Published on November 22nd, 2006 | by Jules Yap


need help taking ikea furniture apart

“we finished furnishing our one-bed apartment with exclusively ikea furniture and just when i thought everything was perfect, we found out that we have to move out of state! i want to take everything with me, but there is no way to get the ikea bed (malm) out of our bedroom unless we take it apart. is there some place where we can get instructions on dis-assembling IKEA furniture?

we also have the following:
1. lillberg sofa
2. a futon no longer shown on the ikea site
3. magiker sideboard

but the bed is the one i really need to take apart if I hope to vacate my apartment. please help! thanks.” – tweety

(tweety also wrote to ikea’s customer service and the ‘official’ reply is that they “are unable to give advice on how to dismantle ikea products as they are not made to be taken apart once assembled.”)

not sure if i’m much of a help either. i guess i’ll just back-track how i put it together. anyone?

More hacks on

wrap your side table in lovely o’keeffe
riddim’s cocktail shaker light

The Author

Jules Yap

"I am Jules, the engine behind IKEAHackers and the one who keeps this site up and running. My mission is to capture all the wonderful, inspiring, clever hacks and ideas for our much loved IKEA items".

56 Responses to need help taking ikea furniture apart

  1. Casey says:

    Has anyone had to dissassemble a Micke Corner Workstation? I really just need to take the legs off or separate it into two pieces to fit it through my door.

  2. Cassandra says:

    How do you take out the plastic screws that get hammered into wood?

  3. Aaron Darcy says:

    I used a professional service a week ago to get it done all for me. They can went and selected up my products for me personally, delivered them and set them together.

  4. Elena says:

    I need to disassemble an älvros sofa (2 seats)

    I have to pass it through a staircase and I am suffering a lot!

    If you can suggest anything or refer to any disassembling video, me and my family will be eternally greatful! :)
    Thanks a lot!!

  5. Frisco49ers says:

    Has anyone ever figured out how to remove these plastic screws/plugs that hold the slats for the mattress in place? I am trying to disassemble a Mydal bunk bed and can not remove these screws/plugs.
    Anyone have any success at this?

  6. Melissa Clarkson says:

    I have a Mydal bunk bed from Ikea that my son has out grown. I have some interested in taking it off my hands but I am not sure of the easiest way to take it apart. Ideally we could leave it in several larger pieces so that it is easier to put back together once it is in it new home. Please let me know if you have any suggestions to help with this project.

    Thank you!!

  7. Pat says:

    I have a malm bed and want to move it from one bedroom to anotner one. I do not want to disassemble it all…but just if possible to take the headboard out and see if it can go through the door. Then hopefully put the headboard back on….any ideas if this can be done?

    • Hector says:

      I was able to take the bolts off of the headboard but the rest of the frame I have to leave alone and move as is.

  8. Owen Limbach says:

    I just figured out how to remove the CAM screws – at least on the desk I was working on. The trick was to turn all of the screws so that the tiny arrows on them pointed at the side it was attached to (the side that I was trying to take off), then pushing that side off. The CAM screws stayed in the holes. To re-attach I just slid the side back over the screws and turned them the other way again.

    • Suzoku says:

      Thanks, Owen! I have been trying to remove the top of a Micke desk which is attached via CAM screws (hardware part #110126) and that little bit of info about pointing the tiny arrows toward the piece that I am trying to remove worked like a charm. You saved me from damaging the desk!

    • Gabrielle says:

      I’ve been trying to unscrew these for a while. Can’t believe it was this simple all along! Thank you

    • Jenny says:

      Holy smokes!! I have been searching all morning and trying so many different ideas! Thank you for sharing your discovery. I’m certain I’ll be putting it to good use again. :) :) :)

    • Cj says:

      Thank you Owen!!!

      You saved the day, worked perfectly.

    • BrandyX says:

      Thank you Owen, I put a cabinet together and needed to take it apart and Ikea wasn’t helpful at all! I love this site.

  9. Stephanie says:

    Hi, I bought a IKEA bed 7 months ago… Set up (messed up one part thou). Has been good to me for all 7 months sturdy (even thou one parts messed up that holds head bored/bed up). But I’m moving Friday… How should I do this? Take front and back piece off and put together in new place? What about the metal bars in the bed? HELP. I really don’t want to break it!

  10. Johnny A says:

    I too am struggling with the CAM screws. I unscrew them but they won’t fall out of the hole no matter what I do. I’ve tried luring them out with a magnet — they seem magnetized although I’m not 100 percent sure. Still no luck.

  11. Anonymous says:

    I’m just trying to dismantle our giant IKEA wardrobe. I think it’s called PAX. Most of it is coming apart easy enough but i’m puzzled about how to take out those screws that kind-of lovk into place. I think their called CAM screws.
    Anyone got anby experience of this?

    • Martin says:

      IF they are the ones I’m thinking of, when you turn them clockwise they engage with the head of a metal dowel in the other piece they are connecting with. To undo, just turn them a half turn anti-clockwise, and they will disengage. You may have to tap the other part to free it completely.

  12. Anonymous says:

    Just bought a used wicker bed frame.Think I may have gotten screwed.There are no bolts,screws or anything.There are 2 side rails with pegs at the end of them which connect to the headboard and foot board.How do they stay in??????…just have to tough it and it falls down
    they do slide in but there is nothing to hold them in
    anyone have ideas????????????
    these are the #’s on the bed frame
    Dokka 0227

    NLC 200208


  13. Anonymous says:

    I need this info too

  14. Anonymous says:

    Help, cannot take apart a rationell drawer. The main device? That gels the front of the drawer (the one that clicks) doesn’t seem to be able to come out.

  15. Anonymous says:

    I found a good website called which has ikea camparitive spare parts on it such as cam locks, cam dowels, wooden dowels and cabinet jointers it even has ikea part no’s on it on some descriptions might be useful if peopelive far away from ikea or lose any spare parts

  16. Anonymous says:

    I used a specialist service last week to do it all for me. they even went and picked up my items for me, delivered them and put them together…

    I spoke to them and they also help with removals (de-assembly & re-assembly) – might be worth consideration …

  17. Bartender Resume says:

  18. little thor says:

    I would love advice on how to remove those plastic screws without breaking the furniture? Some stuff seems designed to fit together but never comes apart again.

  19. Gwen says:

    I have just ordered 2 Alvros 2-seat sofas. Now I’m worried they won’t fit down my narrow hallway (76cm) when delivered. I know they will fit through the doorways as they have been widened to 86cm for wheelchair access. Has anyone attempted to take the arms off this sofa or to disassemble it in any way?

    • Elena says:

      Hi Gwen!

      I am having the same problem with my älvros!

      Did you find any solution to disassemble?

      We are suffering a lot to figure out how to do it!

      If you can give me any hint, my family and I will be eternally greatful! :)


  20. kristin says:

    Does anyone know how to get the huge screws out of the middle shelf in the large MAGIKER bookcase? I have everything else taken apart, but these just barely turn in either direction. I looked at the directions online and they just show the weird screw?

  21. Anonymous says:

    The IKEA wrenches are 13mm. They’re designed to help you build the furniture easier, but any 13mm wrench should do.

  22. Nuri148 says:

    You can take them with you, no priblems, just take the doors and inner shelves, etc. out before moving them.

  23. Hi Guys–I have the Pax closet system and want to take it with me–two, two door units hooked together and bolted to the wall. Is it worth trying to take with me?

  24. John Taylor says:

    It can be tricky if you don’t keep track of the bolts and what fits where, good idea to take some pics as you take each one apart. Here’s a useful
    IKEA resource:
    John Taylor,
    liverpool blinds quick tips on selecting the right shape and styling your room

  25. fkarr says:

    May be out of topic but to those who had the MALM bed – are the beds sturdy? I have read mixed reviews about it and am planning to purchase for me and my kids, would appreciate your feedback. thanks

    • Stephanie says:

      Wasn’t that easy to put together. Instructions werent to clear due to the fact there were no words and a lot of pieces! But I broke a part on my bed and its still together and has been for 7 months now but I’m moving this week hope nothing goes wrong… Lol.

  26. Anonymous says:

    Anyone got any advice on dismantling an IKEA RAKKE wardrobe?

    It is a TOTAL nightmare and I am not even sure it is possible!

    It would be great to know if at least it has been done by someone, somewhere….


  27. Anonymous says:

    Does anyone know what the NHS and Bupa do with all their old hospital furniture? They must auction it off somewhere.
    I work for a theatre and we need for some new props for a hospital based play by the way.

  28. JLR says:

    Most Ikea stuff might be crap, but I LURVE my Malm bed! Hopefully now it’ll make it down the hallway when I switch bedrooms next week…

    Thanks for the tips!

  29. szym says:

    Unfortunately, not all assemblies can be reversed. I’m desperately trying to disassemble an ALLAK swivel chair.

    The problem is that the pneumatic telescope tube is simply pushed into both the five-arm star bottom and the seat support. I could not find in me the strength needed to pull these elements apart :(

    I guess the chair will stay here and I’ll get a new one :/

  30. Anonymous says:

    I am also moving at the end of August – and I was stressing out about finding info on the net about how to disassemble my Malm bed too! :) Taking it apart isnt really the issue, i just want to make sure when I put it back together it isnt a rickety mess. Thanks for all of the helpful comments everyone.

  31. Anonymous says:

    Does anyone know what size the allen/hex wrench is? I’ve lost mine and I need to get a replacement. Thanks!

  32. Anonymous says:

    I am moving in August and have been really stressed about wether I would be able to move my malm bed as well. I’m so glad to know that it can be easily taken apart and reassembled. You all don’t know how much a relief I feel! Thank You!

  33. Anonymous says:

    I have dismanteled all of my IKEA furniture umpteen times without any problems.
    In 1993 we bought a bed, two bedside tables and two chest of drawers from Ikea in England. In 1998 the bedroom furniture and a tv cabinet and coffee table , made the move to Seattle USA! Since then we have bought more beds, more drawers, book shelves etc.
    between 1998 and 2006 all of our Ikea furniture has made 5 more house moves and now finally resides in Michigan!
    A newspaper article in 2006 made me laugh when it stated that ikea furniture was not made to last or make moves! Our only problem now is that we have a UK sized bed of which the matress desparately needs renewing. Unfortunately we cannot buy a mattress to fit and reluctantly we are looking at buying a whole new Ikea set.
    So, as long as you didnt glue the bits together then i cannot see any reason why taking apart your furniture should be unsuccessful! I make a point of keeping all instructions and spare bits and bobs.

  34. Anonymous says:

    Late to the game on this, but the easiest thing to do is just to go in and ask them for the instruction manuals. Don't mention that you're taking it apart, state that you moved, you went to put it together, and the directions are lost. They keep them on a MASSIVE server at ikea HQ, and can just download and print you new copies – sometimes for stuff that's been discontinued for years. I asked them once why they didn't just put the whole damn thing on their website – the answer was that it's a copyright issue.

  35. Tweety says:

    Thanks everyone! This is so encouraging…We did save all the instructions, so I'm guessing we'll be able to manage. Shall update you all when we're done.
    Jules…thanks for posting my question!

  36. Jen says:

    If you need instructions, this site has them in PDF:

  37. Anonymous says:

    IKEA furniture is complete crap. We purchased the HOPEN bedroom series about 2 years ago and one wardrobe broke and one of the bed rails just cracked in half, so we totally wasted money here. I'd rather have no furniture than this crap from IKEA!!!

  38. månbarn says:

    I have taken all my IKEA stuff apart tons of times. Take them apart in the way that seems easiest and most logical.

    My advice is to save the instructions of how to put them together if you thought it was hard to put together in the first place, but most IKEA things are easy. Then take them apart completely and save all small things in small bags, one for each furniture. Then you just move all small parts which are easy to pack and easy to carry and then take some hours to rebuild your home at the new place.

  39. Anonymous says:

    I've taken our Malm bed apart and put it back together several times. The only problem I have had is that it tends to creak for several weeks before it settles down again. Has anyone else had this problem? Any solutions?

  40. Anonymous says:

    The bed comes apart quite easily. The only things to be careful of are:
    1) Store the metal strips carefully … they bend easily … not that I've worked out what purpose they serve!
    2) The nuts hidden away at the foot of the bed require a small spanner (ideally the one which came with the bed). Trying to undo these nuts with a spanner which doesn't really fit normally results in losing skin from your hand!
    3) Make sure you have a correctly sized key (hex I think) for the screws in the head of the bed … you should still have one, but a hardware store will sell you one cheaply if you don't.

    Just undo everything you can! There's the bolts at the bottom and screws at the top. If you have two people, it makes things easier. When I had to do it on my own, I placed books under the centre of the two edges of the bed … this takes some of the weight and stops everything falling to the floor with a large crash.

    Leave the metal 'L' shaped bits of metal attached to the sides of the bed … it's just the bolts/screws at either end which matter.

  41. barbex says:

    Start with the screws and bolts that are openly visible and take note where you got them from. You can tape the bolts or screws with scotch tape close to the place where they are supposed to go but that might be impractical when moving. Watch out for those round-the-corner things, where you have this bolt inside the hole and then another thing goes in to make an angle. (I just can't make myself clear here!) The bolts stick in the hole but not quite! Best to tape the hole shut so you don't lose them when you move everything.

  42. Kelly says:

    We disassembled our Malm bed (not completely, dont do that!) in August when we moved, and reassembled it. It has been dissasembled and reassembled since then by my sister when she took it. So it can be done. My advice, don't take those stupid metal cross beams apart, just disconnect them from the sides of the bed and fold them up with the middle metal bar. Once you've gotten the metal piece out, just unbolt the four “wood” pieces and keep track of the hardware in a ziplock. You'll be left with a total of 5 pieces to move.You seriously don't need instructions to reassemble, it is a piece of cake.

  43. Anna says:

    I´ve taken all my IKEA funiture apart several times when moving. Its usually easy both taking apart and putting back together without any instructions. For some reason most IKEA furiture is best put upside down before taking apart. I think the only way to get any form of instruktions is by taking the assemblyinstruktions a do them backwards.
    /anna from sweden with a hole house full of IKEA furniture

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

Back to Top ↑