Mattress Cleaning

Cleaning the covers

Nurse cleaning mattressIt is recommended that a solution of neutral detergent and warm water with a single use non-abrasive cloth is used to clean the mattress covers. Ensure the cover is rinsed with clean water, using a single use non-abrasive cloth and make sure the surface is thoroughly dried.

All covers are removable for laundering. The recommended washing temperature is between 60° C - 80° C using a diluted detergent solution (please see instructions on label).

The mattress covers should then be hung from a line or bar and drip dried in a clean indoor environment. Tumble dry on a low heat setting. Covers must be thoroughly dried before re-fitting to the mattress.

  • Tumble dry setting must not exceed 40° C
  • Do not tumble dry for longer than 10 minutes
  • Washing at higher temperatures may cause shrinkage


Disinfecting the covers

Light soilage:

Ensure that any residual detergent has been removed prior to disinfection. The cover can be wiped down with a 0.1% Chlorine Solution (1,000ppm). Ensure that the cover is rinsed with clean water using a single use nonabrasive cloth, and thoroughly dried.  

Heavy soilage:

For spillages of bodily fluids i.e blood, urine, faeces, sputum, wound exudate and all other bodily secretions. All spillages should be cleared up as soon as possible. A 1% Chlorine Solution (10,000ppm) can be used to disinfect the mattress. Rinse well with clean water and a damp single use non-abrasive cloth. Large spillages of blood should be absorbed and removed with paper towels followed by as above. Do not use granules. The surface should then be rinsed using clean water with a clean non-abrasive cloth.

Polyurethane coated fabrics can absorb liquids for short periods causing a temporary change to the polyurethane characteristics. The mattress cover swells temporarily and is more vulnerable to physical damage for a period after it is surface dried, by which time it will revert to its previous state.

The foam when either contaminated or when it reaches its end of life should be disposed of in accordance with Environmental Legislation.

  • 1% Chlorine Solution used on a regular basis can diminish the life of the cover if not rinsed and dried properly.
  • Contaminated foams should be removed from use.
  • Do not use phenols, alcohols, bleaches, or abrasive materials.
  • Keep Clear of Open Heat Sources.

N.B.: Always ensure you read the user instructions prior to use and inspect the interior and exterior of the mattress and overlays on a regular basis.

For further information on mattress cleaning and disinfecting, please refer to the BHTA 'Protect, Rinse and Dry' document. Alternatively, download a copy of our FOC Mattress Cleaning Guide poster.

BHTA 'Protect Rinse and Dry' document

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