If you don’t know how to move heavy furniture, thrown-out backs, scraped doorways and broken fingers are just a few possible casualties. You might think you can just "muscle through", or "it's just this once", but just one wrong move can result in months, years, or worse, a lifetime of pain. If you don’t hire professional movers or helpers to transport furniture, it's important to keep the following tips in mind so you don't have to take out a second mortgage to pay medical bills!
Make an Assessment
Have a game plan. Move throughout your home and note all of the furniture pieces you need to move that could pose issues. With a tape measure or yard stick, keep a record of the dimensions and then measure your doorways, entrances and exits. Once your list is compiled, make the calculations and determine the best way to move your large furniture, especially bulky items include bureaus, entertainment centers, beds, couches and book shelves.
Think of moving your furniture as taking a driving test. There will be twists, turns, objects you must avoid, and at other points you will have to slow down. On this particular test, you’re encouraged to inspect the course thoroughly beforehand. Decide how furniture must be angled at various points en route to get it around corners, down stairs, over bannisters and through doorways.
Walk the Line
Walk the path that you'll be traveling with your heavy item(s) ahead of time and make note of any steps, tight corners or breakable items that could inhibit you. Clear the floor of any obstructions. Loose rugs, turned-up carpet, items left lying around and anything that you or other movers could possibly trip over must be removed or relocated. “Break a leg” is an expression for “good luck”, but of course no one means it literally.
Indoor Moving Tricks
Slide, you say? Most of us don’t have the physique of the Incredible Hulk (despite what you tell yourself at the gym). Even if you’ve got the muscle, few of us know how to lift properly. Instead, imagine your furniture sliding and gliding with relatively little effort across the floor. There are some tools and methods that will save you Tylenol and sweat whether you are a mere 100 pounds or a pro wrestler!
Empty it out and prep it. Before moving your furniture, clear drawers and shelf spaces of heavy or bulky items like books and office supplies. It will make the furniture lighter and prevent something from accidentally falling or breaking. Leave soft items like linens and clothing in place, as they’re light weight and their storage will save space. Secure drawers with packing tape or rope so they don’t fly open during transport. Removing unwieldy legs or protrusions is also smart.
Sliders take the cake. Furniture sliders are the ultimate solution to protect your floors. The pieces connect individually to the legs and slide furniture up to 3,200 lb. as if it had wheels. They function on wood floors, vinyl, ceramic tile and carpeting! They’re reusable and make moving heavy objects like entertainment centers, bookcases, armoires, tables, chairs, beds and sofas a breeze! Magic Sliders are the preferred brand among movers to invest in, as they are made of stylish, durable plastic with a hard rubber backing, don’t warp under heavy weight and are easy to install.
Homey alternatives to the slider: If you’re on a budget, there are household items you can use to slide furniture. Try slipping material underneath your furniture’s legs. Instead of lifting, rock the furniture forward or backwards slightly to push the material underneath the legs. On carpet, try smooth cardboard; aluminum foil will serve the same purpose. (Place the shiny side up under the legs; the dull side is actually more slippery!) For bare floors, give dish rags a go!
How to do "the slide": While it may sound counter intuitive, pulling furniture can be much more effective than pushing, because it feels more like a good stretch than a forceful exertion. Place an arm on either side of the furniture and, with your feet a few inches away and using your arms as a brace, lower your body as if you were going to sit, then slowly scoot backwards. Look behind you every so often!