Should I Buy a Used Mattress? the Definitive Guide (2021 Updated)

When it comes to being cost-effective, have you ever thought about buying a used mattress? You might be a college student or a working personal living on your own. You wouldn’t prefer to buy a brand new premium mattress that has to be discarded within a few years. 

Unfortunately, buying a second hand mattress is not something most individuals would entertain. So here are some tips on how to buy a used mattress. However, it’s also essential to know some of why buying a second-hand mattress can pose serious hazards. 

Read on to find out more before you make this critical decision.

Why Should You Not Buy A Used Mattress?

Even if you come across used mattresses with deep discounts, it’s advisable to stay away from it. Getting a hand down mattress is quite risky, and bringing it home would be a recipe for more future problems. 

You may think you are saving a great deal of money. Here’s the secret – A used mattress will cost you much more than the initial price tag.

Here’s why!

1. Health & Hygienic Risks

Here’s a fact – unless you’re aware that the previous owner is a clean freak, there are high chances that the used mattress would be really dirty. Mattresses tend to become icky over extended periods of use. 

A pre-owned mattress will be the breeding ground of bacteria, dust mites, and other microbes, such as mildew and mold. It also gathers pet dander, dead skins, dust, and lots of stains, spills, and sweat. 

Not to mention, it may even contain rotten food stains and anything else that may have made their home within the mattress. It will not only make you feel disgusted, but it can also impact your health drastically.  Imagine spending the night on that bedding with your skin in contact and breathing in that bad odor. You will end up paying more to cure yourself if you contract any illness. 

2. Bed Bugs & Dust Mites

A pre-owned mattress comes with unknown biological residents. Bed bugs are the most common creatures that live in the hidden folds of the bed. They tend to burrow between the layers and slowly re-surface when your warm body touches the bed. They suck your blood resulting in red itchy markings on your skin.  

Guess what? You will notice them only when you start sleeping on the mattress. By then, they would have infested your bedding and other upholstery as well. Having to replace or treat your entire furnishings can be a pain. 

Another parasite that thrives on used mattresses is dust mites. They are even more challenging to figure out. The previous owner may not even be aware of this infestation, as dust mites feed on pet dander and dead skins. So it’s not easy to detect them quickly unless you notice a rash like bites. Symptoms may aggravate for those who have asthma or other allergies. 

3. Internal Damage

Pictures speak volumes but do not give you the complete story. You will not know what kind of damage the pre-owned mattress has gone through. 

Buying a secondhand mattress from online shopping sites is not advisable. Wondering why? Well, you won’t come to know if any internal damages exist based on the images posted. Pictures tend to hide facts that the coil units are broken or that the bed sags over to one side. Some sellers will disclose the good and bad, but most of them will remain biased towards the positive points. 

Even if you go to a local store and physically examine it before buying, you may miss out on the internal damages. You’ll notice it only after a few nights when you end up tossing and turning in bed with a terrible backache.

4. Shorter Life Span

Based on the mattress’s quality, typical bedding will have an average lifespan of about 10 years. Most individuals tend to use their mattress for a more extended period and then sell it off once it’s worn out. If you buy used mattresses, it’s a known fact that the majority of its estimated lifetime has elapsed. Even if the mattress does not have any defects, you may end up buying a new mattress within a few year’s time. 

Why not go ahead and get a new one instead? In fact, certain online brands offer mattresses with warranties of 20-25 years nowadays. 

5. No Returns

What will you do if the used matters turn out to be infested, damaged, or have any other unappealing problems? One of the main issues you will face with a preowned mattress is – you will not be able to return it. 

It might be too firm that it causes backaches or too soft to support your body frame. Well, you have to bear with it or spend more money to get a good mattress pad. You will not be able to demand a refund as the mattress may not have any visible damages. 

On the other hand, new online mattresses come with trial periods and a return policy. Here you get to test the bedding, and if you don’t like it, you can send it back without any charges. 

6. Limited Choices

If you buy a secondhand mattress from a private dealer, they may have only one type of mattress. However, when it comes to well-established retailers, they will have different sorts of beddings to select from. 

Mattress technology advances ahead every year with new products coming into the market. New beddings come with improved materials, which enables consumers to enjoy a good night’s rest. Please make use of these technological advances, and your body will be grateful for it.

5 Tips for Buying A Used Mattress

If you’ve made up your mind to get a second hand mattress, here are some tips you need to keep in mind. 

1. Buy A Slightly Or Never-Used Bed

Hunting for a slightly used or purchased but never used bedding would be a great start. Usually, individuals who sell used mattresses are either getting a new one or planning to relocate. At the same time, some people have it stored in their garage for some reason. Maybe, it doesn’t fit into their present bed size, and they didn’t return it back to the retailer. You will come across these details in the listing or get them from the seller directly.

Bedding that has been slightly used for 1 – 2 years would work fine. Make sure to verify this using the original receipt of the mattress. It’s even better if it was in the guest room, as they will be sparingly used. 

2. Buy From Well-Known Retailers That Knows Quality Assurance

Look out for reputable retailers that sell refurbished upholstery. This could be either a buy and sell the online site or a local thrift store. You need to find out about their procedure for accepting used goods. Dig deeper to get a grasp of how they renovate or restore used items. Ask friends or family members who have purchased from the store earlier. It’s advisable to gather all the necessary information before you make this huge investment.

3. Check Carefully

When you purchase a hand me down mattress, it may not be easy to check it carefully for signs of damages than if you are purchasing online. You will be limited to photos the owner has put up for the listing. Additionally, asking too much about the product can make the seller feel you’re looking down on them. Try to phrase your questions so that you are not pointing your fingers at them for false advertising.

You can try asking them if the mattress has undergone intense conditions like being submerged in floodwaters or faced infestations earlier. Though the approach seems to be direct, you may end up not gaining much info. So why not take a shot!

4. Sanitize A Used Mattress Before Using It

This must be standard practice if you’re planning to get any secondhand goods. It would be best if you sanitized the pre-owned mattress before you use it. Wipe the bedding surface’s surface clean using an antibacterial household cleaner, as it will help eliminate the germs and bacteria. 

Next, leave the mattress out in the sun to completely dry out for a day. Sunlight and air will get rid of the moisture and prevent mildew or mold from growing. Also, the heat from the sunlight destroys any bacterial infestations that might still be alive.

5. The Price For A Used Mattress Do Not Exceed $300

As per online surveys, the average cost of a second mattress is less than $300. This will be a reasonable rate if the bedding is from a high-end or premium brand. If you’re not specific about a particular brand, low-cost alternatives are available in the market for the same price range.

For sure, getting a brand new one would be a better option. But if you are tight on budget, you can haggle and get a hand me down mattress at a lower rate. It’s better to be reasonable about the deal you propose, as the owner may not give in to your demands at times. 

5 Tips for Buying A Used Mattress

Now It‘s Up to You

Now here comes the question: Should I buy a used mattress?

Purchasing a used mattress comes with its own pros and cons. The risks attached to this purchase are relatively high. If this might be the only option available for you, we hope that you can find excellent used mattresses with the above information. 

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