How to Dispose of an Old Mattress

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Allow us to start with a nod of approval here. Instead of dumping your used mattress on a sidewalk or in the garbage, you chose to seek the proper, responsible way to disposing of your old mattress.

How To Dispose Of An Old Mattress

Now, since you asked, we are going to enlighten you on relevant matters- like how long can you use a mattress, is mattress recycling/ mattress donation an option, can stains on mattress be removed, and yes; how to dispose of an old mattress.

Tossing out an old mattress can be difficult to manage since they are bulky and heavy to simply dump it in the garbage.

For the most part, disposing of it by yourself requires a humongous amount of time and effort. We recommend that you take a look at the options and choose one based on your situation.

How Long Can You Use A Mattress?

The Better Sleep Council opines that you replace your mattress every 7-10 years, regardless of the 20-year warranty you received when you purchased the mattress. Also keep in mind that the life of mattress varies greatly depending on the kind of cleaning and maintenance provided, usage,  type of mattress, quality, etc.

 If you’re over 40 you should consider replacing your mattress in under 7 to 8 years, since Consumer Reports say that your body tolerates less pressure as it ages.

In that case, how do you know that its time to buy a new mattress? Here are a set of signs that you check to know if you are better off replacing your old mattress:

Duration of use

If your existing mattress is around 7-8 years old, you should consider disposing of it. This is a general guideline and does not hold good in every case.

Disrupted sleep

Tossing and turning in bed all night long, struggling to find a comfortable position? Well, it could be that such a thing does not exist- you are better off throwing away the mattress which no longer offers you proper spinal support and alignment.


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Stiff muscles and body aches

Old mattress causes back achesA good night’s sleep is supposed to refresh you inside out. On the other hand, if you are waking up nursing a sore back and stiff neck muscles, your mattress could be the culprit. You should change the mattress if it appears to have lost its compression layers as it makes your body sink, unsupported, resulting in aches and pains.

Squeaky, creaking sounds

Alright, so this shouldn’t come as a surprise; a squeaky mattress is not a good sign. And, ahem, for more reasons than one, you’re better off replacing it ASAP!

The creaky noises coming from your mattress could be due to a worn-out bedspring, loose metal screws, or an old bed frame.

Worsening Allergies

Old mattress cause allergies
An old mattress can cause allergies

Your mattress is home to a variety of bedbugs, mites, and allergens, even with regular vacuuming. If you find that your allergies have been acting up lately, and without any apparent cause, you know it is time to replace your mattress. Special caution to the allergies and stuffiness you experience only at night- it’s a dead giveaway that you are sleeping on an old, dirty mattress.

Saggy and lumpy surfaces

Again, no surprises here, but saggy and lumpy padding means that you’ve not been flipping your mattress regularly. Sleeping on an uneven bed is a recipe for disaster, so make sure you replace the mattress for a new one. And this time, flip your new mattress regularly and rotate the sides you sleep on.


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What Can You Do With an Old Mattress?

Before we go into how to throw away the mattress, let’s see what other options you have.

Let’s begin by asking some questions;

Do you still see some life in it? If yes, here’s what you can do:

Sell it

Sites like Craigslist and eBay allow you to list your used mattress up for sale, and you can use whatever money you get to buy a new one. Before throwing away your mattress, you can also consider Facebook Marketplace, or even asking around in your acquaintances’ circle if anyone’s interested in buying a used mattress.

Donate it

Certain homeless shelters and churches accept donations and will take your mattresses, provided they are clean and in decent condition (bedbugs, stains, and rip free). You can even find charities that offer to pick up the mattress for free.

Selling and donating your used mattress is your best bet if you are wondering how to dispose off your mattress for free. You also get the satisfaction of knowing that a product has not gone to waste, contributing to an already overflowing landfill.


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How to Clean a Mattress?

Before you resell or donate your used mattress, be a sport, and do a thorough clean. Mattresses are notorious for harboring bacteria, bed bugs, and allergens; you wouldn’t want another person to sleep on it without cleaning it first.

We don’t mean that you should spend a bomb on cleaning it either-

If you’re wondering what are the inexpensive, natural ways to clean and remove pee stains from your old mattress, read on…

1. Baking soda and essential oil

Things you’ll need: Baking soda, essential oil of your choice, and a strainer.

  • Make a mixture out of these three items and transfer it into a strainer
  • Using the strainer, sprinkle the mixture evenly onto a thoroughly vacuumed mattress. Yes, you read that right- you should remove all the bed covers and linen, and clean the mattress before sprinkling the baking soda and essential oil mixture on it
  • Leave the mixture on for at least one hour
  • After an hour, vacuum the bed surface again, to remove any trace of the baking soda-essential oil mixture, bed bugs, and dirt from the mattress

2. Vinegar and water

This solution works wonders on a stained, spotted mattress.

Things you’ll need: Spray bottle,  clean cloth, baking soda, white vinegar, and water.

  • Mix equal parts of vinegar and water
  • Transfer the solution into a spray bottle
  • Spray onto stains and spots and repeatedly blot with a clean cloth
  • Repeat until the stain fades and disappears
  • Sprinkle baking soda over the markings and let sit for one hour
  • Vacuum the spot and let the mattress air dry
Natural cleaning solutions to remove mattress stains
Homemade cleaning solutions for removing mattress stains.

3. Hydrogen peroxide and baking soda

Let’s see how to clean a mattress without a vacuum cleaner.

Things you’ll need: Hydrogen peroxide, baking soda, liquid dishwashing soap, a spray bottle, and a blow dryer.

  • Mix one cup of 3% hydrogen peroxide, 3 tablespoons of baking soda, and 3 drops of liquid dishwashing soap.
  • Stir well so that the baking soda dissolves completely into the solution
  • Pour the mixture into a spray bottle
  • Spray evenly onto the surface of the mattress, focusing on any stained surfaces
  • Let sit for an hour, and air dry. You can blow-dry the mattress if needed.

Cleaning tip: Regardless of it being a memory foam mattress, latex mattress, or other types of mattresses, when it comes to cleaning, remove all bed linen and vacuum before using any of the above-mentioned cleaning solutions. Flip over both sides and vacuum for the best results.

Natural ways to clean a mattress
Disinfect the mattress with a vacuum cleaner first

 These are handy tips to clean a mattress naturally and remove pee or vomit stains from it. Keep in mind that charities, homeless shelters, churches, and local furniture stores only accept a clean and tidy mattress. So ensure that you clean your used mattress before reselling or donating it.


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Now, what if your old mattress isn’t fit for use anymore? Here’s what you can do:

Hire a Junk Removal Service

There are several junk removal services that can clear your old mattress away for a fee. You can leave all the heavy lifting and disposing activities to them- they will pick up and dispose of the mattress themselves.

Scrap The Mattress

Okay, so if you do have some time at hand, and don’t mind getting your hands dirty for some extra cash, scrapping the mattress for the steel springs is a good option.

Craft Options

Wooden boards, steel springs, and foam can be put to good use! Reuse these in your favorite DIY Pinterest projects instead of buying new materials.


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Recycle The Mattress

When you recycle your mattress, you are contributing to minimizing the waste piling up at a landfill. Schedule a call with your local recycling center to explore your options. The steel springs, wood frames, stuffing, and fabric can be recycled to make new products and you can wave goodbye to your mattress knowing you’ve taken a small step in favor of our environment.

Toss It In The Garbage Bin

Standard rules mandate that you place your old mattress 2 feet away from the garbage bin on the garbage collection day. This way, you can toss it away for free and not go through any time-consuming process.

Word of advice- Always check with your city’s mattress disposal regulations so that you do things the proper way, or you might end up with hefty fines for improper garbage disposal.

Having explored all the options above, go with the one you deem fit, taking into account the costs involved, time at your disposal, and whether you actually do need to replace your mattress.