How to Fix a Squeak Bed Before Having Sex

Nothing ruins the mood faster than waking up the kid.

Originally Published: 
White pillows and sheets tussled across a bed frame

If your bed is constantly betraying you and your wife’s extracurricular activities, then you probably want to know how to fix a squeaky bed. For parents who want to get freaky when the kids are sleeping, it’s essential to keep things (relatively) quiet. But having sex in beds with squeaky or creaking frames or noisy boxsprings makes that nearly impossible. With every movement, it sounds like the bed is triggering an alarm for kids, and it’s even worse in the dead of night when the house is quiet.

The best bed for sex is a silent one. To aid your quest for silence, we asked some bed and mattress experts how best to fix a squeaky bed. We were relieved to hear that it isn’t too hard. In most cases, once you find the source of the squeak, you can solve all your troubles with an Allen wrench, some WD-40, and an old T-shirt. And let’s face it: Fixing your creaking bed is more comfortable than floor sex (albeit a tad less kinky), cheaper than buying a new bed, and less defeating than saving sex for the rare moments when you and the wife are home alone.

To Fix A Squeaky Bed, You Must First, Find The Squeak.

The source of a bed squeak can be like Daniel Bryan: hard to pin down. So the first step is to identify what part of the bed is squeaking through a process of elimination. “You diagnose it by taking it apart, separating the mattress, the box spring, and the frame, and putting force on all of them separately while listening for the noise,” says Bob Czepiel of Yankee Mattress in Springfield, Massachusetts.

Check The Mattress for Noise

Start by sliding the mattress onto the floor and giving it a test ride. “Mattresses don’t normally squeak,” says Joanne Cote, store manager at Mattress Firm in Hadley, Massachusetts. “If one did, it might be the steel coil inside, but I’ve never heard of that happening.” If your bed spring is not compressing in the way that it’s supposed to, then that could be the main culprit for a squeaky bed. And if you have a foam mattress, the chance that it’s the source of the squeak goes from minimal to zero. If the mattress is this culprit, prolonged use might cause health issues, which is why it is important to identify and fix the source of the squeak immediately.

Check The Box Spring for Creaks

“The boxspring is the most common source of a bed squeaking,” says Cote. “It’s either the boxspring itself, the wood on wood components inside, or it could be the wood of the box spring rubbing on the metal frame.” To test your boxspring, slide it off the frame and, again, gently sit or roll around on it. If you hear a noise, there’s a good chance an old spring or chafing wood is causing the issue.

Check The Bed Frame for Squeaks

Put a little bit of weight on it and shake it gently, first from side to side and then from the headboard and footboard. It shouldn’t take long to identify any creaking or loose joints. Czepiel says you can also “put the bed back together again and lay down on it,” assuming there wasn’t an issue with the other components of the bed.

Congratulations, you’ve identified the problem. Now what?

  1. If it’s the mattress…

If you find that your mattress is the source of the squeak, try to flip or rotate it in order to relocate the pressure points. But more likely than not, it’s still going to squeak. Hopefully, the mattress is still under warranty and you can return it for a replacement.

  1. If it’s the box spring…

You can start by rotating the boxspring, hoping to move the pressure point to the foot and alleviate the noise. You can also jam a book or a small piece of wood in between the squeaky spring and the mattress. If that doesn’t work, you’ve got a decision to make. If it’s under warranty (which it probably is, since most boxsprings come with a 10-year warranty), you can simply swap it out for a new one. That’s easy. If it’s out of warranty, though, you can either replace it ⏤ they come as cheap as $60 ⏤ or fix it. If you opt for the latter, pull back the felt cover from the underside and lubricate each of the springs with WD-40. If the wood slats on the bottom of your frame are the culprit, you can wrap each with a worn-out sock or an old T-shirt. Either way, you’ll want to reattach the felt with a stapler from the hardware store.

  1. If it’s the bed frame…

Grab a screwdriver, Allen wrench, and pliers and tighten all of the bolts, nuts, and C-clamps. Add washers where bolts are loose and won’t tighten. Then spray all the connections down with WD-40 or a comparable silicone lubricant. You can also rub a candle or some beeswax on all the joints if you’re wary of chemical smells.

And that’s it. Here’s hoping this advice aids your quest to prevent the bed from giving away your actions. Now, you just have to handle the 1,246,195 other things that will send kids into your room in the middle of the night.

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