No matter how much we love a mattress, at some point, it's time to move on. The same goes for a favorite bed, although beds seem to last longer than mattresses. When you decide it's time, there are some simple tips to help you.
There are even a few ways to help you figure out when that time has come. So here's a hint: if it's been seven years, it's time to think about it.
Have you gone nose blind?
When was the last time you stripped your bed and mattress of linens and smelled the mattress? I don't mean from across the room or when your freshly laundered linens are billowing over the mattress. I mean, sniffing your mattress up close. If even the thought of this scares you, take my word for it, it's time to get a new mattress.
"To the best of my knowledge, there is no scientific answer to the mattress weight and dust mite query," says Glen Needham, an entomologist at Ohio State University.
However, even though no one has conducted a scientific study on the matter, many people have noticed after a few years, their mattress weighs more. Why? Because the longer we sleep on them, the more dead skin cells and the more dust mites and mite droppings a mattress can absorb. 'Nuff said.
What does the Rorschach Test on your mattress tell you?
Not that this has happened to anyone I know, but little accidents on a mattress can add up. Before you know it, your mattress can look like a high school geography map or an unfortunate historical pictograph. Of course, you could try to scrub it, but just like when you put something on the internet, it's really, really, difficult to get it off.
Most Important Rule: Don't trust the handles on a mattress
Back in the day, people used to flip their mattresses often, and that's why manufacturers started putting handles on the sides. Unfortunately, once manufacturers figured out how to save a few bucks, the handles became all show and no go. I can't tell you how many people have ripped the handles clean off their mattress even if they were being careful. There are only a few mattress companies left that build a mattress with sturdy, proper handles.
How to move a mattress – even if it's to another room.
- Please don't lift it by the handles. Unless you are certain they will hold (see above), do your best to avoid the handles.
- If it's a traditional mattress, it might be quite easy to move with another person. If it's a memory foam mattress, you might want to roll it up and secure the mattress with ratchet straps first.
- Protect it with a mattress bag. You could use a couple of old fitted bed sheets to cover up the top and underside of the mattress, but a mattress bag is more durable, and it can keep it drier.
- If you're putting the mattress into a moving truck, double-bagging your mattress, and sealing it shut with strong packing tape is a good idea.
- Do not keep your mattress in a mattress bag for more than a few days. The moisture trapped inside will promote the growth of mold.
- If the move is over a long distance or if you're planning to store the mattress, use a breathable material like moving blankets to avoid damaging your mattress. Do not use a plastic or non-breathable fabric. Protecting your mattress is important, but a plastic or non-breathable covering will damage the mattress.
- Please make sure your moving company understands the issue of trapped moisture so that they use the proper method to protect your mattress.
"It's not heavy; I can lift it by myself."
These are among the most famous last words. A mattress can be deceptively heavy and awkward, even if it's not a king size. These are some basic things to keep in mind when lifting the mattress.
- Have at least one other capable person to help you move the mattress
- Whenever possible, slide the mattress instead of lifting it. A protective mattress covering will prevent scuffs, tears, and damage to your mattress and walls. Sometimes, even the doorway transition strips in your flooring can damage a mattress.
- If you're carrying your mattress with another person, make sure both people can see where they are going. You don't want one person to be walking backward unless absolutely necessary.
- Keep the mattress on its side whenever possible.
- Check the box spring to see how heavy it is. Generally speaking, they aren't as heavy as mattresses, but it's better to be sure before you try moving them yourself.
A bit about moving beds
Not too many people still have those giant four-poster beds or the heavy brass bed frames anymore. It's too bad. Yes, they were difficult to move, but they could last forever.
Many of today's beds are made of particleboard, and they aren't the most durable. Taking a bed apart, moving it, and putting it back together is not that easy. Accidents can happen, and when they do, it won't matter how much bubble wrap was used.
What to do with your old mattress or bed? Here are some suggestions:
- As long as it's in good condition, donate the bed and mattress to a local shelter
- Depending on your move, it might be less expensive and less trouble to have a new mattress delivered to your new place.
- You might get a good price for your bed on a neighborhood website.
- Have one last pillow fight with the old mattress outside and then discard it.
- Relatives with a growing family might be looking for a mattress and bed; it doesn't hurt to ask.