Three Ways To Protect Your Wooden Furniture While Moving

Packing clothing and personal items for a move is relatively easy, but some people fall short when it comes to properly packing wooden furniture for relocation. You may not think of wood as a fragile substance, but fine wooden furniture easily becomes warped, cracked, and chipped, particularly while in transit, if cautionary packing procedures aren't taken. Taking the time to ensure that your furniture is protected during the process of relocation is well worth the investment in time and energy. Following are three ways you can protect your wooden furniture while moving to ensure it arrives at your destination damage-free.

Pad Everything Possible

Padding on the floor of the moving van or truck is essential when transporting wooden furniture. Specialized moving blankets, thick foam pads, and even casual household sheets and blankets make good padding for when it's time to move wooden furniture -- it's best to err on the side of caution and provide too much padding rather than too little. Make certain that all covered wood is exposed, and don't give in to the temptation to use bubble wrap instead of fabric-based padding materials. As an organic material, it's essential that wood is allowed to breathe, and plastic bubble wrap doesn't allow for air circulation. However, you can place a layer of bubble wrap on the floor to provide extra padding as long as you cover it with a breathable piece of fabric such as a cotton blanket before placing your wooden furniture on top of it.

Remove Legs and Small Parts 

If your wooden furniture features screw-on knobs, removing them and storing them in a secure place for the duration of the transit will keep them from becoming lose during the move and becoming lost. Either secure the drawers with heavy twine or remove them entirely before moving -- never succumb to the temptation to tape drawers shut to keep them in place during transit. The tape will mar the finish on the wood and probably won't keep the drawers in anyway. Because the twine may scratch the wood, always place padding between it and the surface of your furniture.

Consider a Climate Controlled Moving Van

Because wood is an organic, porous material, it's damaged by exposure to high humidity levels as well as extremes of temperature. Wood swells when it absorbs moisture, and this can cause it crack and warp. In winter, the optimal temperature for wooden furniture is around 70 degrees Fahrenheit, and humidity levels should be between 35 and 45 percent. In summer, temperatures should be between 70 -75 degrees Fahrenheit and humidity levels should be between 55 and 65 percent. Because moving vans are closed environments that can become extremely hot even when outside temperatures are relatively mild, you should seriously consider using a climate controlled moving van if your furniture is going to be in the van for more than a very brief period of time.

If you are going to be moving during the winter, a climate controlled moving van may be in order if cold seasonal temperatures prevail along your intended route. Cold air dries wood out and makes it vulnerable to cracking. As an organic material, wooden furniture contracts when exposed to the cold, which can result in it changing its shape. This could cause drawers to not open or close properly or cause hinges, screws, bolts, and other hardware to become separated from the wood.

Keep in mind that professional packing services or moving companies offer more than just climate controlled vans. Trained personnel will handle your wooden furniture and other household items, ensuring that they reach their destination safely and intact.