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How to Deep Clean a Mattress at Home

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how to deep clean mattress at home
Table of Content
October 12, 2023

Have you ever thought about how much time you spend in your bed? If you sleep for 7 hours every night, it adds up to 49 hours a week, which translates to 196 hours per month and approximately 2352 hours a year. This amounts to around a third of your life, a significant portion, wouldn't you agree?

Just like any other frequently used item in your home, your bed requires regular cleaning. This goes beyond merely changing your bed linen on a weekly basis; you should also make sure to keep your mattress clean and tidy.

Why is regular mattress cleaning important, and how frequently should you do it? In this article, you'll discover the answers. Furthermore, we'll provide you with a step-by-step guide on how to clean a mattress at home.

However, it's essential to keep in mind that no matter how diligently you clean your mattress, tackling all the dirt, dust and grime with DIY methods alone can be a challenge. Therefore, be sure to schedule professional mattress cleaning at least twice a year to guarantee immaculate results.

Ensuring your mattress is spotless is crucial, but let's not forget the importance of thorough end of tenancy cleaning, where every nook and cranny of your rented space must sparkle to secure your deposit return, and sometimes, hiring professional end of tenancy cleaners is necessary to achieve those perfect results.

Why is it essential to deep clean a mattress?

professional cleaner vacuuming a mattress

Keeping your mattress clean is crucial, not only for extending its lifespan but also for your overall well-being. But, how can a dirty mattress impact your health?

First of all, your mattresses tend to accumulate dust, dirt, and allergens, just as everything in your home including your couch and other upholstered furniture, your carpets and flooring, and so on. Over time, the build-up of dust mites can exacerbate, resulting in unpleasant odours. Not to mention that they have the potential to trigger allergy symptoms, particularly if you are susceptible to allergens. All of these issues can significantly affect the quality of your sleep, which is something nobody wants.

Furthermore, an unclean mattress can potentially harbour harmful microorganisms like bacteria, dust mites and mould. Exposure to these pathogens can be detrimental to your health, particularly if you have a compromised immune system or are prone to allergies.

Overall, we can say that cleaning your mattress properly and regularly is essential not only for its longevity but also for ensuring a good night's sleep as well as safeguarding your overall health and well-being.

How to clean a mattress: step-by-step

cleaning a mattress with a vacuum cleaner

You can easily clean your mattress at home using some common household items like a vacuum cleaner, baking soda, and dish soap. In this section, we'll take you through the step-by-step cleaning process.

Following the tips below will help ensure your bed remains fresh, hygienic, and a more inviting place to sleep. However, if you're dealing with stubborn stains or persistent odours, it's advisable to consider professional cleaning services. Additionally, it's crucial not to postpone addressing such issues for too long, as the longer stains and odours linger, the more challenging they become to eliminate.

Now, let's delve into the essential part: how to clean a mattress at home?

Step 1: Preparation

Of course, the starting point for any cleaning endeavor involves gathering the necessary tools and supplies. But first things first, before you roll up your sleeves, make sure to check the manufacturer's recommendations for your mattress. You can typically find this information on the tag or label attached to the actual mattress. This step is essential because various types of mattresses may demand distinct approaches. In certain instances, there may be specific products that are advised against using.

Now that you've checked out the care label instructions, it's time to gather the tools and supplies you'll need to give your mattress a deeper clean. Nothing fancy here, and you probably already have these items lying around at home. You'll need a vacuum cleaner, a little bit of mild dish soap (or you can even use laundry detergent), baking soda, warm water, and a handful of clean towels.

Step 2: Removing bedding

Start by gathering all your bedding, including bed linens, removable covers, and protectors, and toss them into the wash using a high-temperature setting. This will help eliminate any lurking germs or bacteria. If you're aiming for a thorough clean for your sleeping environment, consider washing your pillows and the mattress topper (if you use one) as well. Just be sure to double-check the care instructions to ensure they can handle a spin in the washing machine.

Now, if your mattress isn't too big and of course, if it is possible, consider taking out in the sun. It's a fantastic way to freshen things up. But if lugging it outside isn't an option, don't fret. Just crack open your bedroom windows and let your mattress breathe.

Step 3: Vacuuming the mattress surface

A vacuum cleaner is your go-to tool for effectively eliminating dust, hair, debris and dead skin cells from the mattress surface. It is usually best done with the upholstery attachment of the machine, but it is not essential so it is not a big deal if you don't have one on hand.

Use small circular motions across the entire mattress surface, making sure you pick up as much dust and dirt as possible. Pay close attention to seams, crevices, and the edges.

Step. 4: Stain removal

Now comes the challenging part - dealing with stains. Whether they're from spills, accidents, or other biological sources, can not only be unsightly but also unhygienic. Ideally, you'd attend to them promptly after they happen. However, in many cases, this isn't feasible, especially if you have pets or children.

In this section, we will share with you practical and effective ways to remove mattress stains using some household goods. Of course, you also have the option to use a commercial stain remover. However, make sure to select one that is appropriate for your mattress and follow the provided instructions carefully.

Removing fresh stains

Let's begin with the better scenario, which is spotting the stain promptly. First, you will need to quickly grab a clean towel or cloth and gently dab the affected area. Aim to soak up as much moisture as possible.

Now, in order to effectively remove stains, you basically have two options - using baking soda or mild dish detergent. The baking soda technique is very quick and straightforward. All you need to do is get a damp cloth and gently pat the affected area with it. Then sprinkle baking soda over the spot and leave it to act for 30 minutes to an hour. After that, simply dab the region with a rinsed cloth until the stain lifts. Lastly, use a vacuum cleaner to eliminate any remaining residue, ensuring that the area is fully dry beforehand.

For the other approach, you will need to make a cleaning solution by mixing mild dish detergent with cold water. You can either place it in a spray bottle or use a container. Spray the solution onto the stain or dampen a clean cloth with it, then start blotting the affected area.

Both the baking soda and dish soap methods are effective, so feel free to choose the one that suits you best. In fact, you can even use both: start by addressing the stain with dishwashing soap and follow up with a layer of baking soda if needed.

Removing dried urine stains

Dried urine stains on a mattress can be more challenging to remove than fresh stains. However, there are some cleaning products such as hydrogen peroxide and enzyme cleaner that may be helpful in such situations.

So, what you need to do is mix equal parts of 3% hydrogen peroxide and cold water in a spray bottle. Spray this solution directly onto the dried urine stain, but take care not to oversaturate the mattress. Next, gently blot the area with a clean towel or cloth. Keep blotting until you notice the stain beginning to lift. After the blotting process, rinse the area with plain water by dampening a clean cloth and gently blotting the spot once more to remove any residual detergent. When you're finished, open your windows to let some fresh air into the room and allow the mattress to dry completely.

If you opt for an enzyme cleaner to address the affected area, be sure to adhere to the manufacturer's instructions for that particular product. Usually, you'll either spray or dab the enzyme cleaner onto the dried urine stain, ensuring thorough saturation. Allow it to sit for the recommended time indicated by the product. Afterwards, gently blot the area with a clean cloth or paper towel. Some enzyme cleaners may suggest lightly rubbing the area as well to aid in breaking down the stain.

Regardless of the product you choose, always conduct a patch test on a concealed area of the mattress first. If visible stains persist even after applying these cleaning methods, it is best to consider hiring professional cleaners.

Removing dried blood stains

To remove an old blood stain from your mattress, you can use either the dish soap or baking soda methods mentioned earlier (refer to "removing fresh stains"). However, you may need to repeat the pointed steps a few times for optimal results.

Another effective approach is to utilize hydrogen peroxide. Mix equal parts of 3% hydrogen peroxide and cold water, then directly apply this solution to the dried blood stain. Gently blot the stain with a clear cloth until you notice it beginning to lift.

Alternatively, you can experiment with a product like Vanish. Start by lifting the stain with a damp cloth, then apply the Vanish solution to the affected area. After a few minutes, dab the stain again with a damp cloth.

Regardless of your chosen spot-cleaning method, avoid using hot water or heat, as they may set the blood stains further. If the stain persists, it might be prudent to seek help from professional cleaning services or consult the mattress manufacturer for specific cleaning recommendations.

Step 5: Deodorizing

Baking soda is a fantastic option for deodorizing your mattress. It can help eliminate odours, absorb moisture, and freshen up your bedding. All you need to do is sprinkle a layer of the powder over the entire surface and leave it for a few hours. For best results, let the baking soda sit overnight.

Once the baking soda has had time to work its magic, employ a vacuum cleaner with an upholstery attachment to thoroughly remove it. Ensure that you eliminate all the baking soda to prevent any residue that might cause skin irritation or discomfort.

To maintain a pleasant mattress scent for an extended period, you can create a mixture of water and a few drops of your favorite essential oil in a pump bottle. Lightly spray the mattress surface with this mixture. You might choose calming essential oils like chamomile or lavender to create a soothing and relaxing aroma that enhances your sleep environment.

Step 6: Finishing touches

Whenever you embark on a comprehensive mattress cleaning mission, don't forget to pay attention to your bed frame or fabric headboard as well. Take the time to dust and vacuum it thoroughly, eliminating all the lurking dirt and dust. Pay extra care to the slats and the areas where the mattress rests. If your bed frame isn't upholstered, you can simply wipe down the remaining sections of the frame with a wet cloth.

Once your mattress is completely dry and odour-free, replace the mattress protector, if you have one, and put a removable cover, fresh sheets, pillowcases, and bedding on the bed.

How often do you need to deep clean your mattress?

Deep cleaning your mattress is essential for maintaining a clean and healthy sleep environment. Ideally, you should deep clean your mattress at least twice a year. This frequency allows you to remove accumulated dust, dead skin cells, and stains effectively.

However, certain situations may necessitate more frequent mattress cleaning. These include:

  • Allergies. If you or any family members have allergies, consider deep cleaning your mattress more frequently. Dust mites and allergens can accumulate, potentially impacting your health.
  • Spills or Stains. If spills or stains on your bed are a common occurrence, you may find it necessary to deep clean your mattress more frequently.
  • Pets or Kids. If you have pets or young children who share your bed, consider more frequent cleaning due to the increased likelihood of spills and accidents.

In summary, twice a year is a general guideline for deep cleaning your mattress, but you may need to adjust the frequency based on your specific circumstances and needs. Regular maintenance, such as rotating the mattress and using a protector, can also help extend the time between deep cleanings.

Additional tips and tricks for effective mattress cleaning

In addition to the basic cleaning techniques, there are some additional tips and tricks that can enhance your mattress cleaning routine. Here, we'll explore these strategies to ensure your mattress remains fresh and inviting.

  • Invest in a waterproof mattress protector. Using a waterproof mattress protector is one of the best ways to shield your mattress from spills, stains, and other potential damage. It acts as a barrier, preventing liquids and other contaminants from seeping into your mattress.
  • Opt for fitted sheets. They can help protect your mattress by providing an extra layer between your body and the mattress. Regularly washing and changing your fitted sheets can prevent sweat, skin oils, and other debris from reaching the mattress surface.
  • Vacuum your mattress frequently. Use your vacuum cleaner's upholstery attachment to remove dust, allergens, and debris from the surface of your mattress. Regular vacuuming helps maintain a cleaner sleep environment.
  • Maintain a cooler bedroom. A cooler sleeping environment can reduce the likelihood of sweating during the night, which can lead to stains and moisture buildup. Adjust your room's temperature to promote a more comfortable and cleaner sleep experience.
  • Let your mattress air out. If your mattress isn't too large and you can manage it, consider taking it outdoors occasionally to bask in the fresh air and sunlight. Sunlight has the remarkable ability to help dispel moisture and odours, resulting in a noticeably fresher mattress.
  • Check for bed bugs. Regularly inspect your mattress for signs of bed bugs, such as small reddish-brown bugs or tiny dark spots. If you suspect an infestation, consult a professional exterminator.

By incorporating these additional tips and tricks into your mattress cleaning routine, you can prolong the life of your mattress, maintain a healthier sleep environment, and enjoy the comfort of a fresh mattress.

Frequently asked questions

How to clean a memory foam mattress?

Ensure your memory foam mattress remains in pristine condition by routinely vacuuming to eliminate any accumulated dust, dirt, or debris. Employ the upholstery attachment for a gentle and thorough surface cleanse. In the event of stains, opt for a mild stain remover explicitly formulated for memory foam mattresses. Apply a modest quantity and delicately blot the affected area, beginning from the outer edges and moving inward. Always steer clear of harsh chemicals that may harm the memory foam's integrity.

Should you encounter persistent stains like urine, blood, or other biological stains, it may be prudent to use the services of professional cleaners for the most effective resolution.

How to remove sweat stains from mattress?

Prepare a solution by combining equal measures of cold water and white vinegar, enhancing it with a few drops of a gentle liquid detergent. Moisten a clear cloth with this solution and delicately blot the stain. It's important to refrain from vigorous scrubbing, as this may force the stain further into the mattress. Following the blotting process, employ a separate, clean, wet cloth to rinse the affected area. Conclude the cleaning by gently blotting with a dry cloth to extract any remaining moisture.

For the eradication of lingering odours, an effective method is to sprinkle baking soda across the mattress surface, leaving it to rest overnight. In the morning, thoroughly vacuum the mattress to remove the baking soda and any odours it has absorbed.

Can you use hydrogen peroxide to remove yellow stains from a mattress?

Yes, it can be effective in removing yellow spots from a mattress, particularly if the stains are caused by bodily fluids like sweat, urine, or blood. However, you need to use it carefully, because an inadequately diluted solution may lighten the mattress's fabric or upholstery.

Prior to the application of any cleaning solution or detergent to your mattress, it's important to embark on a preliminary test in an inconspicuous corner to ensure compatibility and prevent any unintended consequences.

Should you clean your mattress or get a new one?

The decision to either clean your mattress or invest in a new one hinges on the existing state of your mattress.

If your mattress is relatively new, in good condition, and the issues are mainly surface stains or odours, opting for a thorough cleanin is a viable choice. Consistent upkeep, such as the utilization of a mattress cover and periodic cleaning, can effectively prolong its longevity.

If your mattress is old, sagging, or has structural issues like a damaged box spring, it may be time to replace it. The restorative capacity of cleaning can be limited for for an old mattress. Additionally, when deep-seated stains prove resistant to cleaning efforts, it might be a clear sign that it's time for a replacement.

Frequent deep cleaning of your mattress, in conjunction with diligent use of a mattress cover, contributes significantly to preserving its quality. Nevertheless, when your mattress approaches the conclusion of its serviceable lifespan or exhibits noticeable structural issues, the prudent decision is to consider acquiring a new mattress to enhance the quality of your sleep.


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