Bed-in-a-box mattress on the floor

Is It Okay to Put Your New Mattress on the Floor?

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Feature image credit: Thomas Duff, Flickr

The best place to put your new bed-in-a-box mattress is on a foundation.

Depending on your preferences, the type of the mattress and its weight, it can be a box spring, a flat platform, a slatted foundation or an adjustable base.

But what if you have none of those? Can you set up your new online mattress on the floor?

In most cases yes, it is perfectly okay to put your new mattress on the floor as long as it is a completely flat and dry surface.

But check the manufacturer requirements before you do so. More specifically, check the warranty.

Some manufacturers specify what kind of setup you should have for the warranty to be valid.

Some warranties require a specific kind of foundation while most give customers the option of using any kind of foundation as long as it provides sturdy support.

If your mattress is thick and heavy, the warranty most likely requires that the foundation have center support. It may also recommend against a conventional box spring.

If the warranty says that the mattress must be on a stable and study foundation, don’t put it on the floor. It will void the warranty and you may not be eligible for a free return.

If the warranty says you can use it on the floor or doesn’t specify any setup requirements, you can go ahead and sleep on the floor.

If you decide to put the mattress on the floor, there are a couple things to keep in mind.

Mold and Mildew

The main disadvantage of putting a mattress on the floor is reduced airflow.

On a foundation or platform, the mattress can breathe from all sides including the bottom. This maintains good airflow, ensuring you sleep cool and preventing moisture buildup in the mattress.

Moisture creates an environment for mold and mildew which can cause headaches, a stuffy nose, watery eyes and dry skin.

To avoid this, occasionally air the mattress by leaning it vertically against the wall. Make sure the room is well ventilated.

Also consider leaving the mattress uncovered on some days to let it breathe from the top.

Bacteria and Allergens

Dust mites are common unseen allergens in mattresses.
Dust mites are common unseen allergens in mattresses.

The other risk of putting the mattress on the floor is critters and allergens.

Your mattress will have a larger population of dust mites, pet dander, pollen, dust, bacteria and fungi compared to a mattress on a foundation.

I highly recommend using a mattress protector. It will prevent most of these allergens from settling in your mattress and you can easily wash it as often as necessary.

Get a waterproof mattress protector that is also anti-allergen and antibacterial.

On those days when you don’t wash the mattress protector, run over it with a vacuum cleaner fitted with an upholstery attachment.

A small handheld vacuum cleaner also works great for capturing tiny allergens.

Make sure you also keep the floor itself clean. Vacuum it regularly. If it is a hard floor, mop at least once a week.

Staying Warm

Sleeping on the floor is going to expose you to lower temperatures especially if it is a tile or vinyl floor. Spaces under doors can also carry cold drafts into the room.

The best way to keep the cold down is to use a buffer between the mattress and the floor. A piece of cardboard should help.

You can also try putting the mattress on a carpet or rug instead of directly on a hard floor.

Frequently Asked Questions about Sleeping on the Floor

Will putting the mattress on the floor affect its comfort or firmness?

No, it will not. The mattress will feel just as soft or firm as it would have felt up on a platform.

But that doesn’t mean the sleeping experience will be the same.

You might feel colder (for reasons mentioned above) and you may experience allergy-like symptoms because of the dust, pollen and dust mites.

Will putting a mattress on the floor reduce its lifespan?

Not really. The floor provides the same level of support as a foundation.

The only thing that might slightly reduce lifespan is the lack of airflow. Some foams and particularly memory foam can deteriorate when there’s too much heat.

Remember to raise your mattress regularly to air it out.

Will sleeping on the floor cause any damage to my mattress?

If you are not careful, your mattress can get mold and mildew damage because of trapped moisture. This can void the warranty.

That’s why you should regularly air the mattress.


See My Favorite Products of 2021!
Select a list >MattressesToppers & PadsCooling/HeatingPillowsSheets
Touch a tab above to reveal my top picks for that category.
Of the 60+ beds I've reviewed, these are my current favorites:
My Top PickType of MattressPrice
1. Saatva ClassicInnerspring$799 - $1,599
Save $200!
2. Puffy LUX
Luxury Foam$1,145 – $1,695
UPTO $455 ACCESSORIES INCLUDED
3. Leesa Original
Budget Foam$594-$1019
"Up to $180 off mattresses
+ FREE SHIPPING"
4. Nest Alexander HybridLuxury Hybrid$759.20-$1439.20
Save 20%
5. PlushBeds Botanical BlissLuxury Organic Latex$1049 – $2,048save $1,200 off Bedroom Mattresses + Free Luxury Sheet Set.
6. EcoterraBudget Latex$749 - $1,249
$150 off mattresses with code SALE150
7. DreamcloudLuxury PillowTop$599-$1,099
Free Sheets, Protector and Pillows
8. LaylaFlippable/2-Sided$499 - $999
Save $200!
9. Big FigFor Plus-Sized People$1,299 - $1,999
Save $200 with code: JULY4
10. HelixCustom-Fit$500 - $1,149
Save $200!
Mattress toppers & pads are a great way to cool your bed and extend its life.
Topper SizeMaterialFirmnessWarr.
LINENSPA
LINENSPA 2 Inch Gel Infused Memory Foam Mattress Topper, Twin
Best Value2"Gel memory foamMedium3 years
MOLECULE AIRTEC
MOLECULE AIRTEC
Best Comfort3"Memory foamMedium-firm5 years
MyPillow
MyPillow Three-inch Mattress Bed Topper (Twin)
Best pressure point relief3"FoamMedium-firm10 years
LUCID
LUCID 2-Inch Ventilated Gel Infused Memory Foam Mattress Topper - Full
Best cooling2"Gel memory foamSoft3 years
Milemont
Milemont Mattress Topper Twin, 2-Inch Cool Swirl Gel Mattress Topper for Twin Size Bed, Blue
Best for back pain2"Gel memory foamMedium10 years
Pure Green
Pure Green 100% Natural Latex Mattress Topper - Firm - 2 Inch - Queen Size
Best for stomach sleepers2"Natural latexExtra-firm5 years
Sleep Innovations
Sleep Innovations 4-inch Dual Layer Gel Memory Foam Enhanced Support, King, Made in the US Mattress Topper
Best for side sleepers4"Gel memory foamSoft10 years
Sleep Number DUAL TEMP
Sleep Number DUAL TEMP
Best temperature regulation-Forced Air-1 year
TEMPUR ProForm
Tempur-Pedic TEMPUR Supreme 3-Inch Mattress Topper Medium Firm, Full, White
Best memory foam3"Memory foamMedium-firm10 years
Avocado Green
Avocado Green
Best organic2"Organic latexSoft/firm10 years
Bed cooling/heating systems have come a long way – especially the BedJet, my favorite.
SystemTypeBest For...Temp. RangeControl
BedJet V3
BedJet V3
Air cooledBEST OVERALL (esp. for night sweats)66°F-104°FWireless remote control/smartphone app
ChiliPad Cube 3.0
Chili Technology chiliPAD Cube 3.0 - ME and WE Zones - Cooling and Heating Mattress Pad - Individual Temperature Control, Great Sleep Enhancement, Wireless Remote Integration (Queen (80" L x 60" W))
Water cooledBest water cooling system55°F-115°FWireless remote control
Ooler Sleep System
Ooler Sleep System
Water cooledBest temperature control55°F-115°FSmartphone app via Bluetooth
The Pod by Eight Sleep
The Pod by Eight Sleep
Water cooledBest smart cooling system55°F-115°FSmartphone app/smart voice assistant
Mattress Cooler "Classic"
2020 Mattress Cooler "Classic" Chilled Water Sleep Cooling System (Now with a Spare "27x63" Cooling Pad)
Water cooledBest budget cooling systemN/AWireless remote control
SleepNumber Dual-Temp v3
SleepNumber Dual-Temp v3
Air cooledN/ARemote control
bFan Cooling System
bFan Cooling System
FanBest bed fanN/AWired remote control
Brookstone bed fan
Brookstone Bed Fan with Wireless Remote
FanN/AWireless remote control
These pillows excel at relieving neck and shoulder pain:
PillowWhy I Like It
PlushBeds Shredded Natural Latex Pillow
Best Cooling Mattress Pads

best shredded latex pillow for side sleepers
Coop Home Goods Memory Foam
Coop Home Goods - Premium Adjustable Loft Pillow - Hypoallergenic Cross-Cut Memory Foam Fill - Lulltra Washable Cover from Bamboo Derived Rayon - CertiPUR-US/GREENGUARD Gold Certified - Queen
perennial, proven Amazon Choice with over 16,000 reviews
MARNUR Contour Pillow
MARNUR Cervical Memory Foam Pillow Orthopedic Contour Pillows for Neck Pain Ergonomic Pillow with RoHS Certification and Pillowcase Covers, White(23.5×14.5×5.5 Inch)
perfect spine support using a groove down the middle
SleepRightSplintek Side
SleepRight Splintek Side Sleeping Pillow Memory Foam Pillow – Best Pillow for Sleeping On Your Side – 24" x 5" Standard Size
full facial cradle plus a perfectly-angled shoulder cradle
Xtreme Comforts Adjustable Pillow
Xtreme Comforts Hypoallergenic, Adjustable Thickness, Kool-Flow Micro Vented Bamboo Shredded Memory Foam Bed Pillow for Sleeping, Back, Stomach & Side Sleepers, Queen Size, Made in USA
thinner and softer than most, so your head will not bend back
UTTU Sandwich Pillow
UTTU Sandwich Pillow, Adjustable Memory Foam Pillow, Bamboo Pillow for Sleeping, Cervical Pillow for Neck Pain, Neck Support for Back, Stomach, Side Sleepers, Orthopedic Contour Pillow, CertiPUR-US
designed specifically for neck support and alignment.
Mediflow Water Pillow
Mediflow Fiber: The First & Original Water Pillow, clinically Proven to Reduce Neck Pain & Improve Sleep. Therapeutic, Ideal for People Looking for Proper Neck Support
clinical tests prove it reduces neck pain
Cradle Me Cervical Pillow
Cradle Me Cervical Pillow - Orthopedic Contour Memory Foam Pillow for Back and Side Sleepers with Neck and Spine Support - Helps Reduce Back and Neck Pain
best overall design with lots of position choices
KaUa Neck Roll
K Ka Ua Neck Roll Pillow Cervical Bolster with Bamboo Cover – Memory Foam Spine Lumbar Traction Spondylosis Support 4” Diameter x 17 “Length (4 Inch)
1,000s of satisfied customers & rave reviews
J-Pillow Travel Pillow
J-Pillow Chin Supporting Travel Pillow - 2020 Version - British Invention of The Year Winner - Supports Your Head, Neck & Chin (Blue)
added chin support prevents your head from falling forward.
EPABO Contour Memory Foam Pillow
EPABO Contour Memory Foam Pillow Orthopedic Sleeping Pillows, Ergonomic Cervical Pillow for Neck Pain - for Side Sleepers, Back and Stomach Sleepers, Free Pillowcase Included ( Firm & Queen)
Designed to support and cushion you neck and shoulders
J-Pillow Travel Pillow
AVOCADO GREEN PILLOW-Loveable non-toxic pillow has an adjustable fill, made from GOLS organic certified latex and GOTS organic certified kapok.
An all-natural, organic and vegan pillow with an adjustable loft to suit all sleeping positions
These are my favorite luxury sheet sets sold online:
Best Luxury SheetsIncludesSizesColours
Parachute
Parachute
Fitted sheet + two pillowcasesTwin to Cal KingSand, Slate, White, Light Grey, Blue
Brooklinen
Brooklinen Luxe Core Sheet Set – Includes 1 Flat Sheet, 1 Fitted Sheet + 2 Pillowcases – 480 Thread Count Sateen Sheet Set – 100 Percent Long-Staple Cotton – Oeko-TEX Certified – Smoke – Twin
One flat sheet, one fitted sheet, and two pillowcases.Twin to Cal KingWhite, Cream, Steel, Smoke, Smoke Stripe
Saatva
Saatva
One flat sheet, one fitted sheet, and two pillowcases.Twin to Cal KingWhite, Ivory, Grey
Boll and Branch
Boll & Branch Luxury Fair Trade Long Staple Organic Cotton Sheet Set - Full, Natural
one fitted sheet, one flat sheet, and two pillowcases.Full, Queen, King, Cal King onlyWhite, Solid Natural, Striped White, Pewter
Best For Specific Needs Soft and Warm: Parachute’s Sateen sheets Most Luxurious: Brooklinen’s Linen sheets Organic Luxury Sheets:  Saatva Lofton Organic sheets Breathable/Cool: Percale sheets from Parachute or Brooklinen

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