Can You Put a Mattress Directly on a Floor?

Can you place a mattress on the floor? Usually most people use mattresses on a mattress base, box spring or foundation, but what if you want to place your mattress on the floor instead?

Maybe using a traditional box spring or mattress platform is not possible or you have just moved and you don’t have a proper foundation yet. Perhaps you have a few extra guests, there is not enough space for a box spring or bed base or it just isn’t in the budget. In such situations placing a mattress directly on the floor might seem a good idea, but still there are a few things you should consider before doing this.

How Can You Tell If Your Mattress Is Floor-Friendly?

There are some things you’ll need to consider before you put your mattress on the floor such as what your mattress is made of, its warranty, where you live, how you sleep, etc.

Check the Mattress Warranty

You should check the mattress warranty before you decide to put it directly on the floor as some mattress companies offer warranties that require specific bed setups that you must follow to avoid voiding the warranty.

However, many newer mattresses don’t need traditional box springs and can be placed on almost any flat and sturdy surface, including the floor. Some mattresses that need foundations or platforms can also work fine on the floor, but before you put it on the floor, it is better to check this with the company’s customer service support.

See What Is Your Mattress Made Of

It is really important to consider the construction of your mattress as without a proper base to raise the mattress off the floor and allow the air to circulate freely bellow, it may retain more heat and moisture, get mold and eventually be ruined completely. This is especially the case with memory foam, poly foam and other all foam mattresses. Also, if you live in very hot and humid environments, you may find it difficult to maintain a mattress on the floor.

So, although many mattresses sold today can be placed directly on the floor without a box spring, frame, or other type of foundation and there are certain benefits of sleeping on this type of surface, there are some disadvantages too.

Further in this article, we will take a look at both pros and cons of sleeping on a mattress on the floor, and we’ll give you some tips in case you decide to do this after all.

Pros of Placing Your Mattress Directly on the Floor

Benefits of sleeping on a mattress without foundation include:

Placing a Mattress on the Floor Can Help You Sleep Cooler

Although we have already mentioned that placing a mattress directly on the floor without a foundation or a box spring can cause heat and moisture retention due to the lack of airflow underneath the mattress, sleeping near to the ground can be quite pleasant, especially if you live in a warm climate that is not too humid. 

You’ve certainly noticed that the air near the floor is always cool, so placing a mattress directly on the floor will allow that nice cool feel spread through the mattress and keep you cool and comfortable all night long. The fresh air will not only do wonders for your sleep and prevent you from sweating, but it will also be beneficial for your respiratory system.

It Can Improve Your Overall Health

Sleeping on the floor is not only beneficial for your respiratory system, but it is also good for your blood circulation. Besides this, it will reduce your neck and back pain and the risk of developing scoliosis as using a solid ground beneath the mattress may prove to be a better option than placing it on a traditional box spring. The floor will improve the overall support of your mattress and help keep your body properly aligned.

You Will Spend Less Money

Most foundations, bases and other support systems cost at least $150 to $200. By placing your mattress directly on the floor, you can reduce your costs. As we have already mentioned, many mattress companies design their mattresses to work on solid surfaces, including the floor, so why would you spend the extra money on purchasing a new bed frame or foundation if you don’t have to.

You Can Place Your Bed Wherever You Want

Deciding not to use any foundation or box spring will give your more options where you can put your mattress as without a foundation, box spring or platform it will not require such a large space. You can place it anywhere and sleep anywhere you want and in any angle that you like. And this is a good advantage as you will not always feel like sleeping at the same location every night.

Cons of Sleeping Directly on the Floor

Like we’ve said, there are also some drawbacks of sleeping on a mattress placed directly on the floor which include:

Exposure to Dust, Dirt, Pests and Other Allergens

Mattresses that are placed directly on the floor are at risk of exposure to dust particles and dust mites, particularly if the floor is not cleaned regularly. They usually come through the windows and cracks under doors and then settle on the floor and putting your mattress alongside them puts you in closer contact to them. So, there are good chances that you will breathe in more of these than if you were to sleep on a normal bed. This can especially be a problem if you are prone to allergies.

Besides this, by placing your mattress on the floor, you are also giving bugs, spiders and other insects or pests easier access to you and your sleeping surface. This may lead to potential infestations that require thorough cleaning and, in some cases, infestations can completely ruin the mattress.

The Appearance of Mold and Mildew

Placing a mattress on the ground can restrict light and airflow and cause the mattress to absorb body heat and moisture. this is especially true if you live in hot and humid climates. With no place to dissipate, the excessive heat and moisture can cause mildew and mold to form and this can affect both your health and the lifespan of the mattress.

Difficulty Getting In and Out of Bed

The older and less physically fit you are, the harder it will be to get in and out of a bed that is on the floor. This option may work perfectly for kids and young people, but older people may have problems with joint and muscle pain, stability and balance and getting in and out of a bed that is placed directly on the floor may be too hard and strenuous for them.

Tips for Sleeping Directly on the Floor

So, if you consider all the options and limitations and you nevertheless decide to put your mattress on the floor, then you should take some precautions to ensure a healthier and more comfortable sleeping experience and prolong the lifespan of your mattress.

These include the following: 

  • Sweep, vacuum, and disinfect the floor below and around your mattress regularly to prevent the build-up of dust. Let the floor dry completely before laying the mattress down.
  • Lift up the mattress from time to time and allow it to air out. This will prevent or at least reduce the accumulation of mold and mildew.
  • Put a mattress on finished surfaces like tiles, hardwood flooring, or synthetic fiber carpeting that won’t retain moisture and encourage mold growth.
  • Place a thin barrier between a mattress and the floor such as cardboard or foam as this will not only help preserve the quality of your mattress and keep it clean, but it will also serve as an added insulation when temperatures are low.
  • Choose a mattress that is not entirely built of foam. Check out our mattress reviews page and pick a mattress that you can place on the floor without worrying what might happen to it over time.