Getting Rid of A Mattress in a Responsible Way

October 09, 2023 3 min read

Mattresses and electronics are among the most challenging consumer products to dispose of responsibly. As such, these products are usually left on curbsides or dumped illegally in alleyways. Besides, landfills will charge you extra fees for a mattress as they are bulky, do not compact, and can lead to the formation of toxic, flammable air pockets in dumpsites.

Although disposing of a mattress is a hassle, letting it rot away is not an excellent way to get rid of it as it is not environmental-friendly. Recycling mattresses is also tricky as they are polyurethane foam, cotton, steel, and wood. The only thing that can be recycled among the products used to make mattresses is foam. The rest cannot.

So What Are the Best Ways to Dispose of a Mattress?

Here are our top picks:

Return Your Used Mattress to the Manufacturer

More than 50,000 mattresses are discarded daily in the US. This has made manufacturers recycle mattresses themselves. If you want to buy a new mattress to replace the one you want to dispose of, find out from the retailer whether it is possible to return your old mattress to the manufacturer.

Give Away or Sell Your Old Mattress

If you want to dispose of a gently used mattress but don’t want to replace it with a new one, then consider selling it for a reasonable price or offer it for free on Craigslist or OfferUp. Passing a mattress (provided it doesn’t have noticeable signs of wear or doesn’t have bed bugs) to someone who will use it is an environmentally friendly way to dispose of a mattress.

Donate Yoru Used Mattress to Charity

Ask your local non-profits whether they can put a used mattress to use. Depending on health department regulations in your area, organizations like Goodwill and The Salvation Army may put a used mattress to use. Churches, Habitat for Humanity, and homeless shelters can also take your used mattress off your hands. After finding a place to take your old mattress, book a Dolly to take your mattress there.

Find a Specialized Recycling Program

If you cannot donate or sell your used mattress, find out whether there are options to dispose of your mattress in your city. Many municipalities usually provide recycling programs by themselves or can direct you to a local recycler. Some cities pick up used mattresses curbside and get rid of them responsibly.

Break Your Mattress All by Yourself

If you have the tools, space, and time, you can break your used mattress yourself. Cut around the fabric covering’s perimeter and remove the cloth and foam from the wooden frame and box spring. Bundle the material by rolling such that it can fit a regular trash can. Then, chop the frame using a saw and burn or turn it into wood chips. You can either sell the box springs for scrap or take them to be recycled.

Since mattresses are difficult to get rid of responsibly, it may be good to consider durability when buying a mattress. Keep in mind that some mattresses have a 20-year warranty. And with proper maintenance, a mattress can last for decades and help you reduce your household’s overall waste footprint as you will not have to replace your mattress after every few years. So, durability is definitely something worth considering.