Eachnight may earn commissions for products you purchase through our links. Our articles and reviews include affiliate links and advertisements, including amerisleep advertising. Learn more Updated September 4, 2021A bunkie board is a flat surface that goes between your new mattress and its frame. For most bed frames, you’ll want to place a bunkie board or other foundation on the frame before setting your mattress on top. Mattresses aren’t supposed to be put directly on the frame.Placing a mattress directly onto the frame can cause issues with support, sturdiness, durability, and comfort. Adding a bunkie board to your bed can prevent mattress sagging, improve airflow, keep your mattress clean, and prevent stop spots.In this article, we’ll take an in-depth look at bunkie boards. We’ll help you decide whether a bunkie board is the right decision for you. Then we’ll explore the other available mattress foundation options. To wrap up, we’ll answer some of your bunkie board and foundation questions.Bunkie Board: What is it?Bunkie boards are one solid piece of particleboard, plywood, or wood. They are made specifically to be placed between your mattress and its frame and were originally made for bunk beds. The ideal thickness level for a bunkie board is 1 to 3 inches.Which size bunkie board you need is dependent upon the size of your mattress. You won’t be able to reap the benefits of a bunkie board if you buy one that is too big or too small for your mattress.On average, a bunkie board costs $50 to $150. How much you pay for your bunkie board depends on its size, material, and color. You’ll pay the most for a large solid wood bunkie board with a special design element or finish color.Benefits of Bunkie BoardsThere are several reasons why bunkie boards make wonderful mattress foundations. Unlike some foundations out there, a bunkie board works with almost any bed frame and any type of mattress. So, more than likely, you won’t have to worry about a bunkie board being incompatible with your existing bed.Bunkie boards are also lightweight and easy to install. You won’t have to drag out a bunch of power tools or require any assistance when placing your bunkie board inside the frame.Shopping for this mattress foundation is also a breeze. You can purchase it at any mattress retailer or furniture store. They are also available online for a low price.Drawbacks of Bunkie BoardsUnlike traditional mattress foundations, bunkie boards do not add much to the height of your bed. If you’re looking to add a lot of height, consider choosing a different foundation. Bed risers are another way to increase your bed’s height.Likewise, if you want a foundation that offers a tremendous amount of additional comfort and support, a bunkie board isn’t the best choice. We discuss other alternatives to a bunkie board below, such as platform beds and box springs.You cannot use a bunkie board with an adjustable bed. If you try to use a bunkie board on this type of bed, it will slip and slide as the bed’s elevation is adjusted.Which Mattress Types Pairs Well with Bunkie Boards?Bunkie boards pair well with all mattress types. Memory foam, latex, and hybrid mattresses can all benefit from being placed on top of a bunkie board. Using a bunkie board with a hybrid mattress or memory foam mattress is particularly important if you have a slatted bed frame.The one exception to this is an innerspring mattress. Innerspring beds must also be paired with a box spring. You can add a bunkie board to this setup if you wish. However, it is not necessary to use a bunkie board or any other foundation with an innerspring mattress and box spring setup.Which Bed Frames Can Bunkie Boards Be Used On?What type of bed frame you use with your mattress influences what foundation is the best fit. Luckily, bunkie beds are versatile and can be paired with a variety of different bed frames. Here are just a few bed frames that are combined with bunkie boards:PlatformPlatform bed frames are typically made of wood and covered in fabric or upholstery. This type of bed frame is excellent for creating a modern bedroom aesthetic. For best results, you’ll want to place your bunkie board under the mattress on your platform bed.MetalMetal bed frames are commonly found in children’s rooms. This style of bed frame can be painted to match your existing decor. You should not put memory foam mattresses on a metal or steel bed frame. The bed frame can damage these beds.WoodenBed frames made of solid wood are naturally durable and robust. You’ll pay more for a solid wooden bed frame than one that is made of metal or particleboard. However, the extra expense is worth it since the bed frame holds up well over time.FloatingFloating bed frames are a type of platform bed. This bed frame gives your bed the appearance that it is floating or suspended in midair. Most floating bed frames are attached to the wall or have support boxes underneath them. Add a bunkie board to your floating bed for additional support.SEE ALSO: Bed Frame Sizes and Dimensions GuideOther Mattress Foundations to ConsiderIf you decide a bunkie board isn’t right for you, there are plenty of other mattress foundations you can try. Popular options include adjustable beds, box springs, particleboard and plywood boards, and bed slats.AdjustableAn adjustable bed can be raised into the air with just the click of a remote. Adjustable beds are often used for sleepers recovering from surgery. Those with limited mobility, joint issues, or sleep disorder can also benefit from an adjustable bed. This type of solid base shouldn’t be paired with a bunkie board.Box SpringBox springs are only necessary for traditional innerspring mattresses. You cannot sleep on an innerspring bed without a box spring. An innerspring mattress and box spring pair nicely with a metal bed frame.ParticleboardParticleboard is just a cheaper, thinner, and less stable version of wood. You can use particle board in between your bed and bed frame if necessary. However, in the long run, it makes much more sense to invest in a durable foundation like a bunkie board.PlywoodPlywood is a popular alternative to using a bunkie board. Getting moisture-resistant plywood is vital. Moisture resistance means the plywood foundation holds up better over time and won’t soften.A plywood board should be at least ¾ of an inch thick. In comparison to bunkie boards made of solid wood, plywood is cheaper and less durable. Plywood foundations are commonly used with innerspring mattresses and box springs.SlatsSlatted foundations are often found on traditional and platform bed frames. These wooden or metal support beams stretch horizontally across your bed frame. Slats need to be placed no more than 3 inches apart to provide adequate support and prevent mattress sagging.Over time, you’ll want to replace your bed slats to ensure they continue to provide support and sturdiness to your bed. Latex mattresses do not pair well with slats and can be damaged by them.SEE ALSO: Bed Slats vs. Box Spring: Which Should You Use?FAQsDo bunkie boards squeak?Your bunkie board shouldn’t squeak or make any noise when you lie down in bed. If a bunkie board squeaks, it means that it hasn’t been properly installed. Bunkie boards should be placed securely and tightly between a mattress and its frame.Are bunkie boards necessary if you have slats?You will want to use a bunkie board or some other foundation on top of your bed frame’s slats. Placing a mattress directly onto these slats can cause issues. Some of these include decreased stability, premature mattress sagging, and unnecessary wear and tear. Additionally, your mattress may feel too rigid or hard.How much weight will a bunkie board hold?The weight capacity for a bunkie board depends on its size:Small twin size bunkie boards can only support 150 lbs.Larger twin XL size bunkie boards can safely hold up to 250 lbs.Queen and king size bunkie boards can hold 450 to 500 lbs.How long does a bunkie board last?It depends on the material of the board. For example, cheaper bunkie boards made of particleboard or plywood only last 2 to 3 years. When you invest in a more durable wooden bunkie board, you’re likely to get a few more years out of it.Can you put a bunkie board on the floor?It is not recommended to place your mattress or bunkie board directly onto the floor. Putting your bed and foundation on the floor leads to significant support and stability issues. If you’re in a pinch waiting for your bed frame to arrive, you can place your bunkie bed under your mattress for some protection and support.ConclusionBunkie boards are an inexpensive way to add stability, support, and height to the bed. Mattress foundations like bunkie boards are necessary to ensure a comfortable sleep environment and the longevity of your mattress. A bunkie board consists of a 1 to 3 inches thick flat piece of wood, particleboard, or plywood.The nice thing about bunkie boards is that they pair well with almost any mattress or bed frame. You will need to place your bunkie board securely between your mattress and bed frame. To work properly, bunkie boards need to match your mattress size. Other viable mattress foundation options include box springs, slats, and plywood.About the author Jasmin LeeJasmin Lee is dedicated to helping others get better sleep—when she’s not napping, you can often find her researching the latest in bedding and mattress technology. Her fascination with sleep fuels her drive to connect readers with the resources they need to improve their night’s rest. Find more articles by Jasmin Comments Cancel replyLeave a CommentYour email address will not be published. Required fields are marked * Comment Name Email I agree to the Terms and Conditions of this website.