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How To Flip A Mattresses / How to Rotate your Mattress
by Graham Challenger
The terms "rotate a mattress" and "flip a mattress" are used interchangeably by most people, but rarely do mattress buyers know 1)why it's a good idea, 2)how to do it, safely and 3) remember to do it. Rotating your mattress will spread the load, prevent wear and tear in any single spot, and extend the useful life of a quality mattress. We know that we should rotate the tires on our car, to extend tread life. Your mattress is a major expense with "maintainance schedules" too. Every night, your body's weight will leave impressions in any mattress, usually at the hips and shoulders. Turning a mattress from head to foot, and also flipping the mattress like a pancake, is good preventative maintenance.
Here's a simple way for two people to flip a heavy mattress. This won't make the mattress lighter, just less cumbersome. Make sure both people have the strength to hold the full weight of the mattress you will be moving.
Stand at the foot of the bed.
Pull the mattress away from the headboard/wall at least 3 feet.
Rotate the mattress 1/4 of a turn, so it is lying cross ways to the foundation.
One person should stand on the left and the other on the right side of the box spring.
Working together, lift the edge of the mattress closest to the headboard, so it stands vertically on its side.
Continue to "flip the mattress" like a pancake. Laying the mattress back down on the foundation.
The top-side has become the bottom and the bottom-side is now facing up.
The mattress should be lying across the "foot" of the foundation.
Slide the mattress, (still "cross ways" to the foundation) towards the headboard, so the full weight has returned to the foundation/box springs.
Rotate the mattress the same direction as the first 1/4 turn was made, completing the 180 degree rotation.
Standing at the foot of the bed, slide your mattress back up/ towards the headboard.
Realign the mattress, so it is straight and centered over the foundation/ box springs.
Your mattress supports your body during the night. The foundation / box springs support your mattress. Every 3 months, you should refresh your mattress by doing a simple spin rotation (180 degrees/ Step 2 and step 6 above). Most bedding manufacturers recommend that a mattress flip (described above) should be done twice a year. (It's in the small print of your warranty, that you didn't read.) If you remember to do it once a year, you will be OK. This rotation will extend the life span of your new, quality mattress.
In the last few years, mattress makers have recognized that flipping a heavy mattress is a huge chore for many customers, so some models are now sold as "no flip mattresses." These are built with only one side of sleep surface padding and need only be rotated 180 degrees on the foundation a few times a year. There is very little real sleep difference between these models, but you should follow the manufacturer's recommendations on rotation of any mattress you buy to maximize its useful life.
There is one other point to remember. Some mattress manufacturers add exterior handles, straps, or cords for a better grip. Do NOT try to lift or pull the mattress using only these handles. They are there to help you slightly maneuver the mattress, when it's full weight is on the foundation/ box springs. They aren't designed to support the full weight of your mattress, just to assist you in moving it around on the foundation.
A mattress is a major household expense. Take the time to care for it, and you will extend its useful life.