How to Attach a Headboard to an Adjustable Bed Frame?

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Written by:

Max Stevens

How to Attach a Headboard to an Adjustable Bed Frame?

An adjustable frame is a really valuable piece of equipment to help you sleep better, but the look of it may often seem off or somewhat inadequate. You think about what’s lacking, and you suddenly think of a headboard attachment. Platform beds usually have headboards, but how about an adjustable base?

Headboards add class and elegance to an adjustable bed frame and offer other benefits too. But how do you install a new headboard mount to your bed frame? If you’re not a handyman, don’t fret. 

We’ve written this step-by-step guide to teach you how to properly attach a headboard to your adjustable bed base, so you can sleep better and enjoy the excellent view of your lovely bed. Read on! 

Steps How to Properly Attach a Headboard to Your Adjustable Bed Frame 

Follow these steps thoroughly, and ask for the assistance of an extra pair of hands if possible: 

Step 1: Check the Frame to See if There is a Headboard Bracket

First, check if your adjustable base comes with brackets for headboard installation. A headboard bracket is usually a black-coloured piece of metal with holes for screws and bolts. Some frames come with the headboard bracket needed for installation, but some don’t. 

If you don’t see this piece of metal in your frame, it’s time to purchase a headboard bracket by going to your local hardware store or searching online. 

Just ask the salespeople or search online for a “headboard bracket kit”, “headboard bracket set”, or simply “headboard kit”. They’re usually composed of nuts, washers, bolts, and come with headboard bracket channels which you use to attach the headboard to adjustable bed frame. 

Step 2: Check How the Headboard Should be Attached

If you have a headboard bracket on hand, you need to check if it’s a bolt-on or hook-on. Bolt-on has holes that house metal bolts to firmly secure the headboard to the frame. Meanwhile, hook-on is precisely how it sounds—you hook it up on the frame. 

As for durability and stability, the bolt-on method is preferable to hook-on and is the reason why most brackets are this type. Traditional headboards often have bolt-on holes for added stability, as hook-ons are more common with modern-looking headboards. 

Step 3: Prep Your Workspace 

First, you must clear your adjustable mattress of any bedding accessories that may be damaged or dusted during the installation. You also need to remove furniture and accessories near the edge of the bed to work more efficiently. 

Now, get your tools and materials, such as a set of wrenches, screwdrivers, a tape measure, and the headboard bracket nearby for easy access. You may also need pliers to grip bolts and screws easier and with much more precision. 

Tip: Get an extra pair of hands to help you out. It’s advantageous to get help from someone who has knowledge of DIY.

Step 4: Attach the Bracket to the Base of the Frame 

First, you need to attach the headboard bracket channels to the adjustable bed frame using the bolts provided. Make sure to hand-tighten the bolts first, so you can adjust them if necessary. 

Second, you need to attach the headboard bracket flanges to the bracket channels. Again, by using the bolts and nuts provided in the kit and hand-tightening them too. After that, slide the headboard brackets some half-inch to two inches away from the edge of your mattress to set up clearance. 

And lastly, secure the bolts and nuts using the tools that you have with you. Make sure no particular bolt and nut are wobbly, or it may damage the headboard once you install it. Doing this ensures the brackets to your adjustable frame are up and ready. 

Step 5: Properly Line Up the Mounting Holes

After step 4, you now have to measure the centre-to-centre distance between the mounting holes of the frames using your tape measure. After that, you need to measure the centre-to-centre distance between the mounting slots on the headboard bracket flanges. 

If your measurements don’t align, loosen the bolts and slide the headboard bracket flanges until the mounting holes align properly. Re-tighten the bolts afterwards once you have aligned the bracket flanges and holes. 

Recheck the alignment of the headboard flanges and mounting holes once more and recheck if the bolts are too loose, then re-adjust and re-tighten if necessary. 

Step 6: Attach the Headboard to the Adjustable Bed Frame 

Now that the headboard flanges and mounting holes are aligned, put the bolts through the holes to secure the headboard, then tighten the bolts, so it stays secured in place. 

After that, lower the angle of the bed frame until it’s perfectly flat. Ensure one to two inches of space between the headboard and the mattress. You can use the tape measure again, just to be precise, and ensure your headboard doesn’t get too close to the mattress.

Step 7: Check if the Headboard is Firmly Secured 

Now that the headboard is attached, you now have to test the structural integrity of both the adjustable base and headboard mount. The last thing you want is breaking and damaging the headboard, or even worse, letting it fall on you. 
First, gently tug the headboard and see if it moves independently from the bed frame. If it does, recheck the bolts and nuts and re-tighten them. 

Tug again at the headboard, and if it moves a bit with the bed frame, congratulations! You just attached a headboard to an adjustable frame! Be careful not to tug too aggressively, though, as you can damage the headboard, its bracket, the bed frame, or all three. 

Reinstall all your bedding accessories and put back your bedside furniture in place now that you have finished your headboard installation. Enjoy your new-looking adjustable bed! 

Benefits of Using a Headboard With Your Adjustable Bed

Aside from aesthetics and the elegant look of having a headboard for your adjustable bed, you may wonder what headboards can offer more. Here are a few of the advantages of using a headboard for your adjustable bed: 

  • It adds stability to your adjustable bed by placing a bit of weight on one side of the bed, evenly distributing the weight. 
  • It reduces bed frame wobbling and can also reduce squeaking for older adjustable bed frames. 
  • It can provide extra support for your body, especially when sitting upright in your bed, since you have something to lean on as opposed when the bed doesn’t have a headboard. 
  • It can help prevent pillows from falling off your bed too often, as there’s a buffer to stop them from dropping off. 

Can I Install My Existing Headboard To My Adjustable Bed? 

Usually, yes. However, just to be sure, you need to measure the dimensions of your frame first before attaching your headboard. You also need to follow some of the steps we’ve listed above, such as checking for a headboard frame and buying a frame kit if you don’t have one. 

Apart from that, you may also need to buy additional materials such as extra brackets, longer/shorter bolts, and extra nuts to accommodate your existing headboard for your adjustable bed. 

Can I Use My Adjustable Bed Without a Headboard? 

Definitely. Most adjustable beds don’t come with headboards, and it’s not a coincidence. You can undoubtedly enjoy your adjustable bed without one. 

However, if the benefits we’ve listed above enticed you, you can certainly go for a headboard and install one. Nonetheless, using an adjustable bed without a headboard is not required. Simply put, your bed, your rules.

If you have sheets slipping off your adjustable bed, you may need to focus on that more than thinking about adding a headboard so you can sleep conveniently. 

What are the Main Types of Headboards? 

The main types of headboards are the following:

  • Wooden headboard
  • Natural fibre headboard
  • Metal headboard
  • Fabric headboard
  • Leather headboard

Other headboard subtypes are found within these main types. 

How to Attach Floating and Free-Standing Headboards? 

Floating headboards are also called wall-mounted headboards, and as such, they’re relatively easy to install. You just need to drill holes for the screws and secure the headboard to the wall. 

Free-standing headboards can also be wall-mounted or attached to your bed frame. You can follow the steps we’ve covered above to install them, or you can opt for a wall mount instead if you intend to save more space. When mounting a headboard to the bed frame, ensure the nuts and screws are secure, so it won’t fall on you. 

It’s actually your choice how you want to install a headboard; if you want a floating or free-standing headboard, you can buy one and install it on your wall or bed frame. The key is to know how to attach the headboard, which we’ve taught you now. 

Do Adjustable Beds Ruin Mattresses? 

If you use a traditional, non-adjustable bed-ready mattress, yes, an adjustable bed might ruin it. Common mattresses don’t have a slit in the middle that gives way to angle adjustments which happen in the upper portion of the adjustable bed, so your mattress will be strained while you adjust angles. 

However, if you use a mattress intended for adjustable bed use, you don’t have to worry, as they’re made just for that specific purpose by the bed manufacturers.