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Protecting Your Carpets, Floors, and Rugs During a Move

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Protecting Carpets, Floors, and RugsWhen moving, you should plan to protect your carpets, floors, and walls. With all the traffic and large items going in and out of your house – your home can get dirty pretty fast. Luckily, you can take steps to protect your carpets, rugs, and floors and keep your place looking nice.

Take caution to protect the rugs, carpets, and floors in both your old home and new home. You certainly don't want to put in the time and effort to protect these things during the move-out but neglect to do it in your nice new place.

How to protect carpets, floors, and rugs

Rules for Preventing Damage

Before thinking about moving, remember these key rules for keeping your flooring safe and your sanity intact.

Get Help

If you're moving heavy furniture, it’s wise not to do it alone. The easiest way to damage floors, walls, and furniture is by trying to do it all yourself. Finding a few good friends or family members to help is the best way to move.
You can also hire professional movers to help with your DIY move. They can help with the big stuff, and you take care of the rest.

Stay Organized

A dirty or messy house is a tripping hazard when a lot of people are moving your furniture. Organize your boxes and items in the house to leave clear paths. Line your walls with boxes and leave halls and doorways clear.

Moving day is hectic enough without obstacles. So clean your house and move out the heavy things first.

Move Smaller Pieces

If items can be broken down - take advantage of it. Items like dining room tables, beds, dressers, and even couch legs come undone. Not only does this make the items lighter and easier to move, but it also makes the items easier to pack and store in the moving truck.

Be sure to label items with masking tape and keep screws, bolts, and clips in labeled bags that are easily accessible.

Get the Right Equipment

  • Moving dollys are the standard for easy moving. They can be purchased or rented at most major hardware stores, and some truck rental companies.
    Move heavy boxes, appliances, and heavy furniture easily with a dolly and an assistant with ease.
  • Moving blankets and cardboard protect your furniture and sidewalls during moves. Some people will lay down blankets to protect hard flooring and carpets. Moving blankets are cheap to buy or rent, and cardboard should be readily available throughout your move. Remember to secure floor coverings to the ground. Soft items like blankets can be very slippery if not taped properly.
  • Sliders and gliders are pads made out of soft materials that can easily slide across hard floors. These pads go underneath sofa legs, appliances, or heavy cabinets to prevent scratching wood floors.

Protecting Carpets During a Move

Though your movers may use their own drop cloths or runners during the move, there are no standard procedures across the industry. It's worth it to protect your home without waiting for the moving company to do it for you.

Buy Self-adhesive Carpet-Protecting Film

Made for protecting carpets, these plastic films allow you to easily cover your carpet with a tear-free, non-slip surface. Most brands of carpet film won't leave adhesive residue behind on your carpets and are available in a variety of sizes.

You can purchase a paint roller-like applicator to help you apply the film. Although these plastic films are great products, they don't come cheap.

Use Cheap Carpet Protectors

Sometimes, the cheapest options work the best. Be mindful not to use protectors that could turn into a tripping hazard. 

Use old carpets to protect your nice carpet. If you have old carpeting laying around, you can cut them into strips, or just lay them down as is. They are sturdy and think - perfect to withstand heavy traffic while moving.

Arrange them to create a layer that protects your carpet. Be sure not to use old carpets in areas where they might create a tripping hazard.

Wear Shoe Covers

Shoe covers are cheap and disposable. If everybody that helps with your move wears shoe covers inside the house, it will cut down on the transfer of water and dirt. The downside is that you need to remove shoe covers when outside, so there is some "user responsibility" here.

TIP: Protecting rugs is simple. Don't worry about covering rugs during a move - just roll them up and keep them in a safe place.

Protecting Hard Floors During a Move

Floors without carpeting are highly prone to damage during a move. Hardwood floors can be scratched or dented by mover's shoes, hastily pushed furniture, or mishandled boxes. To keep your hardwood floors safe, you can use a variety of protective products to cover your floor.

Plastic Film

Purchase rolls of plastic film for your hardwood floors - similar to the ones made for carpets. There are different products for factory-finished and contractor-finished hardwood, so double-check to make sure you’re getting the right one.

Furniture Sliders

Plastic furniture sliders greatly minimize any chance of damage. You can also use furniture pads made from cloth or felt. These pads shouldn’t be used to move furniture long distances, but they do prevent scratching when you orient furniture on a hardwood floor. You can keep these pads on after you move to avoid any floor damage in your new home.


Taping pieces of cardboard to your floor provides a quick and cheap way to protect your floor. Use painter's tape to keep the in place. Place the most cardboard near the entrances and exits of your old and new home.

TIP: If it is raining on your moving day, wipe down plastic floor coverings often and change the floor coverings as needed. This prevents slippery surfaces and saves your floors from water damage.

Protect Hardwood Floor and Carpet

Painter's Drop Cloth

A cheap painter’s drop cloth can be secured to either carpet or hardwood flooring with masking tape. You can also cut up the drop cloth and secure it in high-traffic areas.

Opt for the thicker drop cloths. They’re fairly inexpensive, durable, and waterproof.



Myles Compton  Posted by Myles Compton on November 14, 2018

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