Last Updated on January 26, 2023 by Sandra Allens

You’ve been sleeping on your mattress for nearly a decade, and it’s time to replace it. The time has come to move on to a more supportive and happy relationship despite the guilt of losing such a close friend. As you go to select the mattress you wish to buy, the question that comes instantly into your mind is: what should I do with my old mattress?

old mattress
Photo Courtesy: Sleep Foundation

What to Do Before Disposing of Your Old Mattress

Each year, nearly 18.2 million mattresses are disposed of in the United States, with many of them ending up in landfills. You should dispose of your mattress properly, regardless of whether or not you’re a tree hugger. The problem is that nobody is willing to transport old mattresses to the dump on their own, so how do you dispose of it?

Take These Options Into Consideration Before You Worry About Your Mattress:

  • Make sure your mattress is covered by a warranty.
  • Learn about the policies in your state.
  • Get in touch with your local mattress store.

If you have an old and new mattress, they may be delivered together. Unless you are planning to immediately replace an old mattress, your options are somewhat limited if you are simply trying to sell it.

Uses For Old Mattresses

If you have an old mattress to get rid of, you have a number of options to choose from. Leaving it behind your apartment building is not the way to dispose of it. These are environmentally and socially responsible actions. Consider these four options.

Option 1: Sell it

The Old mattress you are giving away can still be sold or resold if it is still in good condition. Mattresses are always in demand and people are always looking for affordable alternatives – sometimes an older mattress can be accepted by someone to save money. You may even be able to get someone to pick up your item for you if you’re lucky.

Option 2: Recycle it

Mattress recycling council reports that modern mattresses contain up to 80% recycled materials. Using your zip code, you can search for nearby mattress recycling services. There are many companies that will pick up mattresses at a minimal charge.

You Might Also Be Interested in These Recycling Resources:

  • Bye Bye Mattress. It offers information on how to find local recycling programs through this online aggregator run by the Mattress Recycling Council.
  • Earth911. Search online for recycling services using one of the world’s largest databases.
  • City Services. It might be worth checking your city’s garbage and recycling program office in a last resort.

You can always break down your old mattress yourself if there is no recycler willing to accept it. In this way, you avoid putting your old mattress in the garbage along with thousands of other items.

Option 3: Modify it

If you’re breaking down the mattress anyway, and you cannot recycle the old mattress, why not try to repurpose some of the pieces? Steel parts and springs are useful for a variety of projects, while wood can be used in many different ways. Art projects can also be made with fabrics, foams, and cotton padding – you just need to be creative about it.

Option 4: Make a Donation

Donating mattresses in good condition is another option. Some local charities will pick up your mattresses if you drop them off.

You Should Check out These Places:

  • Habitat for Humanity. Charity ReStore often accepts old mattress donations, and may even pick them up, from a chain of thrift stores run by this well-known organization.
  • Salvation Army. The Salvation Army offers free local pickup at many stores. Your mattress may be picked up if you need it.
  • Goodwill. If a mattress is in good condition, Goodwill stores across the United States take it as a donation often.
  • Catholic Charities. For Catholic charities and homeless shelters, mattresses are always in demand.
  • Furniture Bank of America. The program provides used furniture and mattresses at a low price or for free to impoverished communities.

It may be that the only thing left to you once you’ve exhausted all the other options is to throw the mattress away. There is a right and a wrong way to handle this situation, even if it is the only option available to you.

Getting Rid of Old Mattresses

Depending on where you live, garbage services can accept anything from old mattresses to piles of cardboard. Large items may be allowed by some municipalities, but not all, and you might end up paying a hefty fine if you leave them at the curb. Look into other options before going dumpster hopping.

Throwing Away an Old Mattress Can Be Accomplished in Several Ways:

  • Disposal of Local Waste. If you put your old mattress out on the curb, the waste disposal service may still pick it up. It may be your best option to have a large item picked up by a service that charges a fee.
  • Load Up. Over 50 Load Up locations are spread throughout the United States, and the company also takes care of mattresses that have bedbugs if the company receives sufficient notice.
  • 1-800-Got-Junk. You can also get your mattress picked up by 1-800-Got-Junk, another junk removal service. There are no bedbug-infested mattresses taken.

In the event you have no other option but to throw away an old mattress, you can do it responsibly. The following four options can help you dispose of an old mattress.

Frequently Asked Questions About Old Mattress Disposal

When Disposing of A Mattress, Does It Need to Be Wrapped in Plastic?

It depends. Mattresses are typically encased in plastic before being disposed of by many local refuse services. Don’t forget to wrap mattresses in plastic before dumping them so that you don’t get fined.

What Is the Life Expectancy of A Mattress?

With proper care and maintenance, mattresses usually last between seven and ten years. Consider purchasing a new mattress if your current one is over ten years old. Be sure to inquire if the mattress removal service is offered by the new mattress company.

Does a New Mattress Need to Have the Plastic Film Removed?

When making sure you install your mattress, it is best to remove the plastic that you left on before installation. Unlike plastic, a mattress protector doesn’t block the air flow across the mattress, so it stays fresh. Your mattress might not last as long the plastic is left on.