Move Smart! Learn Basic Moving Facts! Don't Make Foolish Mistakes!
Just a little amount of reading can prevent you from wasting time and money.
Just learning some basic hints and tricks can be very valuable.
Read all of the following moving tips.
Better yet, buy a "How to" book like the popular "Dummies" series.
These types of books provide a huge amount of necessary moving information.
Many of these books are sold in
Amazon's Library of Moving Books.
How to Pack? Carefully! And have your stuff arrive in mint condition.
Take your time, follow the proceeding tips and "how to pack" will become "I am packed!" It's easy. Just remember most damage comes from vibration. Think of a stack of dishes in a box on the bed of a bouncing truck. No matter how well the sides are padded, a firm up-and-down jolt could crack the entire stack. On the other hand, dishes packed on edge and surrounded by bubble wrap have a better chance of surviving the trip unharmed. Let's begin.
• Use the right boxes and packing materials
How to pack... always starts with good packing materials and strong, sturdy boxes. Boxes have a seal on the bottom that gives their strength and capacity. That seal will indicate a weight limit and an "Edge Crush Test" rating. 32 ect is standard for most moving boxes. 44 ect is standard for most wardrobe boxes and larger specialty boxes.
Use heavy-duty packing tape (not masking tape) for the boxes as well as for taping things together (like broom handles).
In the long run, it pays to find or purchase the right packing materials i.e., sturdy boxes, packing tape, bubble wrap, packing paper, etc. For example, items like a tape dispenser and box cutter to 'cut the tape' may help your pack quicker. Plus, a box cutter is extremely handy when unpacking. So, obtain all your packing materials before starting the packing process.
How to Pack breakable objects - use plenty of blankets, pillows and even clothing to serve as a buffer between objects. There should be no empty space in a box, however don't over-pack the box either. ↑Top
• Packing Techniques
If you have further questions or comments about how to pack, go to the moving blog to search the archives for more answers, post your questions and share your experiences. The moving community would love to hear from you! ↑Top
- Prepare for the first night in your new home by packing essential items in a separate bag and carrying it with you. You may even want to prepare a simple meal that you can heat and serve on your first night.
For each person in the household: a change of clothes, a towel, prescription drugs, a toothbrush, and other personal items.
For everyone: plastic utensils, paper plates, paper towels, plastic cups, toilet paper, toiletries, trash bags, a flashlight, first aid kit including pain relievers, pencil and paper, snacks, beverages, and re-closable plastic bags. Small tool kit for re-assembling items that couldn't be moved whole.
- Pack one room at a time. Label each box with a description of its contents and its destination (e.g., kitchen, bathroom). Be as specific as you can; it will make unpacking that much easier.
- Keep the weight of your boxes reasonable. If possible, put heavy items in small boxes to make them easier to carry. Double-box fragile items and add plenty of cushioning.
- Don't apply tape directly to polished or painted wood finishes. Removing the tape could ruin the surface.
- How to pack appliances? (Read the manuals before disconnecting and moving) ↑Top
- Small appliances - Pack in original container or a box cushioned with Packing Paper. (Do not use shredded paper - it can clog the appliance.)
- Large appliances - Check with the appliance dealer for any special moving instructions. For all large appliances, remove loose fittings and accessories and pack separately. Tie down, tape or wedge all movable parts and doors. Gas Dryer - Have the gas company disconnect.
- Dishwasher/Washing Machine - Stuff towels between machine sides and tub to keep tub from rotating. Pad exterior well. Disconnect hoses, put in plastic bag and place in tub.
- Freezer/Refrigerator - Defrost and dry interiors well. Fill interior spaces with lightweight linens, clothing or stuffed toys. If you want to lay your refrigerator down for moving, check first with the local dealer to determine if your brand can be moved like this. If so, make sure refrigerator stands upright for at least 24 hours before plugging in at your new location.
- How to pack household items? ↑Top
- Beds - Disassemble the bed frame. Tie rails and cross-pieces together with packing tape. Be sure to mark on tape to show where pieces fit together for reassembly. You can protect your mattress and box-spring with a mattress cover or large sheets of plastic. You may want to cover them just before you walk out the door - the plastic may make it difficult to move downstairs or around awkward corners in your home.
- Bicycles, Tricycles, Baby Carriages - Loosen, lower and turn handlebars at right angles to save space. Clean and cover chains and pedals to protect other items from being snagged or soiled.
- Books - They're heavy, so use small moving boxes. Don't mix books with other items. Pack books flat, alternating bindings, and fill empty spaces with packing paper or bubble wrap.
- Bureaus, Dressers - Fill drawers with small breakable items and cushion well with loose clothes. Secure drawers with pad or blanket and tape. Do not overload drawers with heavy items. ↑Top
- Chairs - Wrap arms and legs to prevent scratches. Bundle armless chairs in pairs, seat to seat, with a folded blanket or other padding between and tie seats together.
- Clothes - Dresses, coats, suits and anything hanging in closets, travel best in reusable wardrobe boxes, which can be used seasonally as "extra closets" for wardrobe storage. Other clothes can remain folded in their regular dresser drawers. Also, large moving boxes can hold a lot of clothes without making the box too heavy.
- Comforters, Pillows, Large/Light Items - x-large moving boxes will be best for packing light bulky items. If you have small fragile items, you can pack a few in between the pillows for extra protection - just don't forget they are there!
- Curtain Rod Hardware - Put the hardware in a plastic bag and tape to rod or pack in dresser drawers. ↑Top
- Dishes - Individually wrap each piece. Medium moving boxes will fit most kitchenware without making the box too heavy. Place saucers, plates and platters on edge - do not stack flat! Cups and bowls may be placed inside each other and wrapped three or four in a bundle.
- Kitchenware - Pots, pans, etc. can be stacked in a box with packing paper between them. For bulky items, large moving boxes will do best. Remember not to make the box too heavy - someone has to carry it!
- Glasses - Wrap each glass separately in packing paper or bubble wrap (you can wrap first in a plastic bag to save washing later).
- Fine Furniture - You may want to wrap your best furniture in bubble wrap, not only to protect it from scratching, but to keep dust and dirt off the upholstery. Stretch wrap can also help to prevent small scratches and dust from damaging your furniture. Make sure to wrap the item very tight to prevent snags while you are moving.
- Lamps - After disassembling lamps, pack small bases in dresser drawers surrounded by loose clothing, and large bases in boxes stuffed with packing paper or bubble wrap. Box shades individually in boxes with plenty of packing paper for stuffing. Don't use newspaper because it smudges. ↑Top
- Lawn Mowers - Drain fuel and oil before loading. Remove handle from hand mowers and place blade end in sturdy box. Mark properly.
- Mirrors, Paintings, Prints - Small mirrors can be well wrapped in paper and packed in boxes. For a larger mirrors and large picture frames, frame boxes work best. Mark GLASS on the outside to prevent mishandling. Always pack and store on end.
- Paint and Flammables - Do not move! The same goes for other flammables such as alcohol, solvents, lighter fluid, ammunition and greasy mops or rags.
- Radios, TVs - Box upright and make sure items are well padded on all sides. For console-size equipment, surround with furniture pads, and then move and load upright. Rugs and Pads - After vacuuming rugs and pads, sprinkle with moth flakes. Roll up and tape.
- Stereos, Compact Discs and Cassettes - Separately pack components and pack in well-padded box marked 'fragile'. Pack CDs upright in their cases in a sturdy box with tape-reinforced bottom. Tie CDs in small bundles before packing, then fill air space with packing paper. Mark 'fragile'. Cassettes can be packed in a similar manner, although you can group them in larger bundles. ↑Top
- Tables - For large tables, remove legs and tie together. Put hardware in small sealed envelope taped to underside of table top. Pad tops. Pad and tie spare table leaves. For smaller tables, pad top and wrap legs to prevent scratching.
- Tools and Gardening Equipment - Drain hoses, coil and pack in boxes. Fill remaining space with lawn sprinklers, small garden hand tools, etc. Combine rakes, shovels, and other long-handled tools together with tape.
- Valuables - Set aside jewelry, important papers and safe deposit box contents to be packed in a small container you can keep with you throughout the move.
- When everything is packed and ready to load, make sure the items you need least are loaded first. How to pack is usually common sense and is essential when loading the truck. Place the box containing your best china on top of the box of encyclopedias and not vice versa.