Moving can be stressful. Inevitably, it feels like there are a million things you need to take care of — and even more you need to be thinking about.
One significant item on that long to do list is packing your moving truck. If you're not paying to have someone do the moving for you, it's essential to take to heart some pro tips for packing a moving truck.
It doesn't matter if you're moving across town or moving across the nation, packing your moving truck the right way is going to make all the difference in the world when it comes time to unpack it and get settled in.
The following tips for packing a moving truck can help you maximize efficient use of the space (which means fewer trips between the old place and the new place). Such advice can also ensure that you don't break or damage anything, helping you to more safely drive the truck.
#1: Determine What Size Truck You Need
Getting the right sized truck for your move is more important than trying to save a few bucks by getting a smaller vehicle.
Ideally, you'll get a moving truck that will allow you to move all your belongings in one move without having too much extra space. After all, too much room can allow items to shift while you're driving, potentially damaging them.
If you end up using a pick-up truck instead of a moving truck, you will need to think about a few additional things when packing.
Most importantly, you'll want to be aware of the weather — cardboard boxes are not fun to move when wet. You'll also want to make sure that you don't stack items with their bases above the side of the truck bed. You’ll also need to be more focused on securing items down with straps or even a tarp to prevent them from falling out while in the process of being transported.
#2: Protect Your Belongings
Nobody wants to start moving into a new place only to find that the wooden desk they inherited from their grandfather was scratched and all their wedding dishes were broken in the process.
If something is worth packing, it's worth protecting.
To protect your furniture, you should drape blankets and pads over any exposed surfaces. Most of the time, furniture is damaged by hard surfaces rubbing back and forth against each other during transportation.
Along the same lines, metal items should not be stored near furniture, as metal can tear fabrics and gouge wood.
Fragile items, such as glasses, plates, and elaborate decorations, should be covered with bubble wrap and secured in boxes that are marked to be handled with care.
#3: Load in Layers
One of the best tips for packing a moving truck that's often overlooked by amateurs — but never by professionals — is the idea of loading the truck in layers. When done correctly, each layer is independently secured and self-contained.
#4: But Where to Put What?
Putting the right items in the right place in your moving truck is fundamental to loading the truck properly.
You will want to keep your small valuables and important papers in the cab with you, if possible. Additionally, anything else you might need to get your hands on at a moment's notice should similarly be kept upfront.
Next, you'll want to load your heaviest objects. This might include your refrigerator, washer, and dryer. In such cases, use the "I formation." This formation has the tallest object in the center, flanked by shorter objects on each side. More heavy objects, such as desks, can be slid in next. However, make sure you leave room on each side of them for your mattress and your couch.
At this point, you could very easily have filled the front two-thirds of your truck, and that's okay. Next, you're going to build a stable wall of your heaviest boxes, followed by your lightest boxes and miscellaneous items at the very back.
#5: Distribute Weight Evenly
When you're loading up your moving truck, whether you're headed off to college or moving the family into a new house, you want to be careful to distribute weight in the truck as evenly as possible, with the heaviest items forward in the truck.
Having a balanced truck is vital for safety reasons — both your safety and the safety of your possessions. You don't want a poorly balanced vehicle to be the cause of an accident during your move; you certainly already have enough to deal with.
#6: Taking Advantage of Tie-downs
Inside your moving truck, you'll find metal loops secured to the floor. These loops are designed to be used in conjunction with tie-downs to secure heavy items.
When using tie-downs, make sure both ends are attached so the loops, then pull any slack out of the line before using the crank to tighten them up.
Make sure you don't overtighten the straps, as they can put a lot of pressure on items, potentially damaging them.
#7: Make the Most of Moving Straps
There's no need to Hulk-out when moving. A good move is a move where nothing breaks — including you. By using moving straps, you'll be able to safely move your heavier furniture without throwing out your back.
Also, don't forget to bend at the knees when lifting all heavy objects during your move.
Final Thoughts: 7 Strategic Tips for Packing a Moving Truck
Even if you're paying someone to do all the work, moving is difficult. Of course, if you're like most people and are doing the work yourself, it can be even more stressful.
The key is to be smart about your move every step of the way. This includes using our pro tips for packing a moving truck. By doing so, you'll be able to ensure the safety of your belongings, as well as your personal safety during the process.
Often, taking advantage of temporary storage solutions is the smartest way to make your move happen. And, in other cases, more long-term storage solutions might be the right move. Either way, you'll want to use the same tips for packing a moving truck to get your belongs to a storage unit, as you would your new home.
Want to see what storage solutions are going to be best for you? Talk to the experts at Bargain Storage.