How to Properly Dispose of an Old Mattress - Inn Mattress

When you’re ready to transition from your old mattress to a new one, a crucial question emerges: how do you responsibly dispose of your old mattress? With numerous options available, it’s vital to find a method that’s not only cost-effective but also environmentally friendly. In this comprehensive guide, we delve into the best practices for disposing of an old mattress, exploring various environmentally-conscious and budget-friendly options.

Why Proper Disposal is Important

Mattresses are sizable and cumbersome, occupying significant landfill space. The International Sleep Products Association reports that about 20 million mattresses are discarded annually in the U.S., consuming approximately 132,000 square miles of landfill area. Inappropriate disposal methods can exacerbate environmental harm, as mattresses release toxic chemicals while decomposing. Hence, it’s imperative to adopt proper disposal techniques for your old mattress.


Recycling your old mattress is an excellent choice for those aiming to minimize waste and repurpose materials. Comprising foam, metal springs, and fabric, most mattresses can be broken down and transformed into new products, thereby curtailing the demand for new resources. This method not only conserves materials but also aligns with sustainable practices. However, it’s crucial to note that not all recycling centers accept mattresses, and certain conditions, such as excessive dirt or bed bug infestation, may disqualify a mattress from being recycled.


Donating your mattress to a charitable organization, such as a homeless or domestic violence shelter, is a noble way to contribute to your community while preventing landfill waste. Nevertheless, it’s essential to ensure that your mattress meets the specific standards of the chosen organization, as many have guidelines regarding cleanliness and condition.


Selling your mattress, though potentially challenging due to consumer preference for new mattresses, remains a viable option. Utilizing online marketplaces or consignment shops can facilitate finding a buyer for a well-maintained mattress.

Curbside Pickup

Curbside pickup services for large items, including mattresses, may be available through local waste management companies. This convenient option, however, may incur additional fees and is not universally available.


While disposing of your mattress at a landfill is an option, it’s the least environmentally friendly choice and often involves extra costs and potential scheduling requirements.

Professional Removal

For those short on time or resources, professional removal services offer a hassle-free solution. These companies specialize in eco-friendly disposal methods, though they may charge a fee based on mattress size and location.

Eco-Friendly Mattress Disposal: A Sustainable Choice

In an era where environmental sustainability is paramount, eco-friendly disposal of your old mattress is not just a choice but a responsibility. By choosing green disposal methods, you actively contribute to reducing landfill waste and promoting a healthier planet. Here are some innovative and sustainable ways to dispose of your old mattress:

  1. Local Recycling Programs: Research local recycling programs that specialize in mattress materials. These facilities dismantle mattresses, salvaging usable materials like metal, foam, and fibers, which are then repurposed for other products.
  2. Upcycling for Home Projects: Consider upcycling parts of your mattress for DIY home projects. For instance, springs can be transformed into artistic decorations or garden trellises, while foam padding might find new life in pet beds or cushioning for chairs.
  3. Community-Based Initiatives: Engage with community-based initiatives or environmental groups that might offer mattress recycling or upcycling services. These groups often have resources and information on how to dispose of your mattress responsibly.
  4. Professional Eco-Friendly Removal Services: If DIY isn’t an option, look for professional removal services that focus on eco-friendly practices. These services ensure that your mattress is disposed of in the most environmentally responsible way possible.
  5. Composting Certain Materials: Some mattress materials, like natural latex or cotton fibers, can be composted. Check with local composting facilities or consider a backyard composting project for biodegradable components.

By opting for these eco-friendly disposal methods, you’re not just getting rid of an old mattress; you’re making a positive impact on the environment. For those considering a new mattress purchase, explore options like the best mattress for seniors with arthritis or the best mattress for fibromyalgia for tailored comfort and support.


Proper disposal of an old mattress is crucial for environmental sustainability and safety. Whether you choose to recycle, donate, or enlist professional services, preparing your mattress for the selected disposal method is key. Remember, each option has its own set of guidelines and costs, so choose the one that best fits your needs and contributes positively to the environment.

To explore more about mattress care and options for your next purchase, consider our guides on the best mattress for motion isolation, best mattresses for snoring, and the best sleeping positions for gas and digestion relief.


Can I put my old mattress in the trash?

Technically, yes, but it’s not the best option. Mattresses take up a lot of space in landfills and can harm the environment.

How long do mattresses take to decompose in a landfill?

Mattresses can take up to 80 years to decompose in a landfill.

Can I recycle my old mattress?

Yes, most of the materials in a mattress can be recycled, including foam, metal, and wood.

How can I find a mattress recycling center near me?

You can find out about mattress recycling programs in your area by calling your local waste management center.

Can I donate my old mattress to a charity?

Yes, many charities and nonprofit organizations accept gently used mattresses for those in need.

How can I tell if my mattress is suitable for recycling?

Most mattresses with metal springs, foam padding, and fabric can be recycled. However, mattresses that are excessively soiled, infested with bed bugs, or severely damaged might not be accepted by recycling facilities.

Are there any charities that accept mattress donations?

Yes, many charitable organizations accept mattress donations, provided they are in good condition. It’s advisable to check with local shelters, thrift stores, or religious organizations for their specific donation criteria.

Can I sell my old mattress, and where should I list it?

If your mattress is in good condition, you can sell it on online marketplaces, through classified ads, or at consignment shops. Be transparent about the mattress’s condition to attract potential buyers.

What are some creative ways to upcycle an old mattress?

Old mattresses can be upcycled into various items like pet beds, garden trellises, art projects, and cushioning for DIY furniture. The springs, foam, and fabric can all be repurposed creatively.

Is curbside pickup available for mattress disposal, and what does it involve?

Many municipalities offer curbside pickup for large items like mattresses, often for an additional fee. Contact your local waste management department for details regarding scheduling and any associated costs.

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