How to Get Rid of a Mattress - Inn Mattress

Getting rid of an old, worn out mattress can be a difficult and inconvenient task. Mattresses are large, heavy, and awkward to maneuver, making disposal a challenge for many homeowners. However, it is important to properly dispose of mattresses rather than illegally dumping them or letting them pile up in a home. There are several responsible and eco-friendly options for mattress disposal available depending on your specific situation. This comprehensive guide covers various recommended methods for mattress removal, key factors to consider when choosing among disposal options, step-by-step instructions for common approaches, as well as tips for reducing mattress waste.

Overview of Mattress Disposal Methods

When deciding how to get rid of your mattress, you typically have six main disposal options:

  1. Donate – Donate usable mattresses in good condition to local charities, shelters, schools, churches, thrift stores, etc. Some organizations may even offer free pickup.
  2. Sell/Give Away – Resell or give away mattresses with some usable life remaining through sites like Craigslist, Facebook Marketplace, Nextdoor, etc.
  3. Recycle – Utilize mattress recycling programs to properly break down mattress components for recycling rather than landfilling. There is often a fee of $10-$50 associated with recycling options.
  4. Hire Junk Removal – Junk removal companies specializing in furniture pickup can conveniently transport and dispose of mattresses for a typical fee of $100-$250.
  5. Municipal Bulk Pickup – Some municipalities and waste management providers offer special bulk mattress collection days a few times a year, often with plastic wrapping requirements.
  6. Take to the Landfill – Haul mattresses to your local landfill or transfer station yourself. Fees averaging $20-$50 typically apply. Call ahead to verify acceptance policies and prices.

When evaluating these mattress disposal choices, there are several key factors to consider before deciding on the best route for your specific mattress and situation.

Key Factors to Consider When Choosing a Mattress Disposal Method

Mattress Condition

The current condition of your mattress is the most important factor determining suitable disposal methods. Mattresses in good shape can be donated or resold, while recycling or landfilling may be the only options for highly damaged, soiled, or infested mattresses. Inspect your mattress carefully before choosing a removal approach.

Logistics and Convenience

As mattresses are challenging for a single person to transport, consider whether you can easily maneuver the mattress on your own or need assistance. Opt for junk haulers or municipal pickup if moving the mattress poses difficulties for you.

Associated Costs

While some disposal options like donations and municipal pickups are free, others carry fees ranging from $10 for DIY recycling to over $200 for premium junk removal services with transportation included. Choose the most economical option fitting your budget constraints.

Access to Services

The available mattress disposal programs differ widely depending on your geographical area. Research local recycling, bulk pickup days, nonprofit organizations, waste policies, and hauler options to identify accessible services in your region.

Environmental Sustainability

To reduce landfill waste, first consider recycling and reuse options whenever possible. Upwards of 20 million mattresses are landfilled in the US each year, negatively impacting the environment. Make concerted efforts to donate, recycle, or repurpose usable mattresses.

Once you???ve compared the pros and cons of each disposal method and assessed key deciding factors like mattress condition, logistics, costs, service availability, and sustainability concerns, you can determine the optimal removal strategy for your specific mattress and situation.

Step-By-Step Instructions for Common Mattress Disposal Approaches

Here are more detailed, step-by-step instructions to guide you through some of the most popular and recommended mattress disposal methods.

Donating Your Mattress

If your mattress remains in good shape without major stains, rips, infestations, or structural damage, donation is one of the best disposal options since it keeps usable mattresses in circulation and out of landfills. Here is how to donate a mattress:

  1. Inspect the mattress thoroughly to confirm it meets donation standards in terms of cleanliness, quality, and safety.
  2. Research local charities and organizations accepting mattress donations, such as shelters, religious institutions, thrift stores, etc.
  3. Contact your selected organizations to ask about current donation needs, intake procedures, pickup options, or drop off locations and hours.
  4. Transport the mattress to the donation center if bringing it yourself. For large mattresses, you may need an SUV, truck, or trailer to move it.
  5. Provide intake paperwork if required by the donation center. Supply any details about your mattress??? age, brand, dimensions, etc.
  6. Unload the mattress at the drop off point. Staff should guide you on exact protocols.

By taking usable mattresses out of the waste stream through donations, you allow community organizations to distribute mattresses to those in need while also keeping disposal costs, landfill waste, and environmental impacts lower.

Recycling Your Mattress

When mattresses become too damaged, worn out, or unsanitary for continued use, responsible recycling serves as the next best disposal method. Recycling properly breaks down mattress components and diverts materials from landfills. Here are the basic steps for mattress recycling:

  1. Find nearby mattress recycling options on directories like Bye Bye Mattress or Earth911. You can search by zip code to identify recyclers serving your region.
  2. Contact the recycling center to ask about drop off protocols, fees (average $25-$40 per mattress), operating hours, and material acceptance policies.
  3. Prepare the mattress if required, which may involve removing the fabric cover or bedding, taping any tears or holes, wrapping the mattress in plastic, etc.
  4. Transport the mattress to the recycling location yourself or schedule a pickup for an added cost if available.
  5. Provide details on mattress type, size, materials, and condition to facility staff during intake.
  6. Unload mattress to designated recycling area and pay any necessary recycling fees.

Mattress recycling ultimately breaks down the mattress into steel, foam, fibers, wood, and other recyclable components which can be made into new products instead of overfilling landfills.

Hiring a Junk Hauler for Disposal

For those lacking the means to transport mattresses to donation centers, recyclers, or landfills themselves, junk removal services eliminate hassles by picking up and responsibly disposing of mattresses offsite. Here are the basic steps when hiring junk haulers:

  1. Research reputable local junk hauling companies that service your area and confirm they transport mattresses specifically.
  2. Contact the junk removal company by phone or online form to schedule a pickup date and provide details on your mattress type, size, and condition which can impact removal costs.
  3. Ask important questions about additional fees, recycling vs landfilling policies, insurance protections, crew protocols when entering your home, etc.
  4. Prepare the mattress on the scheduled pickup date by clearing access paths in your home and providing any special instructions on location access points or issues.
  5. Complete any release forms and make payments due to the junk haul crew upon arrival and before mattress removal.
  6. Watch crew members as they professionally dismantle, load, and transport your mattress away for proper disposal.

Professional junk haulers simplify and streamline mattress disposal through fast end-to-end coordinated pickup, transportation, and environmentally responsible disposal or recycling for costs typically ranging from $100-$250.

Tips for Reducing Mattress Waste

On a societal level, there are also initiatives aiming to reduce the 20+ million mattresses discarded annually in American landfills through public education, advocating for manufacturer takeback programs, and lobbying for mattress recycling regulations at state and federal levels. Here are some key tips for reducing mattress waste as a consumer:

  • Extend mattress lifespan through regular cleaning, rotating, and considering repairs for minor damage before replacing the entire mattress prematurely.
  • Donate usable mattresses that no longer meet your needs rather than trashing them.
  • Purchase eco-friendly mattresses with recyclable and sustainable materials when buying new mattresses.
  • Compare brands??? mattress recycling programs and prioritize those taking responsibility for recycling their own products.
  • Advocate for mattress recycling laws to implement disposal fees on new mattresses that fund state-run recycling programs.
  • Support mattress recycling organizations through donations, partnerships, volunteer work, and community education.
  • Ask local officials and waste management authorities to expand mattress recycling and bulk pickup options to divert waste from landfills.

Through public awareness campaigns, green purchasing decisions, advocacy work, and responsible donations, recycling, and disposal of used mattresses, consumers can help drive systemic reductions in mattress waste.


Disposing of mattresses improperly through illegal dumping or landfilling creates environmental hazards and municipal headaches. However, consumers have several options when determining the best route for removing an old, worn out mattress from a home through donations, selling/giving it away, professional junk hauling services, municipal pickups, mattress recycling programs, or transporting it to a landfill themselves.

Carefully assess your mattress??? current condition, local service availability, logistics constraints, costs, and sustainability considerations before deciding on a removal strategy. Detailed step-by-step instructions are provided in this guide for recommended disposal methods favored for environmental responsibility and public service. Coordinated efforts around reducing mattress waste through innovation in production, policies for recycling, and consumer education can help mitigate the substantial waste and resource issues posed by mattresses piling up in landfills.

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