How to Get Rid of your Old Mattress?

How to Get Rid of your Old Mattress Australia

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Bulky and heavy – You can’t simply toss away a mattress. It requires planning. You hire a pick-up truck or drop it off at a waste collection centre near you or wait for city councils to organise hard rubbish collection drives. But discarding a mattress is not just a logistical problem, it also hurts the environment big time!

Yes, your mattress is choking the planet  

Around 1.25 million mattresses are sent to landfills in Australia every year and each mattress occupies up to 0.75 cubic metres of landfill space. Here’s why it’s a problem.

  • One, it overburdens our landfills. Even heavy-duty landfill equipment fail to compact the mattress, plus they face the danger of damage or jam at the hands of the innerspring.
  • Two, components like steel and polyurethane foam don’t degrade for decades, which make majority of the mattresses nothing but an indefinite guests in landfills.
Mattress recycling Australia facts

Australia mattress disposal options

But don’t sweat, there are many ethical and responsible ways to trash your mattress. Depending on your location and the condition of the mattress, you can either donate the mattress, opt for free/paid mattress removal or give it to a recycling unit. 

Here’s how… 

Mattress removal (Free)

  •  The Metropolitan Waste and Resource Recovery Group supports Melbourne’s 31 metropolitan councils to collect and refurbish end-of-life mattresses.
  • Some local councils offers free mattress pickup and recycling. To find out if your council supports such programs, click here.

Give it to a recycling unit (Paid)

Do you know 80% to 90% of your mattress can be recycled? That’s because typically a mattress is built of 12.5kg of steel, 2kg of timber, 1.5kg of foam and the rest is wadding and other fabrics. For instance, springs can be melted down into new steel and used in buildings, vehicles and appliances. Recovered timber can be reused as woodchips to manufacture particleboard, animal bedding and mulch. Foam, wadding and latex can make up carpet underlay. Fabrics can be used for mattress R&D. 

This option is best if…

It’s an end-of-life mattress.

How much does it cost?
On average, you can expect to pay around $40 for the mattress removal the comfort for your home.

Who can I give mattresses for recycling? 
  • Softlanding is unarguably the largest mattress recycler in Australia. It’s recovered 17,963 tonnes of steel springs, 8.297 tonnes of timber and of 5,914 foam from 190,296 mattresses so far.
  • While Softlanding services most of Australia, Bedcollect operates within Melbourne and Mattrec collects from Illawarra, Sutherland Shire, Western Sydney, Southern Highlands and Macarthur Nowra.
  • 1800-GOT-JUNK is another mattress removal and recycling service.
  • You can also hire a skip bin or book a rubbish removal service to discard your mattress responsibly.

Donate to a charity

If your mattress looks and functions just fine but is of no longer use to you, donate it to a national or local charity or homeless shelter. Such organisations are always looking for vital donations like mattresses and are more than happy to arrange a free pick-up. And if they can’t, consider dropping it off yourself. Not only will it be a good deed for the society but also the environment.

This option is best if…
Your mattress is old yet in good condition.
 

Where can I donate?
Charities like St Vincent de Paul Society, The Salvation Army, Haven Home Safe, Habit for Humanity, The Generous & The Grateful and donatedirect.org.au welcome pre-loved mattresses. An equally noble idea would be to call up dog shelters and check if their pooches need new beds.

Resell it

If you’d like to make some money off your old mattress, go ahead, put it out in the secondhand market. Upload a good photo or two of the mattress along with specs and details, quote a price and hopefully a buyer should contact you soon.

This option is best if…
If you are moving to a new city or country and don’t want to lug your old mattress.

Where can I resell it?
Facebook Marketplace, eBay, Gumtree and Carousell are some of the popular secondhand marketplaces.

 

Now let’s tell you how not dispose of your mattress

  • Don’t dump the mattress on the kerb, roadside or abandoned areas. Not only is it an uncivil thing do, it’s considered illegal in cities like Sydney and Melbourne and can levy fines. This unlawful act of dumping the trash is called fly-tipping.
  • Don’t burn mattresses as they are filled with toxic materials such as foam, synthetic latex and flame retardants. The fumes released can irritate eyes, throat, nose and even cause nausea, if you are in close proximity. In fact, burning rubbish in the open/in the backyard is prohibited in Sydney, Wollongong, Newcastle regions and other council areas under the Clean Air Regulation.

And should you not want to throw away your dear mattress… 

Get creative. Reuse and upcycle your mattress!

Turn it into a porch sofa or a bed for your pet. You might find it very funny but people extract innersprings and bed frames to make gardening walls, jewellery holders, vases, book stands, kitchen racks, chandeliers, memory boards, office organisers, headboards for bed, compost boxes and what not.

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