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View Full Version : How to Get Rid of an Old, Disgusting Mattress and Boxspring?


Broomstick
08-02-2011, 10:01 AM
I work for a landlord who has a problem, and I'm turning to the Dope for help.

He is now in possession of a number of mattresses/boxprings that need disposal. The usual solutions seem to be the following, none of which suits our problem:

1) Ask the store where you purchase your new mattress to pick up and dispose of your old one! We aren't buying a new mattress. We're throwing out old ones. We don't want and don't need a replacement. These items have been abandoned by former tenants. (No, we can't ask the former tenants to do this - most are on the run from creditors, and frankly, the landlord couldn't get the last 4-6 months rent out of them so no, I don't think anyone is inclined to do anyone a favor here).

2) Ask [fill in the blank here] to recycle them or donate them to charity! Er... these have been through floods (in one case, exposed to raw sewage), they were left in backyards or garages, they have mold/mildew damage, rats, raccoons, and probably things I don't want to know about have chewed them, eaten on/in them, raised young'uns, pee'd and pooped all over and in these things. No, I don't consider that something to be recycled or donated anywhere but a dump.

3) Ask your local city government/garbage provider for a special pickup. Already tried. The answer is "no". A very firm "no". The city warned us that any attempt to sneak one into the garbage will result in a large fine. The garbage agency said they will cancel a contract if a mattress is put in their dumpster. The local recycling center will take the steel parts... so long as there are no other bits attached. Which leaves the problem of what to do with the REST of the mattress.

I guess this explains why abandoned mattresses are not an uncommon site along the highway around here. Seriously, IS there a legal way to dispose of an old mattress?

redtail23
08-02-2011, 10:06 AM
Your town doesn't have a dump?

There's a lot of things that aren't allowed in the regular trash here, and the city doesn't do individual special pickups.

But you can take things to the dump anytime. There's a small fee, based on weight. I think you do have to have a utility bill or something proving residence.

Chefguy
08-02-2011, 10:41 AM
Your town doesn't have a dump?

There's a lot of things that aren't allowed in the regular trash here, and the city doesn't do individual special pickups.

But you can take things to the dump anytime. There's a small fee, based on weight. I think you do have to have a utility bill or something proving residence.

Yeah, drive out to your local landfill and talk to somebody there. Then find a friend with a truck, pay the fee, and all done.

Dewey Finn
08-02-2011, 10:45 AM
I wouldn't even bother driving to the landfill. Either call them, or call the garbage agency (the one that told you not to put the mattress in the dumpster) and ask them, "So if I can't put a used mattress in my dumpster, what is the correct way of disposing of it?"

BTW, since it's possible that the mattress is harboring bedbugs, I'd be very careful how I got it removed. Perhaps use a U-Haul truck.

Sally Mander
08-02-2011, 10:48 AM
Does your city have bulk pickup for large items? You usually have to call and schedule a pickup, or find out when one has already been scheduled for your area. Then you just put it out that day.
My SO and I got rid of 3 beds (mattress and box spring) this way. We had to do it one at a time, but it was easier than dragging them all to the dump.

kittenblue
08-02-2011, 10:53 AM
Around here, you put it out on the curb on trash day and the truck picks it up and takes it away.

Rhythmdvl
08-02-2011, 10:58 AM
Pile them on a street corner with a sign that says "free trampolines."

Haul them into your backyard and make the biggest, bestest fort ever.


Scan the Yellow Pages/Craigslist for haulers and the like. Ask them how much to come get them and what they will do with them (i.e., be sure they won't just take them and dump them on some rural country road).

kayaker
08-02-2011, 11:02 AM
The garbage agency said they will cancel a contract if a mattress is put in their dumpster.

Can you switch dumpster companies? I have a dumpster at my business and have disposed of mattresses. Never a problem. If the dumpster people said anything, a $20 would smooth things over.

kunilou
08-02-2011, 11:04 AM
Call the stores in your town who sell mattresses and ask them who they use to dispose of mattresses. Call that company and try to arrange something directly with them.

Balthisar
08-02-2011, 11:14 AM
Craigslist. Free mattresses.

Machine Elf
08-02-2011, 11:30 AM
Years ago I disposed of a mattress and boxspring by dismantling them and putting a portion into my weekly trash for a few weeks. With a utility knife (to slice up the upholstery), a heavy pair of pliers (to cut up the wires that hold the internals together) and a hammer (to knock apart the wood structure of the box spring, if any), you can take apart a mattress/boxspring set in about twenty minutes.

If you're looking for something less laborious and don't mind spending a few bucks, call the local landfill, or check the city's website for the solid waste department. Instead of asking if you can do X with it, ask them what they suggest you do with it.

If all else fails, there's these guys. (http://1800gotjunk.com/)

Daerlyn
08-02-2011, 12:05 PM
How close is the building of the guy you're working for to Chicago? 1-800-Got-Junk has five franchises in the Chicago area. If you wrap them in a tarp first they should have no problems taking them.

Broomstick
08-02-2011, 12:36 PM
I wouldn't even bother driving to the landfill. Either call them, or call the garbage agency (the one that told you not to put the mattress in the dumpster) and ask them, "So if I can't put a used mattress in my dumpster, what is the correct way of disposing of it?"
They don't care as far as they're concerned it's our problem.

BTW, since it's possible that the mattress is harboring bedbugs
Actually, pretty damn unlikely. Fleas, perhaps, but not bedbugs.

Does your city have bulk pickup for large items?
The city where the mess is located does not, in fact, have bulk pickup. At all. In fact, it only manages to get regular pickup done about 50% of the time.

Where I live there is NO garbage pickup at all. None. I live in an unincorporated area and we get none of the city services urban residents take for granted. Everyone is responsible for dealing with their own garbage, which usually means hiring a private service, or trying to find a place to dump your stuff. No, I do not have access to municipal landfills because I am not a resident of any of said municipalities. Neither is the landlord. He owns property in a municipality, but because he isn't a resident there he isn't allowed to use the landfill. His tenants were, because they were residents, but he's not and he can't.

My SO and I got rid of 3 beds (mattress and box spring) this way. We had to do it one at a time, but it was easier than dragging them all to the dump.
I'm beginning to think that's what we'll have to do, but there are definite issues with that, too.

Around here, you put it out on the curb on trash day and the truck picks it up and takes it away.
Around here, that's a $500 fine for a first offense.

I'll look into the 1-800-JUNK option and see if they'll cross state lines to help us out. Also, I'll try the local mattress places but the first two I called said they if weren't buying from them they weren't going to take old mattresses.

As I mentioned, this could explain the abundance of old, abandoned mattresses we get around here....

But keep brainstorming, we'll figure something out eventually.

Chefguy
08-02-2011, 01:03 PM
No, I do not have access to municipal landfills because I am not a resident of any of said municipalities. Neither is the landlord. He owns property in a municipality, but because he isn't a resident there he isn't allowed to use the landfill. His tenants were, because they were residents, but he's not and he can't.



Really? Do you really think the landfill people will check his residency? Why would they care, as long as you're paying the fee? If there is no garbage pickup service, where does your garbage go? I lived in a rural area for awhile and we hauled ours to a local county landfill.

Rhythmdvl
08-02-2011, 01:11 PM
Really? Do you really think the landfill people will check his residency? Why would they care, as long as you're paying the fee? If there is no garbage pickup service, where does your garbage go? I lived in a rural area for awhile and we hauled ours to a local county landfill.

Do not taunt happy fun landfill guy.

The couple areas I've had experience with gave window stickers at the town hall (haul?) after showing proof of residency (no experience with only having proof of land ownership but not residency). You cannot get into the dump without said sticker.

aceplace57
08-02-2011, 01:11 PM
Rural area?

Burn the mattress in your back yard. Clear away any leaves and have a water hose ready.
Kerosine & some cardboard boxes will get it going nicely. Bring a bag of marshmallows too.

The metal frame can be cut up with wire snips and easily bagged/trashed.

Where I live there is NO garbage pickup at all. None. I live in an unincorporated area and we get none of the city services urban residents take for granted.

Daerlyn
08-02-2011, 01:16 PM
For some reason I read 'NW Indiana' as 'NW Illinois' in your location field. They also have a franchise in Indianapolis.

Al Bundy
08-02-2011, 01:47 PM
Get a truck and take them to the local dump.

I had only one to get rid of so I cut it up in pieces that would fit in a dumpster.

redtail23
08-02-2011, 01:58 PM
Yeah, the dump here requires a utility bill to prove residence. Of course, I've never had them check my ID against the utility bill...;)

Don't you or the landlord have any friends that live in town and could lend a hand?

Lessee, drive around town until you find a construction site and put it in their dumpster.* Alternatively, drive around town until you find an unlocked business dumpster and use that. I haven't done that since I was, I dunno, I think about 19, but as long as we're brainstorming. :)

I like the "burn it" idea, as long as you're not in a drought like we are. Burning things here is a very, very, very bad idea right now. :( But I can guarantee that's what would have happened when I lived in an unincorporated area.


* For humor purposes only. Totally pissed me off when we had one of those dumpsters while we were working on a house. Had to have the damn thing emptied of OTHER PEOPLE'S TRASH like 3 times for the 1 time we filled it. GRRRRR. :mad:

Blakeyrat
08-02-2011, 02:05 PM
Not sure if this is an option for you, but around here we take "difficult" waste to the local Indian reservation dump. They'll take almost anything, and it's not too expensive. If you're close to a reservation, call them up and ask.

kayaker
08-02-2011, 02:27 PM
Alternatively, drive around town until you find an unlocked business dumpster and use that.

I'm a business owner. A nosy neighbor spied someone putting things in my dumpster and got the guys license plate info.

I filed a police report, and the cops caught the guy, who confessed. The cop asked if I would consider withdrawing my complaint. I said I would, if the guy emptied my dumpster, since I couldn't distinguish his stuff from mine. With the cop watching, the guy took everything out of the dumpster and loaded into his car; trunk, back seat, passenger front seat.

Don't do this.

KneadToKnow
08-02-2011, 02:30 PM
Bagster (http://thebagster.com/Areas_Serviced.aspx). Check your ZIP code for service availability.

Tom Tildrum
08-02-2011, 02:41 PM
The guy down the street from me just put his old mattress (and some carpet) out at the curb a few months ago. Apparently he didn't call for a special pickup, because the trash company ignored it. Now I guess he just thinks nature is going to reclaim it, and frankly it is, bit by bit. I'd complain to the county, but I'm perversely fascinated.

Eva Luna
08-02-2011, 02:46 PM
Craigslist. Free mattresses.

This worked for me, within hours. I had several offers.

Romeo and Whatsherface
08-02-2011, 03:15 PM
So the municipal landfill is out. I'm willing to bet your county has a landfill. Why not call your county government offices and find out?

Muffin
08-02-2011, 03:26 PM
Get an art foundation grant and some matching government government funds to have it installed as a found art exhibit. With any luck, you can parlez it into a travelling exhibit and never see it again, a la Elmer McCurdy (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Elmer_McCurdy).

nivlac
08-02-2011, 03:29 PM
Can't you just look for a local hauler to take the mattress away for a fee? Check the local paper, put up notices at the market, laundry, etc., or ask local businesses who they use to get rid of bulky crap.

beartato
08-02-2011, 03:31 PM
I'll look into the 1-800-JUNK option and see if they'll cross state lines to help us out. Also, I'll try the local mattress places but the first two I called said they if weren't buying from them they weren't going to take old mattresses.

The mattress places may not take your old ones, but I think what kunilou was getting as it that they may be able to tell you what they do with ones that they do take.

J-P L
08-02-2011, 03:34 PM
If a store that sells mattresses won't take it because you did not buy mattresses from them, at least, ask them what they do with the ones they do pick up, they might put you in touch with some company that recycles mattresses. You'll most likely be expected to cover the cost.


Beated to it by Beartato.

Rhythmdvl
08-02-2011, 03:45 PM
The guy down the street from me just put his old mattress (and some carpet) out at the curb a few months ago. Apparently he didn't call for a special pickup, because the trash company ignored it. Now I guess he just thinks nature is going to reclaim it, and frankly it is, bit by bit. I'd complain to the county, but I'm perversely fascinated.

Take pictures and post a Web site: The Stinky Mattress Project.


(Ref: Stinky Meat Project (http://stinkymeat.net/))

kunilou
08-02-2011, 03:47 PM
The mattress places may not take your old ones, but I think what kunilou was getting as it that they may be able to tell you what they do with ones that they do take.
Yes, that is what I meant.

Tom Tildrum
08-02-2011, 03:53 PM
Take pictures and post a Web site: The Stinky Mattress Project.


(Ref: Stinky Meat Project (http://stinkymeat.net/))

I actually had that in mind. I would presumably need a stinkymate to volunteer to sleep on it one night.

Rachellelogram
08-02-2011, 04:01 PM
I've had success putting my crap into a dumpster at an apartment complex I used to live at. Drive up just after dark like you own the place, dump em, drive away like you still own the place.

Obviously it's not risk-free.

aceplace57
08-02-2011, 04:07 PM
Cutting up the mattress sounds like the most practical method.
There's really not much there except some foam padding and the fabric top. That'll bag up easily. Cutting up the springs with metal snips would be the most tedious part.

Buy a good wire cutter
http://amazon.com/Klein-D228-8-Leverage-Diagonal-Cutting/dp/B0000302VW/ref=pd_sim_hi_1
Hire a couple teenagers. Pay them $40 a mattress to cut it & bag it.

You might even make a few $$$ taking the cut up wire to a recycler.

Problem solved.

Muffin
08-02-2011, 04:39 PM
Commence toxic tort court actions against the tenants who slept on the mattresses and allegedly stinkified them, and file the said mattresses as evidence with the court. Then either move without filing a forwarding address, or drag things out until the tenants cave in and settle on the condition that they take possession of the mattresses, or just plain lose the case and pay the tenant's court costs in mattresses rather than money.

Muffin
08-02-2011, 04:44 PM
If the Clintons could donate their used underwear to charities (http://nytimes.com/1994/04/16/us/clinton-taxes-laid-bare-line-by-line.html) and claim tax deductions, you should at least be able to drop the mattresses off at the political party of your choice and claim a tax deduction.

Muffin
08-02-2011, 04:50 PM
Rural area?

Burn the mattress in your back yard.You can make more profit if you buy a and insure a flea-bag motel, put a stinky mattress in each room, rent out the rooms for first month plus damage deposit, burn the place to the ground, make an insurance claim to pay off the mortgage, and make your profit by blaming it on the tenant smokers and keeping their damage deposits.

Muffin
08-02-2011, 04:52 PM
Too bad you are not in Canada. At the moment, I keep putting things in the mail, but they do not get delivered (Canada Post is on the rebound from a strike). I suppose the best you could do would be to parcel post them to the address of someone whom you do not like, and for the return address, put down the address of another person whom you do not like.

Muffin
08-02-2011, 04:57 PM
You're a pilot and you'd like to have some flight time comped, so how about dropping them from a plane on the first pass, and then on the second pass letting the parachutists who are paying your plane rental and fuel use them as soft landing targets. Then just fly off into the distance while your happy clients start to wonder how the hell they can dispose of stinky mattresses.

TruCelt
08-02-2011, 05:12 PM
Container garden. Just cut the tops out of each one, stack some bricks around it and fill with topsoil.

Seriously, bagster is the bomb. You might need two bags, but $190.00 and done. If any are King sized you might need a chain saw. . .

Eva Luna
08-02-2011, 05:19 PM
This worked for me, within hours. I had several offers.

Also, freecycle.org. I only did Craigslist first because it took a couple of days to get registered on Freecycle.

SeaDragonTattoo
08-02-2011, 07:16 PM
Sorry, I'm a little confused after reading the thread, I'm still not sure how Broomstick disposes of regular house trash right now. Do you have a private service that picks up regular trash?

My apartment building has a private service that also restricts putting furniture and such in the actual dumpsters, because they aren't prepared with the regular trucks to take furniture and so the poor guy would have to fish the big stuff like that out before being able to lift the dumpster into the truck. What they do, instead, is have residents put furniture to be disposed next to the dumpsters, and when the regular pickup occurs, the extra gets called in and they do an extra pickup - for additional fees, of course. Usually gets picked up within 3-5 days of getting put outside.

So, my take on that is asking if the private service will do an extra pickup of stuff that's outside the dumpster and how much that fee would be. I'm having a hard time with thinking a regular garbage service wouldn't do extra-fee pickups. Man it would be a mess of totally full alleys around here if they didn't do that! (there is no city pickup for buildings larger than 3-flats, so every residential building larger than that has to get private service)

Broomstick
08-02-2011, 07:36 PM
Sorry, I'm a little confused after reading the thread, I'm still not sure how Broomstick disposes of regular house trash right now. Do you have a private service that picks up regular trash?
Yes, we have a private trash service. It is $95 for an extra pick up and they emphatically will NOT take mattresses.

My area used to be rural, but the urban sprawl has caught up with it. So... we don't have perks like municipal pickup, AND it is now illegal to burn trash on one's property. Everyone in the unincorporated areas has to pay for trash service, which is down to two companies in my area, and both charge fairly steep rates because there isn't much choice. If people don't get rid of their garbage, just let it pile up, then they get fined. So it's a bad situation. I know of a couple properties where there's an outbuilding filled with a couple years of garbage.

The former tenants aren't worth going after. There's no money there. Really. They spent the last two months of residence without electricity, gas, or running water due to inability to pay utility bills. Given that, is it a wonder they didn't pay someone to haul the mattress and boxspring away? They couldn't take it anywhere, either, as their car was busted and they didn't have money to fix that either. After they abandoned it the landlord looked it over, decided it wasn't worth fixing, and had a junker service tow it away. But they only dealt with cars.

This is not, however, as bad as the tenants back about 5 years now who decided to raise money for their rent by first stripping the aluminum siding off the house and selling it for scrap, then cooking meth on the waterbed in the bedroom. It did not end well.

What can I say? When middle class people fall into dire poverty it gets very, very ugly. They won't admit how shitty things have gotten, they're either too proud to ask for help or don't know where to go for help, and sometimes they panic or freeze up and don't do anything to help themselves until it's too late. Or they do something stupid or bad or criminal to try to get money.

So, my take on that is asking if the private service will do an extra pickup of stuff that's outside the dumpster and how much that fee would be.
As I mentioned upstream, it's potentially a $500 fine for leaving stuff outside a dumpster in my area. The county "can't afford" trash pickup for everyone, but apparently they feel free to ticket folks.

I'm having a hard time with thinking a regular garbage service wouldn't do extra-fee pickups. Man it would be a mess of totally full alleys around here if they didn't do that! (there is no city pickup for buildings larger than 3-flats, so every residential building larger than that has to get private service)
Did you think I was kidding about mattresses being left alongside roads around here? You are absolutely correct, that sort of situation leads to a mess. That's why around here we have garbage next to roads and illegal dumping going on everywhere.

Icarus
08-02-2011, 08:00 PM
Since you live in an unincorporated area, at the very least you have a County government(?) FWIW - give them a call and complain about this. They have some say over who gets the trash hauling contract, and the terms. I'm not suggesting this will solve your immediate problem, but it may get somebodies balls rolling.

Broomstick
08-02-2011, 08:11 PM
Yes, we have a county government. NO, they have nothing to do with trash hauling. It's either city trash service or, if your city doesn't have such, or you're outside a city you have to contract with a private hauler. They have no say in who gets the trash hauling "contract" because there isn't one with the "county government". It's strictly between private individuals/landlords and the private companies doing the hauling. I'm not sure why people are having such a hard time comprehending this.

The locals governments that don't supply trash pickup do not care (unless you dump something they don't like, have garbage outside your dumpster, or they catch you burning trash). Calling them does no good. As far as they're concerned it's the responsibility of the owner to find a trash service, that is not something provided by all governments around here. If yours doesn't, tough shit, you're on your own.

Dewey Finn
08-02-2011, 08:16 PM
Well, I for one have a bit of trouble comprehending this because I've always lived in incorporated cities and towns, with responsive local government.

Broomstick
08-02-2011, 08:38 PM
Well, I'm in sort of a Libertarian "paradise" - we have very little local government, and for the most part you're on your own for taking care of stuff. Maybe it's why I'm not a Libertarian.

astro
08-02-2011, 08:46 PM
Almost every quasi rural area I'm familar with is lousy with "two guys and a truck" haul away type services. Why is this not the go to answer?

Rachellelogram
08-02-2011, 09:03 PM
Well, I'm in sort of a Libertarian "paradise" - we have very little local government, and for the most part you're on your own for taking care of stuff. Maybe it's why I'm not a Libertarian.
It's not remotely libertarian to illegalize burning garbage (which is how rural folk typically deal with it) or to police your personal property the way they are. It's pretty fascist, actually, to demand that you deal with your garbage by going through one of only two vendors, neither of whom will apparently deal with mattresses.

Make friends with someone who is incorporated and have them take the trash to the county dump.

KneadToKnow
08-02-2011, 09:07 PM
Did I miss this: was Bagster a no go?

redtail23
08-02-2011, 09:23 PM
Obviously the landlord should have stuffed the mattresses into the junker before he had it towed away.

That really sucks. When we lived in an unincorporated zone, it was rural. Everybody burned their trash, there was no pickup. Sounds like you've got the worst of both worlds.

How can the city enforce code if you're not part of the city?

Sateryn76
08-02-2011, 09:24 PM
Did I miss this: was Bagster a no go?

No Bagster in our area. Every time I check, I weep for what could be...

Seriously, they would have made a million dollars off of our house so far.

Sateryn76
08-02-2011, 09:26 PM
It's not remotely libertarian to illegalize burning garbage (which is how rural folk typically deal with it) or to police your personal property the way they are. It's pretty fascist, actually, to demand that you deal with your garbage by going through one of only two vendors, neither of whom will apparently deal with mattresses.

Make friends with someone who is incorporated and have them take the trash to the county dump.

We have problems with air quality around here, what with the mills and all. I'm glad people aren't burning garbage all the time. Plus, I don't think it's a rural area, so much as a built up "town" that has not been annexed to a particular city.

And no, I'm sure the landlord could call any one of a number of 1-800-Got-Junk type of places. It just costs money.

ETA - Are mattresses really "garbage"? I don't think so, not really.

svd678
08-02-2011, 11:04 PM
I imagine its going to cost. Landfills are endangered species. Where I last lived you took refuse to a recycle station, where recyclables were removed. The remainder trucked who-knows-where. Burning is a bad idea - smoke, you know. Nobody will have a use for them to reclaim them, incl. political parties. Muffin-Political donations are not deductible.

aceplace57
08-02-2011, 11:43 PM
After thinking about it....

I'm not sure if the cutters I linked would cut the steel wire used in bed frames. I'd have to look at it too know for sure. The ones I linked do have longer handles that give leverage for cutting. No way would you ever cut that steel wire with cheap $7 side cutters. You got to have long handles for leverage.

Chain Cutters would do the trick for sure. But, I'd peel back the fabric and see how big a wire the spring/frame is made of. The cutters I linked may do the job perfectly.

Cutting up the mattress sounds like the most practical method.
There's really not much there except some foam padding and the fabric top. That'll bag up easily. Cutting up the springs with metal snips would be the most tedious part.

Buy a good wire cutter
http://amazon.com/Klein-D228-8-Leverage-Diagonal-Cutting/dp/B0000302VW/ref=pd_sim_hi_1
Hire a couple teenagers. Pay them $40 a mattress to cut it & bag it.

You might even make a few $$$ taking the cut up wire to a recycler.

Problem solved.

Muffin
08-03-2011, 05:45 AM
Nobody will have a use for them to reclaim them, incl. political parties. Muffin-Political donations are not deductible.Well that shoots that idea in the foot. About all that is left is to drop them off at a whore house with your favourite religious politician's card attached.

Broomstick
08-03-2011, 07:24 AM
Did I miss this: was Bagster a no go?
Since I didn't see the thing about bagster until AFTER I got home from work, which was after work hours, and I haven't had a chance to talk to the landlord who, after all, is the guy who would pay for it, it's more a matter of there hasn't been enough time to see if it's a viable alternative. I do note Bagster is a division of Waste Management which doesn't normally do business in this area. I don't know if that would be a problem or not.

Broomstick
08-03-2011, 07:27 AM
Obviously the landlord should have stuffed the mattresses into the junker before he had it towed away.
Well, yes, but they're wise to that - they tend to unload large junk items from cars before towing because they don't want to have to deal with this stuff, either.

That really sucks. When we lived in an unincorporated zone, it was rural. Everybody burned their trash, there was no pickup. Sounds like you've got the worst of both worlds.
Yep.

How can the city enforce code if you're not part of the city?
The county has codes, too, you know :)

Five years ago you could still burn trash in unincorporated areas. Then the incorporated places started complaining about the smoke and passed the rule county-wide, because they have more people and thus more power in the voting booth. Also, I think a lot of them assumed the unincorporated areas had some sort of automatic trash pickup, which as I mentioned, we don't.

Martin Hyde
08-03-2011, 07:36 AM
I've spent much time in unincorporated areas in Virginia and I guess we just have better county governments / trash pickup companies here. Trash was just simply never a problem, and it was easy to pay extra for large item pickup. This was in very rural, low density regions. Oh well..guess I'm glad I don't live in Indiana, always heard it was pretty backwards, but I never would have thought it was more backwards than SW Virginia where I grew up. Even trash burning is rare down there these days.

In my business it isn't totally uncommon for us to need very short term labor, like 1-2 days work. We have a small permanent staff that might need supplemented 3-4 times a year, maybe for a week at a time or less. I've also hired lots of workers for single jobs. Have you just tried putting up a Cragislist ad saying, "$60 cash to haul old mattress off property." In this economy I think you'd get some bites. I've advertised similarly for different jobs now and again on Craigslist and I always get lots of people emailing me, so many so that I've mostly got a contact list of people who are always reliable for temporary work that I tend to use as a first resort to avoid having to sift through all the Craigslist emails.

Broomstick
08-03-2011, 07:39 AM
No Bagster in our area. Every time I check, I weep for what could be...
Well, I guess that settles that question, as we're in the same general area...

We have problems with air quality around here, what with the mills and all. I'm glad people aren't burning garbage all the time.
Look, frankly, I wouldn't burn a mattress near my home, especially not near my garden - the foam making up most of a mattress will generate extremely toxic smoke. I understand the appeal of burning the damn thing, you'd just be left with the metal which you could then sell for scrap, but seriously people, those of you suggesting burning, don't you realize how toxic burning foam is?

Plus, I don't think it's a rural area, so much as a built up "town" that has not been annexed to a particular city.
50 years ago it was rural. Now, yes, it's a built up "town". Merrillville won't have us, and the locals refuse to be part of Gary.

ETA - Are mattresses really "garbage"? I don't think so, not really.
Trust me - the ones I'm looking at are. Pulled part of an animal skeleton out of one of 'em yesterday.

After thinking about it....

I'm not sure if the cutters I linked would cut the steel wire used in bed frames. I'd have to look at it too know for sure. The ones I linked do have longer handles that give leverage for cutting. No way would you ever cut that steel wire with cheap $7 side cutters. You got to have long handles for leverage.
Don't need to cut any metal. The local scrappers will happily take intact bedsprings, as long as all the non-metal bits have been removed first. Ever take apart a mattress? It can be more effort than you realize. Having to do it in 97 degree heat just adds to the fun.

Which is probably what we'll do - I'll wind up dismantling the mattress, we'll sell the springs, and stuff the other crap into a trash bag so it doesn't look like a mattress. I'll just have to suit up in the heavy leather gloves and get some sharp utility knives. This won't be fun. These things reek. But it looks like it might be cheaper for him to pay me to do the job at my hourly rate than to pay what it costs to get someone to haul it away.

As for the fly-by-night haulers - how do you think crap like this winds up beside the road and in fields and backlots? If we can't get someone to haul one of these away legally for under $50 (or more) what makes you think the shady guys we slip $20 will be able to do it? How do you think they make a profit? It ain't by paying landfill fees.

Broomstick
08-03-2011, 07:44 AM
Have you just tried putting up a Cragislist ad saying, "$60 cash to haul old mattress off property."
Because for $40 he can get me to take one apart, bag the unsellable parts, and take the springs down to the recyclers in my pickup? (Last time I got $7 for a boxspring, which more than paid for the gas to haul it and lunch).

I'm just not looking forward to it, that's all. Neither was he (he's doing some of them, too). 10 years ago, yeah, he probably would have done it that way but the economy has hit him hard, too, so he's trying to find the most cost-effective and legal way to do this.

Martin Hyde
08-03-2011, 07:46 AM
As for the fly-by-night haulers - how do you think crap like this winds up beside the road and in fields and backlots? If we can't get someone to haul one of these away legally for under $50 (or more) what makes you think the shady guys we slip $20 will be able to do it? How do you think they make a profit? It ain't by paying landfill fees.

Based on my experiences I think $60 is a pretty reasonable expectation for "random guy with a truck" to handle the matter. There are a lot of independent contractors who have legal places to dispose of things, and would be willing to make a few sawbucks for a half hour's work. It would probably be someone who wouldn't have to go very far out of their way to swing by your place.

Martin Hyde
08-03-2011, 07:48 AM
Because for $40 he can get me to take one apart, bag the unsellable parts, and take the springs down to the recyclers in my pickup? (Last time I got $7 for a boxspring, which more than paid for the gas to haul it and lunch).

I'm just not looking forward to it, that's all. Neither was he (he's doing some of them, too). 10 years ago, yeah, he probably would have done it that way but the economy has hit him hard, too, so he's trying to find the most cost-effective and legal way to do this.

Yeah...that's reasonable if you value your labor at that rate. For me I don't think I would disassemble a mattress for under several hundred dollars, especially a nasty mattress. I'm not afraid of getting my hands dirty, that's just the sort of job I really fucking hate and would be willing to pay a premium to not have to do myself.

Broomstick
08-03-2011, 07:50 AM
Going rate around here is $20 a pickup load. It's one thing for these guys to handle yardwaste, because there's a limit to the damage grass clippings and tree branches can do, but give 'em $60 to haul a mattress they're going to pocket the "extra" and just dump the mattress. Trust me on this, I've had some experience with these guys, both in hiring them to haul and catching them dumping shit in the back of the property I live on.

Broomstick
08-03-2011, 07:56 AM
Yeah...that's reasonable if you value your labor at that rate. For me I don't think I would disassemble a mattress for under several hundred dollars, especially a nasty mattress. I'm not afraid of getting my hands dirty, that's just the sort of job I really fucking hate and would be willing to pay a premium to not have to do myself.
Yeah, well, I've also helped clean out septic tanks. I don't like filth either, but someone has to clean it up and I can't seem to get other work these days. I have an amazing collection of heavy work gloves, rubber gauntlets, and a "darth vader" style respirator.

It's still a premium over what I normally charge, but having taken a mattress apart before I know how long it takes (actually, having them half-rotted makes that easier, if smellier) and can do it with reasonable efficiency. It's just utterly disgusting and it's hotter than hell outside right now, so it seemed worth investigating alternatives.

If you're wondering, if I have the proper tools, it only takes 60-90 minutes. Except when it's this hot I just don't work as fast. Yes, I'm doing this outside, no way would I want these pieces of crap in my living space.

Muffin
08-03-2011, 08:47 AM
the foam making up most of a mattress will generate extremely toxic smoke. I understand the appeal of burning the damn thing, you'd just be left with the metal which you could then sell for scrap, but seriously people, those of you suggesting burning, don't you realize how toxic burning foam is?Thanks. needed to be said.

Astroboy14
01-25-2014, 02:41 PM
Pile them on a street corner with a sign that says "free trampolines."


Won't work.

If, on the other hand, the sign said "matresses $10 each" they'd be gone overnight.

ZenBeam
01-25-2014, 03:13 PM
Epilogue?

Rhythmdvl
01-25-2014, 05:25 PM
Won't work.

If, on the other hand, the sign said "matresses $10 each" they'd be gone overnight.

What about a sign that said "keep off the trampolines"?


Since the thread was posted, I've used one of those Haul's-it-All places. They were fantastic--our basement went from a candidate for 'Hoarders' to a sea of empty space in a short time for what was to us a shockingly low price.

usedtobe
01-25-2014, 06:26 PM
PEOPLE!!!

THIS IS INDIANA - You think Texas is Red?

In IN, the counties are divided into townships - there are 3 levels of govt, and none of them do any more than a good Republican thinks is the proper role of government.

No service means no service.

I grew up in the hill country of southern IN - yes, there were empty lots everywhere which were used as illegal dumps. I never stayed long enough to run into heavy trash disposal, but this thread explains the illegal dumps everywhere.

Unfortunately, NW IN is flat and devoid of gullies.

I can't come up with anything less expensive than craigslist. I'd resign myself to the idea that whoever takes them away cheapest probably is not going to be responsible about their disposal.

Correction - 1 idea.

Pubbies resent the homeless with a passion.

Find a homeless encampment and dump the stuff around the edges - they probably won't want them either (if they do, they can drag them). When the police make their next sweep and destroy the few possessions the homeless have, they will take the stuff and blame the homeless.

drewtwo99
01-25-2014, 06:46 PM
I'd like an update from Broomstick on how this turned out!

Sarabellum1976
01-25-2014, 09:46 PM
Did anyone suggest digging a hole and burying them?

Broomstick
01-26-2014, 09:36 AM
We stripped the non-metal parts off the mattresses, bagged 'em, and put them in the regular dumpster because, apparently, that made it all sufficiently non-mattress like to make them no longer forbidden. We sold the boxsprings for scrap metal. It was hot, icky work, but since we needed money there was at least that reward at the end.

drewtwo99
01-26-2014, 08:41 PM
We stripped the non-metal parts off the mattresses, bagged 'em, and put them in the regular dumpster because, apparently, that made it all sufficiently non-mattress like to make them no longer forbidden. We sold the boxsprings for scrap metal. It was hot, icky work, but since we needed money there was at least that reward at the end.

Kind of reminds me of the Seinfeld episode where no garbage dump would take the muffin stumps... and they had to get "a guy" who "made problems go away"!

^_^

purplehorseshoe
01-27-2014, 01:15 PM
We stripped the non-metal parts off the mattresses, bagged 'em, and put them in the regular dumpster because, apparently, that made it all sufficiently non-mattress like to make them no longer forbidden. We sold the boxsprings for scrap metal. It was hot, icky work, but since we needed money there was at least that reward at the end.

Can I be nosy and ask how much dough you got for the metal?

Broomstick
01-27-2014, 02:30 PM
Roughly $7/boxspring, which worked out to around $20/hour for the effort.

usedtobe
01-27-2014, 07:19 PM
43,508 hits.
Is this a record?

Broomstick
01-27-2014, 07:28 PM
Wonder if the question is a frequent google search? Or maybe a glitch? It does seem inordinately high.

randompattern
01-27-2014, 07:43 PM
It's No.5 on the list in a Google search.

johnpost
01-27-2014, 07:45 PM
people are attracted to the thread by the good pay cited.

KneadToKnow
01-28-2014, 09:11 AM
43,508 hits.
Is this a record?

That's not even the highest view count in my "new subscribed threads" list. Not even 2nd.

ksarunsk
06-15-2015, 11:31 AM
Also, freecycle.org. I only did Craigslist first because it took a couple of days to get registered on Freecycle.

This website worked for me - within hours I got a message from someone who was ready tp pick up my Box Springs and Bed Frame.

Jstjohn
06-16-2015, 05:30 PM
Disassemble them. I think the issue is with their bulk.
-Cut off all padding and fabric, and bag it up.
-Remove any metal and recycle them or send to trash
-Break down all wooden parts and burn/recycle/ send to trash.

Muffin
06-16-2015, 06:52 PM
Driving down the highway with the mattress tied to the roof with a couple of loops of twine seems to be the preferred option for some folks.

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