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Can I Use A Headboard With An Adjustable Bed? 

 September 11, 2020

By  Marc Laurance

Adjustable beds are a significant increase in comfort as well as an incredible innovation for the medical sector. They come in many varieties and degrees of adjustability, but most home-use adjustable beds are sold simply as an adjustable base, with many manufacturers offering additional items sold separately such as mattresses and frames. 

Pillows and Purple Flowers

Any headboard can be attached to an adjustable bed. Specially made adjustable bed headboards are available, but these aren’t necessary if you already have a headboard. While the method of attaching the headboard can vary by manufacturer, any headboard can be used with any bed including adjustable.

Adjustable beds attach to headboards primarily in one of two ways. These are bolt-on headboard attachments and hook-on headboard attachments. You can tell which kind of attachment your headboard will require by checking the legs of the adjustable bed base. Bolt-on attachment legs will have holes in them where the bolt enters, while hook-on legs have splits for the hooks to attach to. 

Most headboards will attach in one of these two ways, although there are alternatives on the market. Many adjustable beds are sold as a base, and you must purchase a mattress and a frame for it to look normal. I’ll be able to take you through everything you need to know in the rest of this article!

While most headboards use the hook-on or bolt-on attachment methods, there are headboards on the market that attach elsewhere, including the wall behind the bed and underneath the base by a set of brackets. If your headboard is missing parts or can’t attach, a bed frame would be the next best option.

Adjustable Bed

Standard bed frames are slightly larger than the base of an adjustable bed, which means the bed will fit inside the frame and act as a headboard. However, if your headboard is fully working you should have no problems attaching it to your adjustable bed.

Adjustable bed mattresses use the same dimensions as regular mattresses. This allows them to fit with the frames, headboards, and footboards of standard bedding. However, the design of certain headboards may interfere with the function of your adjustable bed.

For example, certain angles of the adjustable bed might be uncomfortable with a headboard attached. This can include lifting the front of the bed, which may be made difficult by the presence of a headboard. Certain adjustable beds also require the base of the bed to be free to move in order for the base to adjust properly.

While you can attach a headboard to an adjustable bed, it can be easier to slot the bed into an existing bed frame. If you decide to do that, you should check the design of your adjustable bed to see whether your bed frame will impair the mobility of the bed. This can mean your headboard is fine, but your footboard won’t be.

If you’re unsure whether you can use your old frame with your new adjustable bed, check with the manufacturer. Headboards are primarily an aesthetic feature, but you don’t have to sacrifice function to achieve that. Keep this in mind when purchasing a headboard for an adjustable bed. 

While adjustable beds have a standard size so people can retain their bed frames, some manufacturers may include a headboard. If using a headboard with your adjustable bed is important to you, this is something to look out for. These headboards will always match the adjustable bed in design as well as fit into its adjustable functions.

If your adjustable bed has lots of wiring, third-party frames and headboards can interfere with that. To help with this, try to purchase an adjustable bed with a wireless remote rather than a wired one that connects directly to the bed. Using a frame or headboard is possible with wired remote beds, but it can lead to additional wear and tear over time and other minor nuisances.

Any of these issues are relatively easy to work around, so if you want to keep your existing headboard, don’t fret - you absolutely can. Headboards won’t usually deeply interfere with the function of an adjustable bed – although the mattress may scrape on certain headboards.

Certain frames, such as slat frames, are also generally unusable with adjustable beds. Most manufacturers will offer their own frames. These frames will usually be the same dimensions as other bed frames, but you can rest easy knowing that it will match and fit perfectly and easily.

Can you buy headboards specifically for adjustable beds?

There are headboards marketed to adjustable beds, but they don’t offer anything more than a regular headboard does. Googling “adjustable bed headboards” gives you mostly regular headboards as they serve the same function, and most will attach in the same way.

Alarm Clock

It is generally not worth seeking these out unless they are recommended by the manufacturer, or you have a nonstandard adjustable bed. However, if your adjustable bed has a unique method of headboard attachment, it’s often likely that the headboard will be included with the bed.

Will my adjustable bed come with a headboard?

Some adjustable bed manufacturers include an optional headboard that attaches to the adjustable bed. Look for these when purchasing as not only will they match, they will often be the easiest to attach. Many adjustable beds come with just a base and adjustable platform so that you can add a mattress, frame, or headboard to your liking.

Adjustable beds that come with all parts included are often specialized and much more expensive than the average one. Unless you have specific requirements for your adjustable bed, such as for medical reasons, it is often not worth finding these ones. The comfort of an adjustable bed can be available for much cheaper, and you can often use existing bedding which will save your wallet.

Do I need any tools to install a headboard to my adjustable bed?

Unless otherwise stated on the packaging, all tools required to assemble will come with the headboard or the adjustable bed if a headboard is included. Many headboards require no tools at all to assemble. Adjustable beds that use either the bolt-on or hook-on methods, which are standard, will require no tools to adequately assemble.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I use my old footboard with an adjustable bed?

Some adjustable beds require the freedom to move around the base of the bed. As such, some frames and footboards may limit the maneuverability of your adjustable bed. If you’re unsure, many manufacturers have customer support service that can answer this question for you specifically.

Wood Furniture

Can you put an adjustable base on a platform bed?

Yes! With many adjustable beds, the legs come off, and you can use your old mattress too on it. There are special mattresses for adjustable beds that split in the middle allowing two people to share a bed with different adjustments, however. There are also some mattresses that can’t be used with an adjustable base, and some materials are better than others for adjustable bedding.

What mattress type is best to use with an adjustable bed?

The best materials are memory foam, latex foam, and hybrid mattresses. Airbeds may also be used, but this can damage cheap ones. If you use a different mattress, such as a spring mattress, you will not be able to use this with an adjustable bed.

Contorting the innerspring mattress damages the springs and bends it into the shape permanently, meaning you can only adjust it once before it’s broken. Attempting to contort an innerspring mattress can also lead to damage in the adjustable bed base as the mattress can exert a lot of force on the base as it bends.

Marc Laurance


Hi, I'm Marc. I'm the head writer for Bedzine. I have a passion for interior design, especially bedroom aesthetic - and I hope to inspire you with new bedroom ideas each week.

Marc Laurance
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