Bunk beds are great space-savers. They’re useful in bedrooms shared by
children, and can also be put to use in space-constrained areas such as dormitory
rooms, small vacation cabins, and communal sleeping quarters. However, if you’re
in the market for a bunk bed, pay special attention to the features and components
of the piece you’re buying along with the manufacturer’s reputation.
Most bunks have two platforms with each sleeping area holding a twin mattress.
Additionally, most include a ladder feature used to access the top bunk. However,
many “twists” on the conventional design can be found in the marketplace
today including: bunks that can be stacked or used individually as two twin
beds (with a detachable ladder), bunk beds with a full or double size sleeping
area on the bottom, and even futon bunk beds (a futon bunk bed is a bunk with
the lower portion comprised of an A-frame futon that can be used for sitting
or sleeping). Whatever the feature set, be sure that the bunk that you’ll
be purchasing is mattress-ready – meaning, you’ll not need to find
“bunkie boards” or plywood as base for your mattresses. Though most
bunk beds have slats or metal grillwork used to support mattresses, check with
the retailer before finalizing a purchase.
Along with varying designs, the materials used in bunkbeds also differ greatly.
One can find metal bunk beds (including iron bunk beds and steel bunks) wood
bunk beds, and even bunk beds made of wood composites at home furnishings stores.
It is strongly advised to avoid the latter, as a bunkbed constructed of wood
composites (particle board and/or MDF) tends be weak, with its hardware working
through the bunks joints over time.
In addition to verifying the design and composition of a bunk bed, be sure
to check the reputation of the manufacturer. Specifically, have there been any
recalls issued against bunks in the past? If so, how have they been handled?
What is the warranty issued by the manufacturer? Childrens bunk beds have often
been recalled in the past due to safety concerns. Ask these questions of any
retailer and make sure you get straightforward answers.
In all, find a bunkbed design that suits your needs, avoid bunkbeds made of
wood composites, and ask your sales representatives specific questions about
the quality of the piece. Follow these simple guidelines, and you’ll be
on the path to finding the perfect bunk bed.
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