Every homeowner at one point or another, encounters the problem of needing to fold their mattress. It is not an easy task, however, and usually requires a lot more effort than just hauling it from the floor of your bedroom to the bed next to it. Most mattresses are too big and cumbersome to lift, so this process is usually done with the use of some sort of sheet metal or wooden plank.
So, the next time you need to store your mattress, before you pack it up in a box or bag, consider folding it first. Folded correctly, a mattress will take up half the space that it would if left unfolded. It’s also much easier to transport and store when folded into halves or even thirds.
How To Fold an Innerspring Or Hybrid Mattress
Folding a mattress is easy but requires some knowledge and patience — especially if your mattress has an innerspring construction. The following recommended method is for an innerspring mattress (such as pocket, or a Bonnell spring type) but can also be applied to hybrid mattresses:
The first step in mattress folding is to actually remove your bedding from the mattress. If you have a waterproof mattress protector or bed bug cover, you should remove it, too, as it will allow the mattress to breathe better when in storage. The standard included mattress cover can stay on for added protection. However, it will be easier to fold a mattress without its cover.
Pull the entire mattress down and away from the headboard. This will give you enough leverage to begin folding.
Next, place a large flat object, such as a wooden plank, across the center of your mattress (if you want to fold it into two). If you do not have one, you can use anything else that’s large, flat and strong. This will be used to keep the mattress folded in half and not unfold during the process. If folding into three pieces (two folds), place the wooden plank across the mattress width where you want the first fold to be. Generally, this would be in the top third area of the mattress.
You’ll need two people to hold the plank securely on either side. Now, standing at the foot of the bed, fold the mattress upwards and toward the head of the bed, ensuring it folds where the plank is held.
Slide the board out, and make sure someone is holding down the area of the mattress that has just been folded.
Now, place the board on the top third of the mattress and fold upwards as you did with the first section, folding it over onto the first part that has already been folded.
That’s it, done! However, you’ll now want to tie the mattress down to keep it from unfolding. Secure with a few bungee cords if you have them, or rope or string if you don’t.
If you don’t bag it up and tie it down just yet, put it against a wall so it doesn’t roll around.
Ideally, you’ll want to store it in a plastic mattress bag to keep it from getting damp and dirty.
How To Fold a Memory Foam Mattress
Memory foam and latex mattresses are easier to fold because there is no resistance from springs. If your mattress does not have an innerspring construction, you can fold it in the same way mentioned above. Just remember a few things:
- If it’s quite thin, 6 inches, for example, you can even fold it into quarters, with three folds.
- The same can also be applied to a memory foam mattress topper.
- You might need fewer people as the lack of springs should make it easier to fold. However, memory foam mattresses can be very heavy, so although one person might be able to successfully fold it, two people or more are recommended for safe and easy transportation.
- You probably won’t need a plank, as the memory foam should give in to your folding pressure easier.
- You can put your folded foam mattress inside a vacuum bag for storage, which will save you a lot of space whether you choose to transport or store it. You can buy mattress bags, but not all of them allow for a vacuum seal. Try to buy one which can be compressed by sucking out the air using a vacuum cleaner. This will make the mattress easier to transport and store.
- When placing a memory foam mattress in the moving van, to help retain its original shape, try not to place anything on top of the mattress. Keep the folded mattress flat and use the right vehicle. Don’t squash it into a tight trunk over long-distance journeys while moving house to house because this will damage its shape and ultimately reduce its lifespan and also affect your quality of sleep.
Helpful Tips For Storing and Moving a Mattress
- If you feel you must leave your mattress in the sun or unattended for long intervals of time (such as if you make frequent trips to another location or if you live in a hot environment), make sure that at least one side of the mattress is never exposed to the sun for more than two hours at a time.
- If you’re concerned about dirt, spills and humidity, we recommend placing each mattress on a flat sheet and stacking them into the cart.
- If it’s not in a plastic bag, to keep your mattress clean, you can use a vacuum or dust mop, as well as throw a sheet over it to protect it from spills and dirt.
- When storing a mattress, use thick blankets to protect your mattress and launder them frequently to prevent mold and mildew buildup.
- If you have difficulty folding your mattress in half, there are special tool kits for mattresses, which we’ve found to be very helpful but will add to the cost of moving home.
- We also recommend these knotless rope straps to wrap around and secure your mattress, which holds it in place when transporting; they are inexpensive and multipurpose as well (and can be used to carry multiple folded mattresses on public transit if you need to move more than one).
- Within your house, consider using a moving cart to manoeuvre around your furniture and transport your mattress to where you want it.
- If you have a folding bed (as pictured above), provided that your mattress isn’t too thick, it should bend in half quite easily using the force applied by the bed mechanism. You can then pull the mattress out of the sides and store/wrap/tie it accordingly.
Now that you know how to roll a mattress, you are armed with the knowledge needed to make your mattresses fit in your moving truck. Maybe now you can better prepare for moving into a new place and fitting all of your belongings into a small van or SUV.
As you can see, it will often require more than one person to fold and move a mattress, especially if it’s a queen or king-size mattress; remember, innerspring, and memory foam mattresses can weigh up to 100 lbs. You should also remember that once it’s folded, you’ll need to keep it from unfolding, often requiring duct tape or tie-down straps. Lastly, don’t forget to keep it from getting dirty or wet, which can be avoided by placing it in a heavy-duty plastic bag.
If you have any questions about how to move a mattress or specific folding information, don’t hesitate to get in touch with us here or send us an email. If you have any suggestions for this guide, please send those along as well!
Finally, if you’d like to find out how to purchase a new mattress in the first place, we recommend you take a look at some of our best mattresses of 2022.
Lindsay is a contributor and the senior editor of all content posted on this site. She is in this role due to her somewhat unrivaled expertise through previous retail experience in the mattress and bedding industry.