It is frustrating when a supposedly healthy sleep turns into a nightmarish moment, and then you feel exasperated the morning after. For sure, there’s something wrong with the bed.
Imagine achieving that moment and desiring to have an uninterrupted sleep and your bed suddenly makes a popping noise when you move your hip! Your bed should provide you with restful sleep so that you wake up refreshed during the day.
You’d ask yourself, “Why does my mattress make noise when I move?” That’s precisely where you are headed to find the solution to the problem.
Whether it’s the mattress or frame that’s creating the popping noise, it’s only fair to investigate how to correct that faulty bed.
A popping bed could mean many things: but for one, the coils are worn out or have tangled with each other. If the spring mattress is new, perhaps, the way the coils are defective. While it is under mattress warranty, send it back to the seller.
Mattresses should be comfy and soft and provide a quiet sleep. If the popping sound competes with your snoring and is quite disturbing, think twice if you continue to use that noisy mattress.
But before you can find some viable reasons why your mattress pops when you move, even with the slightest turn, learn the type of coils your mattress is built for.
Most mattresses or beds are composed of the base and the top foam, where coils play a vital role in satisfying every sleeper.
Mattress coils or springs are flexible metal supports found inside the mattress to provide a sturdy shape for the bed but are comfortable enough to support your spine for a healthy posture.
The universal advantage of coil-based mattresses is their ergonomic feature, resilience to body movement, durability, and no room for airflow.
An innerspring mattress is more excellent than a foam mattress. You wouldn’t want bed bugs and dust mites to the harbor in foam mattresses.
Mattress coils are springs that are designed to support any sleeper’s weight. However, there’s not only one type of coil for a mattress. Different mattresses could be built with varying patterns of coils.
The major downside of coils is their potential to squeak and create noise due to the rubbing of wires or springs. Since coils are intertwined, they tend to affect adjacent springs due to motion transfer. If you have someone beside you, they will likely feel the movement instantly, even with the slightest motion.
When you feel like your mattress springs are poking through, they aren’t in good shape anymore.
Understanding the engineering behind these coils will help you to choose what type of mattress suits you best.
- Pocketed coils: Designed for motion isolation. It means that when you move, your partner wouldn’t be affected.
Every spring is clothed in a fabric pocket, which reduces noise, having the pockets serve as insulators against compression.
- Pocket springs: Offer more support than the older coil spring units—an ideal choice for two people with different body weights.
- Connected coils: Prevent the heavier part of your body from sinking too deeply into the mattress relative to your lightest part.
One significant advantage of connected coils is that your body weight gets distributed evenly. But because all springs are linked together, they tend to move as one.
If you are a sleeper who is more comfortable facing down the bed, you will benefit from the flatter surface-connected coil-based mattress offers.
- Bonnell coils: The most common coil type with a classic spring unit and support clips to prevent the mattress from collapsing.
This mattress type is compressed easily, using hourglass-shaped coils with metal helical connections and wire extensions as joining implements.
- Offset coils: Derived from the Bonnell-type coils but with square sides for even acceptance of weight against compression.
What are the signs of a bad mattress? Answering this question also answers why your bed is making a nasty popping, squeaking, or creaking noise.
No matter what type of coil or spring your mattress is built upon, the popping sound may refer to the worn-out springs. Especially if your mattress is made of connected spring loops, they will weaken in time.
You will notice the reduction of the springiness of the coils when they can no longer handle body weight, causing uneven form on the surface of the bed even if there is no one on it.
The years you have been using your mattress will degrade its stability, no matter how durable it was when advertised.
Some beds have frames that serve as the foundation. These bases are made of wooden slats. Wooden slats creak or squeak when their clamps get loosened through time. The more clamps fall out, the less secure your bed becomes.
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Don’t wait for the slats to break. When you hear a squeaky sound, inspect where the noise comes from and replace the slat with a new one and tighten the seal.
Your bed’s frame should be firm enough to withstand the weight of the mattress, the blankets or duvets, and the sleeper. Those bothersome noises you hear from the edge can be due to loosened nuts and bolts that hold the bed together.
If you have small children using the bed, they contribute to the degrading durability of the mattress when they jump and play on top of the bed.
Observe the impact of temperature in your room since moisture affects wood in specific ways. Thus, creating gaps for bolts and nuts and producing a squeaking noise against the wood.
PRO TIP: If you have a wooden frame, keep the room dry and free of moisture to prevent wood imbibition—the swelling of wood when it absorbs water.
Assuming you just got your new mattress. And on the first night, you hear a popping noise! How disappointing, right?
The first thing to do is identify the source of the noise. There could be two or three possible reasons why your bed pops or squeaks:
- It could be the bed frame
- It could be a broken spring
An innerspring mattress, such as a coil-based bed, has metal springs that can rub against each other. They are prone to noise because coils are made of metal springs.
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If you are correct that the noise issue is brought by the springs, you need to return your newly purchased mattress.
Instead of endlessly figuring out how to fix the popping noise, you better have it checked with your dealer.
Box springs are another type of bed foundation or bed frame. A box spring base is different from a bed frame made from wooden slats. It is a “box,” a wooden frame covered in cloth, but with “springs” inside.
The concept of box springs is to elevate the mattress and support it so as not to be directly laid on the flat wood but on the springs.
The most significant advantage of a box spring frame is to provide a flat mattress surface and is durable to carry weight and bouncy because of the springs’ flexibility.
A memory foam mattress is best suited on top of box springs.
What causes the squeaky sound from box springs?
- Old and used springs rubbing against each other
- Loose joint connections, such as staples attached to wood to hold the springs together
If what you are using is an air mattress, expect to hear a popping noise.
An Air mattress is the type of bed that you inflate. It is also called an inflatable mattress.
An air bed is usually portable and does not have springs inside but an air chamber. The more there are, the more chances of popping.
If your air bed popped, air bubbles might have gotten into tiny holes and are commonly the culprit for air leaks. The type of cushion air mattresses offer is not suitable for sleeping on or for permanent bed usage.
With the presence of air bubbles, your air bed will anytime produce a popping sound when you move, even while sitting.
How do you get rid of popping noise?
- Check the source of the noise.
- Avoid pumping too much air.
- Don’t use it uninflated, and don’t store it inflated
- Avoid putting weight when uninflated to keep its form
- Avoid putting too much weight on one portion only
- Do not jump on it
PRO TIP: The weakest point in spring coils are the joints. When the joining agents get snapped, it will start to unravel other joints to the constant body movement of the sleeper.
Find the Noise Source
Always the first step to figuring out where the noise is coming from. If you hear a popping sound just between your back and the mattress, it means the source of the sound is the springs. Having ample knowledge of coils will give you insight into what to do next.
Bed Frame Noise
Though bed frame noise isn’t a direct noise once you lay on the bed, it is essential to deal with it because of the annoying sound. Bed frame noise depends on the type of base you have.
Is your frame made of box springs? Or wooden slats? This is easy to tell by removing
the mattress from the top of the base.
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Bed Frame Connection
It is easier to identify the noise when it’s louder and more constant. Bed frame connections such as nuts and bolts loosened over time. When they aren’t tightened, the risk of more damage is about to set in your bed frame.
Bed frames’ legs
Like the frame, the legs are vital to the foundation of the frame. Without them, it will fall. If it makes disturbing noise and starts to swivel to and fro means there’s a problem with its legs. Similarly, check leg frame connections and replace connections when the legs are worn out over time.
Padding the Area
When no matter how tight the frames and legs are if the bed persistently makes noise, add felt pads or a mattress topper to the area where the noise comes from. Cut the size of the buffer just enough to surround the site, such as a joint where the nuts are located, before tightening up again.
No matter how heavy the sleeper is, the mattress pad will reduce the noise. More crackling or cracking noise can be heard. If your floor is wood or vinyl, add carpet beneath the bed.
Fasten the Bolts
Loosened bolts will hamper the joints of the frame and legs. Make sure to fasten them against the nuts, so they don’t move. Add noise-reducing pads, as explained previously. Replace worn-out nuts and bolts.
Lubricate the Coils
Another effective way of reducing or eliminating the popping noise is to lubricate coils. Since coils are metal wires, they eventually rust.
It is quite difficult to find the source of the noise when you are using a hybrid mattress. It is called hybrid because it has a multi-layer design combining memory foam or latex with an innerspring foundation.
Hybrid mattresses make firmer mattresses because their engineering is way beyond the conventional beds.
PRO TIP: Did you know that the kind of mattress you have will affect your health in a certain way?
Some sleepers feel that they are being robbed of their good night’s sleep due to their noisy beds. Ignoring the problem on the first few signs will only lead you to endless nights wondering where the noise is coming from. And instead of buying a new bed with a firm mattress, why not try to fix it while you can?
DIY solutions abound. Try the following hacks to silence the squeaky noise from your bed.
- Tighten up screws; nuts, and bolts
- Lubricate the joints, coil springs, and any metal parts
- Apply padding on noisy areas; use old clothes if possible to remove the friction between the boxspring and mattress or a felt pad to reduce the sound and friction. Duct tape will also help.
- Add cork on empty spaces between the mattress and springs or between the gaps in joints. This will remove the popping sound caused by the open space.
- Replace the frame or the mattress if you think the sound is troublesome and irreparable.
Don’t let your body suffer from a bad mattress. The firmness of the foam will depend on how much your body gets comfortable with it.
If you can’t fix it, find a professional to do it or send the mattress back to the store if it’s newly bought. There’s nothing wrong with investing in a quality bed because your health deserves something better.
Robert is an electronic engineer with more than five years of experience with a solid affinity for helping people reduce noise. He writes about these silent home appliances and easy soundproofing measures to help everyone avoid the negative effect of extended exposure to high noise levels.