How To Clean Your Mattress And Box Spring

cleaning a mattress

Chances are you are going to spend more time in your bed than anywhere else. In fact, the National Sleep Foundation recommends about 8 hours each night for adults. So if you are sleeping like you should, you will end up spending a third of your life in bed. So, you are going to want to have a bed that is comfortable, clean and well kept.

When you think of a comfortable bed, you probably think about your mattress. But don’t forget about your box spring. You will sleep much better knowing that your mattress and box spring are as they should be.

Your mattress and box spring clearly won’t fit into your front loader, but they still need cleaning. Just like your bedding, your mattress and box spring need regular cleaning to remove stains, skin cell build up, pet hair, and other common contaminants. Two reasons to clean your mattress — when you are trying to prevent a stain from settling in permanently (spills, bed wetting, accidents, etc.) and for regular maintenance. Your box springs don’t typically need to be cleaned as often as your mattress unless something truly messy happens. If that does happen, you should clean box springs the same way you’d clean a mattress.

Cleaning Your Mattress

When an accident happens, the faster you can get it cleaned, the less chance it will set in permanently. And, depending on what was spilled, the better chance you have to prevent odors from developing. The following steps should help you avoid having permanent stains and those pesky odors.

The first step, of course, is to strip the bed and wash the linens. Then check the manufacturer’s tag on your mattress — assuming it is still there. When you clean your mattress, you want to use the hottest settings that fit the instructions. The heat will kill the dust mites on your linens. Now, get to work on that mattress. Follow these steps:

  1. Vacuum it: The best tool to use here is your vacuum cleaner’s upholstery attachment. Start at the top of the mattress. Then work your way down using overlapping, narrow paths. Do the same thing for the sides of your mattress. The other side of your mattress will come later.
  2. Deodorize with baking soda: Sweat builds up over time and will begin to smell if isn’t cleaned. So, you will want to sprinkle your mattress with baking soda and softly rub it in with a scrub brush. Doing this will get the baking soda into the fabric where that smell is. Let the baking soda sit for about 10 minutes.
  3. Vacuum again: When you scrub the baking soda into the mattress, that allows it to attach to the moisture and body oils that are in the top layers of the mattress. Running the vacuum again will suck the moisture and odors out of the mattress.
  4. Treat the stains: For the most part, any stain on your mattress is going to be blood, urine or some other bodily fluid.
mattress care
Beautiful contemporary bedroom
  • Blood stains: To get these stains out, use a mixture of ¼ cup hydrogen peroxide and 1 tbsp. each of liquid dish soap and table salt. Spread the paste on the stain (lightly) and let it dry. After it has dried, scrape off the residue. If any portion of the stain is still there, dab it with a white rag that has been dipped into hydrogen peroxide. Rotate the cloth as the stain comes off.
  • Urine stains: Urine stains are difficult to get out, but it can be done. Try this technique: Dissolve three tbsp. Of baking soda into eight oz. of hydrogen peroxide. Add a drop or two of liquid dish soap. Now dab the solution right onto the stain. Be sure not to use too much and drench the mattress. If the stain is not eliminated, wait until the spot is dry and then whisk together three tablespoons of dry laundry detergent powder and one tablespoon of water to make a dry foam. Lightly spread the paste over the stain and let it sit for 30 minutes. Use a spoon to scrape off the dried paste. Then, use a white cloth that has been dipped in the hydrogen peroxide to remove and remaining parts of the stain. Finally, vacuum over the stained area.
  • Other fluids: Before you start, we suggest opening a window or two. Use a white rag. Blot the area of the stain with undiluted household ammonia. Be careful not to drench the mattress. Then, wipe the area with a clean, damp cloth. Sprinkle the area with baking soda. This will remove the moisture that is still there and neutralize the ammonia smell. Finally, vacuum the area after it has dried out.
  1. Flip your mattress over and repeat the steps: To keep your mattress in optimum condition, flip it each quarter. Do this to ensure your mattress will wear evenly and to maximize its lifespan.
  2. Now, protect it: Cleaning your mattress may not be as fun as it sounds. If you don’t want to go through this process over and over, consider using a washable mattress cover.

Bed Care — Because We Care

Wilding Wallbeds wants to help you get the most out of your bed — whether it is a Murphy Bed, wall bed or a regular bed. That is the reason behind the Ultimate Bed Care Guide. With the proper maintenance, your bed should keep you comfortable for years to come. Take care of your bed and it will take care of you. For more information about bed maintenance, check out these guides on Taking Care Of Your Sheets And Pillowcase; Pillow, Blanket And Comforter Care; Stains And How To Clean Them; and General Cleaning And Mattress Maintenance. Or you can contact Wilding Wallbeds for assistance with any bed care questions and concerns.

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