A Guide to Moving Awkward Furniture

iStock_000018480179_MediumMoving house is hectic enough without having to think about how you’re going to fit your grand piano through your tiny door frame. Fortunately for you, most removal companies are specialised in moving and dismantling the awkwardly-shaped furniture you don’t know how to handle.

Whether you want to use a removal company, or you want to move yourself, comparemymove.com have put together a comprehensive guide to moving unusually large furniture, electrical and kitchen appliances

Don’t Forget to Measure 

Before attempting to move anything, make sure you measure the furniture as well as the doorway you plan to fit it through. Then you can determine if the removal company will have to dismantle the furniture, or in extreme cases, remove the doorframe, window frame or banister to fit the furniture through.

Also, think about how you’re going to get the items into the new property – are there difficult points of access? Is the doorway narrow?

To avoid these issues, the removal company need to survey the properties before the move so they can bring the necessary tools to deal with them.

However, if you’re set on moving yourself, one tip for moving large armchairs through doorways is the ‘hook’ method: Turn the chair on its side so it looks like an ‘L’, and move it back first through the doorway. Then, curl it around the doorway and pull it through.

For sofas, carrying them through doorways and turning to get them into a room can be impossible. Before entering the hallway, position the sofa on its end so that it’s upright and slide it to the doorway. You should be able to hook it through the doorway, but if it’s too tall, simply tilt the top of the sofa back and pull it through at an angle.

Moving Electrical Appliances

Items such as computers, flat screen televisions and other gadgets can be extremely expensive, so needless damage is the last thing you want to deal with while moving.

Ensure that any cables and power leads are neatly tied up with packing tape – you want to avoid tripping hazards that could result in injury.

The best option for any electrical appliance would be to pack them into the boxes they originally came in. If not, a secure box with soft items like pillows to cushion the appliance would be recommended.

Keep all the extra parts with the items in their boxes. Label each box with the item’s name as well as ‘FRAGILE’ so the removal men know to take extra care and place the boxes carefully.

When unpacking, reconnecting the cables can be quite a complex process. To make things easier, take a photo before you disconnect the cables and pack everything away, so you have a picture of what everything is supposed to look like and where the cables are meant to go.

It’s also important to remember that appliances should never be packed while still warm – wait for them to cool down beforehand.

Moving a Fridge/Freezer

Moving a fridge/freezer can be very messy if you don’t prepare beforehand. In the weeks leading up to your move, try to use up all of your food supplies so you don’t have to waste any by throwing it out. A good solution is to make soups or stews which require multiple ingredients.

Once the fridge/freezer is empty, turn off the power and leave the door open for it to defrost. You will also want to lay a few towels down to prevent too much leaking.

When the ice is gone, clean and replace each drawer, but transport any glass shelves separately to prevent them breaking during the move. Leave the fridge door ajar until the move to avoid mould growing, however when it is in transit, make sure the door is taped shut.

After arriving at the new property, leave approximately 24h between reinstalling the fridge. It needs to be left upright with the power off, so that all the liquids in the internal mechanics can settle back into place. It should be noted that turning the power on too early can damage the appliance. If you are not sure of what to do, always consult the manual. If you have lost it, it will be available online.

Moving a Dishwasher/Washing Machine/Tumble Dryer

These are incredibly heavy appliances, so be sure to take care if attempting to move them yourself. Hiring a removal company would be recommended, though, as they are trained in heavy lifting.

These items need to be moved in the upright position to prevent any damage, and a plumber or specialist removal company should be hired to do the plumbing at the new property and reinstall the items.

Moving an Oven

If the oven is a wall-mounted unit, it will require a specialist removal company to move it. However, if not, before it is moved, clean the interior thoroughly and remove any items that are detachable, such as gas rings.

Turn off the electric power by unplugging it from the wall outlet, to avoid any chance of accidental shock when moving it. If it uses gas, shut off the gas line by turning off the valve in the gas line that goes to the oven. Read the manual to ensure you follow the manufacturer’s instructions. As with the fridge, tape the door shut during the move.

Always Use the Right Packing Materials

Unusually large or awkwardly shaped furniture could be more susceptible to damage during a move, so to avoid the need for unnecessary repairs, you need to ensure the items are adequately packed with the right protective materials.

Some removal companies provide their own packing services to help with your move, but if you decide to pack your own items, the removal company’s insurance won’t cover damage to the items. More information about this can be found here.

In general, furniture can be protected with blankets and plastics wrapped around them to protect the edges from chipping and being damaged.

No matter how large or awkward your furniture is, when moving your items from one property to another, you should always make sure they are covered by your insurance providers. Don’t just leave it up to the removal companies, as they don’t usually fully cover items.

Hiring a removal company to move large or awkward furniture would be the easier option, however, as shown by this guide, it is possible to do it yourself.  Follow these steps, and whenever possible, consult the manuals the items came with to minimize any risk of damage.

One response to “A Guide to Moving Awkward Furniture”

  1. Nick Willis says:

    Two big strong men and a van helps

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