How do I pack books for moving?

Saying that books are important always sounds a bit like an understatement. The significance and impact of books on our lives simply cannot be measured by even the best state-of-the-art measuring devices. How could you possibly determine the value of something that has a different meaning to different people?

A book can touch you deep inside and move you on so many levels. A book is also something very personal – a book you absolutely love, re-read regularly and use to set your moral compass may be carelessly dismissed by your friends despite your heartfelt recommendation.

To possess the passion and love for reading books is much more important than to be surrounded by tons of books in your home. And yet, when the time for moving house comes once more, the question of how to pack books for moving suddenly takes center stage.

How to prepare books for moving house

One major factor that will determine the final cost of your move is the overall weight of the household items you have for transportation. Now add the fact that books are relatively heavy and you get yourself a relocation puzzle with only one solution – to reduce the number of your books to their absolute minimum. It may not be an easy task, especially if you are an avid reader and have no particular desire to get rid of any of your paper windows to thrilling distant worlds. No matter how you feel about parting with some of your books, optimizing your book collection is a process that you have to do not only to save money from the move itself, but to also save space in your new home.

So, start the optimization process by going through each and every book you own. Obviously, you’ll place the copies you definitely won’t part with in one corner and set aside the ones you consider unworthy of your packing time and transportation money. This initial sorting looks pretty straightforward but what about all the books you’re not sure what to do with? Get ready for some tough decisions.

How to pack books for moving

Once the book sorting process is over, it’s time to get down to packing your books for moving. You’re going to need adequate packing materials for the book packing job: strong small to medium sized moving boxes (avoid packing your books in large boxes because they will become super heavy and impossible to lift and carry), clean and soft packing paper, bubble wrap, packing tape and a black marker pen.

Place one sheet of packing paper on the bottom of each moving container and start the book packing process from the bottom of your bookshelf and continue upwards. You have three options to arrange the books in the moving boxes and the choice of which one to use will depend on various factors such as the size, cover and condition of each copy. You can arrange your books upright with the open parts facing the box sides, you can have their spines facing the box bottom, or you can place them flat and stack them up along the box sides. If there’s still sufficient space after arranging the first row, place packing paper on the top and begin the second one. When you fill up the container with books, fill in any remaining space with crushed packing paper or bubble wrap to make sure no book moves during transit. Place one final layer of paper on the very top, close the lids and tape the entire box shut with packing tape. Don’t forget to secure the box bottom for extra protection as well. Label the packed box properly (BOOKS, HEAVY, BEDROOM, LIVING ROOM, LIBRARY) and continue the book packing process the same way until all your books are safely packed for moving.

Tips for packing books for moving

  • Never place a book in a moving box with its spine facing upwards because the binding may get damaged under its own weight.
  • Reserve heavier books for the box bottoms.
  • Keep boxes packed with books under 50 lbs.
  • If you own wheeled travel suitcases, use them for packing your heavier books in them.
  • Wrap expensive books separately with at least on layer of bubble wrap.
  • Be very careful when lifting and carrying boxes full of books as they will be REALLY heavy.

We do wish you speedy book packing, safe book moving and happy reading.

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