How to Put a Bunk Bed Together: A Step-by-Step Guide to Assembling a Bunk Bed

Whether you’ve recently bought a bunk bed or considering buying one, you will definitely have to learn how to put a bunk bed together. Luckily, assembling a bunk bed is pretty easy. You will, of course, need some guidance if it’s your first time, but its nothing to worry about.

With some guidance and patience, you should be able to get the job done. Before we begin, it is important to understand what you’re getting yourself into. So when you actually get to it, your expectations won’t be too off the mark.

Surprises, in our opinion, are not particularly helpful when putting together something like a bunk bed for the first time.

The fellow pictured above looks like he’s ready to dive right into this, so why don’t we:

What to Expect When Assembling a Bunk Bed

Well, first of all, assembling a bunk bed does take up a bit of time. So when you do jump into it make sure you’ve got the afternoon cleared up. Ideally, you want to finish it in one go and not get interrupted or take breaks.

Also, putting together a bunk bed is not a one-person job. You should, at least, have another person to help you. Otherwise, you will find yourself holding up a piece of wood in one hand and a screwdriver in another.

Another thing to keep in mind. You want to assemble the bed in the same room you intend to keep the bed. Because once the bed is assembled, chances of it fitting through the bedroom door are slim at best.

How to Put a Bunk Bed Together

We will take you through the entire process of assembling a bunk bed step-by-step. This will makes sure that every step is clearly identified and understood. Make sure to follow the exact instructions in the instruction manual as well and use the guide as a reference.

Here’s a great animated video that shows how to assemble a bunk bed. YouTube has dozens of videos like this so, you’ll probably find a bunk bed that is very similar to yours. Be sure to check some of these out before starting the assembly process.

Some bunk beds are made of metal and some are made of wood. The following instructions are a general guideline to follow. Having said that, let’s get started:

Step One: Make Sure You’re Prepared

First, make sure you have all of the parts and tools at hand. Locate the instructions manual, they are often found in a plastic bag attached to the railing of the bunk bed.

It’s usually a good idea to read the instructions before doing anything. If you line up the components in the order of the assembling process, you won’t find yourself searching for specific parts after each step.

Step Two: Assemble the Bottom Bunk

You will start off by attaching the side rails to the foot of the headboard and footboard. Almost every bunk bed will come with its own nuts and bolts.

You will find pre-drilled holes on every component. Depending on the bunk bed, each corner can have either one or two holes. Make sure you’ve properly fastened the bolts on each corner.

Step Three: Insert Slats into the Lower Bunk

After you’ve assembled the frame of the lower bed, proceed to insert the slats into the side rails. You will find pre-drilled holes for each of the slats where you can screw them in.

Step Four: Assemble the Top Bunk

Next, you will assemble the top bunk, while it is still on the floor. Assembling the top bunk is similar to assembling the bottom bunk. Attach the side rails to the footboard and headboard.

Step Five: Insert Slats into Top Bunk

Once you’ve assembled the frame of the top bed, proceed to insert the slats into the pre-drilled holes found on the side rails. Make sure you’ve properly screwed the slats in.

Step Six: Attach Guardrails to the Top Bunk

Before you can put the top bunk in its position, you will need to attach the guardrails of the top bunk. Use the relevant nuts and bolts to properly secure the guardrails.

Step Seven: Position the Top Bunk on the Bottom Bunk

With the help of the second person, lift the top bunk and carefully place it on top of the bottom bunk. You will find pre-drilled holes in the posts of both of the bunks.

Carefully align the pre-drilled holes on both bunks and firmly place it on top of the bottom bed. Use the connector pins to firmly attach the two beds together.

Step Eight: Attach the Ladder

Next, you will have to attach the ladder before the bunk bed is ready for use. You will find hooks on the upper bunk. Use the hooks to attach the ladder to the side rails of the upper bunk and secure the ladder using screws.

Step Nine: Place the Slat Rolls

After that, you will have to individually place the slat rolls on the wooden cleats of the side rails. You will have to do this for both of the bunks. When doing this, make sure to close up any space where the bed ends. Use screws to secure the slats into the wooden cleats.

Step Ten: Plug the Holes

After you’ve dealt with the slats, you will have to plug all of the holes for the bolts. Simply insert wooden plugs to cover all of the bolts on both of the bunks. After plugging the bolts, insert the safety plugs in the guard rails. Lastly, you will plug the threaded inserts into the safety rails.

A Few Safety Precautions

  • Always use the recommended mattress size.
  • Make sure the mattress is, at least, five inches below the guard rails.
  • Strictly restrict the top bunk to one person.
  • Only use parts that came from the manufacturer of the bed.
  • Use the ladder to get onto the top bunk.
  • Regularly check if the connectors are tight and if the ladder, guardrails and other vital components are in their proper place.
  • Strictly avoid the use of any kind of special mattress such as water mattresses.
  • Never hang or attach anything that is not a part of the bunk bed. For example, hooks, ropes or belts.


After you’ve plugged up all of the holes, the new bunk bed should be ready. Congratulations, you’ve successfully managed to assemble a bunk bed! After reading the article in its entirety, we are confident that you should, at least, theoretically understand how to put a bunk bed together.

If you properly follow the instructions manual and use this article as a reference guide, you should have no trouble whatsoever setting up the new bunk bed. Also, make sure to go through the safety precautions.

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