How To Move Your Valuable Items
Moving is a challenge, and part of that challenge is packing fragile and valuable items. Good packing techniques can prevent accidents that lead to broken technology, broken dishes and broken heirlooms. Using the right packing materials and sensible packing methods, you can help ensure that your valuable items will successfully make the trip to your new home.
Buy the Right Packing Materials
Do you need special boxes? What sizes and dimensions? How many? Which packing materials (peanuts, bubble wrap, packing paper) are best for your fragile items?
Spend time assessing the valuable materials that need to be packed and buy whatever materials are necessary. You might pack your clothes in free boxes from the nearby pharmacy, but it's appropriate to purchase boxes for items that are easily breakable.
Wrap Items Properly Before Putting Them in Boxes
Wrap items in bubble wrap or packing paper before putting them in boxes. Use packing tape to secure the bubble wrap, but don't attach the tape to the item being wrapped.
For the most fragile items, plan to use a combination of bubble wrap and packing paper. Wrap the item in bubble wrap, then fill the extra space in the box — below and above the item — with packing paper. The packing paper will prevent the item from rolling around loose in the box, while the bubble wrap will keep the item safe.
Use Small Boxes Whenever Possible
Place very fragile items in small boxes with few or no other items. Keep the boxes relatively lightweight. Packing a valuable item in a box with heavy objects could cause your fragile item to become broken or cracked.
Match the box size properly to the item being packed. If a bigger box is needed, then use it. Just keep in mind that overly large boxes can become bulky and difficult to manage, and that can cause the box to be dropped.
Buy Stronger Boxes for Easy-to-Break Items
Boxes can be made with stronger walls for items that need extra protection. Dish packing kits often have extra thick walls for this reason and may come with extra layers of cardboard inside. These boxes are less likely to be crushed or warped by the weight of other boxes and are better able to withstand the movement in transit.
Treat Your Electronics Right
No matter how carefully you pack your electronic devices, the only way to ensure that your data is safe is to back it up before packing. The best packaging for your electronics is the original box.
Turn off devices and equipment and give them time to cool before packing. Unplug cords but take a picture or video of the arrangement of cords before doing so. This will help you remember how to set the devices back up again.
Eject media disks (like CDs) and take out batteries. Electronic devices are sensitive to static electricity, so use anti-static wrapping. Standard bubble wrap can generate static, so you'll have to seek out the anti-static bubble wrapping or use packing paper. Once packed, keep your electronic devices in climate-controlled environments whenever possible.
Use Proper Labeling
Label all boxes that contain fragile items with the word "FRAGILE" on all sides. You can buy labels with this word on it, so you don't have to write the same word over and over again. Using proper labeling indicates to movers and anyone packing or unpacking that these boxes need special care.
Stack Fragile Items Carefully
When stacking boxes that contain fragile items, take care to avoid putting your fragile items in a stack that could become too top heavy or unstable. Stack fragile items all together, keeping the stacks short. Place heavier, sturdier boxes on the bottom of each stack, and lighter, smaller boxes near the top.
Unpack at the Right Time
Sometimes, the safest place for a breakable item is in a box. Unpacking fragile items early in the unpacking process could leave you unable to find a safe place to put them. Wait to unpack until you've cleared a specific shelf or identified a place for the fragile item. Until then, find a safe spot for storing your fragile boxes where they won't be in the way.
Most important of all is to be patient with your fragile items. Rushing the packing process, or handling stacks hastily, can lead to breakage. Taking time and care with your valuable items pays off and will help you have a lower-stress relocation overall. Moving services can also help alleviate frustration and speed up the process.
Author bio: Stan Caramalac is the founder and CEO of Move Central. He started the company because he truly believed that moving could be simple as long as it was done efficiently. He strives to help people make their moves smoother and less stressful. Caramalac and his team proudly serve San Diego, Orange County, Los Angeles and the Bay Area.