How to Clean an Air Mattress? 4 Tips to Maintain Hygiene & Vitality

There are many reasons you might need an air mattress. After all, they’re an affordable and convenient solution for temporary sleeping.

However, as in most cases, air mattresses are transported around, especially when camping and traveling. Keeping on top of maintenance and cleaning is vital regarding longevity and quality.

In this guide, we will explore how to clean your air mattress in a few simple steps to help you avoid damp, mold, and dirt build-up.

How to Clean an Air Mattress?

How to Clean an Air Mattress

Cleaning your air mattress will depend on what kind you have. While some air mattresses are made from PVC, others are made from fabric or even velour in some more expensive options.

So, before you follow the steps below, read the manufacturer’s instructions and check the material before you begin cleaning.

Once established, you can evaluate which cleaning products are correct.

Preparing Your Air Mattress for Cleaning

Before you consider applying any products to your air mattress, you must ensure you have a debris-free canvas. To do this, brush off any loose dirt or dust and check all the nooks, crannies, and seams where debris can become trapped.

If you start cleaning your air mattress while there are still fragments of dirt on it, it could scratch or even puncture it.

The best way to ensure your air mattress is entirely free from dirt is to use a vacuum.

Ideally, this should be done after every use to reduce bacteria and dirt build-up.

Cleaning Solutions for Your Air Mattress

Cleaning Solutions for Your Air Mattress

As we already touched upon, there are many solutions you can use to clean your air mattress, each of which depends on what kind of air mattress you have. Either way, it’s essential to use a mild cleaning solution to avoid damage to the material.

Below are a few options to thoroughly clean your air mattress.

Water and Vinegar

If you’ve found yourself with mold on your air mattress, whether through incorrect storage or use in damp areas, water, and vinegar are renowned for their safe removal.

Using equal amounts of vinegar and water in a bowl, use a gentle sponge or cloth to rub the solution over the affected area.



As long as the chemicals you use aren’t too overpowering and don’t contain any form of bleach products, using a mild detergent to clean your air mattress will be effective.

To use, spray directly onto the surface, and use a damp cloth to wipe the air bad and pump.


Disinfectant is a good choice when cleaning air mattresses because it not only cleans but also kills germs, viruses, and bacteria. It is also an excellent product for removing mildew.

Alcohol Cleanser

Alcohol Cleanser

You can also use alcohol and water to clean your air mattress effectively. When we say alcohol, it doesn’t mean mixing your favorite whiskey with water. What we mean is a specialized alcoholic rub that is made for cleaning purposes. Be sure to read the instructions carefully regarding dilution.

Baking Soda

Baking soda is a good option, especially as many people already have it knocking around in the pantry, and even if you don’t, it’s incredibly cheap and easy to find.

The Importance of Cleaning Your Air Mattress

The Importance of Cleaning Your Air Mattress

Many people might purchase air mattresses without considering the maintenance they take, so let’s help you understand the importance of cleaning your air mattress.

Any item being used for sleeping on will need regular cleaning, just like you would vacuum and clean your mattress at home.

It prevents the build-up of bacteria, germs, and even bed bugs, which can still occur on air mattresses.

Incorrect storage can also cause a build of moisture, especially when stored correctly, so it’s suggested to clean your air mattress before and after each use and ensure it’s dried and adequately folded and packed away in a dry, room temperature area.

Tips for Preventing Mold and Bacteria Build-Up on Your Air Mattress

Now that you understand the cleaning process and products you can use on your air mattress, below is a list of handy tips you can do to prevent further mold or bacteria build-up on your air mattress.


Properly folding/rolling and storing your mattress plays a massive part in mold and mildew prevention. Your air mattress should be folded, packaged, and stored in a cool/room temperature area free of damp.


Cleaning and drying your air mattress before and after each use is the best way to prevent dirt from building up.


Bed bugs and germs often hide in unseen spots, such as the seams and fastenings of your air mattress; vacuuming is a good way of getting into all the knucks and crannies.


Using sheets and mattress toppers is a great way to protect your air mattress from body fluids, skin, and other bacteria.

Frequently Asked Questions

When cleaning their air mattresses, let’s see what other air bed owners are enquiring about.

How Often Should I Clean My Air Mattress?

It’s a good idea to clean your air mattress every few months or as and when you need to if used regularly.

How Can I Clean My Air Mattress?

Remove any bedding and wipe it down with a mild detergent or cleaning solution. Rinse thoroughly and allow it to dry completely before storing.

Can I Put My Air Mattress In The Washing Machine?

No. You should never put an air mattress in the washing machine.

How Can I Remove Stains From My Air Mattress?

You can use a choice of cleaning products for stains. Apply the detergent or alcohol rub to the area, and let it sink in before wiping it with a damp cloth.

The Brush Down

By now, you’ve got a pretty good idea of how to clean your air mattress, whether a simple spot clean or a complete wipe-down in preparation for storage.

I hope the steps above have given you some simple solutions and tips for not only cleaning your air mattress but also preventing the return of mold, mildew, and general day-to-day bacteria.

Sarah Wagner

I'm Sarah Wagner, and I founded Sweet Island Dreams in 2022. It's a blog dedicated to helping people mental vacation virtually anytime they want. By providing information about the best sleep of your life, I help people drift away to paradise without ever having to leave their bed!