Tips for Moving Heavy Furniture
Anyone who has moved without professional help knows how hard solo moving is, especially when it comes to those heavy furniture pieces. Even when you are able to talk friends or family members into helping, it is really not a job for inexperienced people. Not only is there the potential for serious injuries, there is also the chance that you will damage your property trying to get furniture through doorways, down stairs, or up from the basement. Then of course, there is the possibility of scratching, denting or even breaking some of your valuable furniture pieces.
Once you get furniture out of your house, you have to position it properly on a rental truck so that it can be safely transported to your new home. At the other end, you have to go through the entire process again, unloading the heavy furniture and moving it into your new home. By the time you are done, you will be totally exhausted, but hopefully without any serious injuries or extensive damage to your possessions.
Like any job, experience is the key to success. The van operators and crews employed by professional moving companies like Premiere move hundreds of families each year. They have undergone extensive training in order to develop the skills necessary to move heavy furniture and other household possessions safely, and in a reasonable period of time. By contrast, you will likely experience a lot of frustration and take much longer to complete the job. If you are considering doing your own move or are just planning to move a few pieces, then the following tips for moving heavy furniture may help you avoid serious injury:
- Slide. When you are moving a large piece of furniture across the room, use furniture sliders, a moving pad, or a large piece of flattened cardboard to slide the furniture instead of trying to carry it all the way.
- Protecting Your Back. Try to keep weight on your arms, legs and shoulders, not your back. Always try to keep your back as straight as possible.
- Have Adequate Help. Make sure you have at least two people helping you. If you are trying to move something that weighs 300 lb. or more then it is best that there are four people present.
- Protecting Your Furniture. Rent plenty of moving pads and large bands to tie them on, in order to protect your wood furniture. Also purchase professional grade shrink wrap to protect upholstered furniture.
- Proper Carrying Technique. With tall items like buffets and armoires carry them from the top and the bottom. This helps centre the furniture and makes it easier to carry items down stairs.
- Invest in Moving Straps. You can buy or rent a variety of professional moving straps that will protect you and your helpers from injuries.
- Rent Dollies. These are well worth the extra money and will make it easier to move extra heavy items like appliances.
- Couches. Always stand couches on their side before trying to move them through doorways.
- Large Chairs. To move these items through doorways, turn them on their side and move the back first around the corner and out the doorway.
- Recliners. If possible remove the back from the recliner and always tie the foot rest down so it doesn’t open when you move it.
- Mattresses. Some mattresses have handles, but these are not strong enough to move a mattress out of a room; these handles are intended to help you position a mattress on a bed. Thread a rope through the mattress handles and use a piece of PVC pipe to make a sling so that you can get a good grip on the mattress. Purchase a plastic mattress bag to ensure that it does not get dirty during the move.
- Floorplan. Draw a floorplan as to where furniture is to be placed in the new home. This will help you avoid moving the same piece of heavy furniture numerous times.
As you can see, moving heavy furniture on your own can be a difficult and dangerous job. When you consider the obstacles, the extra equipment, and other resources you need to rent or purchase you may find that moving yourself is not the most cost effective option. If you are on a really strict budget it may be worth it to have a professional mover handle the heavy furniture while you use a rental truck or your own vehicle for boxes and other items.