Answered by Nicole La CapriaApril 15, 2013
When opting for a do-it-yourself move, one of the most difficult aspects is correctly loading your moving truck. Following the appropriate loading procedures can prevent costly damage to your furniture, enable you to make the most of the space in your trailer, and prevent you from sustaining harmful injuries. Here are some basic things to remember when loading furniture onto your moving truck:
Disassemble your furniture to make it easier to carry and fit onto the moving truck.
- Remove the legs from tables when possible, take out shelves from bookcases and armoires and take apart entertainment centers, headboards, footboards, bed frames, etc.
- You should also empty all the contents of dressers and remove the drawers before attempting to move them.
Protect your furniture using the proper materials.
- Wrap your pieces in moving pads and blankets to prevent it from being soiled, scratched or torn. Secure blankets with packing tape.
- Shrinkwrap should not be used directly on wooden or leather furniture, because it can trap moisture or even melt in the heat, causing irreparable damage. Wrap items in furniture pads before using shrinkwrap.
- Bubble wrap can be used to protect glass table tops, mirrors, etc. Wrap items in packing paper first; the air bubbles can leave behind impressions if placed directly on the surface of glass or wood.
Load your furniture onto the truck strategically to maximize space and prevent damage.
- Place the heaviest items against the walls to evenly distribute weight.
- Stack items floor to ceiling, with the heaviest pieces on the bottom.
- Load tables with thin legs face down--loading them right side up and stacking items on top can create too much pressure and may cause the legs to break.
- Replace the drawers in your dressers and secure them with rope so they don't slide out during transit.
- Keep items with any sharp, protruding pieces away from couches, mattresses or anything that can become punctured.
- Pack items as tightly as possible to keep everything stationary during the trip and limit the possibility of damage.
Protect yourself during loading to prevent injury.
- Wear gloves to prevent cuts from sharp edges and be sure to wear durable, non-slip footwear.
- Always bend at your knees and not your waist when lifting heavy items to avoid straining your back.
- Keep your back as straight as possible and hold the item close to your body when lifting.
- Use a dolly or have the assistance of a strong friend when transporting furniture--never attempt to carry anything too heavy by yourself.
For more information on loading and protecting your furniture during your move, read the following helpful guides: Packing and Protecting Furniture, How to Move Heavy Items, How to Load the Moving Truck, and Protecting Your Belongings with Moving Blankets, Pads, and More.