Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Packing and Moving Your Garage

The moving date is around the corner and everything in your house is wrapped, folded, dismantled and packed up. The one area that you dread approaching is your garage – it’s filled with odd stuff, most of which you barely ever use but still like to keep just in case… Bulky items like lawn mowers or old deck furniture, some auto parts from extra tires to engine stands, children’s stuff and outdoor equipment long out of use, tools, pots, broken statues – you have to sort through it all and figure out what still has value and what can be sold or discarded. (“Garage Stuff on Garage Sale” is a nice title for your newspaper ad).

A few things to keep in mind when packing your garage for the upcoming move:

- Drain all the gas and oil from gas-powered items such as a lawn mower or snow blower since they are considered hazardous materials, which most movers are not licensed to transport

- Empty the draws of your desks and workbenches and pack their content into boxes

- Secure together all the tools of similar length using a strong plastic cord; if you don’t have a tool box use a thick-wall carton to pack your hand tools and small power tools. Use paper to fill extra space and prevent tools from shifting. Cover sharp edges of the tools with linen or bubble wrap to avoid injuries when unpacking the box.

- Disassemble metal shelves and tape them together in a bundle along with the bolts placed in a labeled zip lock bag.

- Label your auto parts prior to packing. If there are certain parts that you cannot identify or which origin/purpose are a mystery, you are very unlikely to make use of them in the future and might as well donate them to the local auto shop.

- Flammable or explosive liquids (fertilizer, gasoline, kerosene, motor oil, pool chemicals) fall under the hazmat category and cannot be transported by most movers.

Most importantly, don't leave packing your garage till the last moment, it is notorious for being the most cluttered area of the house and can take longer than you expect to prepare for the move.

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