How to Store a Mattress the Right Way
Posted January 17, 2020
Maybe your college student’s room is going to become your fabulous new home gym, or it’s time for that twin bed to become a double. What should you do with the old mattress? It’s still in good shape, but you don’t want to throw it out—and what if your kid moves back home after college? What if you never use the exercise equipment and decide to turn the space into a guest room instead? (It’s been known to happen!)
Store a Mattress in 4 Simple Steps
Mattresses are an investment, one from which you can get more than a decade of use with the proper care and maintenance. There are many reasons you might put your mattress in aself storage unit, from downsizing your lifestyle to needing overflow space until you can move into a new home. Access Self Storage is here to offer several helpful tips on how to store a mattress properly until it’s needed again.
1. Clean your mattress by vacuuming, using cleaner, and air drying.
Putting a dirty mattress into storage can result in mold, fungus, or at the very least a dirty mattress coming out of storage. To avoid this problem altogether, follow a few steps for a clean, ready-to-use mattress upon retrieval from storage:
- Vacuum the mattress thoroughly.
- Apply upholstery cleaner or baking soda.
- Place the mattress outside to air out and dry.
- Use a covered moving truck to transport to storage.
First, vacuum thoroughly, then apply an upholstery cleaner. Use a light hand with the upholstery cleaner; it can be tricky, so read the directions carefully and don’t soak the mattress to the point where it won’t dry. Work the cleaner with a brush, then allow the mattress to dry completely. Even after you think it’s dry, give it another day. You can use floor fans and open windows to expedite the drying process, or put it out in the sun if possible.
As a quicker and simpler alternative, you can sprinkle baking soda over the mattress, let it settle to absorb odors, and then vacuum up the powder. A steam cleaner is also a great alternative to applying upholstery cleaner by hand, as it kills all kinds of allergens. These types of vacuum cleaners are made by the major vacuum brands (Hoover, Bissell, etc.) and can be very effective in cleaning both carpets and upholstery. You can also rent these cleaners from some grocery and hardware stores—if you’re storing several pieces of furniture along with the mattress, it’s worth the bother. To clean your mattress, you’ll need a model with a handheld attachment. Again, be sure to avoid soaking the mattress.
Transporting Your Mattress to Storage
What about keeping your mattress protected during the move? It’s safest to shield the bed from filth and damage with blankets, sheets, or other fabric inside your moving vehicle—preferably a covered moving truck. Don’t have one yet? We’ve got our tenants covered withfree truck use. Tying a mattress to your car with bungee cords can be a risk to you and other drivers as well as the structural integrity of the mattress. Plus, you never know when unfavorable weather conditions might strike on moving day!
2. Wrap your mattress in a mattress storage bag or plastic.
If you have to store your mattress in a garage or storage unit, keep it covered to protect not only against dirt and dust, but also moisture. Mattress storage bags are available at many hardware stores and among Access’s available on-sitepacking and moving supplies. If you’re using plastic, be sure to thoroughly clean and dry the mattress before wrapping it. Otherwise, you could be sealing moisture in instead of keeping it out, and your mattress won’t be in good shape for very long.
In addition, it’s best to store your mattress in a climate-controlled environment—and you can find a storage unit with climate control at anAccess Self Storage facility near you. Avoid damp basements, outdoor storage, and storage sheds. (Really, would you want to sleep on a mattress that came out of a shed?) If you live in an area with high humidity, storing a mattress in a non-temperature-controlled unit can lead to mold and bacteria breeding inside and on the mattress. Not only will your mattress smell like gym socks, but it could also be a health hazard.
3. Store your mattress flat and clear of items to protect the springs.
If you have the space to store the mattress flat, manufacturers recommend this for keeping it in good shape. It may be more convenient to store your mattress standing, but when it’s stored upright, the coils and springs can shift and cause the mattress fabric to sag. Lay a tarp down on the floor before placing the mattress on top.
However, never store items on top of the mattress! It’s not a steady surface, and objects can damage the springs and cause cuts or permanent dents in the cushioning. If you have large boxes or flat furniture where the mattress will be stored, you may lay the mattress on top (as long as it’s steady). Check out ourguide to organizing a storage unitfor further advice on maximizing space.
4. Freshen up your mattress with baking soda and deodorizing spray.
If, despite your efforts, the mattress comes out of storage smelling a little musty, not to worry. Here’s how to freshen it up:
- Sprinkle baking soda on each side to absorb the smell.
- After 10 minutes, vacuum the entire mattress.
- Spray the mattress with a natural deodorizing spray and allow it to air-dry completely.
- To ensure it has time to air out, remove the mattress from storage at least 24 hours before you need to use it.
Mattress Storage from Access Self Storage
There’s no reason to toss a perfectly good mattress out to the curb. When you follow these best practices on how to store a mattress, you should be able to keep yours in usable condition for the future. The well-being of your mattress in storage, in part, depends on how well you store the surrounding items—which is why we’ve compiled some generalpacking and storage tips, too.
Need reliable storage space for your mattress any other household items? At Access Self Storage, we have a full range of unit options to fit your lifestyle.Reserve storage online today!
How to Store a Mattress (And How Not to Store One)
Have an extra bed that is in too good of condition to part with? Learn how to store a mattress the right way.
Mattresses are an investment, both in cost and in the time it takes to find the right one. In fact, a quality mattress can last anywhere from 10 to 15 years if properly maintained.
Because the right mattress is expensive, it makes sense to want to store it when it’s not currently being used. However, a few months or years in storage can damage a mattress beyond repair if the proper care isn’t taken.
Maybe you’re getting married and you need to upgrade from a twin to queen, or your kids are moving out, and you want to repurpose their rooms. Whatever the case — proper mattress storage will significantly expand the longevity of your bed. Keep reading to find out how to store a mattress correctly.
Steps to Storing a Mattress
1. Thoroughly clean and air out the mattress.
Cleaning a mattress can be accomplished in many different ways, but the easiest method is vacuuming your mattress on both sides and then using upholstery cleaner (like the kind you use on a couch). Do the following to get a mattress ready for storage:
- Remove mattress and boxspring from the bed frame and strip all bedding.
- Sprinkle baking soda on the exterior and let sit to absorb lingering odors.
- Vacuum up all the baking soda using an attachment.
- Let the mattress air out for a few hours before proceeding to the next step.
2. Wrap the mattress in plastic.
Before moving a mattress to its storage location, thoroughly wrap the mattress in plastic and secure the plastic with packing tape to create a tight seal. If possible, do not use thick plastic covers, as these are more likely to trap in the moisture. A light, breathable plastic is more ideal.
Similarly, the mattress needs to stay covered the majority of the time it’s in storage. For long-term storage, consider purchasing a high-quality mattress bag (with no holes or tears), which should cost less than $20. These covers are designed to prevent mold and ensure the mattress stays dry.
Bonus Tip:When storing a mattress long term, open up the plastic wrapping every few months to air out the mattress. Make sure to reseal entirely afterward.
3. Move in a covered moving truck.
When moving your mattress from point A to point B, cover the bed pieces with old blankets or sheets to further shield them from dirt and damage. Remember always to use a covered moving truck.
It is not only unsafe to tie a mattress to the top of your car, but the mattress could also bend to the point of no return in the process. Inclement weather could also complicate matters when moving a mattress on an open truck bed.
During the moving process, it’s okay to keep the mattress on its side to create more space in the moving truck. This method is preferred versus piling lots of heavy furniture on top of the mattress.
Read Also: How to Move Large Items With Ease (5 Tips)
4. Lay the mattressflatwhen storing.
While some sources may tell you to prop the mattress on its side to save space, you should never store a mattress upright for an extended period. It’s entirely okay to carry your mattress upright, but once you place it inside your storage unit, lay it flat to mimic its natural positioning.
Mattresses need to be stored flat because eventually the coils and inner-workings of a side-stored mattress will settle out of their proper position, destroying the cushion.
5. Keep everything off the mattress.
Never store anything on top of the mattress. Heavy objects can damage the springs. Also, heavy objects create more wear to the exterior.
To make the best use of space, place the mattress on top of other objects, like pallets or other flat-topped furniture items. Make sure everything is stable, though!
6. Find the best place to store a mattress.
A primary concern when keeping any furniture in storage is moisture and temperature changes. These mischief-makers can do significant damage to a mattress. These factors make basements a terrible place to store a mattress for any length of time.
If renting a storage unit, consider upgrading from a traditional unit to climate-controlled storage. Opting for climate control will ensure that your storage space will have heat in the winter and stay cool in the summer, safeguarding your expensive mattress and bed from severe temperature changes.
If you do go with a traditional storage unit or opt to store the mattress in your basement or garage, buy a portable dehumidifier. Even though this setup is not ideal, this tool will pump moisture out and help maintain the quality of your mattress.
Learn More About the Benefits of Climate Controlled Storage: Should I Upgrade to Climate Controlled Storage?
7. Repeat Step 1 when retrieving a mattress from storage.
Once you’re ready to retrieve your mattress, follow all the guidelines in Step 1 to make sure your mattress is looking and smelling fresh.
Remember, all these storage tips also apply to the box spring. Following these tips on how to store a mattress and box spring will protect your mattress for months and years to come.
More Storage Guides:
This post was originally published on 2/29/16 and updated 3/7/18.
Would a mattress be damaged by standing on its side for two years?
If a mattress is new (unused and in original plastic) but was manufactured two years ago and has been standing on its side all that time, does that damage the mattress integrity?
Gravity will usually cause the padding to shift.
This is quite possible. Some mattresses are more rigid and could take standing up longer than others. If the mattress was bent in a standing position you could imagine the spring system taking on a contorted posture permanently. No sure about the previous comment but it does stand to reason that things could shift in 2 years. My biggest concern would be the change in shape of the mattress, as I would doubt the mattress would be standing in perfect up and down position.
Perhaps if it was perfectly balanced on it’s side, there may not be any issue. But foam layers are glued together and after a long period of time, as Peter said, gravity can take it’s toll and the adhesive’s no longer hold the layers together and will bunch/fold. Depending on the thickness and coil system, it may not stand well on it’s side and lean funny. If it was left for a significant period of time in an odd shape, it will likely maintain that shape when laid on the floor. In the end, that is the test to try. If you lay it flat on the floor and it looks or appears fine, it could be alright. If it doesn’t lay flat or if it looks funny, it could have been damaged in the 2 years it was on it’s side.
If it is a foam encased mattress, the foam on the edge has most likely compressed significantly. The shifting of the foam in the comfort layer of the mattress is less common but still possible. According to most manufacturers, the proper support for a mattress is laying on a hard flat surface. Storing a mattress on its side is not proper support leading them to claim it has been misused. Either way, it will take some time after placing the mattress down for the materials to realign and retain their original shape. Tip for the future: when storing mattresses long term, lay them completely flat on a flat surface. This will prevent abnormal compression & shifting. Good luck!
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Mattress Expert Shares Best Way To Store A Mattress
Tips and Tricks That Will Protect Your Mattress In Storage
If you are about to move and store your mattress and boxspring you will not want to miss this interview with Campbell Mattress Executive Vice President Greg Sammons. He explains the best ways to store your bed including tips that could keep you from ruining your investment and your night of sleep.
Storage unit as it became fuller Photo by Jarrod Lombardo
Doug– First of all, thank you for sitting down with us to answer a few questions that we commonly get from our customers. As you know sometimes people have to place their beds into storage and they are always concerned about the potential damage that could possibly happen if not stored properly, after all a mattress is a big investment. So Greg does it cause damage to the mattress if it sits in storage and is not used? Do you find problems with the material falling apart or anything like that?
Greg-Yes there can be storage issues. I think in the long term you’ll have to think about humidity. For safekeeping, you will want to store it in a heavy-duty plastic bag with micro holes so that the mattress can breathe. I think a major concern is the temperature and humidity of the environment it is being stored, but for your question see to it that it lies flat for longer periods of time while in storage. Laying it on it’s side short term won’t do any damage but for the long term there is real potential for issues.
Doug-You mentioned heat, do you find that the foam and upholstery are vulnerable to harsh weather conditions like cold or heat?
Greg-If you’re going to take it from a cold environment to a warmer one let it have time to heat up and acclimate to room temperature. The foam reacts to your body heat and it’s going to feel like a brick till it gets to room temperature especially in the case of memory foam products. The storage of it not so much.
Doug-You mentioned humidity; are there any problems with storing a mattress in cardboard?
Greg-Cardboard can offer great protection to a mattress while in storage. Many of the mattress we ship for you and our other customers are well protected in heavy-duty plastic bags and then boxed keeping them protected during transport by shipping companies all over the country. My concern with cardboard is only in damp environments. As I said we ship many of our mattresses in boxes, but cardboard is a material that can and does absorb water so dry storage is crucial.
Doug-Greg where do you think is the ideal place is to store a mattress? People seem to keep them in all kinds of different places storage units, garages, climate control storage units, warehouses, attics, and the list goes on. Personally we like the idea of climate-controlled environments how about you?
Greg-Yeah I think you’re right on with that. Dark and damp is a recipe for a mushroom farm (laughing) if you know what I mean? You’re going to have issues with mold and mildew that could ruin your mattress set.
Doug-Greg so here it is the most asked question we get asked.
What is the “best position” to put the mattress in when storing it?
People are very concerned that one storage position favors another. Some people think laying it flat is better, others say on their side, and some say you can place them standing on end. What are your thoughts?
Greg-I’d rather see the mattress lay flat. I mean that’s the way the mattress is built and that’s the way they are meant to be slept on. Short term you can lay it on its side and this is for the consumer, not the warehouse. Ideally, I guess if you’re going to have it vertical, you can compress the two together and have something that holds them together like a sandwich. The reason is gravity can cause shifting of the raw materials. (padding) The biggest problem you got in today’s world is the migration factors from heavy Visco foams gel foams or even latex. They lay atop some of the other foam products and the effects of gravity weight them down causing them to shift out of position.
Doug-Are those layers that you speak of usually quilted up in the surface Greg?
Greg-No a lot of time we are talking about two inches of memory or two inches of gel even two inches of latex and they are just heavier materials than the quilted layering that is on top of it.
Doug-So they can’t shift out of position and buckle just like an old baffled waterbed mattress?
Greg-Yes gravity is going to drag it down. They’re heavier so at some point you’re going to get this pinching spot and that is why laying a mattress down flat is better. You don’t want gravity working against it, that is why I suggested earlier if you must stand the mattress on its end or side you pancake or sandwic h the mattress and box spring t ogether tight so the layering is supported. Think of it like bookends for a mattress. You are fighting migration on the materials from gravity. And another thing pocketed coils are especially vulnerable due to their extreme weight. Pocket coils, in particular, are going to have more of that bowing effect than a standard open-end coil system that uses helical wires that connects and holds them stable. At Campbell, we go out of our way when it comes to pocket coils to glue almost every layer which most people have given up on because the cost prohibits it. This is the primary reason why we do a lot of the gluing of the layers, coils, and we glue inside the tub. Pocket coils due to their design become more floppy even making a mattress hard to carry.
One more thing I would like to mention to people that are thinking about storing mattresses. When moving them please be careful. Mattresses can be quite heavy and you can hurt yourself if you do not know how to lift properly or damage the mattress. I suggest hiring a professional mover. They can take care of the proper packaging for preparation of storage and should know how to handle the mattress warding off potential damage. They should be able to place your mattress in proper climate-controlled storage until you are ready to put it back into daily use.
Author: Douglas Belleville
Doug Belleville and his father Dave own and run STLBeds – a specialty sleep store located in Arnold, MO. The staff at STLBeds is highly educated about sleep, comfort and their special sleep products. STLBeds only carries high quality mattresses and bed-related products. You won’t find the brand names here – click here to find out why!
7 Tips for How to Store a Mattress and Box Spring
How To | September 26, 2019
It is hard to believe, but we spend over one-third of our lives sleeping! Having a good bed, box springs and mattress is an investment that could last a very long time. A bed set, including the headboard, box springs and mattress can cost thousands of dollars, so it is important to protect your investment. If properly maintained, a good bed set can last decades and mattresses and box springs can last at least 10 to 15 years. Even if you are an empty nester, and cleaning out a child’s bedroom, it might still be a good idea to keep their mattress for future needs.
Interested in learning the top box spring and mattress storage tips? Keep reading below.
Tips for Mattress Storage
What is the best way to store a mattress and keep it in good condition during moving or storage? Learn how to store a mattress below.
1. Avoid Storing Mattresses in the Basement
Basements can be damp, which could damage the mattress. In order to protect your mattress from potential damage, never store it in your basement. Also, keep mattresses away from pets and sharp objects.
2. Clean the Mattress Thoroughly
Before moving or storing a mattress, be sure to thoroughly clean the mattress. Use upholstery cleaner on the actual mattress and then vacuum both sides.
3. Take the Bed Frame Apart
Disassemble the bed for moving or placing it in storage. Keep all screws/nuts/bolts in a plastic bag taped to the frame or headboard for safe keeping. Cover the bed frame and headboard with old blankets during transit and during storage to protect from dust.
4. Use a Mattress Storage Cover
Invest in a mattress cover to protect the mattress in storage. Use a light, breathable plastic cover to cover the entire mattress. These usually cost $20 or less at stores. Secure the cover with tape and cover any holes or tears in the cover.
5. Keep the Mattress Flat in Storage
If you are storing a mattress on a long-term basis, then store it flat in the storage unit. This is actually opposite from what you read in most storage tips. It is okay to move the mattress on its side, but for storage, it is better to store flat as the coils and inner workings could shift by storing it on its side over a long period of time. When storing on the ground in a storage unit, lay a tarp on the ground first. You can also store the mattress on top of flat furniture.
6. Avoid Placing Items on Top of the Mattress
Do not store anything on top of a mattress. Heavy items can cause damage to the mattress material as well as possibly damaging the mattress springs.
7. Freshen Up the Mattress with Baking Soda
Once you are ready to remove the mattress from storage, freshen up the mattress before use. Sprinkle baking soda on both sides allowing the baking soda to absorb any odors and then remove via a vacuum.
More Tidy Life Tips
In this infographic, you will find more information regarding the importance of storing your mattress correctly as well as more mattress storage tips. Click below!
How to Store a Box Spring
Of course, if you have a box spring for your mattress, you’re also going to want to make sure you store it properly as well. Storing a box spring is very similar to storing a mattress, but much more simplified. Below are some tips for box spring storage:
1. Clean the Box Spring
Before storing your box spring, be sure to vacuum both sides. If it needs cleaned further, use a stain remover and rag to blot out stains.
2. Use a Mattress Storage Bag
Cover the box spring with a mattress storage bag. This will help to prevent dirt, dust or moisture from getting to your box spring.
3. Freshen up the Box Spring with Baking Soda
When you remove the box spring from storage, sprinkle it with baking soda to freshen it up.
Consider Storing a Mattress in a Storage Unit!
It is critical to protect your bed set, box springs and mattresses, while moving or in storage, so you will be able to use the items for many years to come. Self storage is a great home storage solution to keep these items protected until you need them again.
ezStorage has storage facilities in Washington, DC, Baltimore, MD and Northern Virginia. Reserve a 5×10, 10×10 or 10×15 storage unit for all of your household storage unit needs today!