Mistakes to Avoid When Packing Boxes

One of the most difficult parts of moving items can be figuring out how to pack them up into boxes. You don’t want to throw everything in one box and call it good. You want to pack things carefully and with intent, so that nothing gets ruined or lost.

Some mistakes that are made on a regular basis when packing include putting too much weight in a box, or using boxes that are the wrong size for the items included within them. You don’t want to make moving anymore stressful than it has to be. Here are a few mistakes to avoid when packing your boxes.

Limit Heavy Items

One of the most important things you need to keep in mind when packing moving boxes is that you need to limit how many heavy items you put in each box. It may seem like it would be super easy to include all your heavy items in one place, but the opposite is actually true. If you load a box entirely with heavy items you will not be able to pick it up and move it easily.

It’s also possible the box will fall apart if there is too much weight included in it. You could go to pick it up and have the bottom drop out or the sides split. If you’re lucky this could happen when the box is just sitting. Most likely it will happen when you are in the process of moving the box and you’ll have a mess to clean up.

When packing heavy items it is a good idea to include a few of them in each box to break up the weight. Place them in the bottom of the boxes and then put lighter items on top of them. Try not to fill more than half of a box with heavier items.

There’s Nothing Wrong with Using Tape

Even if you are just using moving boxes to take stuff from one area of town to another, there is no shame in using packing tape to secure them together. Sealing up the bottom especially can help keep you from having box accidents throughout the process. Otherwise there is a chance the bottom will fall open during your move and everything inside the box will spill out and have to be cleaned up.

For a longer move it could help you to seal up the tops and corners of the boxes as well. This will help them stay sturdy during transit as well as when they are being carried. It will also make them sturdier so you can set other boxes and things on top of them as necessary.

If you are shipping your boxes, you will definitely want to use tape to secure the bottom and top. Use several pieces along the flaps so there is no way they can pop open during transit. It is better to err on the side of caution in order to make sure your items arrive safely.

Labels are Great

Just because you think you will remember what is in every box you pack doesn’t mean that is actually so. You can easily confuse the moving boxes if they look similar. Putting labels on the boxes as you fill them will help you stay organized and help you remember where you put your items.

Labeling can also help make it easier to unload your boxes once you get where you are going. Take the time to mark them as “kitchen” or “office” or “bathroom”. This way you won’t have to search for utensils and toothpaste through the wrong boxes later on.

You should also set aside boxes specifically for items you will need right away. Mark these appropriately to keep them from burying under boxes of less urgent items. This can help a lot if you are moving to a new place and need things like dishes, toilet paper, and other essentials right away.

Consider Travel Methods

Will your boxes be traveling via truck? Car? Airplane? Will you be stacking them on top of each other to move them? Or laying them out in a single layer? Take a few minutes to consider how your boxes will move so that you can be sure you have the right boxes and the right packing materials for the job.

If you are sending your boxes via plane you will want them to be packed securely, with sealed tops and bottoms. On the other hand, if you are sending them via truck you will want to make sure that any fragile items are very carefully wrapped so they don’t brake when you handle them.

If you are moving your boxes yourself you will know how careful to be with them. Also, if you hire a moving service you can’t be as sure that they will handle delicate things in the proper manner. Pack your items with tissue paper, bubble wrap, or packing peanuts so there is less chance of things ending up broken by an irresponsible handler.

Big Boxes Are Not Always Your Friends

Most moving companies who sell boxes will give you a list of what items work best in each kind of box. For small boxes they’ll suggest things like books and other heavy items. For large boxes they’ll suggest blankets, pillows, and other lighter items.

You don’t want to fill a giant box with books. This is very important to keep in mind. Even if you own hundreds of books and you don’t want to make multiple trips to move them all. A giant box filled with books can easily fall apart because of the weight inside of it.

Big boxes are also more difficult for an individual person to carry on their own. If you don’t have the use of a hand truck, or are moving things mostly by yourself, you need to stick to boxes that you know you can take care of. Remember that bigger is not always better when it comes to packing boxes.

Can You Carry Them By Yourself?

If you are lucky you’ll have people to help you when it comes time to move your boxes. They can help you with the really big ones and the really heavy ones. If you are really lucky you can hire a service to move them for you.

But if you need to move your boxes by yourself, you need to make sure they are aren’t too large or full of weight for you to take care of. Once you have packed them half full, try picking them up and carrying them a short distance to see how it goes. If you struggle, don’t pack anything else in them that will add much weight.

A hand-truck is a great tool to help you move things by yourself. But even with the use of one, you need to make sure your boxes aren’t too unwieldy. You don’t want them falling off the hand-truck mid-move and causing a mess.

Handles are Handy

There are several things to look for when selecting boxes for moving. You want them to be sturdy, simple to put together, and you should get them with handles. Handles can make it much easier to move the boxes around after packing.

Packing Boxes
Packing Boxes

Handles in this case does not necessarily mean ‘handles’ like you’d find on a bag or a suitcase. Instead these are usually cut into the sides of the boxes and make a convenient place for you to grab and lift them. They should be at least a third of the way down the sides of the box. This is to keep them from tearing if the box is heavy.

Separate Delicate Items

If you don’t want your fragile items to get broken, you need to take extra care in how you pack them. Use bubble wrap, tissue paper, newspaper, or packing peanuts around them. Be sure to mark the boxes they are in with labels. Thus alerting anyone that picks them up that there are delicate items within.

Do not pack heavy, sharp, or loose items with your fragile pieces. They could break them if they are jostled around. Be sure that any items in the box with the delicate things are safe for them to be around.

Transit can be hard on boxes. They can be thrown around, if you stack half-haphazardly, or place upside-down. You won’t want your fragile items to be treated like non-breakable things, so carry these boxes separately from the rest.

Packing doesn’t have to be a chore. With some organization, planning, and care, you can pack all of your items so that they arrive at their new location in proper order. It may take some time, but it will be worth it in the end.

Get help from Box-n-Go

Box-n-Go is your one stop shop for all your storage and moving needs. We can provide you with anything. ranging from moving boxes and supplies to storage units and moving labor. Call Box-n-Go at 1-877-269-6461. We will be happy to help you with any needs you may have.