How to Fix a Squeaky Pine Sleigh Bed

Updated February 21, 2017

Pine sleigh beds have a graceful, curvilinear structure and an elegant natural finish, but over time the frame of a pine sleigh bed can loosen, causing the wood at the bed’s joints to slip and rub together. This slipping can cause the bed to squeak whenever you move, which can be irritating and even cause you to lose sleep. A few simple steps can be taken to re-tighten the frame and secure the joints.

Remove the mattress and box spring.

Check the connections of the side rails to the headboard and footboard. Use a wrench to tighten the bolts on any connections that appear loose. Coat the inside of joints with either a thin layer of paste wax or with a sprinkling of baby powder.

Make sure that none of the individual parts of the headboard or footboard are coming apart. Re-glue any parts that appear loose.

Check the mattress slats. The bed should have at least eight slats made from boards measuring at least 1 inch thick by 6 inches wide. If the slats are smaller, replace them with the appropriate size.

Remove any screws from the slats (if present), then rub each screw's threads with bar soap for lubrication. Use sealant tape to wrap any screws that felt loose because the corresponding holes have been stripped. Return the screws to their original holes and tighten them with a screwdriver.


If your bed slats were not originally screwed into place, drill holes into the bedrails and the ends of the slats and use screws to secure the slats. Replace the slats with two whole pieces of plywood to eliminate the shifting that occurs as slats become loose.

Things You'll Need

  • Wrench
  • Paste wax
  • Baby powder
  • Wood glue
  • Bar of soap
  • Sealant tape
  • Screwdriver
  • Wood screws
  • Drill
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About the Author

Mason Howard is an artist and writer in Minneapolis. Howard's work has been published in the "Creative Quarterly Journal of Art & Design" and "New American Paintings." He has also written for art exhibition catalogs and publications. Howard's recent writing includes covering popular culture, home improvement, cooking, health and fitness. He received his Master of Fine Arts from the University of Minnesota.