Any kind of mattress can be a challenge to clean. This guide is about cleaning a memory foam mattress.
If your mattress is very wet (having been dunked in a bath or used a hose on it), cover with towels and walk up and down on it until the excess is soaked up. If the mattress is only slightly damp (spot cleaned), do either same as previous or use a Wet Vac to soak up excess.
Finally stand mattress on side next to radiator and rotate as necessary. It will dry within the day. This has worked with single mattresses raging from 5 - 12 inches thick.
Good to know should the occasion arise, but I avoid this to begin with by covering the entire mattress with a waterproof zippered cover that can be laundered should the need arise...which it did to me recently, on my new 12 inch memory foam mattress. I have two of them, one king size and one twin. Both are a bit bulky and large to stand up to dry, so I find a waterproof mattress cover is the best for me - and it only cost around $10 and is reusable.
How do you clean memory foam mattress pads?
Kathleen from Houston
I have a two inch memory foam pad on which my grandson had an accident. The foam got soaked through and through. I used the 1 part Woolite and 2 parts water then 1 part vinegar and 4 parts water. It WORKED very well!! Suggest cleaning outside as it gets heavy when wet. To get the water out, I suggest you lay it between several layers of towels and walk on it. (This presses the water out and the towels soak up the water)
You can try a home carpet cleaning machine. Spread a clean tarp outside, Have an assistant to hold pad down while you go over it. I would leave the protective cover on during this process. You can try adding some disinfectant to your detergent (Clorox or Lysol) Even some fabric softener for a fresh fragrance. Dry in the sun on some saw horses. Cover each horse with a clean towel to protect your clean pad. Turn occasionally to ensure even drying. Good Luck!
I found a really easy way to clean the memory foam mattress pad. Go to pets mart or another major pet store and purchase SIMPLE SOLUTION - STAIN & ODOR REMOVER, an awesome product to have in the house with pets anyway. Take your memory foam topper and lay it out in your basement or garage. Spray the soiled area until it soaks through. Let it stand for the time quoted on the bottle. The key is getting it dry.
Memory foam is just a giant sponge, so what I did is take my shop vac and placed the wide floor cleaning attachment on the hose and placed it on the wet area. I placed a towel on the underside so that the vac could draw air from under the mattress pad. Move it occasionally around the wet area until you think its pretty dry. I then placed a dry towel on the top and the bottom of the mattress pad and placed a weight on top and let it sit overnight. Worked like a charm, with a little of the stain visible but the odor was gone.
I suggest to use ammonia to clean most things, good luck.
Milk was spilled on my seat, which has memory foam in it. I wanted to know if I am going to have to replace the foam in order to get the milk smell out. Is there anything else I can try? Please help me. Thanks.
Sheryl from Oklahoma City
Hi, I know how bad this smells, I spilled a cup of milk in my car a couple of years ago and it was awful. I scrubbed and scrubbed and it still stunk. I found some kind of liquid product at Target with enzymes in it, made especially for protein spills. I think it was called Kids N Pets. It helped a lot, didn't completely take the smell away but made it much better. I kept my windows down when I could, and kept a scented candle in the car for when the windows were up. It took about two months but the smell is completely gone. Look for a product made for milk, you just dump it on and let it air dry, may have to do it several times. Hope this helps and you can keep your chair.
OdoBan took lingering odor from vomit out of my car seat, and it removed skunk odor from towels used to clean up our dog. It can be found at Wal-Mart in a ready-mixed spray bottle, or you can buy it by the gallon at Sam's Club. It works great for many household uses. Good luck!
I use Febreze for those really tough odors. I bought a small size bottle years ago and I only use it on impossible odors. It really does work.
I have taken mine outside on a warm/hot day and draped it across 2 or 3 lawn chairs. I spray the soiled spot with simple green and leave an hours or so. I then use the hose to rinse thoroughly and leave in the sun to dry. It may take 2 or 3 days and require turing over but it will be clean.
How do I clean and deodorize my Sealy Posturepedic mattress? It smells like sweat!
By Mary M
I totally believe in white vinegar. I would think on a sunny or dry day you should try to spray it on the exposed mattress (wash the cover with white vinegar in place of bleach and in place of softner)... cheap try!
I have a 2005 heavy foam mattress and need to be safely cleaned.
My heavy 2005 queen size mattress has a sweaty smell and it may have bedbugs.
It has been in a 5th wheel RV in the sun.
The mattress needs to be cleaned inside due to the small size of the RV doors.
Please advise on treatment options.
How do I get the urine smell and stain out of a memory foam mattress?
By Judy from Lincoln, NE
I used natures mirical on my daughters new mattres when my cat peed on it. I poured it right from the bottle. It worked. No smell at all. great stuff for every thing. Got it in the pet store.
Use waterproof sheets as well as waterproof mattress cover, this should help eleviate some of the problem and maybe use waterproof pants for your son.
Question said nothing about the source of urine. What's up with this assumption that it must have been a boy who caused urine smell and the suggestion to essentially wrap him up in plastic?! Please check your biases.
My house caught on fire, but we were able to save my newly purchased bed. It is a memory foam bed and smells badly like smoke. How do I remove the smell without damaging the mattress?
By hopesanddreams42 from City, PA
I would try a no vaccum foam carpet cleaner & get some hair refresher spray by tresseme fresh start. It gets smoke smell out of your hair without shampooing. Maybe even a catalytic oil lamp & use to clean purify & refresh room. A carpet cleaning company can maybe do cleaning for you.
My son is still a bed-wetter and he and his brother sleep in bunkbeds with the "memory foam" type mattresses. About 3 times a week he wakes up in the morning to a wet bed. I've tried putting several towels under his sheets, a waterproof mattress cover, and a sleeping bag, but no matter what I do his urine soaks all the way through to his mattress. (I don't let him drink any liquids whatsoever after 6 pm and I make him use the bathroom at least 3 times before bed.) He's just a pee-pee factory! Anyhow, I don't know exactly how to get the damp urine stains out of his mattress (it's no ordinary mattress, it's absorbent).
Does anyone have any helpful ideas at all?
Help me please! ARRRRRGH!
My son is still a bed-wetter and he and his brother sleep in bunk-beds with the "memory foam" type mattresses. About 3 times a week he wakes up in the morning to a wet bed. I've tried putting several towels under his sheets, a waterproof mattress cover, a sleeping bag, but no matter what I do, his urine soaks ALL the way through to his mattress. (And I don't let him drink ANY liquids whatsoever after 6 pm and I make him use the bathroom at least 3 times before bed.) He's just a pee-pee factory! Anyhow, I don't know exactly how to get the damp urine stains out of his mattress (it's no ordinary mattress, it's absorbent).
Does anyone have any helpful ideas at all?
Help me please! ARRRRRGH!
I can't help with the mattress. I would suggest calling the manufacturer. However, I can suggest a bit of help for the bed-wetting. A quick trip to the doctor - there is a nose spray that helps quite a bit. I am not sure how, but it helps. (01/09/2005)
My son had the same problem until he hit puberty and the nasal spray mentioned is called DDAVP for short - it was awesome and began working almost immediately (we also used the pill form when he was older) - the doctor told my son that the problem was not anyone's fault and that even if he stopped drinking at noon, he could still wet the bed - it's just that his body was late to produce the hormone that the spray provides.
As for the mattress - covering the area when it's wet with borax really helps pull a lot out of the mattress. You can also try the new pet stain removers that contain enzymes which actually break down the stain but you have to really soak it and then let it stay. I've also been very happy using oxi-clean type solutions and then using my shop-vac to pull out the solution/stain.
I was very hesitant to give my son the medication, but I think the constant humiliation he experienced was doing more damage than taking the hormones - I also have a great doctor who I totally trust and that helped.
Good Luck! I know how discouraging the whole problem can be for both you and your son. My son is 16 now and hasn't wet the bed in three years. (01/09/2005)
You can try vinegar and water in a spray bottle. Also, have him wear Nighttime pull-ups. It would be better than having the mattress wet. He can be discreet with putting them on, and no one would have to know. (01/09/2005)
I'd try the vinegar solution with the mattress, and literally stand on it with a dry towel to absorb the wetness after it has a chance to neutralize the odor. You could also talk to your local chiropractor about your child's bed wetting. I referred my girlfriend for her son and it worked wonderfully for him. He now has a dry bed and fun overnights with friends, no more embarrassing moments for him. (01/09/2005)
Once you've restored the mattress, cover it with a cheap plastic shower curtain to protect it from future accidents. The cheap, stiff ones are the best (completely waterproof). (01/09/2005)
I have found a scent remover that is the bomb! At Sam's Club they have a product that is called ODO-BAN. We have pets and it was unbearable! We thought our carpet was ruined. They were demonstrating this and we thought this was going to be our last shot! We had tried the vinegar solutions, Tide, and even the products for pet smell removal...nothing worked. Well, to make a long story short, if you wash the area first with a steam cleaner (upholstery attachment) and then use this to rinse. It worked great! It is a regular staple in my house and they guarantee it! If it does not work for you, you can take it back.
Good Luck, Michelle. (01/10/2005)
Thank you all so much for all the helpful hints! I'll be putting them to action today! I'm so glad I found this website! It's incredible! (01/10/2005)
Excessive thirst and bed-wetting also can be an early sign of diabetes. Have a urinalysis and blood sugar tested at next physical. This was the ONLY sign in our 12 year old before he was diagnosed. (07/06/2005)
I wouldn't know for a fact if it will work on a mattress of that kind but "OderZyme" has a money back guarantee on pet urine and that is a lot worse than human because of the ammonia contents in animal urine. It's worth a shot to look it up on the internet and call them to ask if it would work for your problem. (09/28/2006)
We have two Tempur-Pedic mattresses. One was rolled up and stored in the attic about a year ago because our geriatric cat decided to use it as a cat box. The other night, our dog urinated on the one in our master bedroom. We have been using a product called Nature's Miracle for carpet stains. We figured we had nothing to lose, so we tried it on the recently soiled mattress. I basically drenched the area with Nature's Miracle and then walked on a few dry towels over the area to sop some of the liquid up.
After a day of drying, the odor and stain were completely gone. I was so impressed that we pulled the old mattress out. It cleaned the year old stain with no remnants of odor. You can pick it up at PetsMart. It's about $30 for 1.5 gallon container, but well worth it since it saved about $4000 worth of mattresses for us. (09/17/2007)
I don't know about memory foam, but I do know about non-washable furniture and pet urine. I have three cats (and plenty of room and litter boxes). Two of whom have temper tantrums (not medical conditions, they've been checked) and pee on my couch.
The best thing that I've found is a mixed solution of white vinegar, scented laundry detergent (I find the ones with added fabric softener work best for odor), and lukewarm water. Do not use too much vinegar as it will smell like salad dressing for a few weeks. Make sure to use enough water. I suggest a 1/2 part vinegar, 1 1/2 parts detergent, and 2 parts water. Test this on the material prior to using on entire area. Keep in mind that any "vinegar scent" will fade with time.
For washing anything in the washing machine (like sheets), throw in a good measure of white vinegar along with a bit of salt (helps prevent colors from fading) and plenty of detergent and a bit of fabric softener. I use the longest cycle possible with extra rinse/extract. Use common sense with water temperature (aka: don't wash something red in hot/cold and not expect it to bleed or fade).
I find white vinegar to be a wonderful urine neutralizer for cats. I've had NO luck with "Nature's Miracle" whatsoever. I've had NO luck with Feli-way and other pet deterrents. I'm sure the white vinegar will work on cleaning human urine as well.
I strongly recommend using shower curtains (the thick gauge plastic ones) to cover furniture/beds from pets when you're not home or being attentive. They work like a charm (unless the cats have torn holes into them with their claws). These shower curtains can be washed in the washing machine (cold water) as well.
Use common sense with mattress protectors. I'd suggest a traditional plastic cover with a newer "waterproof" cover over that to silence things a bit. Never expect any fabric that is porous (aka: not plastic or rubber, etc) to fully protect anything from liquids.
I hope these tips are helpful. (10/22/2008)
I've used Borax to get vomit off of our memory foam topper and regular mattress. Just dampen the spot (probably not necessary with the urine) and liberally sprinkle 20 Mule Borax over the area. Let sit for at least 6 hours, if not overnight. I vacuumed the area after about 12 hours of it sitting on the topper, and it was dry, with NO odor of vomit at all. It's 4 days later, and I've been sleeping on it, and it's still fine! :) (01/18/2009)
I don't necessarily have an answer for the cleaning problem BUT I do have an answer for the nighttime wetting problem. Find a reputable chiropractor who adjusts children and share the problem with him/her. I took my 7 yr old who was wetting every night and wearing pull ups; being teased by his younger brothers, too. It was literally overnight improvement! I highly recommend it to everyone I see having this problem. We have put kids through so much trying to fix this problem including limiting fluids to these thirsty little people. I tell you those days can be behind you! I'd love to hear from you if you try this! (04/06/2009)
YES! It can be washed, victory! My son wet the bed and I tried the pet odor remover/towels but it was too strong (he's recovered from autism spectrum, very sensitive to any type of chemicals). This might only work with a small topper (we have a 2" twin size) unless you have access to a very large washing machine, however, it worked wonderfully.
The BIG trick is to babysit the washing machine process and skip over the parts that would do damage. I crammed the topper in with equal weight on opposite sides for the spinner to work well; I let it fill with water and soap, then turned off the wash cycle and dipped/pushed it several times by hand (which shrunk it down, easier to wash). I skipped to the drain/rinse cycle, let it fill up with clean water and did the same thing. Then I skipped to the spin cycle, which I repeated to spin out excess water.
This was only a few hours ago and after laying it over ventilated sweater racks flat on the floor, it is almost dry. All urine smell is gone. It did pick up a few pieces of lint from the washer since it is so porous and a little sticky, but nothing at all major - so try wiping out the barrel very well beforehand. Hope that helps someone to avoid all those chemicals! (04/18/2009)
When my girls were little, I bought plastic mattress covers that covered all four sides of the mattress and had a zipper in one end to put it on and take it off. It wasn't an easy job to get it on and off, but I felt it was better than maybe having a wet mattress. (02/07/2010)
This may sound odd but if you have an odor in your Tempurpedic mattress, if the smell is still there at all once you've done all you can, you might consider getting a memory foam mattress topper for it. I believe that would act as a (very comfortable) barrier for any lingering odor. I have a firm Tempurpedic and have slept with a 3" softer memory foam topper on it for about a year and it is super comfy. Anyone who lies on it has to comment to me about it. My kids wet my bed a few times and I feel fortunate that I just have to change out the mattress topper. It's really beyond gross at this point. But expensive as it is, it could be worse. (09/12/2010)