mattress disposal guide

Getting a new mattress can do wonders for your health and happiness – no more tossing and turning, aching back in the morning, or sprung springs poking you while you sleep. Congrats!

But then reality sinks in and you remember that you still have to get rid of your old mattress. Ugh. The mattress that you’re replacing has served its purpose, and now it’s just taking up space. It’s got to go – but how do you get rid of it?

Leaving it on the side of the road to be taken to the dump just seems wrong, what with the landfills overflowing with trash already. And there’s the fact that you probably won’t win any popularity contests with your neighbors for the addition of that little neighborhood eyesore.

Good news! This guide is here to help you with 6 simple (as well as socially and environmentally responsible) alternatives to chucking your old mattress into the street and waiting for the garbage men.

Option 1: donate it

If the mattress that you’re replacing still has some life in it, you might want to consider donating it to those in need. There are tons of charities that would love to have your gently used mattress, and most of them offer free home pick-up service or convenient local drop-off locations.

Some of the nation-wide charities to consider when looking to donate your old mattress are:

The Salvation Army has a large network of local sites that accept mattress donations, and you can schedule a time for one of their trucks to pick your old mattress up.

Goodwill Industries accepts mattresses that are still in good shape, and they have many local drop-off locations where you can take your old mattress for donation.

Habitat for Humanity is a worldwide company that has dedicated themselves to making sure that everyone has a safe place to call home. They accept mattress donation drop-offs at multiple locations.

You can also contact homeless shelters, churches, and domestic violence prevention centers in your local area to see if they accept mattress donations or visit the Donation Town online database to discover what charities near you are currently in need of mattresses.

Option 2: Find It a New Home

If you find yourself in the situation where the mattress that you just replaced is practically brand-new, and you’d like to recover some of the money that you’ve invested, there are definitely some options out there for finding your old mattress a new home.

Craigslist is an online classified advertisement site that can be found in practically every area of the world. You can place a free ad in your local area offering your mattress for sale, and people looking to buy a “like new” mattress can contact you directly through the site.

Facebook and other social media platforms are also a great way to check with your own personal network to see if any of your friends or family are in the market for a new mattress. Just place a picture and description on your profile, and before you know it – no more extra mattress to contend with!

Option 3: Recycle It

Every single year in the United States, nearly 20 million mattresses end up in landfills, damaging our planet and creating unsafe working conditions for county and state refuse employees. Yikes!

Want to be a part of the solution to this problem? Use one of these services that are dedicated to helping you to recycle your old mattress:

Earth 911 provides a national search engine that uses your zip code to find the recycling center closest to you that accepts mattresses.

Bye-Bye Mattress was created to help counteract the devastating effects of overflowing landfills, and is one of the best mattress recycling center locators in the U.S.

If you live in a major metropolitan area, this list of 100 mattress recycling centers across the country can help you to find the best recycling location near you.

Option 4: hire a pick-up pro

If getting your mattress out to a donation drop-off location or recycling center just isn’t an option for you, there are companies that will do it for you in exchange for a fee.

Check with your mattress retailer first, as they might offer an assistance program for having your mattress picked up at home. For example, Lull works with 1-800-GOT-JUNK to provide mattress removal services to our customers in certain zip codes in exchange for a small one-time fee of $100.

You can also look into hiring a local company to remove your mattress for you, such as:

Option 5: break it down and reuse it

Did you know that 90% of traditional innerspring mattresses can be reused? Mattresses that are disassembled and broken down provide parts that can be recycled, sold for scrap, or used around your home for handyman projects.

Just some of the parts of an innerspring mattress that can be reused include:

Steel springs can be bundled and sold as scrap to be reincarnated as new steel components, such as wind turbines.

Foam material can be reused as carpet padding or moving blankets, and when recycled, it can be used as a biomass fuel source.

Wood parts can be broken down and reused as landscaping mulch, stuffing for pet beds, or scrap material for a variety of projects in both the house and the garage.

If you decide to repurpose some of the parts of your old mattress, you can learn how to disassemble it step-by-step by watching this how-to video on breaking down a mattress for parts.

Note: Disassembled innerspring mattresses contain sharp components. Be sure to use caution!

Have a memory foam mattress? They can be shredded and reused in couch cushions, carpet padding, or even building insulation. And you can even make a little extra cash by selling that shredded foam!

Option 6: break it down and get creative!

If you’re more into crafts than handyman projects, you might want to consider reusing your old mattress to create some unique and sustainable art or home décor.

Ready to get creative? Check out some of these DIY projects using mattresses:

Pinterest offers over 1,000 inspired ways to turn your old mattress into a work of art for your home, including how to make a repurposed steel spring wine rack.

Bob Vila shows you 7 ways to add rustic style to your home with your old innerspring mattress.

And you don’t want to miss these 15 creative ways to reinvent your old mattress into something completely new and fun!