As we begin to take notice of the impact we have on the planet, more and more Americans are looking for new ways to reduce carbon footprints, reuse resources whenever possible, and recycle the things that remain.
It’s a great policy — especially when it comes to mattresses. According to Earth911.com, “Each year in the U.S., 40 million mattresses are disposed of, and a mattress can take up as much as 40 cubic feet in a landfill.” Unfortunately, mattresses have traditionally been difficult for the average consumer to recycle.
Knowing your options is half the battle. These are a few choices available to mattress owners interested in recycling today. These help reduce the amount of mattresses that end up in landfills.
Remember a 100 percent natural latex mattress is 100 percent natural and recyclable.
The state of Connecticut passed a law requiring mattress manufacturers doing business in the state to take the reins when it comes to recycling and disposing of unwanted mattresses. Public Act 13-42, became the first law of its kind in the U.S.
It requires mattress manufacturers to assign a fee at the sale of each new mattress. These fees are to be set aside for the removal, recycling, and disposal of the mattress when it is no longer wanted. This project is not funded or administered by the state, but it does meet a very real need in the average mattress life cycle.
Some mattress companies across the country offer voluntary take-back programs. These programs recycle any mattresses you purchase from them once you’re finished with them.
Donate Old Mattresses
Donating is a great way to add years of service to a mattress that may not be quite at the end of its usefulness. Donating turns your old mattress into a gift to someone else. Who might be interested in mattress hand-me-downs? You might be surprised by some of the options on this list.
- Family members
- Adult children
- Freecycle Readers
- Shelters (homeless shelters, domestic abuse shelters, and such)
Local Mattress Recycling Programs
Many communities offer special days throughout the year where you can bring mattresses in for recycling. Some communities offer mattress recycling at landfill sites. The onus is on you to get the mattress there, but it’s better than allowing the mattresses to fill up more landfill space when it’s currently so scarce. Check with your local sanitary or waste management service to learn specific dates for community mattress recycling services.
Craigslist, secondhand furniture stores, community newspapers, and consignment stores in your area may be interested in purchasing your mattress. You make a little money, the mattress gets a few more years of use, and landfills aren’t yet filled with your old mattress.
Old Mattress Removal Programs
Some mattress manufacturers (like us here at PlushBeds) offer old mattress disposal services to anyone who purchases new mattresses from them. The removal applies to mattresses from other manufacturers. This allows you to purchase the mattress you want without worries about how to dispose of the old mattress you no longer want.
With mattresses occupying such a huge share of landfill space, it’s perfectly reasonable and responsible to seek alternative solutions once your mattress is no longer useful to you. Each of these recycling options is a good place to begin.
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