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What To Do With An Old Mattress (Explained)

What To Do With An Old Mattress (Explained)

Are you looking to replace your saggy old mattress, but aren’t sure how to go about it? Read our post to find out how.

Rather than abandoning your old mattress next to your nearest dumpster or storing it in the corner of your garage to wither and collect dust, you can dispose of it responsibly. There are a few ways to get rid of your old mattress that are friendly to the environment and your wallet. Here's how.

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Every 10 years or so, you’re faced with the task of old mattress disposal. Contrary to popular belief, getting rid of a mattress is actually pretty easy and might not even require much work or money on your end, depending on your location and where you purchased your mattress. Below are the many different tips for how to get rid of a mattress so it’s off of your hands — and off the side of the road.

How To Tell It’s Time to Get a New Bed

There are a few telltale signs of an old mattress, the first of which is its purchase date. If you purchased your mattress when the Obama administration first took office, it’s definitely time for a new mattress.

If you go to bed feeling healthy and wake up with an aching pain in your back or hips, your mattress has probably developed sags and lumps over time. Lumps and sags contribute to physical pain and can be enough to deprive you of sleep. They might even be visibly noticeable if you strip your linens down to the bare mattress. If that’s the case, you should really consider recycling your old mattress and buying a new one.

Additionally, some folks undergo drastic life changes such as significant weight loss or gain, moving in with a partner or upgrading to a larger home with more space. In these events, you might want to purchase a new bed. A person’s weight plays a determining factor in how a bed feels, and losing or gaining ~100 lbs can change your perspective on your mattress.

You also may want to go up a mattress size if you start sharing a bed with a significant other or move into a house with a spacious master bedroom.

Luckily, if you’re in the market for a new mattress, you’ve come to the right place. We don’t sell beds, but we give expert advice to shoppers who are a little overwhelmed trying to find that “perfect” mattress amid the sea of different options. Check out a few of our individual mattress reviews, some of the best green and natural mattresses or a best list to find out a few of our top choices.

Recycle Your Mattress

Mattresses contain a heap of recyclable materials such as steel springs and cotton — in fact, 80% of your mattress can be recycled. Bye Bye Mattress and Earth911 are two great resources you can use to locate your area’s nearest recycling center. That way, you can drive to the facility and have your mattress recycled rather than dumping it in a random field.

If you happen to be a resident of California, Connecticut or Rhode Island, you’re in luck. In 2015-2016, these states began adding a recycling fee into the cost of a new mattress. When its expiration date comes around, you’re able to drop it off for free at a recycling center that will break down the different materials for reuse. Some locations even offer a small monetary incentive to recycle your mattress.

Donate Your Mattress

Just because you can’t use your mattress anymore, doesn’t mean somebody else can’t. There are plenty of charitable organizations who will accept your bed as a donation and give it to somebody else in need. Here’s a solid list to get you started:

Goodwill and the Salvation Army are common organizations that accept donations as long as the item is in good condition, i.e. no rips, tears or stains. Habitat For Humanity, on the other hand, restores mattresses and box springs so they’re acceptable for reuse. The organization will either donate the mattress to somebody less fortunate, or use it to furnish the homes it builds.

Requirements for the condition of your mattress donation vary by location, so be sure to check with your local charity before you try to drop off a mattress.

If you have absolutely zero means to take your mattress to a charity for a donation, you can always advertise your bed for free on websites such as Craigslist or Facebook. That way, someone in your community can pick up the mattress and transport it themselves. After all, you’re giving it to them for free — it’s the least they could do.

Free Mattress Retailer Disposal

Unless you live in California, which requires mattress retailers to pick up old mattresses when they deliver new ones, you should ask your mattress retailer if it offers free mattress disposal services. Some, such as online mattress brand Loom & Leaf, will do it for free, while others such as Tomorrow Sleep offer mattress removal for an additional fee.

Throw Out Your Mattress

There’s one more easy trick for how to dispose of a mattress: Contact your local waste management facility to find out about its curbside pickup policies for bulk items. Some companies may offer free pickup, while others will charge a fair fee.

You can also contact third party services, such as 1-800-Got-Junk?, which will give you a free online estimate for trash pickup after you input your personal information, address and the time you want your mattress to be retrieved. Of course, you also have the traditional dump option, which usually comes with a small fee.