How To Pack Dishes For Moving Day

Whether you’re moving across town or across the country, the last thing you want to deal with is opening up your “fragile” box, only to find a container full of dish shrapnel and ceramic dust. To avoid this mess, your best option is to properly pack dishes and fragile items.

When it comes to packing dishes for a move using a box designed for dish packing is the best option to ensure the safety of your dishes. Dish boxes are designed for the fragile content that will be your dishes. They are built thicker with a double layer of corrugated cardboard that adds an extra insulated layer against vibrations, sudden movements, and the constant shaking during their transport.

Other standard types of boxes will work, however, to give your dishes their best chance of survival you’ll need to use extra packing materials if you go with the thinner boxes. Kitchen items are something that you use just about every day so know how to pack dishes for moving is a skill set worth having.

Dish Packing Materials

To get your dishes packed for moving you’ll need:

  • Dish Boxes – The best packing boxes for your plates are dish boxes or dish packs. The boxes are made of stronger material designed for this type of job. The do cost a bit more but the extra protection they provide could be well worth (protecting) your investment. The bottom line is when packing dishes for a move, invest in dish boxes. These boxes help separate breakable items from coming in contact with one another. Damage is most often sustained when two breakable items strike against one another. The dish box provides individual chambers for dishes to help provide added buffer space.
  • Plenty Of Packing Paper – The copious use of packing paper when you pack dishes for moving is usually the difference between have your dishes all arrive in one piece… or not. Use plenty of packing paper around every single breakable item. There really is no such thing as using too much. This way, all of the movement within the box is absorbed by the packing paper. Additionally, make sure there is no open-air pockets (such as on the top of the box). Fill this area with packing paper as well. There should be no room available for a breakable item to move freely. The proper use of packing paper surrounding your items keeps them insulated from road vibrations, shaking, and generally constantly bumping into each other in box during the transport.
  • Medium-Sized Boxes – Due to the weight and density of dishware don’t go with the cheapest available when i comes to your boxes.
  • Packing Tape – Use a high-quality tape. This will be what is ultimately is holding all your packing efforts together.
  • Labels And Markers – Label the sides of your boxes so you can see what they are and what room they go to even when stacked.

No need to use bubble wrap and if you’re thinking about old newspaper for the packing paper… yes this will work, however, be mindful that the ink from the print can transfer onto your dishes. For the most part it can be washed off, but sometimes not so easily, to why take the chance and add more for you to do once you start unpacking.

Packing Your Dishes For Moving

The first thing to do is tape your boxes and tape them well. Make sure that you have at least 6 points of contact along the bottom of the box. One line of taping going with the seam of the box taped securely at both ends. Then add two more rows perpendicular and across the seam you just did, and this will give you the six points of contact of tape to the box.

Next is to prep the bottom of your box for the move. You want to create a soft bed of crumpled paper on the bottom of the box. Crumple the paper and not just fold a piece. The crumpling of the paper has much better shock absorption qualities and will work much better when you pack dishes for moving. Don’t be stingy on this part give your dishes a nice 6-inch bed of paper on the bottom of the box.

Wrapping And Stacking The Dishes

Get your packing paper laid out on a flat surface and place your dish in the center of the paper. Pull the corners of the wrapping paper to the center and wrap the dish according to its specific needs as far as size and shape. Repeat this process with your plates that have the same size. Stack your plates together in a group of about four. Then turn the stack upside down and take a full sheet or two of packing paper and wrap the four plates together creating a grouping of four and seal the entire grouping with tape.

Once you have your groupings or bundles of plates assembled, stand the dishes vertically in your dish boxes. Don’t pack your dishes for moving by laying them flat on top of each other as they will be much more likely to break. Add additional bundles to your box until the plates are secure. Be mindful of the weight as you go. Fill in and stuff any open areas of the box around your dishes. The goal is to completely eliminate any movement of your bundled dishes. Boxes in transport are going to be subject to much vibration and shaking about so the tighter you fill in the gaps the more solid of ride your dishes will enjoy. Lastly, label the box on the sides and mark it “Fragile” and “This Side Up”.

Packing Glassware

Glasses, stemware, mugs, and cups are also very fragile items that require some extra attention to detail when it comes to packing them for a move.

Set up your packing so you have the heaviest and/or sturdiest glassware on the bottom and the thinner more fragile glassware finishing out the top. Once again, just like packing dishes for a move the key is to create a soft bed of crumpled packing paper in the bottom (and top) of the box and to wrap each piece individually.

Begin by stuffing each piece with wadded-up packing paper. If a stem is involved, then crumple some paper and form it around the stem. Then wrap the entire piece itself with wrapping paper folding and tucking the paper around the glass as you go.

Separate Your Layers

If you are packing in layers, make sure there is always a layer of packing material in between. After all, the box likely has enough room for multiple layers of dishes. Crumple up and used either packing paper or newsprint in order to give you this buffer space.

Top Off The Tops Of Your Boxes

As you go through the process of packing your dishes for moving, you’ll want to leave a few inches in the tops of each of the boxes where you can crumple up some paper and top off the boxes. The tops of the boxes are also a great place to add some of your kitchen smalls with dish towels or small plastic items.

Don’t overfill your boxes. When it’s time to close up and tape the top of the box the flaps should lay flat naturally without you pushing down on the top. Again, make sure the boxes are marked and labeled on the sides so you can easily see the contents and what room they belong to even when stacked up.

Insure Fragile Items by Hiring Pros

By utilizing our packing services, your items are insured, making us liable for any damage. However, experience has taught us how to avoid damage in the first place. We treat your items with care like it’s our job, because it is. Whether you want packing help or are looking to pick up boxes and packing material, we’ve got you covered.

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