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mattress guides

How To Dry A Wet Mattress — Step By Step Guide

What to do if you spill water on your mattress

When you spend a few hundred bucks (or even a few thousand) bucks on something, you want this thing to be perfect. In the case of mattresses, even a glass of water can ruin perfection. How to save water-damaged mattresses? What causes stains? How can one prevent them? The answers can be found below.

water spill on mattress

What causes water stain?

Paradoxically, water, and the excellent solvent we usually use to remove stains, dirt, etc, can cause stains on your mattress. Why does it happen?

Water itself cannot make your mattress or anything else dirty — stains are caused by minerals in it.

Calcium & magnesium are common components of the water we usually call “hard.” It is a big problem for people living in homes on private wells, but it doesn’t mean that others never face such difficulty. More than ¾ of all American households have hard water. This liquid leaves mineral deposits after water is evaporated.

Iron in water is another big problem. If liquid contains a lot of iron, water stains are very hard to remove from any surface.

hard water effects

So, even if it’s “just water”, you need to dry out your wet mattress before stubborn stains appear on it.

How to dry out a wet mattress: step-by-step instruction

If you spill a glass of ordinary water on your mattress, you should take action ASAP, not only because of stains that appear because of calcium, magnesium & iron, but also because your bed will turn into a home for various bacteria, mildew, and of course, mold. Hopefully, we have some answers on how to get mold out of your mattress, but it’s better to not even start it.

So, if you spilled water on the mattress, take the following steps:

instruction to dry mattress from water spills
  1. Remove all the bedding from your mattress. If you just spilled it, absorb the liquid using a dry towel, paper towels, or wet & dry vacuum cleaner. If you use towels, try to use a lot of pressure to absorb as much water as possible.
cleaning solution to dry mattress from water stains
  1. Take a spray bottle, ingredients, and make your cleaning solution. You need a solution that will kill all bacteria. Here is the recipe: add 1 part hydrogen peroxide (antimicrobial properties), 1 part water, and 2 squirts of the dish soap. If you want to add some nice aroma, include a few drops of essential oil you like to the cleaning solution. Shake it up and spray it in the spot area. If you don’t have a spray bottle make a solution and just pour it on the mattress.
baking soda to remove stains
  1. Use baking soda to absorb liquid and odor. Just take baking soda and sprinkle it all over your mattress. Note that too much soda will not cause any damage, so don’t be afraid to use it, just distribute soda evenly. If there is a very stubborn spot, you can use a toothbrush to rub it into your mattress.
  2. Wait for 10-12 hours and let soda do its job. There is a better option for those who have fans or at least a hairdryer (if a stain is small), you use them to dry your mattress and move on to the next stage. You can also take your mattress outside if it is a sunny day.
vacuum to dry mattress
  1. Then use a vacuum or even a broom if you don’t have a vac to remove soda from a mattress.

You can take these steps if you need to remove urine, blood, coffee, oil, and other stains, too.

blood stain on mattress

How to prevent water stains on a mattress?

If you want to prevent water stains in the future, you can purchase a waterproof mattress protector. They protect your bed from accidental spills, and they are not too expensive — the average price is about $20-25 for Queen size. Here are some of the best products on the market:

Waterproof mattress protector is a great investment if you want your mattress to last longer. In case, you are not sure if you’d like to purchase a protector, take a look at mattress toppers. Toppers, often called pads, can also save the mattress from water spills, but the list of their advantages a little bit differs.

mattress topper from water stains


Water seems like a harmless liquid, but it can ruin your mattress. It is not only about the stains caused by minerals but also about bacteria, mildew, and mold. If you just spilled water and can dry it, do it ASAP. If there is a water stain on your bed, clean a mattress.

The good news is supplies you need to use are probably in your home already:

  • Gloves
  • Baking soda (or baking powder, but soda is better)
  • Hydrogen peroxide and/or vinegar
  • Spray bottle
  • Dish soap
  • Toothbrush (optional)

Just follow the steps we listed above, and your mattress will last as long as it is supposed to last.


How do you get water out of a mattress?

Absorb the liquid using a wet & dry vacuum cleaner. If you don’t have one, use paper towels and/or dry towels.

How to remove water stains from mattress?

You can remove them just like any other stubborn stains: vacuum your mattress, spray the solution, treat your mattress with baking soda, dry it, and vacuum it again.

What cleaning services clean mattresses that have been wet?

There are plenty of cleaning services in the US like USA Clean Master, Stanley Steemer, etc. You can easily find lots of them in your state and don’t forget to check its rank on Yelp.

How to dry a wet memory foam mattress? Does cleaning foam mattress differ from cleaning other types?

No, cleaning a foam mattress is not different from cleaning other types of mattresses. To dry and clean it, use towels to absorb liquid or vacuum it, mist the spot area with the solution, sprinkle baking soda, and vacuum it after it absorbs all the liquid.

How long does it take a fan to dry a wet spot on your mattress?

It depends on the size of the spot. If it’s urine, and if the spot is pretty big, it may take 3 hours to dry it with 2 big fans. If you use a hairdryer this may take even longer. If it is just a small spot, you can dry it within half an hour.

How to dry a waterproof mattress pad?

Such protectors are machine washable and dryable. Just wash it (it is okay to wash it with bedding and clothes) and dry it outside, indoors, or in your washing machine.