future beds!

Disadvantages of a Wood Bed Frame

  • Formaldehyde treatment will release toxic gases as the wood ages and breaks down.
  • Wood is heavy, and wooden bed frames are heavy too. Wooden frames are so heavy you may not be able to use them in your home, depending on the quality of your floors.
  • Unlike metal, wood can’t be compressed into a mold and set to a retailer. Each wooden bed needs more added labor than metal beds do, and as a result, they come with a heftier price.
  • Suppose you have a queen bed but are ready to upgrade to a king—tough luck. You’ll need to buy a new frame to go with it.

How Long do Wood Bed Frames Last?

The average wooden bed frame lasts anywhere from 7 to 10 years. However, a solid hardwood bed frame maintained and stored in regulated humidity will last a lifetime and maybe even longer.

Wood Bed Frame: Queen Sized

The standard size of a queen-sized mattress does not change if you are using a wooden bed frame. It will always be 60 inches wide and 80 inches long, or five feet by 6 feet 8 inches.

However, if you are convinced that a wooden bed frame is the right choice for you, make sure the frame you purchase fits a queen-sized mattress. Wooden frames are not usually adjustable, and a frame that is too small will damage the mattress in the long run. A frame that is too big won’t provide enough support.

Wood Bed Frame with Headboard Options

Although there are many more overall design options for wooden bed frames, this is not necessarily true for their headboards. Most wooden frames are designed with a matching headboard in mind. The details of the design may be hard to match with similar products.

What’s Better, Wood or Metal Bed Slats

Metal slats offer more support, while wooden slats offer a softer sleeping environment. The choice is entirely up to you.

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