It is an undeniable fact that it will be your fragile household items – glassware, chinaware, delicate furniture pieces (antiques), electronic equipment, artwork, mirrors, lamps, musical instruments and so on – that may suffer considerable damage during a household move if the required safety measures are not taken when packing them. Sometimes it takes as little as a bit of careless packing, a few missed safety tips, a powerful shot of confidence, or simply a deceitful sense of it-will-never-happen-to-me attitude to turn the process of unpacking your breakables into a series of headaches that even painkillers won’t be able to fix, at least not immediately.
The thing to remember here is that packing fragile items when moving house is not to be underestimated. Following the necessary safety rules when packing for a move is important for all your household items. Still, how you protect clothes and safeguard books for the relocation journey is very different than the way you should pack the very fragile and breakable items found in your home. Therefore, here are the steps you need to take in order to make sure your easily breakable belongings survive the upcoming move.
Step 1: Don’t move any breakables you don’t need
Knowing how to pack fragile items quickly is a great advantage but the very first question you should ask yourself is whether to move your breakables in the first place. Create a detailed inventory of your home and make a separate list of all the delicate and fragile items you own. Once you’re ready, go over that list carefully and decide which ones you are definitely taking with you and which ones you’d better leave behind for one reason or another.
Moving experts advise that items which have not been used for more than a year are not worth the transportation costs and should be sold, gifted or thrown away depending on the individual circumstances.
Step 2: Find proper packing materials
One of the most essential prerequisites for packing very fragile items safely is the availability of adequate packing supplies. You can’t possibly skip this step or underestimate its significance for a hassle-free packing and moving experience.
To pack fragile items for shipping, you will need the following major packing supplies:
- Strong cardboard boxes. You can also get second-hand boxes for free to save money but make sure they are in excellent condition – sturdy, dry, and clean;
- Packing paper. You’re going to need A LOT of clean and soft packing paper;
- Bubble wrap. The bubble-filled plastic material is vital for keeping your breakables safe so get a few rolls of bubble wrap and never look back;
- Packing tape. Get the highest-quality packing tape you can afford;
READ ALSO: What packing supplies do I need?
Step 3: Prepare your moving boxes
Preparing the containers you will use to store your breakables is just as important as protecting the delicate items themselves. There are 3 simple steps to make sure the moving boxes for your breakable things are ready for their load:
- Inspect the boxes for structural damage, including signs of water damage;
- Tape the bottom and the sides of each box as additional insurance against possible breakage;
- Place crumpled paper (newsprint is okay) on the bottom of each container to provide a shock-absorbent layer again unavoidable vibrations and accidental hits.
SEE ALSO: How to pack plates for moving?
Step 4: Wrap your fragile items with care
Packing breakables for moving is all about following the major safety rules accepted and adopted in the moving industry. Feel free to browse through our top packing tips to learn more about how to achieve the ultimate packing safety when moving house with fragile things.
Here are the best tips for packing fragile items you should always keep in mind when packing for a move:
- Set up a suitable packing station with a flat, clean and stable surface – kitchen tables are usually safe enough for that task.
- Use small to mid-sized boxes for your breakables and don’t make the containers too heavy to lift and carry;
- Use soft paper first and then apply bubble wrap on top of it to provide the unrivaled protection you are after;
- Do not use newsprint to wrap fragile items with even more delicate surfaces due to possible ink stains;
- Always stack wrapped-up plates sideways in their respective boxes;
- Secure the stems of your stemware with bubble wrap first before wrapping the glasses with packing paper.
SEE ALSO: How to pack glasses for moving?
Step 5: Pad your breakables-filled boxes
Once your fragile things are inside their containers, it’s time to make sure that your already wrapped-up stuff won’t move inside during the haul. To achieve that level of immobility, place wads of paper, old pieces of clothing, towels or no longer needed pieces of bubble wrap to fill up any remaining space and avoid accidental movements.
Yes, providing sufficient padding for you very fragile items is key to finding them in one piece after the move, so don’t be quick to dismiss that safety tip. You may choose to utilize anti-static packing peanuts or cushioning foam to get this job faster but those accessorial supplies will further strain your budget as it is.
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Step 6: Yes, labeling is important
Labeling the boxes that contain your highly breakable items is more important than you might think – proper labeling will increase the chance of finding your fragile items intact when it’s time to get them out of their containers and arrange them in your new home.
Write FRAGILE and HANDLE WITH CARE with big black or red letters on at least 2 sides of each box. Also, don’t forget to mark down the contents of the containers and their destination rooms – for example, PLATES, KITCHEN. Regardless of who’s going to handle your delicate household items – professional movers, your friends or you yourself, such inscriptions are generally taken into consideration on Moving day.
READ AS WELL: How to pack electronics for a move?
Step 7: Handle your breakables with extra caution
Unless you’ve entrusted the tricky job of securing your breakables to professional packers and movers, you will need to be extremely careful when carrying those boxes to the awaiting moving vehicle, then loading them safely for problem-free transportation, and finally unloading and carrying them inside your new residence. Watch your every step, do not be hasty to try to save time, use straps or ropes to secure those containers inside the moving trailer, and drive with caution if you’re moving locally on your own.
Remember that extreme caution is the best way to pack fragile items for moving, and then to actually move them to your new home.
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