8 Tips on How to Move Heavy Furniture By Yourself
Moving heavy furniture with friends and family can feel like an uphill battle. But moving it all by yourself? That’s next-level!
It can be done, of course; you just need to know what you’re doing so you can pull it off safely.
Because we know it can be a challenge, we’ve created this in-depth guide on how to move heavy furniture by yourself. We’ve included tips on how to prepare your space and how to safely lift heavy furniture. Just keep in mind that while we know you are strong and fully capable of moving everything on your own, we do suggest asking a friend for a helping hand during certain parts of your move, like when stairs or heavy lifting are involved.
Ready to learn how to move heavy furniture? Let’s go.
Tip 1: Remove Any Obstacles
Perhaps one of the most important tips in our guide on how to move heavy furniture alone involves clearing your area of anything that could cause you to trip or fall. That means no toys, shoes, bubble wrap, or cardboard boxes on the floor or walkways. In the same vein, you’ll want to keep your pets in a closed-off area and ensure your kids aren’t running around, either.
Tip 2: Dress the Part
Next, when figuring out how to move heavy furniture safely, take a close look at your wardrobe. To start, you’re going to have a hard time moving heavy objects if you’re not wearing the proper shoes. Flip-flops and high heels are a big no-no. Choose closed-toed shoes (in case you drop something on your foot!) with a non-slip grip at the bottom. As for your clothing, wear light, loose, and breathable tops and bottoms—you don’t want to split the fabric if your clothes are too tight!
Tip 3: Protect Your Furniture and the Premises
If you’re moving heavy objects, don’t be surprised if you face a few bumps along the way. To protect your belongings (and your space), wrap plastic or bubble wrap around your items. Moving upholstered furniture? Look into plastic covers designed for sofas and chairs. If you’re in a pinch, you can always use old blankets or sheets to cover your furniture.
To protect your floors and walls, place furniture pads on the bottom of your furniture to keep from scraping the floor and tape cardboard on the walls (especially the corners) to reduce scratches and dents.
Tip 4: Get Equipped
When it comes to moving heavy furniture, don’t rely on brute force. Before the big day, pick up these tools to move heavy furniture to save your arms, back, and legs from injury.
- Dollies: These provide an easy way to move heavy furniture without over-exerting yourself. Pick up either a two-wheeled hand truck or four-wheeled square platform. Place your items on the dolly’s platform and use the handle to move it in the right direction. With your belongings on wheels, you’ll have a much easier time getting them from Point A to Point B.
- Ramps: Forget about using your strength to lug heavy furniture over stairs and into truck beds or moving trucks. Ramps make it much easier and safer to place a large or unwieldy item on a raised area.
- Moving straps: If you’re wondering how to move something heavy, turn to moving straps, also called lifting straps. These can help distribute the weight across your body and prevent strain on your back and legs.
- Work gloves: Wearing gloves not only protects you but your furniture, too. These gloves will help prevent injury in case your furniture has any sharp or jagged edges. They can also keep your hands from transferring dirt or oils to your belongings.
- Sliders: Are you moving heavy furniture across tile or hardwood floors? If so, place sliders on the bottom of your furniture. This helps protect your floors from scrapes and dings, but it also makes it much easier to slide and glide your items across the floor. You can also find carpet sliders specifically designed for transporting your belongings across the carpet.
Tip 5: Stretch Beforehand
You might think we’re joking about this one, but we’re 100% serious. You wouldn’t jump right into weight lifting or running a marathon without stretching, so why would you skip stretching when moving heavy furniture? Moving and lifting furniture is a full-body workout, and if you’re not careful, you could strain and pull your muscles, or worse, throw out your back. Do some side, back, leg, and arm stretches to warm up your muscles beforehand to help prevent injuries.
Don’t be surprised if your muscles are tired or achy at the end of the day. Stretch again after moving your furniture and be sure to get plenty of rest. Draw a warm bath or use a heating pad if your muscles are especially sore.
Tip 6: Look into Moving Techniques
You probably know you’re supposed to lift with your legs, but that’s not the only moving technique you should keep in mind. Bend your knees and avoid twisting your body when lifting or carrying furniture. You’ll also want to keep the object as close to your body as possible to help you maintain balance. Above all, make sure you can see clearly in front of you.
Bonus: Tips & Tricks For Moving Heavy Furniture
How do you move heavy furniture downstairs?
There are several ways to approach this. One way is to enlist the help of a hand-truck designed for stairs. Securely strap your belongings on the hand-truck and then tilt it back so that it is balancing on its two wheels. Slowly move it down one step at a time. You can do the same going up the stairs, but you will walk backward, pulling the truck step by step. Get some friends or family to help spot you and ensure your safety.
Instead of a hand-truck, some people prefer to do this trick using a blanket. With the help of a friend or two, simply place the item on an oversized blanket and then use the corners of the blanket as handles to hoist the object up or down the stairs.
So, you can move furniture down the stairs. But how do you move heavy furniture up stairs? You’re not going to go at this one alone, so round up a friend to help. Let’s say you’re moving a desk. Hold onto the top of the desk and stand one or two steps further up the stairs than your friend and have your friend hold the bottom of the desk. You will slowly walk backward up the stairs as your friend guides you. Try to keep your furniture balanced and as upright as possible.
Carpet is another common nemesis when it comes to moving. If you’re wondering how to move heavy furniture on carpet, start with the carpet sliders we mentioned above. These sliders are usually thick rubber or plastic that you can place directly under your furniture and use to slide your items across the carpet. But if you don’t have any handy, plastic container lids or cardboard will do the trick, too.
Tip 7: Lighten the Load
This isn’t a weight-lifting contest! Make your items lighter by taking off removable parts. If you’re moving a dresser or desk, take out all of the shelves. A couch? Remove the wooden legs. Take inventory of all your heavy items in advance and see how you can lighten the load before picking them up.
Tip 8: Follow the Buddy System
If you’re struggling to figure out how to move furniture by yourself, don’t hesitate to reach out for help. After all, moving heavy objects without assistance can be a recipe for injury. See if you can round up some buddies or neighbors to give you a hand. Set aside the especially heavy objects and plan to move them together.
At the end of the day, take it slow and don’t push your limits. You won’t get any awards for muscling through it all on your own.
Learn About Our Storage Units
Now that you know how to move heavy furniture, where are you going to put all those items? If you’re in need of a storage unit, we’re here to save the day. Here at Stor-It, we proudly hold the title of the oldest and largest storage facility in Idaho. We provide all kinds of storage units, along with moving and packing supplies to make moving day a cinch. Our on-site managers are also available to help you determine what size unit best suits your needs. Check out our FAQ page and contact us to reserve your storage unit today.