What is a Box Spring and do you Need one?

While some enjoy placing their mattress directly on the floor. For instance, Japanese style beds are quite low to the ground, others prefer a mattress foundation that is high off the floor to allow easy access to the bed.

A box spring foundation could be beneficial to your sleep needs but not in every circumstance. Let’s talk about box springs, are box springs necessary for you and what benefits do they bring? 

The purpose of a box spring is to provide a foundation for your coil spring mattress

What is a box spring?

The purpose of a box spring is to provide a foundation for your coil spring mattress. It is a wooden frame that is filled with springs and covered in fabric. The box spring provides the perfect accompaniment to your coil spring mattress because it is the same size and usually comes in a set.    

What is the Purpose of a box Spring?

Sleeping on a coil spring mattress without box spring may not be the most comfortable option, considering box spring beds are typically made in a set. They complement each other as the spring base is designed to absorb some of the motion transfer from the mattress. However, as a bed box spring and coil spring mattress are both made with springs, they are considered to be of high motion transfer. 

A bed box spring is best used with a coil spring mattress only. 

Box spring beds elevate your mattress off the ground so you can easily climb in and out of bed

What does a box spring do

Box spring beds elevate your mattress off the ground so you can easily climb in and out of bed. It also uses the springs within the base to absorb some of your nighttime movements and gives your mattress a sturdy and flat place to sit. Avoid box springs with memory foam, latex, hybrid, and AirFoam™ mattresses. 

Benefits of Using a bed box Spring

  • A box spring raises your mattress off the floor so it’s a comfortable height to climb into and climb out of 
  • Gives your coil spring mattress a flat and sturdy place to rest
  • Could absorb a little motion transfer from the mattress
  • Could extend the life of your coil spring mattress
  • Lightweight and easy to move 
  • Looks warm and cozy

A box spring is best used with a coil spring mattress

Disadvantages of a bed box spring 

  • No storage option under the bed
  • Could be too bouncy 
  • Springs could easily wear out
  • Weak box spring beds could cause your mattress to sag    

Do you need a box spring

A box spring is best used with a coil spring mattress. Usually, you will find a box spring and a coil spring mattress sold in a set because they complement each other well. It is not advised to use a box spring with memory foam, latex, hybrid, or AirFoam™ mattresses as the box spring is not strong enough for them.    

The same rule applies to AirFoam™ mattresses, they are best used with a foundation, platform, or adjustable base

Do you need a box spring for a memory foam mattress

It’s best to employ a box spring alternative if you have a memory foam mattress. If you use a box spring for memory foam mattress, the box spring will sag under the weight of the mattress. A memory foam mattress is much heavier than a coil spring mattress, for which the box spring is made. 

The same rule applies to AirFoam™ mattresses, they are best used with a foundation, platform, or adjustable base. Learn more about foundations here

You could put your mattress directly on the floor but this would impede air circulation

Are box springs necessary?

A box spring will complement your coil spring mattress very well. However, you can place your coil spring mattress on most bed foundations. Memory foam, latex, coil spring, hybrid, and AirFoam™ mattresses will be comfortable on a:

  • Foundation
  • Platform
  • Adjustable Base  

You could put your mattress directly on the floor but this would impede air circulation, therefore, limiting your mattress lifespan. If you enjoy having your mattress on the floor, put the mattress on its side now and then to air out. A good time to do this is when you’re changing the bedclothes. 

The important thing to remember is that your mattress is on a sturdy flat surface. An inadequate mattress foundation could have a serious impact on your sleep health and physical health, if there is any sagging in your mattress it could put your spine out of alignment, exacerbating aches, pains, and limiting your quality of sleep.      

5 Tips when buying a box spring 

  • What bed height is most comfortable for you? If you like to sit on the bed with your feet flat on the floor and your back straight, consider a foundation, platform, or adjustable base. 
  • Do you have limited storage space in your bedroom? If so, a box spring may not be ideal as it contains springs in the base, therefore, no under bed storage is an option.
  • How will you get the box spring into your bedroom? A box spring is very light and easy to move, however, it can not be taken apart. Take care to consider how you will get it up a long flight of stairs or around any sharp corners in your home. 
  • What type of mattress will you use? A box spring is best used with a coil spring mattress and will not be strong enough to hold a memory foam, latex, hybrid, or AirFoam™ mattress for very long.    

Conclusion   

The best box spring foundation will be accompanied by a coil spring mattress that has been specially made for it. Both box spring and mattress are lightweight and easy to move. However, motion transfer is high on a spring base and mattress so sharing the bed may create lots of bouncy moments. 


A box spring and coil spring mattress combination can be cost effective but only in the short term. A more durable option such as an AirFoam™mattress and an adjustable bed base would provide premium sleep comfort and could last a lifetime.  

Check out Nolah’s 2 Award Winning Mattresses Here