Bunkie Board vs Slats

So, you are now getting a new bed. However, you are wondering whether you should just use slats on your bed frame or simply put a bunkie board instead. The same question has confused many people. In general, a bunkie board is great because of the flat, smooth surface that can support the whole mattress evenly. But it can be quite expensive, especially if compared to slats. Below, we will see more about bunkie board vs slats to help you decide.

About Bunkie Board
A bunkie board is basically a flat wooden board that is sturdy and durable enough to support a mattress along with people sleeping on it. There are various bunkie boards available on the market, varying by size and thickness. Usually, a bunkie board is already cut in a particular size to suit a specific bed size – some people even make their own bunkie boards, as we discussed in Bunkie Board vs Plywood. Meanwhile, the thickness of the bunkie board usually affects the stiffness. Bunkie boards were created to replace box springs, which are bulky and heavy.

About Bed Slats
The most commonly used on platform beds to provide support is bed slats. They are often pieces of wood that have been nailed, screwed, or simply put on the bed frame. The wooden boards go from one side to the other side for the entire length of the bed. They may appear like a ladder. Because the slats already provide support for the mattress, platform beds usually do not require a box spring.

Support and Flexibility
Bunkie boards can give the best support, but keep in mind that they are also stiffer, especially the thick ones. If you are using a regular foam mattress that is thin, the stiffness may make the bed feel uncomfortable. You should pair it with a thin yet durable bunkie board to make it feel flexible and comfortable.

On the other hand, slats don’t give even support across the mattress because there are gaps. This is not a problem for most mattress types and if you use an enough number of slats. They are generally more flexible. Each slat can respond differently and independently to adjust to the weight on its area. The gaps can even help to relieve pressure points. The effect is more noticeable if you are using a thin foam mattress.

Suitable Mattress Types
However, if you are using a thick mattress, the performance differences between bunkie board vs slats are not very noticeable. Mostly, the decision comes down to the support and durability. One thing to remember, if you are using a memory foam mattress, you probably have to choose a bunkie board. Due to the flat surface, a bunkie board will give the best support for a memory foam mattress without making it sag down. On the other hand, slats aren’t very good for a foam mattress, but still viable if there are at least 20 slats with less than two inches between the slats.

You should choose a bunkie board for most memory foam mattresses because the flat and even surface will give the best support and prevent it from sagging down. You can also get a bunkie board if you prefer a specific thickness and stiffness. However, slats are viable if you have at least 20 slats with less than two inches between the slats.