I’ve always thought there are two kinds of mattresses in the world. There are saggy, stained mattresses that are on their way to being replaced someday. These mattresses draw ire from their owners, who acknowledge they need a replacement, but for some reason are waiting it out.

The other type of mattress is the dream mattress. No sag, no stains, just the right firmness—this mattress is the one you plan to keep for years to come. An owner of a dream mattress loves the bed they sleep on and wants to keep it pristine for as long as possible. They rotate the mattress as directed and may even protect it with a waterproof cover.

If you’ve got one of those dream mattresses and you want it to remain in it’s dream-like state, it’s imperative that you store it properly.

How to Store a Mattress

The key is to mimic the natural position of a bed by laying the mattress flat with no items resting on top. Remove the bedding and wrap the mattress securely in a plastic cover and secure the cover with rope or tape. While in storage, keep it at a reasonable temperature – humidity and mold are the greatest threats to the life of your mattress, so it’s important that you take the necessary precautions:

To find out more, we reached out to Mattrezzz Guys, a retailer that’s making a name for itself as an Austin favorite (check those Yelp reviews), and spoke to owners Frank and Anthony about how to properly store a mattress.

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1. Keep Your Mattress Flat

This is the main reason this blog post exists. Not to point fingers, but other blog posts and websites often say to store the mattress on its side. Frank and Anthony strongly advise against it.

“If you stand it up, the padding and coils can settle and the mattress will never be the same. Don’t forget, gravity’s not always our friend,” said Frank.

If you intend on keeping this mattress in good shape, you’ll want to mimic its natural positioning—maybe even setting up your whole bed inside your storage space.

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2. Don’t Place Anything On Your Mattress

Gravity can come into play if you leave something on top of your mattress (or you have your mattress resting on something). To avoid wear and tear, make sure nothing is weighing down your bed. The only thing that should be on the mattress and boxspring is a plastic cover.

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3. Use a Plastic Mattress Cover or Plastic Wrap

This final layer of protection can prevent worst-case scenarios. Frank and Anthony recommend completely wrapping the mattress in plastic, be it a specially made mattress bag or stretch plastic wrap.

Water damage or pests shouldn’t be a problem at most storage facilities, but the covering has a more important application as well. This prevents dust from settling into the fibers of your mattress, which can happen even in the cleanest indoor unit.

4. Cover Mattress Before Moving

You should apply the plastic wrap or mattress cover before moving to help protect it while it’s being transported. Make sure you cover the entire mattress and secure the cover with tape.

5. Use a Covered Moving Truck

While we’re on the topic of transportation, you should avoid tying your mattress down on top of your car. You’re either going to warp your mattress by tying it down too tight or ruin it having it fly off the top of your car and onto the road. You should transport your mattress protected from the elements in a covered moving truck. Note: It’s okay to transport the mattress on its side as long as you aren’t leaving it there long-term, according to Peter Cancelli of The Mattress Expert.

6. Get a Climate-Controlled Storage Unit

“If you’re storing for an extended length of time use climate-controlled storage,” Frank advised.

He might have been speaking to local customers in this case, but this tip applies anywhere with a relative humidity that swings above 50 percent (hint: almost everywhere at some point in the year). Mold is a serious threat to the health of your mattress and potentially to your health, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

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7. Let it Breathe

Frank and Anthony’s final tip: If you stored your mattress for more than six months you should remove your plastic covering and let the mattress breathe for a few hours before you put your sheets on it. This should prevent any lingering odor from the plastic or the storage unit, which will help you continue to appreciate your dream mattress.

Post updated by SpareFoot, 3/20/2017.