Now that box spring beds are becoming more and more popular in Germany, the question of whether the next new bed should be of a conventional nature or whether the decision in favor of the popular box spring bed system should be made here is becoming increasingly common. In the following article we explain the differences between conventional beds and box spring beds. We also refer to most other bed types and also draw the frequently made comparison between box spring bed and water bed.
When it comes to box spring beds compared to conventional beds, the special structure of the box spring system has to be considered first. While a conventional bed system basically consists of a bed frame, slatted frame and mattress, the core of the box spring bed consists of three other essential components.
The special components of the box spring bed
The basic structure of box spring beds is the same for most models, although there are some manufacturers who rely on a slightly modified structure. In principle, a box spring bed consists of:
Under mattress / innerspring box / spring frame / box spring / box
The bottom mattress of the box spring bed, which is also referred to as a spring core box, a spring frame, a box spring or a box spring bed base, is roughly equivalent to the bed frame including slatted frame of a conventional bed. The spring core inside the box corresponds to the slats of the slatted frame. The spring core box takes on the function of the spring base.
Similar to the slatted frame, the box is responsible for ensuring that the actual mattress or top mattress of the box spring bed can fully develop its effect and positive properties in terms of flexibility and support.
In order to achieve the air circulation that is essential for a healthy sleeping climate, the bottom mattress of the box spring bed does not lie on the floor, but rests on bed feet, which depending on the design and quality of the bed also have a positive influence on the appearance of the bed. For an attractive look, the bottom mattress of the box spring bed is usually covered on the outside with fabric or leather.
Box spring beds, which are designed as double beds (usually from a bed width of 160 cm), are usually equipped with two separate box springs.
The top mattress is placed on the box box spring box. The top mattress of a box spring bed is basically identical to the normal mattress in a conventional bed. It is quite possible to place any commercially available mattress of the appropriate size on the bed's under mattress. In general, however, it is advisable to choose one of the top mattresses that are offered by the manufacturer of the respective bed and matched to the innerspring box.
In combination with the bottom mattress, the top mattress provides optimal support for the body when lying or sleeping.
Depending on the manufacturer and model, box spring beds in double bed size use both continuous, one-piece top mattresses and two separate mattresses.
The top mattresses are often covered with the same fabric or leather as the bottom mattresses. In these cases there is also talk of decorative mattresses. The advantage of a box spring bed with a decorative mattress is that in principle it is sufficient to cover the topper with a fitted sheet.
Topper / topper mattress / top mattress
The upper end of the box spring bed – the lying surface – is formed by the so-called topper mattress, usually also referred to as a topper. In contrast to the bottom mattress and top mattress, toppers are always made consistently. With box spring beds in double bed size, you can be particularly happy about this because the "hatch" in the box spring bed, which is known and hated from most conventional bed systems, is not available thanks to the continuous topper.
To put the topper of the box spring bed in relation to conventional beds, it can be seen as a counterpart to a mattress topper that is additionally placed on the mattress in a conventional bed.
In the box spring bed, the topper takes on the function of optimal body positioning while lying or sleeping. It enables fine-tuning of the lying feeling conveyed to the user by the bed system.
To ensure cleanliness and hygiene in bed, the toppers are usually equipped with removable covers. If necessary, the topper cover can be easily removed and washed in the washing machine at home.
Different materials for different requirements
With conventional bed systems, the selection of the right combination of slatted frame and mattress is decisive for the properties and sleeping comfort of the bed. A decision is made here based on your own needs and individual physical requirements. There are mattresses made of various materials in various designs and differently designed slatted frames available.
The situation is similar with box spring beds: the individual components (bottom mattress, top mattress, topper) are made from many different materials that have already proven themselves in the manufacture of conventional mattresses. Different versions and combinations allow the box spring bed to be fine-tuned to personal wishes and habits.
Hardness levels for box spring beds
As with the mattresses of conventional beds, box spring beds in various degrees of hardness are also available in stores. Although there is a degree of hardness from H1 (soft) to H5 (hard), mostly box spring beds with a hardness of H2 and H3 can be found. These two degrees of hardness are often required / preferred and are therefore the most frequently represented.
The degrees of hardness of box spring beds are not properly standardized, which is why box spring beds from different manufacturers cannot be compared based on their degree of hardness. A box spring bed that runs as an H3 model at one manufacturer may, for example, more closely correspond to a bed model with H2 at another manufacturer.
What is better box spring bed or slatted frame?
This frequently asked question cannot be answered simply. Ultimately, personal preferences and desires, as well as subjective feelings, are often the deciding factors when it comes to assessing a sleep system. If you e.g. “In love” with the particular look of a particular box spring bed model, he will no longer wonder whether a bed with slatted frame would be better for him if the selected box spring bed can offer him everything he needs in terms of sleeping comfort.
The quality of the respective beds or the respective equipment components for beds as well as their specific suitability for the user should always be taken into account. If the slatted frame and mattress are perfectly coordinated and match the requirements of the sleeper, this solution will be just as good as a box spring bed that perfectly matches the needs of the sleeper. Then only the individual taste counts in the decision.
Basically, it can be stated that the box as a spring base has the advantage that the lying comfort or functionality is given on the entire lying surface. With slatted frames, however, it is often the case that the spring action is only optimal in the middle. Towards the sides, the moldings can usually no longer develop their full potential, which can limit the comfort of lying in these areas.
Box spring bed and upholstered bed
We often hear questions like "What is the difference between a box spring bed and an upholstered bed?" Or "What is better box spring bed or an upholstered bed?" Depending on the design of the box spring bed, the difference between an upholstered bed and a box spring bed lies solely in the structure. Visually, the differences are often only marginal.
As already explained in detail in this article, the box spring bed does not have a slatted frame, but a box equipped with a spring core, which takes over the function of the spring base for the mattress. In addition, the box spring bed usually has a topper on top of the mattress, which is not the case with conventional upholstered beds.
The question of whether an upholstered bed is better or a box spring bed is better, just like the question above about the box spring bed and slatted frame, does not allow a general answer. Ideally, you should take some time in advance to make decisions and try out different upholstered beds with conventional equipment and with a box spring system to determine your personal favorites.
Box spring bed and water bed
If you look more closely at the choice of bed and the different bed types, you may also be thinking about buying a water bed. At some point the question may arise whether a box spring bed or a water bed is better.
First, some basic information about the waterbeds: A distinction is made between hard-side models with a water core reaching to the edge and soft-side models with a stable foam frame. Today, only softside waterbeds are required, because with hardside beds, getting up is often very difficult due to the user sinking deeper into the edge area.
The basic structure of a water bed consists (from bottom to top) of a base, weight distributors (in the form of wooden crosses), a base plate, a foam frame, a heating element, a safety film, a water mattress and a cover.
How the waterbed found its way into our bedroom
Already 3000 years ago, nomadic desert peoples discovered that the best way to sleep on the often bitterly cold desert nights was on water bags that let the sun heat them up during the day.
Some time later in 1851, the invention of an “invalid water mattress”, which a certain William Hooper had made, caused a sensation and a small revolution in nursing. The invention he invented did not fully meet the goal of "weightless" positioning of patients, but it came quite close. The first development of a real “floating water mattress” then took place in 1873, but could not prevail due to poor durability, which in turn was due to the lack of materials and undeveloped production processes at that time.
In 1885, the first mass-produced waterbed was launched, which also found its way into the “Harolds” mail order catalog.
In 1932 a “water bed for the prevention of pressure ulcers” (pressure ulcers = bedsores) was presented. This development goes back to C. A. Ewald, who used a water tank with a loose, thin rubber cover for his care bed. However, acceptance for these new bed systems, which should simplify the care of bedridden patients, initially failed to materialize and only became apparent in the late 1960s.
At the end of 1968 the era of the waterbed as we know it began in California. It was a typical coincidence that was made by a couple of design students in San Francisco. Originally, an improvement to the well-known styrofoam beanbag was planned. The students used novel plastic films and filled them with water. But since the water simply did not want to be “backrest-shaped”, they made a virtue of necessity and a piece of reclining furniture from the intended innovative seating.
From the beginning of the 80s to the end of the 90s of the 20th century, numerous developments took place, which have significantly shaped the quality and range of the waterbeds available today.
What is better for the back – water bed or box spring bed?
Even if you can read in many places on the Internet how well the waterbed affects sleep and health, this has not been medically proven.
While the body of the person lying is supported and carried by conventional bed systems with mattresses and slatted frames as well as by the box spring bed with spring box and mattress, it is the case with the water bed that the body often "sags" like in a hammock, which then describes all weightless lying becomes. Often store e.g. the legs in the waterbed are higher, as the middle of the body is heavier and sinks deeper into the water mattress. This may or may not be an advantage or disadvantage.
With box spring systems as well as with an optimal combination of slatted frame and mattress, the back is supported precisely, which does not take place in the waterbed, which adapts completely to the body without offering the necessary resistance.
Interesting on this topic: "Sleep disorders increase pain ”on Spiegel-Online
- convinced waterbed users swear by the system
- good pressure relief
- relatively allergy-friendly
- no precise body support
- Poor ventilation because it is a closed system
- additional electricity costs through the heating
- additional maintenance costs due to water treatment
- very difficult, the water has to be drained to adjust or move
- there is always a risk of leaks
What are box spring water beds?
There are already offers for box-spring water beds on the Internet. These sleep systems are water beds that are equipped with a bed frame that gives them the appearance of a box spring bed.
With box spring water beds there is no spring base or generally no spring core at all. This also makes no sense for a moving water core or a sleeping pad filled with water in bed.
What is the difference between box beds and box spring beds?
Sometimes you stumble across the term "box bed" in advertising supplements or with beds offered online or in a furniture store. If you have not yet dealt with the topic of "box spring beds", you may quickly assume that this is a synonym, but this is not the case.
The term "spring" is missing in the term box bed or box bed and so it is with the equipment of this type of bed, which is often offered very cheaply. The box beds also have a three-part design. There is a supporting base or box, a mattress and a topper. In contrast to the box spring bed, the box does not have a spring core, but usually only has (relatively simple) foam padding. The other components of the box bed are often only made of cheaper foams.
Except for the look and the three-part division, there are no real similarities between a box bed and a real box spring bed.
How well the ventilation works with a box bed is questionable. The quality of lying comfort must also be doubted. If you make little demands on your sleeping place, have no problems with your back and also do not value a typically springy lying feeling, you may be satisfied with a box bed. However, a clear buy recommendation cannot be given.
What are box spring mattresses?
The term "box spring mattress" is used to identify a specially constructed innerspring mattress. Accordingly, it is not a synonym for the top mattress in box spring beds.
Boxspring mattresses are very high compared to normal innerspring mattresses with a height of around 30 centimeters, which results from the fact that they have two innerspring inners in their interior.
Two different types of innerspring are often used in box spring mattresses – e.g. a flat elastic Bonell spring core (below) and a point elastic (mini) pocket spring core – used.
The box spring mattress brings its first spring base with it thanks to the double spring core. Box spring mattresses are also combined with matching slatted frames. When deciding on a box spring mattress, care should be taken that the mattress can sink at least 4 cm deep into the frame of the bed frame, so that a secure position is guaranteed.
Due to the double spring core in the box spring mattress, there is a special springy, comfortable lying feeling, which is similar to that of a box spring bed. The special height of the mattress increases the entry height of the bed and thus provides additional comfort.
In combination with a slatted frame coordinated with the box spring mattress, an alternative to the box spring bed is available, which offers similar advantages. Ideal, for example, if there is a good bed frame that needs to be kept.
What is box spring upholstery?
In the field of upholstered furniture production, box spring upholstery is a multi-layer innerspring structure. Similar to the box spring bed, where the box and mattress usually have a spring core, the living area or the (bed) sofa in the box spring version has at least two spring cores inside. The spring cores support each other in their function and ensure a very high level of comfort. Similar to the construction of box spring beds, there is often a topper-like cover for upholstered seating furniture, which is either fixed or loose above the innerspring system and can be made of different materials.