Hide-a-beds. Stay away, or Throw away.

Hide-a-beds are garbage.

When they reach the end of their life (aesthetically or otherwise), there is no place in Vancouver that will take them as a donatable piece of furniture, nor as recycling. I thought there was, the place is/was called Recycle It but there phone isn’t being answered, so they may not exist anymore. Perhaps it wasn’t profitable to dissasembling the beds.  Think about it, $15/hr per person to hand dissasemble a bed into it’s component parts? You’d have to charge a lot per bed to recoup your costs and break even, and then you need to make some money. Their number was 604-987-3873 if you care to give them a call and they’re supposed to have a depot in Surrey.

But from time to time you have guests and you want to let them sleep somewhere that isn’t in bed with you? Excellent, I have just the solution!!!

What you need, is a couch you love, AND an inflatable bed.  Couches are donatable.  Easy squeasy. They’re light, easy to handle, and most charities take them no problem (that is if your cat hasn’t had a go at the arms or your football buddies haven’t used it as a beer mat.)  We charge our regular rates to get couches which is presently set at $45/cubic yard and most 3 seat sofas are between 2 and 3 yards.

The air mattress is still going to end up being garbage when it gets a hole in it or whatever, but usually they fit in a box. 1 person can carry it out to the trash and heave it into the dumpster or the city will come and pick it up with your garbage if you live in a house. If it’s part of a larger load you hire us to come and collect, for example, we’re cleaning out your garage, then it will add to the bill, but not in any noticeable way.

We charge $125 to dispose of hide-a-beds, and even then I’m pretty sure we lose money on those things.  This price doesn’t include going to Surrey to the aforementioned recycling depot.  If you want us to do that, we’ll charge an additional $115 per hour to go from your location, to the depot and back to your locataion, as estimated by Google Maps.  Hide-a-beds are heavy, awkward, and cumbersome. There’s an excellent chance we’ll ding your wall, or worse, the knot we tie the bed part shut with comes undone and the bed springs open (like a tiger) mid staircase and kills your friendly neighbourhood garbage man.  (This actually did happen to me once in Kitsilano when I was getting rid of bed for a lovely older couple.) (Scared me half to death (as anything that’s 400 lbs that leaps out at you would) but I didn’t die). (you know this because I now run this blog among other things).

In short, stay the heck away from hide-a-beds. They’re garbage.  And bulky heavy garbage at that.  Nothing would please me more if all the hide-a-beds in Vancouver disappeared in a puff of smoke.

If, per chance, you didn’t read this article 15 years ago when you bought your couch/bed, the best thing to have them “recycled” is to put them on Craigslist and hope that a college kid will come with 15 of his jock type friends to come and get it.

That really is the best way, here’s a link to a few people who are doing just that… The prices are varied.  If I’d charge you $125, and they’re selling them for $300 then you’re “saving” $425 (my cost plus what you make on the bed).

http://vancouver.en.craigslist.ca/search/?areaID=16&subAreaID=&query=hide+a+bed&catAbbreviation=sss

Does anyone else have any garbage tips on how to avoid creating it? I’d love to hear them.

I will add that if you have room to store a regular mattress, there is a company out there that recycles them and that we haul ours to.  It’s called www.mattressrecycling.ca in flatable beds need to be tried out before being bought.  Some (like some hide-a-beds) are hideously uncomfortable.

Follow up: September 4, 2009

My guy was heartbroken we couldn’t donate the latest hide-a-bed we picked up today. He went to Union Gospel, St. Vincent de Paul, Value Village and the Salvation Army.  All declined.  He then phoned 2 friends to see if they wanted it.  No.  Lesson learned, you will not be able to donate or recycle your hide-a-bed if you buy one. Please don’t.  Consider the air mattress option. Last night I went to Wall Mart just to see what they cost and they started at $30.

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