Once you’ve started packing up your home for a move, sooner or later you will get to the point of having to protect your heavy items for the upcoming move. That’s right – all the heavy and cumbersome items you’re planning to take with you will need to be packed properly so that they remain damage-free throughout the relocation.
So, how do you pack heavy items when moving to another home?
Packing heavy items for a move can seem daunting and challenging in the beginning but you can manage that task just fine. Ensure the safety of your cherished possessions, protect your property from damage, and most importantly – eliminate any chances of sustaining personal injury when moving heavy items due to improper packing techniques.
Follow these simple 10 packing steps to pack all heavy items in your home – safely and effectively.
Do you REALLY need to pack and move heavy items?
When you’re getting ready for a long-distance move across the country, it’s really important to be familiar with how your cross-country moving company will calculate the cost of your move. In the best case scenario, you’ll know that the total weight of the shipment is one of the major factors that will influence the relocation price, one way or another.
It’s simple: the more heavy items you choose to bring with you, the higher the cost of the move will be. So, in an attempt to cut moving costs, your very first challenge will be to re-evaluate your decision to move the heavyweight things you’ve decided to move.
Ask yourself if you REALLY need to move super heavy furniture pieces? Won’t it be better to just purchase new ones when you reach your destination?
Do you have to move all of your books as well?
Be smart and don’t pay for transporting any large and heavy items that cannot possibly be worth the transportation costs.
The importance of having the right packing supplies
After you’ve found the answers to the very questions that will enable you to save time and money, it’s time for the second step in your personal guide on how to pack heavy items for moving.
In order to complete the packing job successfully, you’re definitely going to need proper packing materials.
STRONG boxes. The packing boxes you will be using for packing heavy items will need to be made of durable cardboard so that they can withstand the extra weight. Getting hold of sturdier double-walled cardboard boxes is always a good idea. When packing heavy fragile items, you may even choose to purchase plastic or wooden crates for extra security.
- THICK wrapping materials. Your heavy household items will need to be well protected during the haul. That superior protection can be achieved through the use of multiple sheets of bubble wrap and a number of thick blankets to serve as cushions in case of accidental hits or drops during the moving process.
- SOFT packing paper. White packing paper can be very useful when packing the smaller parts of any heavy household items. It is primarily used as the first layer of protection before the use of bubble wrap or furniture blankets.
- QUALITY packing tape. Invest in a few rolls of high-quality packing tape that will provide the required reinforcement of the heavy cardboard boxes and fixation of the wrapping materials around your large items.
How to prepare your moving boxes
Most of the small yet heavy items you own – canned goods from the kitchen, books, etc. – will go into moving boxes. And because of that, you need to make sure that the cardboard boxes you’ll use to transport your heavy things are ready to bear the weight.
Here are a few box preparation guidelines that you should follow closely:
- Select packing boxes that are strong and have no any visible signs of damage on them. This is especially important for second-hand cardboard boxes.
- Use primarily small boxes (1.5 cubic feet) when packing heavy things for moving. Remember the packing rule that small boxes are meant to hold heavy items while large boxes are better suited for lighter articles.
- Use strong packing tape to reinforce the bottom of each cardboard box you intend to use for packing heavy objects. One thing you don’t want to happen is to have a box break under its own weight.
- Place sheets of crumpled paper or pieces of bubble wrap on the inside bottom of each box for added safety.
How to pack heavy furniture safely
When it comes to packing furniture for a move, the guiding principle is to disassemble the various furniture pieces so that they can be packed up and transported more easily and safely.
Disassemble any beds, cabinets, dressers, bookshelves, and tables to their main components– consult their assembly manuals if you need to or ask professionals for assistance. Take out drawers to make the pieces lighter, then remove doors or panels (especially glass ones).
- Protect any particularly fragile parts or sections first with soft packing paper and then with bubble wrap to create protective layers. Do NOT place bubble wrap directly onto your furniture to prevent possible damage to the delicate surface of your belongings. Also, consider placing pieces of thick cardboard over delicate elements as added protection.
- Wrap up all disassembled pieces with thick furniture blankets that will serve as effective cushions to eliminate the risk of damage during transport.
- Cover all remaining furniture pieces with protective blankets as well, then tape those protectors to keep them from unwrapping. Do not let any packing tape get into contact with the surface of your furniture to avoid stains – the same is true when using shrink wrap instead of packing tape.
How to pack heavy appliances
After a careful consideration, you may choose to pack up and move some of your home appliances as well. Large heavy appliances such as washing machines, dishwashers, refrigerators, freezers, and cookers can be rather tricky to pack and move.
Here are the most important things you should know when packing heavy appliances.
- Unplug the electric appliances from the power outlet before protecting them for the move.
- Make sure the heavy appliances are empty. Defrost your refrigerator or freezer at least 48 hours before Moving day.
- Remove all elements from the kitchen appliances that can be removed safely – shelves, drawers, etc., then pack the detached parts separately in packing paper, bubble wrap (if necessary) and moving blankets.
- Use shrink wrap or pieces of twine to secure the doors of your heavy appliances and keep them from opening during the move.
- Wrap heavy appliances completely in thick furniture blankets to prevent accidental damage. Use packing tape to secure those protective covers.
How to pack heavy books the right way
Considering the airy feel of a single page from a book, you may find it hard to believe just how heavy books are, especially when you plan to pack and move your entire book collection. In reality, when books are packed together in a tight space, like inside a box, they become very heavy and the resulted weight may cause some problems for you on the day of the move.
Here’s how to pack heavy books for moving:
Optimize your book collection and choose carefully which books to move to the new home. You surely don’t want to pay more for transporting your books than they are worth, right?
- Sort out your books and leave behind the ones you won’t ever read again. Ever. There are many good places where you can donate books in good condition.
- Select small boxes for your books because as we mentioned above, books can become too heavy too quickly when crammed into a tight space.
- Line the boxes with soft packing paper – the bottom + its sides – before packing your books in the cardboard containers.
- Pack books UPRIGHT (their open parts facing the sides of the box), FLAT (stack them along the sides of the box), or SPINES DOWN (book spines facing the bottom of the box).
- NEVER pack books with their spines facing you because that can damage seriously the bindings of your books.
- CONSIDER packing your books in wheeled suitcases to eliminate any chances of accidents due to the extra weight of your packed books.
How to pack heavy kitchen items easily
Interestingly enough, there will be a number of heavy items to pack in the kitchen as well. No, we’re not talking about the super heavy kitchen appliances such as a refrigerator, a freezer or a cooker. Rather, it’s about some food items from the pantry and most of the metal silverware you own – spoons, forks, knives, etc.
Here are some tips for packing heavy kitchen items:
- Prepare small cardboard boxes for the heavy things found in your kitchen. Tape their bottoms with strong packing tape for added security.
- Arrange canned goods and glass jars and glass bottles on the bottom. Wrap in packing paper each glass kitchen item to avoid possible breakage during the move. Canned goods do not need to be wrapped in anything, just neatly arranged with minimum space between them.
- Fill in the space between the packed kitchen items with crumpled pieces of paper (newspaper works ok) in order to immobilize them and prevent them from getting into contact with one another.
- Place some paper sheets over the first row and then start the second one where you should pack lighter kitchen items.
- Pack your silverware pieces into the small box as a second row. Take a handful of metal forks and spoons, position them over several sheets of packing paper and just roll them into a neat bundle.
- Finally, pack lighter kitchen items such as spice containers and hand towels on the top of the box. Place one final sheet of packing paper, close the flaps and tape the box shut.
How to pack heavy clothes properly
You don’t usually think of clothes as heavy household items but some clothing pieces can be quite the exception to the rule. Winter clothes can be rather heavy because they are made of thick materials (wool, fur, leather) that are supposed to keep you warm during the cold months of the year.
The moment you start packing clothes for moving, you may get unpleasantly surprised just how heavy your winter jackets and coats are. Also, some thick sweaters can be surprisingly heavy as well.
Here are a few solutions to simplify the clothes packing process:
Consider using special wardrobe boxes in which you can hang in your heavy winter clothes. This is also a great option for keeping your clothes perfectly protected (dust-free and wrinkle-free) during the move, especially if those garments are expensive too.
- Pack your heavy clothes in wheeled suitcases if you don’t wish to pay extra for wardrobe boxes. That way, no matter how heavy the pieces of clothing are, you’ll have no trouble wheeling them out of your home and loading them onto the moving van.
- Consider packing some of your heavy and super voluminous clothes in vacuum bags to save packing space inside the moving vehicle.
Keep in mind that packing heavy household items can be a bit tricky due to the great weight and considerable bulkiness of those things. Without a doubt, the best way to pack heavy items is to have reliable helpers around you when you do it. Also, pack heavy fragile items with extreme care and do not make cardboard boxes heavier than around 50 pounds.
Ideally, you’ll be able to afford professional packers to pack up your heavy items quickly and safely while you tend to other important tasks before you move out. Fill in a quick quote to check how much experienced packers will charge you for the job.