How to Move a Mattress By Yourself (Tools and Step-By-Step Guide)

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Written by: Alex Savy
Read 5 minLast updated on May 6, 2020

Moving into a new house is exciting…

…when you know that the moving company will come in to take the heavy lifting off your hands.

But what if you have to do all the moving on your own? How do you manage to transport your beloved mattress without damaging it or yourself?

Today’s post will explain how to move a mattress conveniently, in the safest way possible.

How to Move a Mattress

Essential Tools Needed to Move a Mattress

Let me start by listing what you will need:

  • Physical strength.

First things first, since you are going to be moving a mattress — which is considered a piece of heavy furniture — you need to be physically strong. If you are not in good shape or you are sick, this might not be the best time to move a mattress all by yourself. Which leads us to the second point.

  • Assistance.

You definitely need help with carrying your big mattress from the bedroom to the car or truck. And this is where extra hands come in handy. Asking your family, friends, or a neighbor to assist you will go a long way in ensuring safety. Also, you will need just as much assistance when bagging or packaging the mattress before the move.

  • Wrapping tools.

These can be a plastic wrap, a mattress bag, or some old thick blankets that you don’t particularly care for anymore.

Both the plastic wrap and the mattress bag are very cheap and can be found at your local store. You will also need some duct tape for extra security no matter what wrapping tool you use to protect your mattress. If you opt for the blanket option, make sure you have at least two of those to throw over both ends of the mattress and then secure with the duct tape.

Now, whether you are moving a memory foam mattress, an innerspring one, or an airbed, ensure that the type of wrapping tool not only will protect your mattress but also will not damage it.

  • Scissors.

Okay, it only makes sense to have a pair of scissors in place when working with duct tapes. You may also use your teeth or a knife, but I doubt this is safe for the teeth, and knife accidents are also common.

  • Ropes.

Finally, you need ropes or straps. This equipment does not apply to those who are moving without a car. I mean, if your new apartment is a walking distance away, then disregard this point. However, if you will move your mattress on top of a car or truck, then get some straps/ropes to fasten/tie your mattress to the vehicle. Make sure the rope is thin enough to tie securely but strong enough to not break easily.

Now that you have all the necessary tools needed, how do you go about using them?

Steps On How To Move A Mattress Safely

Step #1 — Create Enough Space

Yes, you need to make sure you are working in a spacious area before you start getting your mattress ready for the move.

So, the ideal thing to do would be to carry the mattress out to your front lawn or your garage where there is enough room to secure your mattress safely. In both cases, you will need a floor covering to place your mattress on, to prevent it from getting soiled by dirt.

Or, if you insist on working from the bedroom, then make sure the mattress is the last thing you try to move from that room. This way, you have cleared up sufficient space for you to work conveniently.

Step #2 — Wrap the Mattress Up

For this next step, there are a couple of things to consider.

The first thing is to avoid bending your mattress, as this can deform its construction, making it unable to properly support your body at night.

Secondly, determine the size of your mattress bag so that you knew if you should place the mattress vertically or horizontally. In case you are using blankets or a plastic wrap to cover your mattress, the positioning does not really matter.

Now, lift the end of your mattress to an angle that is enough to easily slide the mattress moving bag over it. Once the mattress is neatly inside the bag, you want to keep going until it is securely enclosed and then use the duct tape to seal it.

If you opt for the blankets and wrap sheets, then you have to carefully make sure no openings or holes are left unwrapped. This is probably one of the drawbacks with wrapping sheets, as any opening is potentially exposing your mattress to dirt and dust.

Step #3 — Actually Move Your Mattress

As already mentioned above, for those who intend to move their mattresses without a truck or car, you don’t need any more steps other than carrying your mattress with the help of your friend or family to the new place. But, if you’re transporting your mattress on top of a car, you will be required to carry it to the roof of your car or load it in the pickup. It is always logical to comply with your local traffic laws when using this means. After you do that, get your straps or ropes and start to secure the mattress to the vehicle. For ropes, you will first place the rope over the mattress, then tie it underneath the backseat roof. You want to make sure your ropes are long enough with surplus length left after tying up your mattress. Repeat this three or four times, just to be extra safe. The last thing you need is your rope being too short and then snapping off half-way through the journey.

“Failing to secure your mattress on top of your car might cause damage to the people and the car behind you. Plus, this can lead to extra expenses, which you were trying to avoid in the first place.”

As for ratchet straps, you will need to place your mattress over the car or truck before proceeding to secure it to the edge of the vehicle. Watch this helpful video on how to use ratchet straps securely and safely.

Step #4 — Drive Carefully

I know this sounds like a no brainer, but you need to be extra careful when driving with a piece of heavy furniture such as a mattress strapped to your vehicle. Slow down your driving speed and be extra vigilant on your rearview mirror. Again, don’t forget to check your local laws to make sure you are not violating any driving or traffic rules. As much as you can, try to avoid highways or busy roads and opt for less busy roads instead.


Moving into a new place might feel like a tedious adventure. Still, the feeling you get from knowing that your cozy mattress will arrive in the best condition makes it worth it. If you can afford a moving company, go for it. But if you are a DIY sort of person, then hopefully this guide gave you enough insight on how to complete your mattress moving task.

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