How To Dispose Of Your Old Mattress – UK

Wondering how to get rid of your mattress? It can sometimes be difficult to find the best way to dispose of your old mattress. Depending on the condition of it there may be multiple ways to get rid of it without having to be hit with an unexpected fee. We have compiled a few different ways of getting rid of your mattress, these include selling it online, donating it to charity and arranging a pickup from a mattress company. 

It can also be tricky to dispose of your mattress while being environmentally responsible and not breaking the bank. We do all have a responsibility to dispose of our mattress correctly.

It is estimated that around 200,000 tonnes of UK landfill are taken up by old mattresses with up to 30% of them able to be recycled in some way. Currently, just 15% of mattresses are recycled, mainly due to cost and ease of access to recycling facilities for the average consumer. With this in mind, it is always a better option if you can recycle your mattress instead of taking it to a landfill site. 

If you are looking for a new bed our buyers guide may help. This can be found here.

When do I need a new bed?

It may not always be the easiest to decide when to buy a new mattress. Here are a few key signs to help you make the decision:

  • If you can feel the springs when laying on the mattress.
  • Your mattress is over 10 years old (may vary depending on the material used in mattress)
  • There is dipping or sagging in one area.
  • Your weight changes a large amount from when you bought the mattress.
  • You are not getting a good night’s sleep on the mattress.
  • You are waking up during the night uncomfortable.
  • You are getting aches or pains from your mattress.
  • Your allergies are worsened when sleeping.
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Selling your mattress

Sometimes it may be that you are moving and unable to take your mattress with you or are due to have an upgrade. If your old mattress is still in good shape and has no stains on it then selling can be a great option. The best places to sell it on would be the Facebook marketplace, preloved, gumtree and many others. These are easiest because you can sell the mattress on your terms. Make sure to discount it from its original price though to make selling easier.

Fedex van

Donating your mattress to charity

Another option if your mattress is still in good condition is to donate it to charity. It is estimated that 1 in 10 people who are in serious debt do not own a mattress and charities can help out people in need with the help of your donation. You are also helping reduce the amount going to landfill each year. Quite often the charities have collection teams who can take the mattress off your hands-free of charge. Several well-known charities such as the Red Cross and the Salvation Army will collect mattresses if they are still in good condition. Many of these mattresses will be sold and the proceeds are put to good use. A quick call to one of these charities can help you find out what they do with donated mattresses. If you have a local charity in mind you can easily find out if they accept mattresses with a quick phone call.

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How to get rid of my mattress?

The majority of local councils offer a bulky waste collection and disposal service, including beds and mattresses. The best way to check this is to search on your local council website. This can prove to be very expensive and if you are looking to get your old mattress recycled then there is no guarantee of this.

Your local tip will take your old mattress, getting it there may present a challenge sometimes but if it does not fit inside your car then you may be able to fold it using cable ties or look to borrow a van from a friend or someone in the local area. Social media websites can be useful to search for this help and someone may be willing to do it for a small charge.

If you are struggling with any of these options then there are specialist mattress disposal companies such as collect your old bed or Mattress recycling ltd that will dispose of your mattress at your convenience.

Old mattress springs

If you live in England or Wales, you can find out how much your council will charge for bulky waste disposal by typing your postcode into the website. If you live in Scotland or Northern Ireland, go to your council’s website and search for bulky waste disposal.

Make sure to clarify with the council about what you need picking up first as a frame and a mattress will often be counted as 2 items and if you have a large divan base that is in multiple sections with a headboard they charge even more. 

If you have a skip handy and were not planning on recycling your mattress then putting it in that can save you a trip to the skip. Make sure to check with the skip company beforehand as some charge extra due to the bulky nature of mattresses. Sometimes up to an extra £30! It is still better than options such as fly-tipping and burning your mattress which can land you with some large fines. 


In a survey by Which it was found that 1% of people reported burning their old mattress. This is not a good way of disposing of your mattress as due to the different materials in them, especially memory foam does not burn well and maybe releasing damaging fumes into the environment. 

Taking your mattress to your local recycling centre can be an easy trip away from getting rid of your old mattress. Most local centres can be checked online for the items they accept and opening times. Again you will need a vehicle that is suitable to take a mattress away with. Some may offer a pickup service for an additional fee, however.

Despite mattresses being mostly made from recyclable materials only around 15% are recycled each year in the UK. The majority are sent to landfill even though they are very bulky and can take up to 10 years to break down with some parts such as springs taking a massive amount more. If they are recycled however the old mattress can be broken down into parts with springs being melted down and foam being reused into other products. Unfortunately, the reality is that recycling a mattress is not cost-efficient. Due to their different layers and small individual parts they can be very expensive to break down. The cost is reducing all the time though and independent recycling companies are well worth checking out. 

Mattress company pickup

Becoming more popular is mattress companies offering an option to pick up your old mattress. Many local shops offer this for free as part of the sales package but you can also find it at the bigger high-street retailers such as Ikea and Argos for an additional fee of around £20. Many mattresses companies such as Emma, Eve sleep and Casper also offer this service for a varying fee. One thing to be wary about is that mattress in box companies offer a free trial for their mattress and if it does not suit you and you send it back to them you may be left without a mattress at all! To avoid this you can also arrange a pick up with the many mattress collection companies. These can offer an easy solution to get rid of your old mattress. A few things to check first though is to see if they recycle the mattress

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