How to properly clean a futon mattress

futon mattress
The futon mattress started as a traditional style of bedding in Japan. However, over time, it became a stylish, practical, and convertible piece of furniture that can serve as a sofa or a bed, thanks to the mattress that is pliable enough to fold when the frame is adjusted.
Futon mattresses are no longer just a choice for college dorms and are widely used, especially in smaller apartments. However, as with every mattress, the futon also becomes soiled by dead skin cells, body oils, spills, and other grime. If you have pets in the house, this may be much more likely to happen more often. Regular cleaning is important. Whenever you notice obvious stains or an unpleasant smell, it is definitely time to clean your futon mattress.
Whenever a spill or a stain occurs, you should tend to it as soon as possible. That way you will prevent it from penetrating deeper into the mattress and permanently damaging it. Some futon mattresses have removable covers which should also be washed regularly. You can have a schedule for cleaning those, washing them when needed, or seasonally.

Ideally, you should vacuum your futon mattress once a week to remove dust and soil and prevent them from building up. How often you will deep clean your futon mattress depends on how often you use it and the type and amount of grime that accumulates on it.
If you use your futon mattress only for sleeping, deep cleaning it once a year would be enough. If, however, you also use it as a couch, for eating, snacking, or snuggling with your pets, cleaning the mattress once every 3-4 months would be great.
The construction of your futon mattress will help you determine the cleaning method you will use. Traditional Japanese futons are usually thinner and filled with cotton. Western futon mattresses are thicker and usually have small interlaced springs, cotton, foam filling, or a sheet of memory foam.

Cleaning cotton or innerspring mattress

1. Remove the cover – If possible, remove the cover of the mattress and wash it according to the care label of the fabric.
2. Vacuum the mattress – Use the upholstery attachment of your vacuum cleaner and thoroughly vacuum the surface of the mattress. Do not forget to vacuum the sides, then turn the mattress around and vacuum the other side as well.
3. Treat stains
Food and drink stains – Grab a microfiber cloth, wet it, then wring it out until it is just damp. Spray the stains with an enzyme-based laundry detergent and allow the product to sit for 10-15 minutes. Then, use the cloth to gently rub at the areas where the stains are. Keep moving to a clean area of the cloth, as the stain transfers to it. Rinse the cloth once in a while and repeat if needed.
Urine stains – To make a solution, mix ½ teaspoon of an enzyme-based stain remover or a heavy-duty liquid laundry detergent and 1 cup of warm water. Dip a soft-bristled brush in the mixture and lightly scrub the stained area of the mattress. Start working at the outer edges of the stain and work your way toward the centre to prevent it from spreading and becoming larger. Blot the area with a dry cloth to absorb any moisture. Sprinkle it with baking soda, let it dry, then brush away the powder, or use your vacuum to remove it.
Blood stains – Use the same cleaning mixture of enzyme-based laundry detergent and water to remove as much of the stain as possible. Make sure you use cold water, since hot water may set the stain and make it hard to remove or even permanent. Mix a paste of powdered oxygen bleach and water and apply it to the remaining stain. Allow it to dry, then vacuum the rest of the powder. Repeat if needed.

Cleaning of foam futon mattresses

Foam mattresses should not be cleaned with any type of wet cleaning, including steam. To remove spills, place a microfiber cloth on top of the stain and press down to absorb as much moisture as possible. You can apply pressure with your hands or a heavy object. Keep replacing the towels with dry ones as the spill gets absorbed. Allow the mattress to air dry. Do not use hair dryers or any other heating objects.
Clean with a powerful vacuum with a soft-bristled brush or an upholstery attachment. Start on one side and work in a circular motion. Make sure you remove all dust mites and other grime to prevent them from building up.

Tips on further futon mattress maintenance:

• Use a cover and wash it at least once per season.
• Monitor humidity levels to prevent mould and mildew growth.
• Avoid leaving damp items on your futon mattress.
• Use a washable pad or blanket underneath your pets if you allow them on the futon mattress.
• Treat spills immediately.