What is a Trundle Bed?

Trundle beds can often be confused with similar types of sofa beds that serve more than one purpose. Thankfully, this article will cover exactly what they are ass well as the various models and functions the provide.

What is a Trundle Bed? A trundle bed is a low bed frame on wheels which rolls out from under a normal bed. They are sometimes attached to a bed forming a single unit but can also be bought separately and slipped under an existing bed if the space allows it.

By buying a complete unit (bed and trundle) together, you avoid having to make sure they fit. But what if you want to add a trundle to an existing bed?

What is the Point of a Trundle Bed?

It’s a neat, space-saving way to add an extra bed to a room. When you don’t need it, it’s practically invisible, but when you have guests or sleepovers, it can be quite a comfortable alternative to them sleeping on the couch!

Types of Trundle Beds

There are four main types of trundle beds:

All-in-one Units

This is the most expensive but also the most convenient way to buy a trundle bed. The two fit perfectly and are sometimes attached to each other, allowing a smooth drawer-like motion when rolling the trundle in and out from under the bed.

Separate Trundles

Even though you can sometimes buy a bed and a trundle together, they may not be attached to one another. This is still convenient because they fit together perfectly but you need to take a little more care when sliding them in an out. They are often much cheaper than all-in-one units.

If you buy the trundle separately, make sure it fits under the regular bed.

Pop Up Trundle Beds

What is a pop up trundle bed? The unique frame of the pop-up trundle bed allows it drop lower when not in use or raised up to meet the height of the regular bed, resulting in two twin beds side by side, creating the equivalent of a double bed.

These can be found in all-in-one units as well as stand-alone trundles.

If you want the two beds to match in height, don’t forget to also buy the same height mattresses too.

Daybed with Trundle

A daybed serves as a couch AND a bed. This means it can easily be placed in a living room as well. The trundle adds a third level of functionality to the setup and is the most versatile of the options.

Where to Buy Trundle Beds

Where is the best place to buy a Trundle Bed? We’ve got your covered with our best trundle beds review.

Can a Trundle Bed Fit Under Any Bed?

No. If you’re buying a trundle separately, you’ll need to measure the space between the legs as well as the height of the main bed.

If you want to an in-depth answer as to how trundles fit under a bed, check out our trundle bed size guide!

How high does a bed need to be to fit a Trundle underneath? You need at least 78 inches in width and 12 inches in height for most trundle beds to fit.

This height allows for a 3 inch trundle with a 8 inch mattress. Trundle beds with pop-up frames usually need a little more height to accommodate the mechanism as well.

If you want to leave the trundle bed made up when packing it away, you’ll need a little extra head room for a comforter and pillow too.

Obviously, your main bed cannot have a leg in the center either. It will make it impossible to get the trundle rolled out.

By the way… It doesn’t matter if it’s a twin, double or queen. As long as you have enough room to slide it in and out, it’ll fit just fine.

How Does a Trundle Bed Work?

Wheels, also known as Casters or Trundles are attached to the bottom of a low bed frame. This allows the trundle bed to slip under a regular bed when not in use.

Fancier models include pop-up frames which raise the trundle bed up to meet the regular bed and others can even be attached to a complex drawer system which works seamlessly within the main bed.

Origin of Trundle Beds

Trundle Bed HistorySo where does the concept of a Trundle Bed come from? The first mention of Trundle Beds are from around the 16th century. Some wealthy landowners would have servants sleep at the foot of their bed to tend to their night-time needs. This included assisting them with relieving themselves or keeping fires burning for warmth.

Due to their practicality, they became more commonplace as poor and middle class people needed extra sleeping room but did not have the floor space to accommodate an extra beds.

Origin of Trundle Bed

Today, they are the perfect marriage between space saving functionality and convenient comfort as more and more people start using them in their modern homes. This is especially true for kids rooms and quest bedrooms where sleepovers are more common.