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Can You Burn a Mattress? (All You Need to Know)

A mattress is one of the most common bedding materials. You might use mattresses on your beds regularly. Many people also use them on the bare floor or in many places. So, a mattress is pretty essential in our day-to-day life.

But when it comes to disposing of a mattress, you might be confused about whether you can burn a mattress or not.

Well, you have to know the benefits and drawbacks of burning a mattress. If you burn a mattress, you must think about the burning elements of the mattress and their effects on the environment.

Can you burn a mattress?

You can’t burn a mattress. Burning a mattress is not recommended because it’s illegal in many places. When you burn a mattress, it releases highly toxic fumes. This fume contains flame retardants, formaldehyde, and benzene that are excessively dangerous for the environment and health.

People from different places use different types of mattresses. The manufacturing elements of the mattresses are also different. So, let’s see which mattress you can burn or not.

Tempurpedic mattress:

Tempurpedic mattress is a well-known and famous mattress. This mattress is made of memory foam according to NASA technology. But the common elements for making the mattress are the same as others.

So, you can’t burn this mattress. This mattress contains materials that can produce highly toxic fume. This fume is dangerous for the environment, soil, humans, and animals.

TEMPUR‐Cloud Prima Medium-Soft Mattress, Luxury Cooling Memory Foam Layers, Queen, Made in USA, 10 Year Warranty

Futon mattress:

Most futon mattresses are made of foam and polyester. These mattresses are Japanese traditional mattresses that are popular nowadays. But when you will burn a futon mattress, it will also spread chemical fume.

The chemical and toxic fume is harmful to the environment. So, burning a futon mattress is also illegal.

Kodiak Furniture Phoenix Futon, Full Size, Suede Gray

Memory foam mattress:

You can’t burn a memory foam mattress. Generally, the memory foam mattress is one of the common mattresses throughout the world. But the manufacturing material is pretty similar to the other mattresses.

So, when you will burn a memory foam mattress, it will release toxic fume that is dangerous to environment and health. So, you can’t burn a memory foam mattress.

Zinus 12 Inch Green Tea Memory Foam Mattress / CertiPUR-US Certified / Bed-in-a-Box / Pressure Relieving, Queen

What happens when you burn a mattress?

When you burn a mattress, the manufacturing materials of the mattress burns and creates a fume. Generally, the fume released from a mattress is very harmful to the environment, animals, and humans.

The fume consists of toxic elements like volatile compounds (VOC), formaldehyde, benzene, methylene chloride, CFCs, etc., gases. These gases are dangerous for our environment. Even if you inhale these gases unintentionally, it will cause harm to your health.

Most mattresses are made of different types of foams and plastic materials. Generally, foams and plastic materials are two of the most VOC-containing materials. So, when you will burn a mattress, it will produce toxic gases from foams and plastics.

Do burning mattresses contaminate the soil?

Yes, burning mattresses contaminate the soil. So, burning mattresses in usable soil is highly prohibited and illegal in many places.

When you burn a mattress, the elements inside it release fumes that contain toxic gases. The fume contains volatile materials that get inside the soil. So, if the soil receives volatile compounds and other CFCs, the soil will be contaminated.

Moreover, the soil will lose its ability to produce gradually. So, burning mattresses on the soil can be dangerous for the soil.

Queen Size Mattress, Sweetnight 12 inch Memory Foam Mattress with Three Firmness Levels from Soft to Firm, Gel Infused for Cool Sleep and Spinal Support, Flippable Bed Mattress in a Box, Whisper

How fast does a mattress burn?

A mattress burns at a super-fast rate. If you put fire on a mattress, it can be burnt in a couple of minutes. Even, the fire doubles every minute on the mattress. So, burning a mattress can be very dangerous.

When you put fire on a mattress, the manufacturing elements get the fire. So, the volatile materials and other compounds are likely to burn easily. Moreover, these compounds will release a hung amount of toxic fume.

So, the exact time depends on the size of the mattress. But if you put fire on a mattress, it will burn through in a couple of minutes.

How to get rid of a mattress?

You can’t just burn a mattress to get rid of it. Since burning mattresses is illegal, you have to follow some other processes.

If you want to replace your mattress or decide not to use it anymore, you can get rid of a mattress in some ways. So, let’s see how you can get rid of a mattress.


You can recycle your mattress in different ways. Even you can use different parts of the mattress for different purposes. Besides, you can use the mattress as additional sitting or sleeping places at different corners of your house.

Moreover, you can remove the fabric of the mattress and use it to make mats and rugs. You can also use the spring of the mattress for DIY projects.


You can also donate your old or extra mattress that you are not using anymore. Many organizations effectively take mattresses and giveaway them.

If your mattress is in a good condition, you can contact the organization. Otherwise, you can donate personally, if you know anyone who needs a mattress.

Zinus 8 Inch Foam and Spring Mattress / CertiPUR-US Certified Foams / Mattress-in-a-Box, Full


If your mattress is not damaged yet, you can sell it. Many organizations buy old and used mattresses for recycling or reselling. So, you can sell your mattress at a lower rate to get rid of it.

Moreover, you can just give away the mattress so that someone can be helped. If you want to sell the mattress, you can also get help from online platforms that sells used products.


You can cut the mattress and make DIY projects from it. For example, you can make cushions and beddings for your sofa and couch.

You can also make a tea-corner in your house and make sitting places with the mattress. Moreover, you can cut the mattress to use it for a smaller bed.

Contact with authority:

If your mattress is damaged and can’t be used anymore, you can contact your city’s disposal authority. Mattress burning is illegal in many cities.

So, you can’t burn the mattress in a random place. You can give away the mattress to the authority so that they can dispose of the mattress.

Is it safe to burn an old mattress?

No, it’s not safe to burn an old mattress. Whether the mattress is new or old, the manufacturing material of the mattress will be the same. So, when you will burn an old mattress, it will also be unsafe.

Generally, burning mattresses spread a huge amount of toxic fume. The fume contains many dangerous gases that should not be released into the environment. The fume can cause severe health issues if you inhale it.

So, it’s not safe to burn an old mattress without any precaution.

Is it illegal to burn a mattress?

Yes, it’s illegal to burn a mattress in most places. Though some areas may not impose strict rules on the burning mattress, it’s highly prohibited. You might want to burn a mattress in your area. But the fume a mattress releases will spread out the area.

You might know that the burning fume from a mattress is toxic. So, the environment and people around will be affected by the toxic fume.

So, burning a mattress is illegal in most cities. You should not burn a mattress in a random place. Otherwise, the authority might take action against you.

King Mattress, Sweetnight Breeze 12 Inch King Size Mattress Medium Firm, Ventilated Memory Foam Mattress for a Deep Sleep, Supportive & Pressure Relief

Can I burn a mattress on a bonfire?

No, you can’t burn a mattress on a bonfire. You might think that you are burning the mattress in your place and nobody has the right to stop you. But burning a mattress on a bonfire is illegal.

Moreover, burning a mattress on a bonfire will bring harm to you. While burning the mattress, the toxic fume will spread through the environment. This fume is dangerous for air pollution and soil pollution. Once you burn a mattress on the soil, the soil will get contaminated.

If you inhale the fume accidentally, it might cause severe medical issues. Moreover, you might face difficulty breathing immediately. So, you can’t burn a mattress on a bonfire without permission and randomly.

Final Thoughts:

You can’t burn a mattress because it can cause harm to the environment and humans. You can recycle, reuse, donate, or sell your mattress if you want to get rid of it. But never burn a mattress in a random place or on a bonfire. The fume from the mattress will release volatile toxic compounds.