​How to Move a Mattress Without Hiring a Professional

​How to Move a Mattress Without Hiring a Professional

How to move a mattress? Every year, thousands and thousands of Americans attempt to move their mattresses. Maybe they're moving, maybe they're buying a new one and need to discard the old, whatever. Regardless of their reasoning for needing to move it, too many people wind up injuring themselves because they didn't move it properly. Either that or they permanently damage their mattresses in the process, since these things aren't designed to be mobile.

The problem is that many people don't know the proper ways to move one. Yes, you can hire professionals, but why bother when there are plenty of safe ways to move a mattress on your own? Sure, you do need to make sure your mattress is even worth moving. If it's too old, is it worth the risk of injury or damage? 

Mattresses are expensive so make sure that this is what you truly want before dislodging it from its resting place. But when it comes to moving a mattress, therein lies the question; How??

Well, fortunately for you, we have ten different methods you can employ on your own or with others to successfully move a heavy mattress. So without further ado, here are ten ways to move your mattress without hiring a professional.

1- Get The Correct Moving Truck

This is just basic stuff right here. Getting the right truck to fit all your stuff, as well as your not-so-inexpensive mattress. Truck, flatbed or even SUV will all work. As long as your seats fold downward or else there's enough flat space, it should work fine.

If all you've got is a dinky car with static seats, then you'd be wise to rent a truck of some sort. Your mattress could get damaged by being stuffed into an awkward arrangement in your car that it wasn't made for. Plus, you still need to be able to see out the back.

2- Call in Favors From Friends

First things first, and we stress again; DON'T TRY TO MOVE IT BY YOURSELF. That's just asking for disaster right there. Mattresses are big, they're heavy, and they're constantly off balance. Moving it on your own is a recipe for back strain in the making, to say nothing of potential damage to your bed.

If you're dead set on not hiring professional movers to help (and with the expense who can blame you?) then take advantage of your pals. Call them in to help, offer free pizza as payment and make a day of it. Besides, if they're great friends, then you'll have more fun watching them awkwardly fumble around with your furniture, anyway.

3- Carry it Properly

This is always the tricky part because so many people don't have a clue how to carry heavy objects safely. Flip the mattress up on its long end so it's standing upright. Then, with a friend, stand on either end. If it has handles, grab these for leverage. If it doesn't, then just keep a firm grip on the bottom corners. Lift both at the same time so the weight is evenly distributed.

Make sure to check around beforehand that you have a clear path from your room to the truck. Tripping over anything could be disastrous in the middle. Once you've got it up, if you have an extra set of hands, position them alongside the mattress for balance. Carefully make your way to the truck and gently lift the bed inside. Secure it up alongside the wall and either tie it in place or balance it with heavy furniture to keep it steady.

4- Do NOT Strap Your Mattress To The Top of a Car

Okay, A, this is a traffic ticket in the making. B, should it happen to fall off, at best, it'll be severely damaged. At worst, it'll potentially cause a major car accident from startled drivers. In fact, in some places, it's straight illegal to transport a mattress in this manner.

We know it's expensive to rent a truck, but if that's what you have to do in order to move it, then just do it. It's a lot safer and more cost-effective in the long run, and you won't be chasing your mattress around the expressway.

5- Get a Protective Mattress Bag

However you wind up moving it, you'll want to make sure it's protected. After all, if you're going to the trouble of moving it, you're going to want to sleep on it again. For about twenty dollars, you can buy a protective cover for your mattress. This will block out dust, bugs, and any other detritus that might be hiding in the truck.

This heavy-duty plastic fully covers your bed and can even be reused. It's a great option if you're looking to store your mattress long term, and will keep protecting it. It's a much better and cleaner investment than having to manually wash dirt and other gunk from your bed after the move.

You'd also be recommended to add a layer of packaging tape around the outside of the plastic. This adds extra support to the protective layer and bolsters its shielding capabilities. Make sure to keep a sturdy pair of scissors on hand to help you free your bed from the plastic afterward. This is if you taped it, which won't make it reusable.

6- Shipping Containers

If you're one of the lucky ones who can afford professional movers or are moving across the country, then this might be for you. Shipping containers are great storage and can hold a lot of items inside. If you're handling the loading of them on your own, then simply bag and tape the mattress like normal and use poly-cords or rope to secure your mattress in place.

Once inside the container and strapped down, it won't be going anywhere until the movers come to take the container away. You'll likely be handling the unloading as well, so simply follow the previous tips for safe handling of your bed. This is a slightly more expensive route when considering how to move a mattress, but it's ultimately a very safe option.

7- Lift From The Knees

When moving something heavy, too many people neglect to remember that the safest lifting technique is with the legs. Lifting with the back is not only unsteady, but it's also incredibly dangerous. So when moving a heavy item like a mattress, whether you do it preferably in a group or by your lonesome, never lift with the back.

If you have to move a mattress alone, brace the mattress carefully on its side while lifting it up with your knees. If lifting together, then always make sure your movements are in tandem so you don't cause someone to go off balance.

8- Folding Your Mattress

This isn't recommended for everyone, but folding it is indeed an option. If this is one of your options in how to move a mattress, you'll need to consider the risks carefully. If your mattress is thick or filled with coils, then don't even try it. You'll risk ruining it. But if you are able to, then be careful.

Make sure you fold it width-wise with your preferred side on the outside. It'll need to be reinforced with either ratchet ties or straps so it doesn't fly open during transit. And you certainly don't want to leave it like this for long. Even floppier mattresses can be damaged if folded for too much time.

9- Keep the Mattress on Its Sides

Your mattress is where you sleep, so keeping it clean is a priority. The last thing you want to do is lay it flat side down where it'll pick up lord knows what. If you have to lay it down, then be sure to wrap it. If you can't wrap it, then try to secure it to the walls of the truck on its side by ropes or else sandwiched in by heavy furniture to hold it still. This way it'll stay up and not flop around during transit.

10- Use a Dolly or Cart

This is a great option if you have limited people. Once the mattress is wrapped up for transport, load it onto a cart or dolly, preferably on its short side. Have someone walk behind you and lend support while you wheel your bed outside or back in. This provides both easy support and easy transport to and from the truck. It also keeps your mattress off the ground and largely spares your back from heavy lifting. When it comes to moving a mattress, this is probably one of the smoother options.


When considering how to move a mattress, there are lots of ways to do so. It's just a matter of picking the safest option for you. Keep in mind the weight of the bed, where it needs to be moved, and how many hands you've got to help you move it. Damaging the mattress in any way can void the warranty, and these things are expensive replacements. If you're not willing to leave it behind, then definitely do the research required to move it as carefully as possible.