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Keeping Your Fragile Items Safe During a Move


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Packing and moving are involved processes requiring careful consideration and proper planning. In addition to transferring information, decisions must be made about what belongings to take along and what to leave behind. From there, thought and planning must go into how to move various types of furniture and other personal items. At Roadway Moving NYC, we specialize in relocating all sorts of fragile items. In this article, we will share some of our expertise. Read on for some practical suggestions regarding how to wisely go about moving fragile items.

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Moving fragile items 101

Here’s what you will need to do:

  • Get proper packing supplies
  • The heaviest items go on the bottom
  • Individually wrap each item
  • Utilize packing paper to fill hollow items
  • Use dividers
  • Consider getting insurance
  • Hire professionals
  • Clearly label the boxes
  • Take your time packing
person with their feet on a moving box
If you hire professional movers, you get to sit back and relax.

When relocating fragile items, the most important thing is to have enough time for the task. Thus, you will not want to delay the packing process to the last possible moment. Ideally, your fragile valuables should be among the first boxes you pack. Even if you are planning on hiring packing services from one of the long distance moving companies, there are always a few items that you may want to pack on your own. Unless, of course, you are hiring a white glove service mover, in which case you will want to leave it to them. But let’s say that you have decided to pack your fragile items on your own. The first thing you will need to do is:

Get Proper Packing Supplies when moving fragile items

Don’t skimp on packing supplies, but don’t spend excessive money either. Sturdy boxes are a must and many retailers are willing to give away quality used boxes for free. Family and friends who recently moved or who use online shipping services frequently may have boxes on hand.  However, it is always best to use new boxes to ensure your items stay safe. Take time to thoroughly wrap fragile items in bubble wrap or multiple sheets of newspaper. Depending on the nature of your fragile items, you may want to get additional packing supplies. For example, you will certainly need plenty of packing tape to go alongside your wrapping materials. You will use the packing tape to keep the wrapping in place and to prevent the items from shifting underneath the wrapping while they are in transit.

Place Heaviest Items on The Bottom

In addition to using sturdy boxes and carefully wrapping fragile belongings, it is important to consider placement within boxes. For example, when wrapping kitchen items, be sure to place plates on the bottom of the box rather than on top of lighter fragile items. Even before placing items in boxes, take a quick inventory of all fragiles and the basic weight of each. Line all boxes with extra cushioning before placing the first layer of fragiles.

a painting and a moving box
Lighter items always go on top.

Also, when placing the boxes with fragile items inside a moving truck, you will want to make sure that they are either the last boxes to go in, or that they are safely cushioned. This is how white glove moving NYC is usually conducted, after all. If you have any questions about where exactly you should place the boxes, you can always contact your local movers. Roadway Moving NYC, for one, is always happy to assist our clients and answer any moving-related questions they might have.

Wrap Individually

Although it may seem like a time saver to group wrap items such as plates, it is not worth the risk of fragile dishes breaking or chipping en route to the new location. Take the time to individually wrap each fragile item. Take extra care to also wrap each portion of the fragile. For example, wrap not just a teacup base, but also the handle. This process can take up quite a bit of your time, however, so make sure that you start early. Ideally, you should start wrapping your fragile items as soon as you start talking with some of the residential moving companies in NYC. Of course, start with the items that you are not using regularly. You can wrap a couple of items each day and before you know it everything will be wrapped and ready to go!

Utilize packing paper to fill hollow items

Any fragile item that has hollow spaces (jars, glasses, etc.) needs to have those spaces filled with something before relocation. When moving fragile items, the easiest material to use is packing paper, as it is specifically made for this purpose. Packing paper will help soften vibrations and add another layer of protection. You can get packing paper from pretty much anywhere, but you can usually get a great deal if you are buying it from the moving company that is conducting your relocation.

packing paper in a box
Packing paper will help you protect your fragile items.

Use dividers for stemware and glasses

One of the best ways to transport stemware and glasses is to obtain dividers for your cardboard boxes. These dividers will allow you to pack each glass individually into a space of its own. Alternatively, you may also purchase moving boxes that already have dividers. You can get them from your local moving company, usually at a discounted price. Box dividers will provide your fragile items with additional protection and they are well worth the money you invest into them.

Consider Value and Additional Insurance Options

Also prior to boxing fragile objects, take a general inventory of their value. Photograph either all fragile things or just the most expensive ones. Read all small print if using a moving service and evaluate whether or not an additional insurance option is needed. Many movers provide limited coverage which might not be enough for some of your most expensive items. If your fragile belongings have a hefty price tag, then it is in your best interest to protect yourself by purchasing additional insurance. For example, as one of the best commercial movers NYC has to offer, Roadway Moving NYC offers multiple choices when it comes to insurance coverage but some other moving companies might not. They might have a singular insurance option, one that is simply not enough to protect your items. Therefore, make sure you check very carefully what your insurance options are before you sign anything.

Hire Professionals

Moving professionals have plenty of experience with moving fragile items. If you feel hesitant about your ability to properly gauge the logistics of moving fragile objects, feel free to price out your moving service options and read available reviews. This is also a great option when pressed for time. Professional movers present a way to pack your fragile items both quickly and safely.

person packing something
Remember – You can always leave packing to the professionals!

Most of the time, you will hire movers to relocate your entire household or office. But if you only need their help to relocate fragile items in the city of New York, you will want to get in touch with companies that offer white glove moving services. An example of these services is our own Roadway BLACK, where we offer full-service solutions for even the most valuable and fragile items out there. These services include custom crating and packaging, alongside custom storage solutions. Furthermore, white glove movers are extremely experienced in handling fragile items, specifically. This means that you can rest easy knowing that your items are going to be safe and sound throughout the entire relocation process.

Mark Boxes Containing These Items Fragile

If you decide to use a professional packing and or moving service, they often issue special stickers to use to identify boxes containing fragile items. If your company does not do this or if you are packing and moving on your own, be sure to clearly mark boxes with the word “fragile.” Use bold lettering and an exclamation mark so that there is no question or confusion about the care needed in handling those identified boxes. This is one of the essential moving day safety tips, as non-marked boxes can oftentimes present a hazard. You need to be able to see what the box contains at a glance, after all.

Moving can be stressful but common sense and pre-planning help to alleviate pitfalls and make the entire process smoother. Feel confident that you are taking proper measures to protect all of your belongings including those that are fragile. Unpacking is a much more pleasant experience when all belongings arrive at the new location intact. When you move you can pass your supplies and expertise on to someone else who will appreciate them.

Take your time packing

We’ve mentioned time a couple of times throughout this article. This is due to the extreme importance it has in moving fragile items. The fact of the matter is that you never want to be in a rush when packing delicate belongings. And this means that you need to be aware of the time you have for this task. Also, try to stay aware of what you are doing at all times. If you notice that you are speeding up the process and thinking about something else, such as cleaning your home after the move, you need to slow down. You need to understand that even a small mistake can mean all the difference between a broken fragile item and an intact fragile item. If you don’t think that you can manage to keep your focus, you can always hire professional movers to assist you.

And if you need help protecting, packing & unpacking fragile or valuable items during your move, you can always contact us today to learn how Roadway Moving can take the stress out of your relocation and help you with moving fragile items. We are eagerly awaiting your call!

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