When Should You Replace Your Mattress?

Despite what some mattress warranties say, the general consensus among sleep experts is that you should replace your mattress every seven years. However, if you are experiencing certain pain symptoms or sleep issues, then you may want to trade your mattress in even earlier than that. Scroll down to learn more about some telltale signs that you need to ditch your current mattress — as well as some strategies for keeping it in good shape for as long as possible.

How Do You Know It's Time?

If you are experiencing any of the following issues, then you should probably think about getting rid of your mattress and investing in a new one:

  • You wake up in the morning feeling stiff, achy, or numb anywhere in your body.
  • You feel tired and sleep-deprived after getting at least eight hours of sleep.
  • Your partner is experiencing these pain and/or sleep issues.
  • You notice sagging, lumps, rips and tears, worn edges, stains, and other signs of wear and tear.
  • The mattress looks exceptionally dusty, or you’re experiencing symptoms of dust mite allergies like coughing, wheezing, and tightness in the chest.
  • You roll to the center of the mattress in your sleep.
  • You’ve slept somewhere else — such as your couch or another bed — and found that it was more comfortable and more suitable for sleep than your current mattress.
  • You can’t remember how old the mattress is or it’s been more than seven years since you’ve purchased a new one.

Using our research data, the graph below features lifespan expectations for the five most common mattress types. As you can see, some mattresses last longer on average than others. But please note: regardless of the estimated lifespan, you should always think about replacing your mattress if you are experiencing any of the problems or issues listed above.

Average Lifespan of a New Mattress

What About the Warranty?

Before purchasing a new mattress, check to see if your current mattress is still under warranty. There are two forms of warranty to be aware of:

  • Written warranties are what most people think of as warranties. The manufacturer or seller makes a written commitment to repair or replace a damaged mattress as long as the damage falls under the listed conditions. Written warranties are usually active for five, ten, fifteen, or twenty years.
  • Implied warranties are required by law in all 50 states. A warranty of merchantability promises the product will be functional and include everything advertised, while the warranty of fitness ensures that it can be used for everything the seller says it can be used for.

Different sellers and manufacturers differ in what their warranties cover and for how long, so check your information to be sure of the details. However, most warranties cover premature sagging or sinking past a certain depth, broken coils, faulty seams, and deformed foam.

Warranties do not usually cover wear and tear or damage from accidents. Furthermore, if the defect can be repaired with a replacement part (such as a spring), it is unlikely they will replace the entire mattress.

Another factor to be aware of before making a claim is whether you have non-prorated or prorated coverage:

  • Non-prorated coverage indicates that the mattress owner will only have to pay out of pocket for potential transportation and inspection costs. The repair or replacement itself is covered by the warranty provider.
  • Prorated coverage requires the mattress owner to pay a percentage of the repair or replacement cost. This usually begins at 50% and rises by a percentage every year for the rest of the warranty period.

Many long-term warranties (particularly those over 10 years) offer non-prorated coverage before transitioning to prorated.

How to Dispose of Your Mattress

There are ways to avoid adding your mattress to the approximately 132,000 square miles of landfill space taken up every year by newly discarded mattresses. Before you take your mattress to the landfill, consider these other options:

  • Mattresses can be 80-90% recyclable and are accepted by some recycling facilities. To discover if this is a local option for you, try an Internet search with your zip code. Most recycling facilities charge a $20-$40 fee for home pickup or $10-$20 for delivered mattresses. However, recycling isn’t an option if your mattress is stained, wet, or infested with bed bugs.
  • Some local and national charities accept used mattresses in good condition. If you’re replacing a mattress which is clean and still functional, consider finding out if any charities near you are interested. Mattresses are useful to big names like the Salvation Army as well as local homeless and women’s shelters. Not only will you be helping out, but it can also save you money on disposal. Larger charities are more likely to offer free pickup for your mattress, while local charities will vary by region.
  • Junk removal services are likely to be your best option if you have no charities or recycling centers nearby. Prices vary among national and local services: many charge based on the space your mattress takes up in their truck, while others charge a per-item fee. Some junk removal services have relationships with recycling facilities, so using one doesn’t automatically mean your mattress will end up in a landfill.

When to Buy a New Mattress

If you don’t have to replace your mattress immediately, holding out for one of the regular holiday or event sales can be well worth it.

Event/Holiday 2019 Date Description
Event/Holiday

New Years Day

2019 Date

Jan. 1st

Description

Getting more sleep is a popular New Year’s resolution. Whether as an individual sales event or part of extended post-Christmas sales, many mattress sellers offer sales on and around New Years Day.

Event/Holiday

President’s Day

2019 Date

Feb. 18th

Description

As one of the first sale events of the year, President’s Day is a popular time for online mattress sellers to release brand new coupon codes. Some sellers also offer specials on specific brands or styles.

Event/Holiday

Memorial Day

2019 Date

May 27th

Description

Both brick-and-mortar and online mattress companies usually offer steep discounts and excellent deals over the holiday weekend. If you’re interested in a specific brand or style, shopping online is a good way to make sure you find what you’re looking for.

Event/Holiday

Independence Day

2019 Date

July 4th

Description

This middle-of-the-year sales event is usually an excellent time to find offers on popular brands and styles. New coupon codes and discounts make it easy to find the mattress you’re looking for.

Event/Holiday

Amazon Prime Day

2019 Date

July 8th

Description

During this sales event, Amazon offers its Prime members excellent deals for a limited time. Many of these deals are also limited in availability, so check regularly and act fast if you find something you like. Other sellers will also offer new coupon codes in the days around Prime Day to compete with Amazon.

Event/Holiday

Back to School

2019 Date

Aug-Sep

Description

Back to School sales events usually focus on children’s mattresses and mattresses for college students. However, some companies will also have coupon codes or discounts for a wider range of products.

Event/Holiday

Labor Day

2019 Date

Sep. 2nd

Description

Traditionally one of the best mattress sales events of the year, Labor Day usually sees both online and offline mattress sellers pulling out all the stops. Start looking for coupon codes and discounts starting on August 30th.

Event/Holiday

Veteran’s Day

2019 Date

Nov. 11th

Description

With the start of holiday shopping season only weeks away, mattress companies use Veterans Day sales to clear out stock and plan their holiday inventories. Careful shoppers can use this sale to get excellent discounts from promotions and coupon codes.

Event/Holiday

Black Friday

2019 Date

Nov. 29th

Description

Both online and brick-and-mortar stores offer huge sales all weekend but steeply discounted “doorcrasher” mattresses can sell out quickly on Black Friday. Getting to physical stores early provides you with a better chance of catching the best offers, while shopping online ensures the best deals while avoiding crowds.

Event/Holiday

Cyber Monday

2019 Date

Dec. 2nd

Description

Online mattress sellers compete with each other to offer the best price cuts and special deals during the Cyber Monday sales event. Shop around to find perks like free bedding along with excellent deals. If you forget to check on December 2nd, remember that some sales will last all week.

How Can You Keep Your Mattress in Good Shape?

New mattresses are expensive, especially if you have to replace them prematurely. The following strategies can help you get as much use as possible out of your current mattress.

  • Manage dust mite accumulation by frequently vacuuming areas around your bed and washing all sheets and pillowcases in hot water. Mite-proof bedding materials are widely available, as well.
  • Rotate the mattress 180 degrees every few months. Simply flip the mattress so that the side where your head rests is now at the foot of the bed. You can also rotate double-sided mattresses by turning them over, as well as swapping the head and foot.
  • Avoid excessive jumping or rough-housing on the bed — and instruct your children to do the same. Also understand that pets jumping on beds can wear out the mattress.
  • Make sure your bed frame has a center support beam. Otherwise, your mattress will be much more susceptible to premature sagging.
  • A mattress protector (as the name implies) can absorb lots of long-term compression and reduce early sagging or indentations. Some mattresses come with built-in pillow-top or euro-top layers that offer the same benefit.

Additional Tuck Resources

Switching mattresses can be complicated. To read more of Tuck’s tips for buying a new mattress and our research on the best mattresses available, follow the links below: