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Get Cushioned! Use Household Items to Protect Your Goods When Moving

January 5th, 2011 | Categories: Moving Tips | Tags: , , ,

So, you are on the move again and have all of your stuff organized in piles ready to go. You’ve hired a FlatRate mover and have your moving boxes, (either cheap and cheerful crates from your local grocery store, fancy plastic boxes from a supply store, or the sturdy cardboard variety ) and you’re about to start packing. The only thing still to work out is how o pack, so that your prize collection of rare star wars toys doesn’t get damaged in transit!

First, make sure you’ve got your heavy stuff in smaller, more compact and tighter fitting boxes and your lighter items in the bigger boxes. Ensure they’re not too full and that the box lids can close flat. Remember to write ‘fragile’ in large clear letters on the outside of boxes containing valuables and if possible, to make your move easier, pack and mark your boxes by room so that you will know where everything goes in your new house. And most importantly, ensure you have the right materials to pack the boxes with in the first place.

For most boxes you’ll need to simply get hold of some tape, clean newspaper and bubble wrap. But it is also possible to wrap other items in protective materials without spending a great deal of money. For example, with large, bulky items such as beds you can tie the slats and frame together with old rope or tape, label the pieces (for easy reassembly) and then wrap them in tights or socks to protect the wood. Similarly, tables, desks and old bureaus can be wrapped or covered by overcoats, blankets and jumpers – just be sure all of the drawers are taped closed. The drawers can also be filled with clothes or smaller items, just nothing too heavy.

For larger household appliances such as dishwashers, freezers or fridges you obviously need to prepare long in advance of the move by defrosting and draining them and cleaning the interiors to prevent mold. After this is done you should stuff the interiors with large towels and wrap the glass shelves (or any moving parts) in dishcloths and tape. Then, cover the entire unit in blankets and tie it tight. Lastly, for larger electronic items such as televisions or computers it is probably best to keep the original packaging in your attic as these items require specific protection.

For smaller items there are a number of materials you can use. Kitchenware such as pots and pans can be packed in newspaper, egg cartons and rolled up socks and again, pots and pans can be filled with smaller utensils, condiments and other items. For breakable items such as dishes and glasses, wrap each item newspaper and then stack, where possible, before using string to tie them together. Then surround them with more scrunched up newspaper, old towels, tea towels and clothes, and where necessary, the odd bit of bubble wrap.  Be sure to utilize and cushions or pillows that you have lying around.  All of this is done to ensure there is a thick layer of cushioning around the items and nothing is sat against the edge of the box.

For books there is less need for wrapping so simply stack them in small cartons, one on top of the other and alternate the bindings. If the books are rare or collectible then one layer of cloth protection might be useful and make certain that the box is never left anywhere damp or moldy.

Finally, for awkward items, plan ahead. Chairs can be covered in blankets and the legs and arms taped down with bubble wrap, or you can purchase chair bags for protection. If necessary, remove slipcovers and store elsewhere. For rugs, you simply roll up the rug and tie with string before wrapping it in old bin liners. Mirrors and frames are especially difficult and should be first wrapped in newsprint and tape, before being covered in old cloths and then packed away into mirror boxes, reinforced with cardboard.

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