how to steam clean mattress

How to steam clean a mattress

Last Updated: April 2017

Whether you sleep on a traditional innerspring mattress or a top-of-the-line memory foam bed, it is important to take the time to clean it now and then. The best way to clean your mattress is with steam since it is eco-friendly, sanitary, and in most cases, fairly simple. Below, you can discover how to steam clean a mattress step by step.

If you are looking for alternative ways to clean your mattress, then check out our general guide to cleaning a mattress right here.

Why Should You Learn How to Clean a Mattress?

Some experts claim that a mattress can double in weight over the course of 10 years thanks to the buildup of dust mites and skin cells that fall into the materials as you sleep. You can reduce much of this with proper cleaning every few months, and it is quite simple to do. All you need to do is vacuum your mattress regularly and steam clean it now and then.

Step 1 – Check with the Manufacturers

No matter what type of bed you have, you should always refer to the mattress manufacturer before you apply any moisture – including steam. Some materials are not intended to be exposed to moisture of any kind. You might also want to check your manual for the steam cleaner you prefer to use. Those that dry as they go are the best since they leave the least moisture behind, which is ultimately best for any mattress.

Step 2 – Always Vacuum First

Before you break out the steam cleaner, make sure that you use a powerful vacuum with an appropriate attachment to thoroughly vacuum out any loose dust and debris that may be on your bed. A steam cleaner cannot remove dust, dirt, and pet hair, but your vacuum certainly can. Much of learning how to clean a mattress is in the preparation, which involves removing as much debris as possible beforehand.

Step 3 – Prop the Mattress Against a Wall

The best way to steam clean a mattress is to remove it from the platform or box springs beforehand. Not only does this expose the mattress to more air, which will keep it from getting too wet, but it also helps you reach the various nooks and crannies. What’s more, when you take the mattress off of the bed, you can more easily turn it around to steam both sides. (Note that you should turn your mattress every few months anyway, so combining this with steam cleaning is a great choice.)

Step 4 – Use Short Bursts of Steam

When you start to move your steam cleaner along your mattress, you may be tempted to use constant delivery. After all, steam kills the germs, so more is better, right? Not necessarily. You do not want to soak your mattress, so it is best to use short bursts of steam rather than a constant stream. This way, you can still achieve your goal of removing stains, sanitizing, and killing odors – all without the extra-wet mess.

Haven’t got a steam cleaner? Worried they might be expensive? Don’t be! Here is a selection of affordable steam cleaners you can purchase today!

Step 5 – Don’t Forget the Sides

Many people forget to pay close attention to the sides when they learn how to clean a memory foam mattress. This is a very important part of the cleaning process since the sides of your mattress also collect dust, and they are quite prone to stains. Part of the purpose of steam cleaning involves odor removal, which is particularly important when it comes to memory foam. Skipping the sides may leave lingering odors behind.

Step 6 – Allow the Mattress to Dry

Allowing your mattress to dry completely is perhaps the most important part of the process. This is especially true if you will place a cover on a memory foam mattress. Failing to properly dry your mattress can result in mold and mildew, which will make things worse instead of better. For the best results, leave your mattress propped up and dry it with a fan. Be sure to flip it after a few hours and repeat the process on the other side.

Still need help? Check out this video which shows exactly how to steam clean a mattress as we discussed above.

Learning how to steam clean a mattress is not a difficult task, and it can certainly keep you healthier over time. What’s more, when done correctly, it can extend the life of your mattress, giving you a better return on your investment.

Take a look at our essential guides:

Mattress Guides

Pillow Guides

Topper Guides

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