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What to do with Old Mattress | 5 Ways to Get Rid of a Mattress

what to do with old mattress

Sometimes your mattress is beyond saving. It’s lived its life and supported your back. Now it’s done. Now what? You have some options to weigh. Let’s just hope that you’re not going to dump that mattress on the street, in an alley or heaven forbid, on the side of the road. So many mattresses end up on the sides of the freeway, abandoned for someone else to clean up.

Don’t be that person!

There are many options for getting rid of your old mattress. Some are free and some will cost, but may be worth it to you to pay. Some cities like New York, will haul away your mattress if you leave it at the curb, but most of us aren’t that lucky.

If you have a box spring, they can be even harder to dispose of than a mattress! So keep that in mind too. We may earn a commission when you shop through our links.

What to do with Old Mattress

Here are 5 things you can do with your old mattress.

  1. If you’re getting a new mattress, see if the company you’re buying from offers a mattress removal service.
  2. Donate or sell/give away your old mattress (assuming its still in useable shape).
  3. Recycle all or part of the mattress.
  4. Have a junk company come and pick it up (they will take it to the dump for you or in some cases, recycle or donate it).
  5. Tear it down and put it in a dumpster or the trash

old mattress in dumpster

Mattresses That Offer Removal Services

For the easiest transition from an old to a new mattress, with the least amount of work for you, these mattress companies offer mattress removal services for an additional cost. The advantage is the timing. You’ll get the old mattress removed and the new mattress put on the bed frame for you, usually in one visit.

Here are 3 mattresses that offer removal services, that we know of, be sure to confirm as COVID restrictions may change the terms or service:

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Haven – delivery, set-up your new mattress, and take your old mattress (adds 1-2 weeks for delivery) for $149. Add $29 for removal of 2nd piece (mattress & boxspring).

Idle Mattress – This service is an additional $149.

Casper – in-home delivery and setup for $149 and includes removal of your current mattress/boxspring should you need it.

Nectar – for $149, your new bed is delivered, set up and you have the option to have your existing bed removed.

Donate your Mattress

If your mattress is in good condition, you can donate or give it away. It shouldn’t be stained or torn. If it just needs to be cleaned, see our article on how to get urine off a mattress and the video. The solution works on many stains.

Some nonprofits will send someone to pick up your mattress. Call nonprofits such as Salvation Army or Habitat for Humanity or a shelter, to see what’s available in your area. If that doesn’t work, you could list your mattress on a place such as Facebook Marketplace/local Facebook Classifieds group, or Craigslist.

Recycle your Mattress

Ideally, you can recycle the mattress.

According to the Mattress Recycling Council, “more than 50,000 mattresses end up in landfills each day.” So hopefully, you can help reduce that. I did a video about a mattress recycling facility that was a partnership with industry and the city dump, however, there was a fire and it was shut down. This was awful news and we still hope that other cities around the country will look to them as a model of what can be done to reduce the number of mattresses that end up in the landfill.

If possible, you can reuse parts of your mattress. In my state, I know of a woman who makes dog beds out of mattresses and toppers and then donates the beds to local pet shelters. But that’s a small operation. The Aria hotel in Las Vegas has their old mattresses recycled into dog beds.

It usually costs to recycle a mattress, call first in case you have to have an appointment or to be sure they will take your particular mattress. You may not have a truck or way to lift and transport a mattress. It may be too far. This is the case with a mattress I needed to dispose of. So I cut down the foam and recycled the metal springs at a metal recycling company near me. They paid me $3 for it, which just about covered the gas. I folded it in half and tied it so it could fit into my SUV.

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Have a Junk Company Come Pick Up your Mattress

After getting in trouble I fit the foam into our regular trash can. Load Up is an example of a company that will come and haul away your mattress. They’re priced lower than competitors, you can book online and get a price quote and they try to recycle as much as possible. 

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Put your Mattress in a Garbage Can, Dumpster

or Take it to the City Dump

I used a razor blade to cut down the foam layers into smaller pieces, removed the springs (fold them in half, tied them shut, then took them to be recycled at a metal recycler) and then threw the rest away. I had a dumpster but after it took up too much space, I moved it to the garbage can at my house.

Another time I folded the mattress in half, secured it with a tie down strap and put it into the dumpster.

As much as possible I hoped to avoid taking it to the city dump, it was a very thick and heavy mattress that wouldn’t fit in my car. Our dump is very dirty and gross. It needs a car wash outside when you leave!

Please ask for permission before using a public dumpster, if you illegally dump in one, they may fine you.

You can watch the process of me disposing of a mattress here:

How to Move a Mattress

If you need to move your mattress, this is the best method. If it’s a spring mattress that you need to transport to the dump or to be recycled, folding it in half will make it so much easier.

How will you dispose of your old mattress? Let us know in the comments. And it’s our honor to help you find a new mattress, whenever that may be!