Smelly Mattress

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Smelly Mattress

Postby matteo1a » Tue Jan 21, 2014 11:02 pm

I bought a used mattress and box spring with bed frame, got a great deal, was overly optimistic (it was a steal - I know) and a "good" quality mattress. Now that I have it at home (propped against the wall as I'm not ready to set it up yet), I can really smell how old it is. It doesn't look old or dirty, but it has that old musty, mildewy, been-in-grandma's vacation cabin smell and every I get a whiff now I almost gag! I've looked online for cleaning ideas about baking soda, vinegar and several people swear by using these both, leaving them in while airing mattress and box spring outside, etc. I just want to ask the pros: Do you think any of this will work to make it smell okay enough to use or do you think I should just forget about it and take it to the dump? Any different cleaning ideas that won't be a HUGE hassle? I also found some vinyl, zippered mattress covers I can buy and but on the mattresses once I clean them. Any input would be SOOOO gratefully received!!!!

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Re: Smelly Mattress

Postby mrscleannw » Thu Jan 30, 2014 2:54 pm

Hi Matteo,
Thanks for your question and welcome to the forum. If I was in your situation, I would definitely try baking soda first.

I almost had to throw my heating pad out because of how musty it smelt. I laid the heating pad flat on the floor, sprinkled a good amount of baking soda over the entire surface (making sure it coats evenly) and then let it sit for a day. Dispose of old baking soda daily until the odor is no longer there. It took probably 3 days to get the smell completely out, but in my opinion it was worth it (a couple bucks spent on baking soda is a small price to pay!)

Almost any sort of fabric that can’t be thrown in the washing machine can be deodorized this way, which is why I always buy baking soda in bulk.

Vinegar will work, as well as the fresh air, but I’d definitely try the baking soda method first.

Let me know how it works out and if you were able to save your mattress! :D
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Re: Smelly Mattress

Postby matteo1a » Thu Feb 06, 2014 9:07 pm

Well, thanks for the reply . . . but in spite of the fact that everyone said vinegar and/or baking soda, I tried BOTH and a) the vinegar smell didn't entirely "go away" after drying, and b) the baking soda was a messy hassle and did almost NOTHING. It may have helped a little, but not what I'd hoped for, and meanwhile, I had a bit of a mess to clean up on my porch with the hose. Luckily it's only baking soda. I did find vinyl mattress covers at Target for around 11 bucks a piece (one for box spring; one for mattress) so I will use those ( I think they'll work, especially with sheets, mattress cover, etc.). I sure won't ever recommend baking soda OR vinegar to anyone, though, but thanks anyway. My advice. SMELL, SMELL, SMELL all parts of any mattress you're buying before you buy, because I had sort of "wishful smelling" going on, and didn't think the sort of "old lady attic smell was that strong . . . . but as time wore on at my house, that smell started to make me gag whenever I'd get the slightest whiff!!!! So it's ON with all the coverings and my fingers are crossed . . . if that doesn't work .... THE DUMP (grrrrrr!)!!

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Re: Smelly Mattress

Postby mrscleannw » Tue Feb 18, 2014 12:02 pm

Well I hope the mattress covers work out for you, Matteo!

I'd definitely recommend smelling a mattress before you buy it, as well. Lesson learned! :D
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Re: Smelly Mattress

Postby evelin_michaels » Thu Feb 20, 2014 3:30 am

I think that professional mattress steam cleaning is absolutely necessary in your case. Forget about baking soda and vinegar, they are not good enough. :wink:
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Re: Smelly Mattress

Postby mrscleannw » Thu Feb 20, 2014 10:39 am

What a great idea, evelin_michaels! :) I just researched and you definitely want a professional doing this as it's easy to mess up the mattress.
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