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What Should You Pack?
Obviously, not everything will fit in boxes. As a general rule, furniture and major appliances will be wrapped and padded by your moving crew. Items requiring professional disassembly and/or crating (such as slate pool tables, chandeliers or large glass table tops) are best left to the professionals.
Use new, high-quality packing materials (available from Heroes Moving & Storage) specifically designed for moving to better ensure your items will safely arrive. Professional moving cartons come in a variety of shapes and sizes that are specifically suited to fit a variety of household goods.
- Bundles of packing paper (clean, unprinted newsprint available from Heroes Moving & Storage).
- Bubble wrap and paper pads for delicate items and artwork.
- Rolls of PVC tape (don’t use masking tape or cellophane tape)
- Tape dispenser
- Broad-tipped markers for labeling
- Scissors or sharp knife for cutting cartons
- Notebook and pen or pencil for listing contents of cartons as they are packed
- Labels or stickers for identifying boxes
Wrapping How To’s
Before packing cartons, you’ll need to wrap most items to protect them from scratching and breakage. There are a variety of materials available, including bubble pack, foam peanuts and tissue. However, most professionals use bundles of clean, unprinted newsprint (available from Heroes Moving & Storage).
Start by placing a small stack of paper on a flat, uncluttered table or countertop. Round glasses and jars can be rolled up in two or three sheets of paper; always begin from a corner of the sheet and fold the sides in as you roll. Large or odd-shaped items require a similar technique. Place them in the center of the sheet and bring the corners together. (It may be necessary to flip the item over and wrap it again from the other side.) If in doubt, use more paper! When the corners come together, secure them with tape.
Before packing each box, line the bottom with a few inches of wadded paper for padding. Then place large, heavy items on the bottom and lighter, more fragile items on the top. Plates, books and things of a similar shape, should be loaded vertically to utilize their own maximum structural strength. Don’t overload boxes; keep them to a manageable weight. Fill in any voids and top off loaded cartons with wadded paper. Then tape boxes securely to avoid shifting while in route.
Imagine packing away a truckload of boxes and then having them delivered to your new home. How can you tell what box goes where? Because you’ve labeled them. Follow these tips to thwart confusion.
- Use a broad, felt-tipped marker.
- Clearly mark your name, the room it should go to and contents on each box.
- Indicate “FRAGILE” on delicates; “THIS END UP” where appropriate.
Tips From the Pros
We suggest you start with out-of-season items. Next, pack things used infrequently. Leave until the last minute things you’ll need until moving day. Here are some more helpful hints.
- Empty drawers of breakables, spillables, non-transportable items and anything that would puncture or damage other items.
- Pack similar items together. For example, don’t pack a delicate china figurine in the same carton with cast iron frying pans.
- Keep all parts or pairs of things together. For example, curtain rod hangers, mirror bolts and other small hardware items should be placed in plastic bags and taped or tied securely to the article to which they belong.
- Wind electrical cords, fastening them so they do not dangle.
- Wrap items individually in clean paper for fine china, crystal and delicate items. Colored wrapping paper draws attention to very small things that might otherwise get lost in a carton. Use a double layer of clean, unprinted newsprint (available from Heroes Moving & Storage) for a good outer wrapping.
- Use newspapers for cushioning only. The ink can rub off and embed itself onto fine china.
- Place a two or three-inch layer of crushed paper in the bottom of boxes for cushioning.
- Build up the layers, with the heaviest things on the bottom, medium weight next and lightest on top.
- As each layer is completed, fill in empty spaces firmly with crushed paper and add more crushed paper to make a level base for the next layer, or use sheets of cardboard cut from cartons as dividers.
- Cushion well with crushed paper; towels and lightweight blankets may also be used for padding and cushioning. The more fragile the item, the more cushioning needed. Be sure no sharp points, edges or rims are left uncovered.
- Pack small, fragile, individually wrapped items separately or a few together in small boxes, cushioning with crushed or shredded paper. Place small boxes in a single large box, filling in spaces with crushed paper.
- Limit carton weight to about 50 pounds. Avoid overloading boxes but strive for a firm pack that will prevent items from shifting; the cover should close easily without force, but should not bend inward.
- Seal boxes tightly with tape.
- As you finish with each box, list the contents on the side of the box (for easy viewing while stacked) and in a special notebook. You might want to number and/or code the box as well.
- Indicate your name and the room to which each carton should be delivered at destination. Tape a sign on the door of each room at destination corresponding to the carton labels so movers can get the cartons into the proper rooms quickly. We also suggest using colored stickers on the boxes and marking the rooms doors with the same color so the movers can quickly place the items in the appropriate rooms.
- Put a special mark (the number 1, or the letter A) on cartons you want to unpack first at destination.
Contact Heroes Moving & Storage
To learn more about our residential moving services or to get a free estimate, contact us at 804-552-2942.