By Jeff Walker
A lot of people would rather perform a do-it-yourself (DIY) move to try to save some money on their move rather than hiring a professional moving company to do it for them. To some degree it makes sense. If you’re young, have friends who are willing to help you move furniture, or just feel capable of performing the tasks necessary in a move, a DIY move can save cost and leaves the move entirely in your control. You don’t have to worry about someone else breaking your items, and if there is breakage, it’s on you. You won’t have to hassle with a claim, you just take care of it yourself. Our best tip? Buy your boxes from the professionals.
Protection of your items is the biggest reason for hiring a professional mover, as they know from experience how to pack, what kinds of boxing options there are and how each one can help keep your items save during a move, where items are generally stacked, and occasionally items shift during transport, lending items to fall, or become compressed during the move. Boxes are key to this effort, and having the right boxes can help keep your items safer than the ones you pick up at the grocery store.
A dish pack is a box with a set of cardboard dividers, specifically used to pack away a set of dishes. The dividers have “teeth” or grooves that allow other dividers to fit perpendicular to them creating smaller box compartments large enough for glasses, dishes or other glass or ceramic items. Dishes should be packed and stored vertically, as they will take more force vertically than they will on the flat (horizontal) side of the plate. Also, make sure you take the time to wrap those items well in packing paper or newspaper to insure that they are well protected. You can watch a video from our partners at Humboldt here.
Wardrobe boxes are really nice for moving clothing. A taller box, it comes with a metal bar that runs across the top of the box and allows for clothing to hang from the bar. Once full, the top of the box comes down on top of the hangers, keeping everything in place during transport. Pretty clever! While this is a great way to keep items from getting wrinkled or pressed, you may want to plastic wrap any clothing that is expensive, like a suit or that favorite dress to keep dust or other types of dirt away from that expensive item!
Books tend to be heavy, so a smaller box is usually recommended. Because books are oddly shaped, you may need to pack a few of them sideways, or use packing paper to fill in blank areas. Paperback books are lighter than hardbound books, and you can test your weight by filling the box halfway and trying to lift it to see where your limits are, before you get to a point you may not be able to handle it. If you have any important or expensive books, you may want to consider placing them in a baggie or plastic wrap to keep dust or humidity from damaging the book.
You can get boxes for your artwork, family photos or other framed items. Keep in mind, this is a fairly expensive option. At the time I checked into it earlier this year (2017), it was $36 per frame! While I felt confident in boxing my own pictures instead of paying the money, if you have an expensive piece of art, frame or picture, you may want to spend the money to keep the item protected. This box has corner fittings to fit to your frame which are linked by a rubber band-like string, allowing the box to fit your particular frame. One side comes with a flat piece of cardboard to protect the glass side of your picture.
Alternatively, you could take a large box and cut it down to wrap around the frame of the picture. Make sure you place plenty of packing paper between the cardboard and glass to protect your picture. In addition, when moving your pictures, make sure that, like your dishes, they are stored vertically, rather than horizontally.
We usually don’t think to hang on to our TV box, once we’ve bought that 60” flat screen TV, but finding a new one can be a challenge. TV Boxes can be purchased if you know where to look, but make sure you’re measuring your TV diagonally, not horizontally to make sure you get the right fit.
The best part? Finding these specialty boxes is easy. You can pick them up at the U-Pack Box store, or at your nearest professional moving company. Good luck with your move!
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