Why Your Mattress Makes Noise When You Move: Complete Guide

Your mattress is important because it helps you get a good night’s sleep. Nothing is worse than an uncomfortable bed, but what about a noisy bed that creaks every time you move? Should you be concerned about this issue?

Your mattress makes noise when you move, likely due to wear and tear. Any bed part, such as your bed frame or headboard, may also cause the noise you’re hearing. Like your mattress, the different parts that make up your bed will wear down in time.

Keep reading as I’ll explain how to identify the source of the noise, what’s causing it, and how you can fix the problem. I’ll also discuss how to prevent the annoying noise that your mattress makes. Let’s get started.

Find Out Where the Noise Is Coming From

To find the right solution for the problem, you must first find out where the noise is coming from. It might be that the noise isn’t necessarily coming from your mattress. A worn-out bed part could also be the culprit.

Check the mattress, box spring, frame, or headboard. Any of these can cause squeaking or other unpleasant noises for various reasons.

The best way to identify the source of the problem is to test each part. You can do this by isolating each piece and testing it to the best you can.

Inspect the Mattress

To check if the mattress is the problem, follow the  instructions below:

  1. Remove the box spring and frame.
  2. Apply pressure on the mattress using your hands to see if it makes any sound. If you like, you can also sit on the mattress or jump on it.

A mattress has a type of spring or coil inside of it. Chances are you have an old mattress, which typically has metal springs. These springs will wear down after prolonged use, causing the annoying noise you hear whenever you move on the bed.

Newer mattresses commonly found today also have springs or coils. They’re made differently, so they don’t always wear down as easily as older mattresses do. However, they can still make noise after years of use.

Perform a Shake Test for the Box Spring

Suppose your mattress isn’t the problem — because it’s not making any noise when you move on it. Then try out the box spring to determine if it’s the cause of the problem. Like other bed parts, box springs deteriorate over time. Follow the steps below:

  1. Remove the box spring from the frame.
  2. Shake the box spring to test if it’s making any noise.

Suppose you don’t hear any noise from the box spring. Then, move on to the next solution.

Check if the Bed Frame Makes Any Noise

The bed frame itself can also cause a bunch of noise. To determine if it’s the source of the problem, follow the steps below:

  1. Hold on to the bed frame and shake it.
  2. Push the bed frame around randomly to see if you hear anything.
  3. Check if there are any loose bolts or broken parts. They could be causing the noise.

Inspect the Headboard

The last thing to check is your headboard which could be considered part of the frame. However, some headboards don’t come with the frame that you order separately. A headboard can become loose or broken, so you’ll want to shake yours to see if you hear anything.

What to Do if Your Mattress Is Making the Noise

Note that within a mattress are coils or metal springs that keep the mattress from losing its shape and can support the human body’s weight. However, over time these coils can break or get worn down to where the metal begins to rub, causing a squeaking noise.

The coils within a mattress can also tangle. When this happens, they make a popping sound. That’s the noise you hear whenever you move on your mattress. Is there something you can do about wear and tear?

Unfortunately, wear and tear are normal for any product. On the bright side, you can do a few things to fix the problem.

Flip or Rotate Your Mattress

Suppose you’re not ready to buy a new mattress. Don’t worry. Instead of buying a new mattress, you can flip or rotate your mattress. Doing so can help the pressure from you sleeping on the mattress move to a different area that hasn’t been worn down yet. You likely won’t hear any noise for some time.

Replace the Mattress

Another way to fix the problem is to buy a whole new mattress. Any mattress, regardless of quality, deteriorates over time, eventually causing you to need a new one.

Consider flipping or rotating your mattress first, but if the annoying sound persists, it may be time to splurge on a new mattress.

How to Prevent Your Mattress From Making Noise

Now that I’ve discussed some ways a mattress can make noise and how it can be fixed. Let’s explore ways how to prevent the problem in the future.

Flip or Rotate Your Mattress Every 6 Months

Earlier, I mentioned that you could consider rotating or flipping your mattress to stop the annoying sound. However, this is a temporary fix. The next time you have a new mattress, ensure you do the same, but not when your mattress starts making noise. Flip or rotate your mattress every 6 months.

By doing this, you’ll distribute the wear on your mattress evenly, keeping it from only wearing out in one area and causing discomfort and unpleasant noises.

Invest in a Better Mattress

A high-quality mattress can last between 7 and 10 years, even more. Consider investing in a better mattress next time. While high-quality mattresses are expensive, they’re worth investing in because a good night’s sleep is important for your overall well-being.

Investing in a higher-quality mattress also means you’re less likely to fork out money for a new mattress in the next several years.

It’s better to buy one good mattress that could last up to 15 years than to buy 2–3 bad mattresses in the same time frame.

What to Do if the Box Spring Is Causing the Noise

After testing the entirety of your bed, if you find that your box spring is causing the noise, there are a few reasons this could be happening.

Box springs are usually not made with the best quality; they’re just pieces of wood put together with some fabric. Typically, older box springs contain springs.

A noise coming from the box spring could be from wear on the springs themselves. The wear and tear happen when the metal springs rub against each other with time. Such is the cause of the horrible squeak you hear when you move on your bed.

However, if your box spring is a more up-to-date version, the noise could be coming from friction between the wooden slats, or one of these wood slats could be broken.

How to Fix a Noisy Box Spring

If there is a broken piece of wood, you can use an industrial stapler or duct tape to get the piece of wood back in place. This solution is temporary and won’t hold for a long time. Eventually, you’ll have the same problem down the road.

You can also use wood glue, which is a pretty good way to keep it sturdy for longer. Now, if you have to start gluing the box spring wood panels all the time, it may just be time to get a new one.

Another way to fix this problem is to put padding or blankets where the box spring is worn down to prevent it from further breaking. The padding can add some extra support and muffle the bothersome noise.

What to Do if the Frame/Headboard Is Causing the Noise

Suppose you’re experiencing a metal-like squeaking noise. It could be coming from your bed frame or headboard. If that’s the case, then there could be a few reasons your bed frame makes this noise.

Your bed frame is likely old and worn. Beds are used every night, so they experience intense wear over time. Most bed frames are some type of metal. After a while, that metal will age and squeak, especially when you consider the bedframe is holding everything plus you on top of it.

This could be from a lack of lubrication, like when the hinges on a house door begin to squeak. A bed frame comprises many screws and bolts to hold everything in place, so it’s common for them to become loose and make a noise.

A wooden bed frame can also make noise, but it is for a different reason. According to Casper, wood can become warped from too much moisture over time. It leads to unevenness, which causes the frame to make noise when you sit, toss, and turn on the bed.

How to Fix a Noisy Frame/Headboard

Suppose the bed frame is making noise due to the lack of lubrication. You’ll want to spray something like WD-40 on it, which should help get rid of the noise.

With a metal bed frame, you’ll want to go through and make sure all the bolts and screws are tightened to rule that out as a problem. If the noise goes away after doing that, then the problem was them being loose, and you should be good to go.

If the wooden slats have become warped, there is a way you can minimize the noise. You can always add some type of padding around the uneven slat or even add more slats to help support the bed frame. Another thing you can do that’s a little more work is replace your slats with plywood.

The Bottom Line

Your mattress can make a noise when you move for multiple reasons. Usually, this is because your mattress, box spring, or frame is old and has just worn out over time.

Some other reasons could be springs or coils in the mattress that have been tangled or worn down, warped or broken wood in the box spring, or loose bolts or screws in the bed frame.

Most of these issues can be fixed with wood glue, extra padding for support, flipping your mattress, and tightening loose bolts. If these don’t work, it’s time for a new purchase.

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