A latex mattress - especially one that's made from organic materials - can last many years if used, cleaned, and stored correctly.
Usage is easy. Simply follow the manufacturer’s guidelines regarding rotating the mattress to ensure even wear.
We've also covered cleaning before in this guide on how to clean a latex mattress the eco-friendly way.
So, that leaves me to cover storage.
In this article, I’ll cover everything you need to know about how to store a latex mattress properly so that it stays in good condition for as long as possible.
First, I’ll cover the basics, such as how to prepare your mattress for storage, the best way to store it, and how to protect it from damage.
Most people get this wrong!
Then, I’ll touch on some different situations that require one or two additional steps.
Let’s get started...
If you’re not using your latex mattress for a while, you might want to follow the steps below to properly store it away and prolong its usable life.
Any fabric that comes into contact with the mattress can hold moisture, leading to mold and mildew growth.
Before you store your latex mattress, you’ll want to take a close look at it for any signs of damage.
Pay close attention to the seams, edges, and surface of the mattress.
If you see any rips, tears, or holes, you’ll want to repair them before moving on. Otherwise, they could worsen over time and cause significant damage to the mattress.
If you don’t feel comfortable repairing the damage yourself, you can always get an expert to do the repair for you.
As I mentioned earlier, to find out more about the right way to clean your mattress, follow this guide.
To sum it up, you’ll want to use a vacuum with a hose attachment to remove dust, dirt, debris, dead skin cells, etc.
Then, you’ll want to spot-clean any stains with a mild non-toxic dish soap and water solution.
For stubborn stains, liquid dishwashing soap might not be enough. You may need an enzymatic cleaner. These use a combination of enzymes and good bacteria to break down the stains and any associated odors.
Just make sure to spot-test the cleaner on an inconspicuous area of the mattress first.
There are three main types of enzymes in enzymatic cleaners:
You can find enzymatic cleaners at most pet stores or online.
Once the mattress is clean, you’ll want to allow it to air dry completely before moving on to the next step.
I usually recommend drying things outside in direct sunlight to help kill odors and germs.
However, latex can deteriorate if exposed to too much sunlight, so I would limit the sun exposure to an hour at the end of the drying process.
If you don’t have the tools or time to clean the mattress yourself, plenty of professional mattress cleaning companies will do it for you. A quick Google search will give you plenty of options in your local area.
Once your latex mattress is clean, dry, and free of damage, you’ll want to prepare it for storage.
The best way to do this is to wrap it in a mattress bag. These heavy-duty plastic storage bags protect the mattress, and some even have handles that aid with moving the mattress.
Popping a couple of packets of silica gel into the bag or plastic cover will help keep the mattress dry and in A1 condition.
Now that your latex mattress is prepped and ready to go, it’s time to find a suitable storage location.
The ideal storage location is a cool, dry place with good ventilation.
A basement or spare bedroom would work perfectly. Just make sure the room is free of any moisture, pests, and excessive heat or cold.
If you live in a humid climate, you might consider using a dehumidifier in the room where you’re storing the mattress. This will help keep moisture levels low and prevent mold and mildew growth.
You should also place the mattress on a pallet or other raised surface to keep it off the ground. This will help prevent water damage in case of flooding and is especially important if your storage space is in the basement.
The mattress should be stored flat with nothing on top of it. Leaning a mattress against a wall, storing it on its side, or piling loads of other stuff on top will all have a damaging effect over time.
If you don’t have a suitable spot in your home for long-term storage, you can always rent a storage facility. Just be sure to do your research and find a clean and well-maintained unit. A temperature-controlled storage unit is ideal for mattress storage.
Transporting your mattress to the storage unit is where damage is most likely to happen. So be careful and use a suitable vehicle. For example, lying the mattress flat in the back of a truck or U-Haul is preferable to tying it to the roof of a Chevy Spark.
If you want extra transportation protection, consider using a lidded storage container or strong cardboard box in addition to the mattress bag.
Storing your mattress raised off the ground, or on a tarp, is also a good idea when using a storage unit.
When moving a mattress into a new home, you’ll want to transport it carefully, just like when moving it to a storage unit.
You’ll likely have lots of other things to move to your new home (not just your mattress), so it might be worth avoiding potential damage and unnecessary stress by hiring a professional removals company.
Your latex mattress might not be simply 100% latex. It might be a hybrid latex mattress containing a layer (or multiple layers) of innerspring coils.
Hybrid latex mattresses can be cumbersome, especially larger ones, so take extra care when lifting, moving, and transporting.
Also, due to the design of the coils, it’s doubly important to store flat. Storing on the side or corners may cause the coils to move and no longer provide the proper support.
You can store your latex mattresses for as long as you need to. There’s not really a time limit on mattress storage, providing you follow the steps outlined in this article.
However, if you’re planning on storing the mattress for many years, I recommend inspecting it and airing it (for a few hours) at least once every six months.
If your mattress gets wet, you’ll want to take immediate action to dry it off. You can do this by blotting the damp area with a clean, dry towel.
Once the excess moisture has been absorbed, you’ll want to place the mattress in a warm location to help speed up the drying process.
When the mattress is dry, you’ll want to inspect it for any signs of mold or mildew. If you find any, you’ll need to take steps to clean and remove the mold or mildew.
You can store your mattress outside, but you’ll want to take steps to protect it from the elements.
If you live in an area with high humidity, you may want to consider using a dehumidifier in the storage area.
You’ll also want to make sure the storage area is dry, clean, and free of dirt, dust, and other debris.
If your mattress is stored in a clean, dry location, it’s unlikely that bed bugs will infest it unless they were present before storage.
Bed bugs need a source of food (you! 🤢), so if you’re not sleeping on the mattress, there’s nothing to attract the pesky critters.
If you do find any, then these non-toxic sprays will get rid of them for you.
Yes, you can store your mattress on a sustainable and sturdy frame. This helps keep the mattress flat and off the floor. Just remember not to pile anything else on top of the mattress.
Providing you’ve stored the mattress correctly, it should be ready to use within a few hours.
Start by removing it from the mattress storage bag or container and placing it in the room where you will use it.
Next, sprinkle with baking soda and leave for a few hours. Finally, vacuum up the baking soda along with any dust or debris that may have accumulated during storage.
Many new latex mattresses are delivered compressed and rolled up in a plastic storage bag or cardboard box. Ideally, you should unbox immediately to give it time to unroll and off-gas as much as possible.
Leaving a new mattress in its box for a short time will not hurt it, but don’t leave it longer than two weeks. You can jeopardize the integrity of the foam by keeping the mattress compressed for too long.
Most mattresses should be rotated at least every six months. However, check with the manufacturer for advice specific to your mattress.
Now that you know how to store a latex mattress, you can rest assured that your mattress will be safe and sound while you don’t need it.
Just be sure to follow the tips above and take all the necessary precautions.
With a little care and attention, your mattress will be as good as new when you’re ready to use it again.
Have you stored a latex or memory foam mattress before? Do you have any tips I’ve missed? Drop me a line and let me know.