How to fold a mattress

Written by cynthia winzor
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How to fold a mattress
Folding a mattress is easier than you think. (matratze 1 image by Carmen Steiner from

A large king- or queen-size mattress can be extremely difficult to move in and out of your home, as mattresses are floppy and heavy. This can make them very hard to manage when moving through narrow stairways, hallways and doorways. Additionally, a mattress requires special care when moving to ensure the springs don't become distorted or the mattress does not rip. Follow some specific steps to fold your mattress correctly.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • 2- and 9-foot sections of 1/4-inch rope
  • Scissors
  • Assistant

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  1. 1

    Place the two ropes about 6 feet away from each other on the floor. Ask your assistant to help you lift the mattress and set it directly on the ropes. Check that the ends of the ropes are showing from each side of the mattress.

  2. 2

    Begin lifting one side of the mattress together with your assistant, and fold the mattress in half. Have your assistant sit on the end of the mattress to hold it in place. In the meantime, grab the ends of the rope and tie the ends in a reef knot (also known as the square knot) so that each rope binds the mattress at no more than 1 foot from each end (see References section).

    How to fold a mattress
    (bed image by Kirsten Alexander from
  3. 3

    After moving your mattress, you will need to unfold it. Have your assistant help you place the mattress on its side on top of the box springs. Untie the reef knots (or cut the ropes with scissors) while your assistant sits on or holds the mattress in the folded position. Pull the ropes free, and slowly unfold the mattress so that it lies flat on the bed.

    How to fold a mattress
    (slept in hotel bed image by James Insogna from

Tips and warnings

  • Avoid keeping your mattress in the folded position too long, as it can distort the spring unit. Try to fold the bed and unfold it as soon as possible.

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