how to stabilize a metal bed frame

Learning how to stabilize a metal bed frame is one of the few skills you need to have, especially if you’re going to live without the supervision of an expert or a carpenter.

And while many people thought it was something that should be left to professionals, it’s actually a pretty simple thing to do.

So, in this guide, I will give you the best tips on how you can reinforce your metal bed frames superiorly.

To stabilize your metal bed frame, tighten the screws, bolts, and pins of your bed frame, replace the center beam support, add slats, install an L-shaped bracket on the legs, or add extra support beams adjacent to the center one.

What Tools Do You Need in Stabilizing a Metal Bed Frame?

stabilizing a bed frame

Learning how to stabilize a wobbly metal bed frame is one thing and knowing the things you will need for it is another.

The following are the tools you will need to stabilize your metal bed frame:

  • Screwdrivers (cross and flat)
  • Different-sized wrenches
  • Hammer
NOTE: Hammers are used for pinning and applying pressure, if for example a component is being too difficult to fit.

Now that you know about the tools, let me give you a brief rundown of some of the extra products and materials you’ll be utilizing (depending on how you want to reinforce your frames).

What Extra Materials Do You Need?

extra material

Apart from the tools you need, you’ll also have to use extra sets of materials to successfully stabilize your bed frame.

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Plywood

Sets of plywood usually provide additional support to a bed frame structure.

In my own experience, I would suggest purchasing plywood not thinner than 19mm.

NOTE: As an alternative to plywood, you can also purchase steel or metal slabs to act as support. 

This totally depends on what you’re looking for, but just because you install steel slabs, doesn’t mean that it’s already indestructible.

Bed Slats

a bed slats

You’ll be able to find a number of different sizes for bed slats, which are made available by a lot of companies and manufacturers.

The best ones, though, are around 1 x 3, 1 x 6, and 3 x 6 inches thick.

NOTE: Bed slats are typically wood, but you will be able to find bed slats made from steel.

Metal L-Shaped Brackets

Last, and most definitely not least are L-shaped brackets.

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They might not seem much, but they are actually one of the best and most effective components in securing the stability of your beds.

NOTE: You don’t necessarily need all of this to stabilize and make your bed frames sturdier and stronger. You can select an extra material you can utilize for it.

How to Stabilize a Metal Bed Frame? 5 Easy Methods

how stabilize metal bed frame

Here are 5 easy methods you can do independently to make sure that your metal bed frame is more stabilized or isn’t wobbly.

Method #1: Tighten the Fasteners of the Bed Frame

The first method, which probably is the easiest and simplest would be to tighten the bed frame’s fasteners.

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What I mean by fasteners would be everything from the screws, nuts, bolts, and even individual slats.

NOTE: For this, you only need a wrench or a screwdriver – no need for other extra materials for it!

Method #2: Replace the Central Beam Support

replace beam support

This next method will require an additional material – plywood or steel slab.

Most of the time, people have the misconception that the central beam supports that come with beds are already enough but, in most cases, they’re not.

Especially if you’ve had the bed for years, you might want to check out how the support is doing.

What you want to do is replace your bed frame’s central beam support and install a new one.

Here’s how it’s done:

  1. Remove the mattress from the bed frame.
  2. Unscrew the center beam from the entire structure.
  3. Measure the length and width of the beam. Measure its distance from the floor, too.
  4. Purchase a slab of plywood or steel and drill it for the fasteners.
  5. Install it to the bed frame.
NOTE: You can think of the central beam support to be like the spinal cord or the backbone of the entire bed. If it’s wobbly and unstable, then the entire bed will be unstable.

Method #3: Install L-Shaped Brackets on Each Leg

l shaped bracket

This is the method I love the most because it isn’t that tedious, but it adds unnerving support to the entirety of the bed frame.

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For this, you would need L-shaped steel brackets. You want the size to be proportionate to the thickness of each of your bed frame’s legs.

What you want to do is purchase at least 6 L-shaped brackets (2 for emergency purposes), and pre-drill each of them if they haven’t been drilled yet.

Once done, screw each of the brackets to each of the respective legs of the bed.

Finalize the installation by checking if the bracket is able to support the weight when you climb and lay on your bed.

NOTE: I usually measure the legs first before buying so that I don’t make the mistake of purchasing a wrong-sized steel/metal bracket. 

Method #4: Add Bed Slats

add a bed slats

For this method, the extra material you will need is bed slats. Bed slats, in case you aren’t aware, are added support to the bed frame.

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When you look at them closely, they will somewhat look like ribs – but they function more than that.

Bed slats are available at any hardware shop, you just have to find one that best suits your bed frame.

NOTE: Most bed slats are made from wood so that the bed is still flexible.

Method #5: Add Extra Support Beams For the Frame

This last method is similar to the 2nd method but instead of replacing the central beam support, you would reinforce and improve it.

Adding one or two center support beams to your bed frame can give you the support you’re looking for.

extra support

It doesn’t matter whether your current support beam is made out of wood or steel, you can add whatever type of support you want, so long as you’re 100% sure that they are reliable.

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These are the methods I was able to try over the course of being responsible for my own bed.

I can tell you that I have tried them all, and for me, the easiest method would be the installation of L-shaped brackets, but the most effective is the addition of bed slats.

Fixing a Metal Bed Frame

fix metal bed frame

In case you came late in terms of developing or reinforcing your metal bed frames, don’t worry, it’s not the end of the world.

Before you decide to throw this piece in the trash, here’s a brief process on how you can fix it.

  1. Remove the mattress from the frame to locate where the problem is.
  2. Inspect every corner of the frame from the headboard down to the legs.
  3. Then, remove the slats (if there are any), as well as the center support beam.
  4. Inspect them independently, then check back on the frame.
  5. Apply wood glue along with the splinters, holes, and cracks.
  6. Replace any part of the bed frame if the damage is obvious.
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When Should I Buy a New Bed Frame?

why buy new

Ideally speaking, the standard timeframe for replacing metal bed frames is anywhere between 8 and 10 years.

However, due to multiple factors such as cost, minimal deterioration, and manual reinforcement and development, the majority of people push off buying bed frames for at least 15 to 20 years.

For me, I purchased mine just after 8 years even if it didn’t have a lot of squeaking and wobbling.

Why? – Because I don’t want to wait for the time that it’ll be extremely difficult for me to dispose of it.

The Bottom Line

Now that you’ve reached the end of this article you now know how to stabilize a metal bed frame.

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If you thought that fast replacement is the key to a better and more pleasant experience with your bed, think again!

This is the importance of learning how to stabilize a metal bed frame – so you don’t need to purchase new frames once every 5 years!

Kristina D
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