It’s pretty common for John Boys and his crew of professionals to get calls from Michiganders asking how to move heavy furniture, and begging for his help.
“We move a lot of heavy furniture, no matter how big the project,” said Boys, owner of Big Guy For Hire. “We have moved everything from just washing machines onto curbs to a 4,000-square-foot home.”
If you’re trying to move something heavy – an item that weighs a couple hundred pounds or more – there are techniques that will protect you and your home from harm.
Keep reading for furniture-moving tips from Boys and another professional. Together they have decades of experience moving clients and the things that weigh them down.
Make Your Furniture as Light as Possible
Give you back a break and remove any drawers or shelves from heavy furniture before you try to move it.
“Get rid of all the small items that would normally occupy a dresser,” said Boys. “If it’s too heavy, remove the drawers and take the shell downstairs.”
If you think your heavy furniture weighs too much to move – even with its parts taken out – consider dissembling it, said Craig Simmons, owner of Minute Men Professional Moving in Minnesota.
“Don’t forget to measure furniture before you move it, to make sure it will fit through the doorway or down the stairway,” he said.
You don’t want to go through the trouble of lifting heavy furniture just to find out it won’t fit!
How to Move Heavy Furniture: Protect Your Floors
Save your floors, and your furniture, from damage by protecting them during moving day.
“Wrap the item with professional moving blankets and then stretch wrap for long-distance moves or storage,” said Boys. “If you can’t lift it, because of space, put it on a moving blanket on the floor and then slide it through the door.”
You can also use floor sliders – or Frisbees and cardboard pieces to save money – on the bottom of your furniture to easily push or pull heavy furniture around a house with hardwood or tile floors.
“If you’re moving into a house with new floors, I highly recommend buying and applying felt pads to the bottom of your furniture,” Boys added. “The item could be 700 pounds, and the pads will help it will move easily and protect your floor.”
Avoid plastic tarps as moving materials, as they easily slip and slide around, Simmons said.
“Moving blankets are your best choice,” he added.
Use Dependable Tools and Moving Techniques
You’ve heard it before, but it couldn’t hurt (literally!) to hear it again: Lift with your knees!
“When you’re lifting heavy furniture, make sure you use your legs and not your back,” said Simmons.
In fact, you should try avoiding lifting much at all by renting a furniture dolly at a moving supply store.
“If it’s an option, rent an appliance dolly,” said Boys. “It’ll take the weight on and you’ll be able to steer it better.”
Remember to pack heavy items in small boxes, to avoid packing unmanageable loads. And buy similar-size boxes to easily stack and move them on a dolly, said Simmons.
And don’t be afraid to call in professionals! Many will quote you prices just to move the heavy stuff, in case you want to save money and move the lighter things yourself.