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  • Writer's pictureJason & Liz Sautter

How to Pack Fragile Items When Moving



One of the biggest headaches when it comes to moving is ensuring that your valuables stay intact while in transit. The last thing you need on your hands is precious antiques or very expensive furniture in pieces when you unpack them in your new home (that would certainly be an awkward conversation with your mother when she sees cracked china!) That's why we've compiled a guide on how you can pack your most fragile items with the utmost care so they can arrive safely at your new home.


1. Gather the Right Supplies

  • Sturdy boxes: Use new, strong boxes for fragile items to ensure they provide adequate protection.

  • Bubble wrap: Perfect for wrapping glassware, ceramics, and other breakables.

  • Packing paper or newspaper: Ideal for wrapping and cushioning delicate items.

  • Packing peanuts: These can fill empty spaces in boxes, preventing items from shifting during transport.

  • Foam sheets: Great for added protection, especially for electronics.

  • Dish pack inserts: These are specially designed for packing dishes and glasses.

  • Tape: Use high-quality packing tape to seal boxes securely.

  • Markers: Label each box clearly with “Fragile” and indicate the contents.


2. Prepare Your Items

  • Clean and dry: Ensure all items are clean and dry before packing to prevent mold and mildew.

  • Disassemble: If possible, disassemble larger items to make them easier to pack and less prone to damage.


3. Wrap Items Individually

Each fragile item should be wrapped individually to provide maximum protection:

  • Glassware and ceramics: Wrap each piece in bubble wrap or packing paper. Secure the wrapping with tape to prevent it from unraveling.

  • Plates: Wrap plates individually in packing paper, then place them vertically in the box, like records, to reduce the risk of breaking.

  • Electronics: Remove batteries and secure moving parts. Wrap the device in foam sheets, then in bubble wrap for extra cushioning.

  • Lamps: Remove light bulbs and shades. Wrap the base and the shade separately in bubble wrap.


4. Pack Strategically

How you pack your boxes is crucial for protecting fragile items:

  • Layering: Start with a layer of packing peanuts or crumpled paper at the bottom of the box for cushioning.

  • Heavy items first: Place heavier items at the bottom of the box, followed by lighter items on top.

  • Fill gaps: Use packing peanuts, paper, or bubble wrap to fill any empty spaces to prevent items from shifting.

  • Don’t overpack: Avoid overfilling boxes as this can lead to crushing. Each box should close easily without bulging.


5. Seal and Label Boxes

  • Seal securely: Use packing tape to seal the box. Reinforce the bottom and top seams with extra tape.

  • Label clearly: Mark the box with “Fragile” on all sides. Include a brief description of the contents and an arrow indicating which side should face up.


6. Transport with Care

Finally, ensure your fragile boxes are handled with care during the move:

  • Load carefully: When loading the moving truck, place fragile boxes on top of heavier, sturdier items.

  • Secure properly: Use straps or ropes to secure boxes in the truck to prevent shifting during transport.

  • Communicate: Inform your movers about which boxes contain fragile items and emphasize the need for careful handling.


Additional Tips

  • Use original packaging: If you still have the original boxes and packaging for electronics or other items, use them as they are designed to protect the items during transport.

  • Take inventory: Make a detailed list of all fragile items and their condition before packing. This can be useful for insurance purposes in case of damage.

  • Consider insurance: Look into moving insurance that covers fragile items, providing peace of mind during your move.


By following these tips, you can ensure that your fragile items are packed securely and arrive safely at your new home. Happy moving!


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