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Don't Start Your Move Without a Plan for Your Mattress. Here's How to Do It

Moving a mattress doesn't need to be complicated. Learn the best steps for getting your old bed into your new space.

Arielle Burton Associate Content Manager
Arielle Burton is an associate content manager on CNET's Performance Optimization team. She graduated from Hofstra University in New York. Prior to joining CNET, she worked with legacy news (ABC7NY and Fox Business Network) and tech companies (Mashable). She specializes in crafting compelling alerts, building community engagement on news platforms, and optimizing CNET's content for all audiences. Ultimately, Arielle is a digital media professional by day and a fierce chef by night.
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Arielle Burton
4 min read
two professional movers in red shirts and overalls carry a mattress down a flight of stairs

Use a mattress cover to protect it from damage during the move.

Andrey Popov/Getty Images

Moving can be very stressful if you don't have a solid plan. One of the most important things you want to prepare for is moving your mattress. After a long day of moving into a new place, having a comforting and inviting place to lay your head can make all the difference.

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Two things you should ask yourself before moving your mattress: 1) how old is it; and 2) what condition is it in? Typically mattresses last about seven to 10 years, depending on how well they're taken care of. First figure out if you need to trash your old mattress and get a brand new one for your new place or keep your current one.

If you decide your mattress is good enough to move, here's what you need to know. Follow the steps below to prevent damage and wasted time.

Read more: Best Moving Companies for 2023

Make a mattress plan once you know your move date

For moving a bed and mattress, consider the details of the heavy lifting. If you own a queen- or king-sized mattress, you might need one other person to help you navigate your way out of your old place into your new one. Also, they can help you secure your mattress during your move.

However, if you don't want to move the mattress at all you can always hire professional movers.

Read More: Trusted Moving Companies: How to Find Movers You Can Rely On

If you have a bedframe, decide if you should break it down or if it will fit through your door frames. If you decide to keep it together make sure you have proper transportation big enough to hold your entire frame. Hashing these details out ahead of time can save you from stressing and wasting time.

professional movers mattress

Young men in uniform moving a mattress, up a flight of stairs.

Getty Images - AndreyPopov

Get a mattress cover for moving

This step for moving your mattress is not mandatory, but it's highly recommended. Purchasing a mattress cover will limit damages to your mattress during the move. 

While there are other clever hacks like taking sheets and wrapping them around your mattress, covers for moving mattresses are fairly inexpensive. There are plastic covers you can purchase at your local department store and trash once you use it. Then there are reusable covers you can buy from Amazon to keep and store for your next move.

While you are shopping for a cover, consider getting some tie down straps too. These straps can secure the mattress inside of a truck or van to keep it in place while driving.

First, strip your mattress of all bedding 

Okay, so you decided your mattress is a keeper and you have your moving supplies. Before you move your mattress, you'll want to remove your sheets, comforter, pillowcases and anything else on it. It's highly recommended that you wash your sheets and comforter before packing them. Then everything is fresh and clean when you unpack in your new place.

Read More: The Best Way to Machine-Wash Your Sheets, Comforter and Pillowcases

Getty Images - Carlo A

Next, clean the mattress

After stripping off all the bedding,  you want to make sure to clean the mattress. Over time your mattress will accumulate germs and dust bunnies so vacuum it well, then wipe it down with warm water and a touch of dish soap.

Read More: How to Clean Your Mattress at Home

Clear your walkway to make space for your mattress

In the rush of moving sometimes clearing a walkway is the last thing on your mind. In order to ensure safety for you and your helpers, make sure there is space for you to get your mattress through your old home

Transporting your mattress on moving day 

Now it's time to put your mattress plan into action. With your helpers, if needed, load your mattress into your truck or van. 

For mattresses with coils or springs, transport them positioned on their side, ideally between large furniture for extra stability. Most memory foam mattresses should be transported while flat, though you should definitely check with your manufacturer for specific recommendations for moving. 

Read More: How Big a Moving Truck Do I Need? Get the Right Size Rental Truck

Most moving experts do not recommend strapping a mattress to the top of a car. Along with the very real danger of the mattress falling or flying off, it's also much more prone to scratches, tears or damage to the coils or springs.

After you bring your mattress into your new place, be sure to wipe it down and give it a quick clean. During the move, dirt and germs can accumulate. Once you have cleaned surfaces, now it's time to unpack the rest of your stuff and get settled into your new pad.