Is It Illegal To Sell A Used Mattress? Secrets To Know

Is it illegal to sell a used mattress? The answer to this question varies depending on where you live and the regulations in your area. These regulations exist to protect consumers from the potential hazards associated with using a secondhand mattress, such as exposure to bed bugs, allergens, and other harmful factors. Learn more about this matter!

Overview Of US Mattress Regulation

Mattress regulation in the US aims to ensure that mattresses are safe, durable, and free from harmful chemicals. The Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) was established in 1972, and its core mission is to enforce federal mattress safety standards. These criteria cover content risks for people such as flammability, labeling, and performance.

Additionally, several states have their own mattress regulations, which may go beyond the federal requirements. For example, California has strict rules regarding the use of flame retardants in mattresses. 

Connecticut also requires mattresses to be labeled with full information about their product contents and manufacturing processes.

Is It Illegal To Sell A Used Mattress?

In fact, it is not illegal to sell a used mattress in the United States, as long as they are labeled with full information and their manufacture is safe. Still, there are certain regulations that sellers must follow. 

There are regulations that differ from state to state; in the states that allow the sale of used mattresses, sellers must sanitize the mattress and disclose all relevant information about its condition, age, and previous use to potential buyers. 

Many states also require that the mattress be labeled as used or secondhand. However, there are places where it is restricted whether used items can be sold or donated, and some even prohibit selling these types of products.

The main concern with selling a secondhand mattress is the potential health risks associated with bed bugs, dust mites, and other allergens. Therefore, sellers need to take appropriate measures to ensure that the item is clean and free from harmful substances before trading it.

Read more: Lucid Mattress Review

What Criteria Are Included In The Selling Used Mattress Law?

In the United States, selling a used mattress is legal, but several criteria must be met to comply with the law. These criteria include sanitation, labeling requirements, federal flammability standards, licensing, and consumer protection methods.


Sanitation is a critical criterion included in the law on selling used mattresses. This requirement ensures that the used mattress is free from harmful bacteria, bed bugs, and other infectious agents.

To meet the sanitation criterion, sellers must commit that the secondhand item is thoroughly examined for its new condition and disinfected before selling. This is not only important for the health and safety of the buyer, but it is also essential for the seller’s reputation.

Labeling Requirement

The law mandates that all used mattresses be labeled with specific information, including the date of manufacture, the name and address of the manufacturer or seller, the origin, and whether the products have been sanitized.

These labels come in three colors: red, white, and yellow. Red labels indicate that the mattress has been sanitized and meets all legal standards. White means the product is new, while yellow signifies that the item has not been sanitized and is unsuitable for resale.

Federal Flammability Standard

The Federal Flammability Standard is a not-to-miss criterion stated in the law on selling used mattresses in the United States. According to this standard, all mattresses sold in the country must meet certain safety requirements to reduce the risk of fire hazards.

As such, used items that fail to satisfy this standard cannot be sold legally. Sellers have to ensure that the secondhand products they sell stick to the rules to avoid legal consequences.


Mattress manufacturers and retailers are required to obtain proper licensing and permits to operate legally. This includes obtaining a business license and complying with state and local regulations. 

Additionally, businesses that sell used items must follow certain guidelines, such as properly disposing of any products deemed unfit for sale.

Failure to comply with licensing requirements can result in legal repercussions, including fines and penalties. By adhering to licensing requirements, businesses can guarantee that they operate legally and protect their customers.

Consumer Protection Methods

This contains recommendations for companies and people selling secondhand mattresses to adhere to the law and safeguard customers from health risks and safety issues. Consumers can also file complaints with state and local agencies if they believe a seller has violated the law.

Read more: How To Get A Free Mattress From Amazon

Why Does The Law Of Selling Used Mattresses Exist?

The law on selling used mattresses exists to protect consumers from potential health risks associated with secondhand mattresses. 

Used products can harbor bacteria, allergens, and pests that can cause health issues, especially for those with respiratory problems or allergies. The law generally requires secondhand items to be sanitized and disinfected before being sold to the public.

This helps to reduce the risk of contamination and prevent the spread of bed bugs or other pests. Some states prohibit the sale of certain types of used mattresses, such as those that are heavily stained or have been infested with bed bugs. 

By regulating the sale of these items, the law helps to ensure that consumers can purchase safe and hygienic bedding products.

Are There Any Risks If I Buy A Used Mattress?

There are common risks when buying a used mattress; primarily, these risks are related to hygiene and potential exposure to allergens or pests. 

These secondhand items can be the breeding ground for bacteria, dust mites, and other allergens that trigger respiratory issues or skin reactions. They may contain bed bugs or other pests that can be difficult to detect and eliminate.

While it is possible to sanitize a used mattress, it may not be completely effective in removing all contaminants. It’s important to carefully inspect a used product before purchasing it and to ask questions about its age, condition, and previous use. In some cases, buying a new one may be safer and more hygienic.

Read more: Best Super Single Mattress


So, we hope you get the answer to the issue of “Is it illegal to sell a used mattress?”.  Doing so is not against the law in most US states. But there are regulations and principles that need to be followed strictly to ensure the safety and protection of consumers. 

We suggest you research and understand all criteria in this law before buying or selling a secondhand product to sidestep legal or health issues.