Mattress Warehouse recycling mattresses
LEXINGTON, KY. – Innovative Mattress Solutions (iMS), the parent company of mattress retailers Mattress Warehouse, Mattress King and Sleep Outfitters, has diverted more than 4.9 million pounds of mattress waste from community landfills since 2013.
“Discarded mattresses are causing problems in our nation’s landfills,” says iMS CEO and founder Kim Knopf. “We are one of the few retailers that voluntarily recycle used mattresses. We are doing what we can to help our communities’ environment and recycle old mattresses for new and useful purposes.”
In the last three years, some 65,000 mattresses and box springs -- constituting nearly 4.9 million pounds of waste -- were sent to Spring Back Recycling in Nashville, Tenn. where the beds are deconstructed and the materials sold for new and different uses. About 90 percent of mattress materials can be recycled. For instance, cotton and foam from the mattress may be turned into carpet padding or insulation. The wood may become landscaping mulch and the steel springs are melted down for other uses.
“A mattress that can take decades to decompose in a landfill can be deconstructed for recycling in minutes,” says Knopf.
The International Sleep Products Assn. (ISPA) estimates 20 million mattresses are discarded in the U.S. each year, and many end up in landfills where they take up lots of space. A single mattress occupies 27 to 60 cubic feet of landfill space and weighs, on average, 60 to 70 pounds. Mattresses are built to resist compression, so they are difficult to compact and can take years to decompose. Their steel innersprings tear up landfill equipment, and they can absorb hazardous materials into flammable air pockets, causing landfill fires.
Currently, three states have enacted mandatory mattress recycling laws. Connecticut and California began their programs last year. Rhode Island’s mattress recycling program is scheduled to start May 1. Each state charges a small recycling fee at the point of purchase.
iMS, which has been voluntarily recycling mattresses since 2011, charges a $19.99 fee to remove old mattresses from customers’ homes for recycling.
“We at iMS are members of our communities,” says Knopf. “Keeping these old mattresses out of our landfills is a way we can give back, a way we can help keep our communities clean and green.”
About Innovative Mattress Solutions
Innovative Mattress Solutions is headquartered in Lexington, Ky. Owner Kim Knopf founded the company in 1983 with a single Mattress Warehouse brand store in South Charleston, W.Va. Today, iMS operates 157 Mattress Warehouse, Mattress King and Sleep Outfitters stores in six states: West Virginia, Ohio, Indiana, Kentucky, Tennessee and Alabama. Products include Tempur-Pedic, Sealy, Stearns & Foster and Dormeo/Octaspring mattress sets, as well as adjustable foundations, pillows, mattress protectors, frames and headboards. In 2014, Furniture Today magazine ranked iMS as the country’s 21st largest bedding retailer.