How do I convert a double bed into two single beds?

If your room has a double bed and you have been wondering can you convert it into two single beds? You would be surprised to know that it is not that uncommon for people to need to do that sometime or the other in their life. A carpentar will tell you how easy it is for him to do that. In fact, joining beds and separating them comes under their regular work process.

Did you know that a double bed is almost always two single beds screwed together so that no amount of moving, jumping etc on the bed will result in the bed being shaken out of place. In fact, bed boxes which are a fair amount of heavy, for instance, big custom sized bed boxes made of heavy wood may not even need to be screwed together. The are so already so heavy that become unlikely to move.

Converting a double bed into single bed may seem like a very straight forward process of removing fittings and separating elements but some amount of expertness in handling D-I-Y projects is recommended. It’s always best to hire a professional who specialises in wood work and other related activities.

Benefits of converting a double bed into single beds

People generally need to convert a double bed into a single bed when –

  1. they are moving and a double bed makes it impossible to move a double bed from an old house to a new one
  2. Renovating their current room such as adding wooden flooring, marbles etc
  3. Space constraints – They need to make extra space in their current room where a double bed has been taking a lot of space
  4. Medical reasons – You need an extra medical bed for somebody who has special medical needs. You make space by removing a single bed.
  5. Separation – Separating beds instead of buying a new one makes it easier for home adjustment situations for instance where siblings grow up and need their separate space
  6. You can use a single bed as a stand alone sofa by covering it with cloth over cushioned seats. More about this later in the article (See Below).

Different components of a bed

A bed is broadly comprised of the following components –

  1. The headboard – The headboard is the vertical area made generally of board/ply/wood/iron behind where your head resides when you are lying down in your bed.
  2. The Bed Box or the Frame – The area where you lie down on a bed and where the headboard is affixed at the back and the footboard is affixed at the other end is known as the bed box. This is basically the part over where you place your mattress.
    • When the frame is just a board held in air with relatively taller legs for support and below the board is just empty space, it is commonly referred to as the frame.
    • When the frame is a complete box i.e the board over which the mattress is placed, has a board below and to the sides encompassing it to look like a box, it is commonly referred to as the bed box. The bed box may also have legs attached below it but they are generally relatively shorter in height than a frame.

The bed box is the component that holds the head board and the footboard together.

headboard and footboard photo
   The Headboard and the Footboard

The tools required to convert a double bed

  1. Knowledge, efficiency and capability in handling wood work.
  2. A screw driver with different tool set (maybe required in some cases)
  3. An electric screw driver set (may be required in some cases).
  4. A hammer with nail remover (may be required in some cases).

A bed and its components may generally be made of iron or wood. We shall deal with instances where mostly the components are made of wood in this article.

How to remove a headboard, footboard from the bed?

The process of converting your double bed into two single beds for your bedroom will first require you to take out the headboard and the footboard and then proceed with dissociating the two single beds from each other.

Detailed steps to dismantle a bed

We have tried to elucidate steps to dismantle a bed in two cases. One would be when your bed comes with bed boxes and the other without.

Note:- It is advisable to always take professional help for any kind of work whether wood work or otherwise to prevent injury and loss. If you still choose to work by yourself, you do it at your own risk. Kindly also go through the site disclaimer.

In case of a double bed with bed boxes :-

  1. First of all, move and shift the bed so that the headboard of the bed is not aligned against the wall. Make sure that there is ample space for you to stand and work behind it.
  2. Remove the mattress.
  3. Go to any one side of the bed and open the bed box lid all the way through, as much as it allows, over to the side of the other bed box.
  4. After opening the lid, look inside the bed box towards the header. You will generally find the headboard screwed together with bed fittings or bolts. Rotate the bolt till it completely unscrews out (if the bed box has any drawers, its generally a good idea to take out the drawers first and then the screws).
  5. Now, go to the other side of the bed, lift the other lid and remove the bolt that joins the header from the other side as well.
  6. Once you remove all the bolts or screws that attaches the headboard to the bed box, go and stand behind the headboard and slowly detach the headboard from the main frame. The headboard may be heavy, so it would do you good if more than one person holds it while detaching it.
  7. Afterwards, just like you have removed bolts towards the headboard, you need to remove the bolts from the footboard side as well.
  8. After you remove all bolts and screws that join the footboard to the bed box, go and stand at the front of the bed towards the footboard and take help, if needed, to detach the footboard from the bed boxes.
  9. Now that you have removed both the footboard and the headboard, take out any drawers from both the bed boxes if not already done so.
  10. Note the middle side along which both the bed boxes meet. Then, look inside of any one bed box towards the middle side and check for places that use bed fittings or bolts/screws or nails to join the bed boxes.
  11. Use tools like a screwdriver or a nail remover to remove the screws/ bolts and put them aside.
  12. Look inside the other box. Confirm the removal of all screws and bolts. If screws are remaining, remove them.
  13. After removing all such screws that holds the bed boxes together, try to move a single bed box away from the other one. Were you able to move it successfully? Then you are done. If not, check again to see if all the screw points were taken care of.
bed with bed box
   A Single Bed with Box

In case of a bed with no bed boxes and just a frame:-

  1. First remove the headboard and the footboard as explained above.
  2. Look from above and check for any nails hammered in the middle. The middle, in this case, is the edges where both single beds meet. If there are any, remove them.
  3. Look from the back and front for any nails or screws/ bolts just to be sure.
  4. Then move any single bed to the side and you are done.

Things to note:-

  • In Both the cases above, it is possible that your bed may have a hydraulic fitting that lifts the entire bed frame up from the footboard side. In such a case, the hydraulic bed fittings would have two points of suspension – one on each side of the bed. You shall then, need to first of all remove the hydraulic bed lift up fittings before the headboard and the footboard.
  • If your bed has drawers at the footboard then sometimes, removing the drawers can remove the footboard itself.[fig 1]
  • In case of older beds, connections directly embedded in the headboard and footboard join them. Do not remove the headboard and footboard as they are already individually attached to each bed. One can easily separate and move an entire single bed to the side by applying adequate pressure. [fig 2]

Other situations

  • Also, some beds have screws behind the headboard and footboard joining the middle part of the bed frame together. You need to note wether the middle part of the bed frame has two boards joined together or just a single one.
    If single board runs along the center, then such beds are probably completely modular and you probably had to assemble them when they first arrived. You cannot convert such beds into single beds for they share a single board for the whole bed.
  • Sometimes you cannot find the points of connection or the bolts between the headboard/ footboard to the bed box just by opening the box lid. Generally, in such a case, you can find the points hidden beneath a board that runs along the frame near the edge towards the header and the footer.
    Such boards that hide the bolts are generally portable and removable. If they are not removable, you have to remove them carefully by finding their points of connection and loosening them. At times, you can find the points of connection already marked using a small sticker.
bed image with footboard drawers
   [fig 1]Bed with Footboard doubling as drawers.
image of an old bed with footboard joints
   [fig 2]Old bed with Embedded joints

Convert your single bed into a sofa

When you are planning your home decor or just need re-decorating ideas for your home, transforming your furniture may help you save some money. After you take apart a double bed, if you feel you don’t really need two single beds or your new room does not have enough space, then you can place the extra single bed in your living room and use it as a daybed or a sofa.

This is a very good space saving idea for your home in which you can use the available furniture and also save money.

Best interior decorators always utilise such ideas that beautify your room cheaply and also help you to feel proud of your living room interiors.

It is relatively an easy process to use a single bed as a sofa

Steps to transform a single bed into a sofa

  1. Place your single bed side ways against the wall . Placing it against the wall is to provide a natural back support to your would be sofa.
  2. Place a cushion over the bed frame. You can place a foam or your unused bed mattress as well.
  3. Cover the cushion with a cloth. A fabric cloth of velvet or suede would be soft to touch.
  4. Now since your bed does not have any headboard or footboard, you can attach some wood boards just a little taller than the height of your sofa at the sides using screws and nails.
  5. If you find it difficult to attach boards, you can choose not to attach them. Instead, place a couple of sofa pillows at the sides to give you support.
  6. You now have a beautiful sofa for your living-room – ripe with cushions and soft fabrics to give your living room a delicate touch.
photo of daybed
   A Simple daybed

Soft Sofa Fabrics for your daybed

For covering your bed converted sofa, you can go for any soft fabric. You can also recycle an already available fabric for example you can use old curtains as your sofa fabric. You can even use your bed sheets with nice patterns to make your sofa pretty. You only have to cover your daybed, so you can choose from a variety of fabrics.

Instead of just covering your daybed, you can also choose to cushion the bed seat by placing stitched sofa seats. You will first need to purchase sofa cushion seats and then make a stitched cushion cover. You can even stitch the seat to the bed frame. You may find that sofa seat covers are somewhat functionally similar to your bed pillow covers.

To cover your sofa seats with stitched covers, you can use a variety of sofa cover fabrics like:-


Velvet is a very beautiful fabric which is equally soft to touch. You will find velvet to be very easy to maintain as well. Velvet gives your makes your living room luxurious and also makes your furniture look luxurious. Velvet is easy to clean and durable.


Suede is a very pretty fabric. Natural Suede is a type of leather. It is made from the underside of animal skin. Suede is comparatively difficult to maintain. There are different alternatives of suede like micro-suede, soft suede, suedette, suededed cotton, suedded silk, alcantara. One needs to brush suede regularly for proper maintenance.


Linen upholstery on sofa is very durable. Linen is soft as well. The con of linen is that it gets creases quite easily. Linen sofas are easy to clean and you can use water or a cloth dipped in soapy water to carefully remove stains.


Cotton is as durable as linen. You find cotton furniture readily in markets. Cotton, like linen, is easy clean and maintain. Cotton sofas wrinkle quickly. One can even choose to use chemically treated cotton for suede like finish commonly known as sueded cotton.

Convertible furniture designs are a boon for home improvements and really help when there is a crunch for space. Exploring home decor ideas like recycling old furniture or putting any leftover metal, fabric, wood, glass to use are cost-effective ways to improve your interior designs and renew your living space.

2 Comments on “How to recycle, dismantle & convert a double bed into 2 single beds or sofa

  1. HI,
    Thanks. We have actually done this – that is how we are able to provide this info.

  2. Hello, Excellent read, Positive website, where did you u come up with all the information on this posting?

    I have read a few of the posts on your site now, and I love your
    Kind regards,

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