Futons have gotten bad reputations over the years because they break down after just a couple of months. But does it have to be this way? Of course not!

There are generally two ways to avoid the wear and tear of this piece of furniture. The first is to treat it like a real bed. The second is to ensure you are properly maintaining it.

If you remember these couple of things, then you can be certain that your futon and futon mattress will stand the test of time – or when your son moves out of the basement and into a new apartment.

Here are five tips for keeping your futon mattress clean:

1. Buy Bed Sheets and Change them Regularly

Let’s face it: because the futon looks like a standard sofa, even though it is mostly used for sleeping, you refrain from purchasing bed sheets and using those same sheets for your nightly slumber.

Well, it’s about time that you finally purchased bed sheets. This will protect your futon mattress from the evening mess that you usually create in your shut eye, primarily sweat.

Moreover, it is important to change these sheets regularly – we’re talking weekly or bi-weekly. You never want your sheets to become absorbed with your sweat. Plus, isn’t it nice to sleep on fresh sheets?

2. Use a Futon Cover During the Day

A lot of households make the decision to purchase covers for their sofas and loveseats. The reasons range from having pets to wanting to keep the piece of furniture intact for years to come.

You may have plenty of reasons yourself, but it would be wise to buy a futon cover and cover your item throughout the entire day. This way, you are shielding your futon from the harsh elements of your humble abode, like the black cat who tracks their litter or the friend who always spills tomato sauce on your stuff!

3. Don’t Use the Futon for Everything

What do you think the typical demographic is for your futon?

  • The teenager in your home.
  • The young person living in their first apartment.
  • The person who wants to live in a bachelor.
  • The household that uses the futon for guests.

Many of these people will generally use the futon for everything. Watching television, eating their dinner, reading their copy of Agatha Christie’s The Murder of Roger Ackroyd, and playing video games.

In other words, everything.

Here’s the thing: you should never use your futon for everything. Sure, the right futon can handle a whole host of people and environments, but it’s best to not push your luck. This was an expensive purchase, so allow your investment to last a long time.

4. Change the Mattress Annually

Not all futon mattresses are created equally. Some are too soft, some are too hard, and some are just about right. Like anything else, the more you use it, the more wear and tear it will endure.

What should you do? It’s simple: change the mattress. Or, if you feel it’s still in great shape, then you can swap it for a new one every couple of years.

This is especially if you’re like one of the people we warned about earlier who use the futon for everything. You can keep your futon in great shape and you can remain comfortable. All by changing futon mattresses when possible.

Are you in the market for a futon? It’s likely for your first apartment or for your son’s bachelor pad (the basement). Whatever the case might be, it would be a good idea to not be stingy when you’re buying one. Some futons can easily break after a few sitdowns or sleepy evenings. Some can endure the weight of multiple people.

Ultimately, it’s up to you how long it will last based on the aforementioned recommendations and how much you’re willing to pay for the futon of your dreams.