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Mattress Disposal Guide: What to Do With Your Old Mattress

Mattress Disposal Guide: What to Do With Your Old Mattress

by

Aoife O.
 | 
Sep 28, 2020

You shouldn't keep sleeping on a mattress that doesn't suit your comfort and support needs—if it's time for a new mattress, it's time. But buying a new bed doesn't mean your old one should go to the landfill. Before you throw away your used mattress, consider all your options.


Landfill overflow is an environmental crisis, and mattresses take up significant space. Whenever possible, it's better to find a new home for your used mattress or take it to a recycling facility for breakdown into reusable materials. This practical guide will walk you through your options, including how to find donation centers or recycling services near you.


You can also inquire about old mattress removal when purchasing a new one. Many mattress brands and retailers offer this service along with mattress setup. If you purchase a new Nolah mattress, we offer old mattress removal for $125. You can also choose our used mattress removal/new mattress setup bundle for $225.


Also, check your mattress's warranty before getting rid of it. You may be entitled to repairs or replacement if there's a manufacturer defect.


Options For Removing Your Old Mattress

Your choices for used mattress removal depend on the condition of the mattress, the services available in your area, and if you need a free or paid solution. Keep reading to learn more about each option below.

Mattress Donation

If your used mattress is still in good condition, consider donating it. You can give it to someone directly or find a donation center near you.

Resell Your Mattress

Use an online platform like Facebook Marketplace to sell your gently used mattress to someone in your community. Reselling gives your mattress a second life, and you recoup some of the cost.

Mattress Recycling

Mattress recycling puts your old bed to good use, keeping it out of the landfill. For a small fee, you can drop your mattress off at a recycling center. It's the best solution for mattresses that are too worn out for resale or donation.

Waste Disposal

As a last resort, you can throw away your mattress. Depending on where you live, your city may offer bulk refuse pickup. If not, you can drive your mattress to the landfill or pay for a private junk removal service.


Mattress Donation Guide

Even though you have a new bed, your old one may still have life left. If your used mattress is clean and structurally sound, consider donating it. You can help someone in your community, and that's one less mattress headed to the landfill.

Mattress Condition

Before researching local donation centers, assess your used mattress's condition. It doesn't help anyone to donate a faulty or unsanitary mattress. Every organization has standards for acceptable donation conditions—but in general, you shouldn't try to donate your mattress if it shows signs of structural damage, holes, rips, tears, infestation, stains, discoloration, mold, mildew, or odors.

Where Can I Donate My Used Mattress?

Due to their size and nature, mattresses are difficult to sanitize, store, and distribute. Plus, many states have laws prohibiting their resale. As a result, many charitable organizations that accept other household donations can’t take mattresses.


Options may be limited, but we’ve listed a few organizations below that may take your gently used mattress. Please note that with national charities, mattress donation policies vary by location. We recommend calling your local center to ask if they accept mattresses, what rules apply, and when they’re open for drop-offs.

Habitat for Humanity/ReStore

Habitat for Humanity is best known for its construction projects but provides many other community services. They have almost 900 Habitat for Humanity ReStore locations where they accept and sell gently used appliances, furniture, and building materials. Call your closest ReStore location to find out if they accept mattress donations. Some even offer free pick-up services.

Furniture Bank Network

According to the Furniture Bank Network website, “Furniture banks are registered charities, not-for-profit organizations or social enterprises designed to provide gently used household furnishings to individuals and families in need, at little or no cost.” This online network can help you find your closest participating furniture bank, many of which accept mattresses.

The Salvation Army

The Salvation Army provides various social services, including its thrift store donation centers. Again, mattress donation policies vary by location, but the Salvation Army's website does list beds on their Donation Value Guide to commonly donated items. Call your local Salvation Army for more information.

Local Charities and Shelters

Aside from these national programs, you may be able to find a local charity or shelter that accepts donations. Search online for organizations near you and call to ask if they need gently used mattresses.

Donate Directly

If you can't find a donation center nearby that accepts beds, don't give up. You can always give your mattress to someone directly. Ask around or post on social media; your family, friends, or community group leaders may know someone in need. Online services like FreeCycle can also connect you with someone in your town. Or, use any of the online marketplaces discussed in the next section as if you're selling your mattress but list it as free.


Selling Your Old Mattress

If you want to recoup some money from your used mattress, try selling it through an online marketplace. Platforms like Craigslist, eBay, Facebook Marketplace, LetGo, and OfferUp make it easy to sell things second-hand to others in your community.


When you create your listing, be sure to specify the mattress type, size, and condition. Follow the platform's safety and payment guidelines, and always be cautious when giving out your address.


Mattress Recycling Guide

Even if your used mattress is too worn-out to donate or sell, that doesn’t mean it’s destined for the landfill. About 80 to 90 percent of your mattress is recyclable, and a recycling service can break it down to its reusable materials.

About 80 to 90 percent of your mattress is recyclable, and a recycling service can break it down to its reusable materials.

Is Mattress Recycling Free?

In most cases, mattress recycling costs a small fee. The charge varies by provider, but you can expect to pay about $10 to $40 for mattress recycling, whether you drop off the mattress or have it picked up. The fee may seem inconvenient, but you can feel good about your eco-conscious decision to keep your used bed out of the landfill.

Mattress Recycling Services

You can find a mattress recycling site or service near you with little research. Below, we've listed a few resources for finding a local provider.

Municipal Resources

Your city or town may provide mattress recycling pick-up services or have a drop-off recycling center that accepts mattresses. Contact the local government department in charge of refuse and recycling and ask about options for mattresses.

Check the Earth911 Database

Earth911 has an extensive directory of recycling centers. Using the search function, enter “mattresses” under material and input your zip code.

Bye Bye Mattress/The Mattress Recycling Council

Three states—California, Connecticut, and Rhode Island—participate in the Mattress Recycling Council’s Bye Bye Mattress program. Mattress retailers must charge a mattress disposal fee with purchase, which funds the recycling program. In these states, it’s free for residents to drop off used mattresses at a participating collection center.


Live outside California, Connecticut, and Rhode Island? Bye Bye Mattress’s website also has a useful list of mattress recycling providers in other states.

Repurpose Your Mattress

If you can’t find a mattress recycling service nearby, you can break down your mattress yourself and recycle, donate, or repurpose the materials. Get creative! For inspiration, see our article on Creative Uses for Your Old Mattress.


Mattress Disposal Guide

As a last resort, you can get rid of your used mattress through a junk removal service or take it to the landfill yourself. We’ve outlined a few mattress disposal options below.

Junk Removal Companies

A junk removal company like 1-800-GOT-JUNK, LoadUp, or Junk King can haul away your mattress for a fee. Search “junk removal near me” to find a local provider. You can request quotes online or call to schedule a hauling service.

Mattress Removal Cost

The cost of junk removal and hauling services depends on the provider, but you can expect to pay about $75 to $200. According to LoadUp’s website, the average price for mattress removal is $80. 1-800-GOT-JUNK charges by volume and has a 1/8th of a truck minimum charge. Their website states that mattress disposal is difficult and expensive and that mattress recycling is a better option.

Removing Your Mattress Yourself

Bulk Refuse Pick-Up

Depending on where you live, you may have the option to leave your used mattress at the curb for bulk refuse pick-up. However, many municipalities do not offer this service—leaving bulk waste like mattresses at the curb may be illegal, resulting in a fine. Research your city or town's bulk waste removal policy to find out if it's allowed, when they collect, and if there's anything you need to do to prepare the mattress for disposal.

Taking it to the Landfill

If you have a big enough vehicle, you can take your old mattress to the local landfill yourself. Call ahead to find out if mattress drop-off is permitted and if there’s a fee. Fees typically range from $10 to $50.


Mattress Disposal FAQ

How Much Does Mattress Disposal Cost?

It depends on how you dispose of your mattress:

  • If your city or town offers bulk refuse pick-up, there’s likely no additional charge for removing a mattress from the curb.
  • If you take your mattress to the landfill yourself, expect to pay a fee from $10 to $50.
  • If you hire a junk removal company, expect to pay $75 to $200 for them to pick up your mattress.

Can I Leave My Old Mattress on the Side of the Road for Regular Trash Pick-Up?

It depends on your municipality's policy for bulk refuse. Some cities and towns offer bulk refuse pick-up, typically on a specified day of the month. Contact your local refuse and recycling department for more information. You should know that in some places, it's illegal to leave your mattress at the curb, and you could receive a fine.

Are All Mattress Types Recyclable?

Yes, you can recycle any type of mattress, including foam, memory foam, latex, hybrid, and innerspring mattresses.

Does Goodwill Accept Mattress Donations?

Unfortunately, most Goodwill locations cannot accept mattress donations. However, it doesn’t hurt to ask. Call your local donation center for information.

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