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How To Pack a Moving Truck: 7 Tips & Tricks

van full of moving boxes

Moving can be stressful and time-consuming. Besides packing your belongings and furniture, you also need to know how to pack and load a moving truck, which can be tricky, especially for moving newbies.

You need to utilize the space inside a moving truck properly to pack more stuff and make your move more efficient. Although this sounds difficult, the truth is the whole packing process can be simple if you know how to pack a moving truck.

We took the time to get all the best tips and tricks to pack a moving truck easily, so keep reading the rest of our article to learn how to pack your moving truck like a pro.

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The 7 Tricks for Packing a Moving Truck

1. Purchase Packing Supplies

The first step in moving is to purchase packing supplies for your belongings. To pack your items safely and well organized, you’ll need:

  • Boxes
  • Packing tape and paper
  • Plastic wrap
  • Bubble wrap
  • Tools
  • Labels and markers

Having all the required packing supplies is crucial as they will protect your items and make unpacking at the new place easier. You might need a dolly, and if you have a lot of furniture, you should get furniture pads.

Moving blankets and padding might come in handy depending on the amount of furniture and stuff you have. They can fill the gaps between your belongings and boxes for extra protection during transport.

You should also purchase moving straps to keep your items in place, which is especially important for heavier stuff. That way, you’ll ensure that your possessions remain intact throughout the journey, even if the road is bumpy.

moving boxes to a new house
Image By: kurhan, Shutterstock

2. Determine the Size of the Truck You Need

You’ll need to rent out a moving truck, so it’s crucial to determine its size to fit all your stuff. As most truck rentals offer a variety of sizes, it can be hard to find the appropriate size for your needs. Although smaller moving trucks are generally cheaper, going small is not always the best solution.

If you have a lot of stuff, choosing a small truck would mean you must go back and forth a couple of times to transfer everything you own, which may be inconvenient. Try to compare the truck size with the amount of stuff you have to choose the best option for your move.

Typically, you will get size guidelines from the truck rental companies, which should make your truck selection easier. When in doubt, you can call the rental company directly to speak with their representative to get advice.

3. Disassemble Furniture and Pack Your Belongings

The next thing you should do is disassemble your furniture and pack your belongings. Furniture is often heavy and bulky, so without dismantling it, it would take up a lot of space inside your moving truck.

If you take apart the furniture, you’ll be able to maximize the available space in the truck. With the furniture disassembled, it will also be easier to evenly distribute the weight inside the truck.

Before you start packing your belongings, it might be helpful to clean out any excess clutter and get rid of stuff you don’t need anymore. That way, you’ll have fewer things you need to transport to your new home. Once you’re left with the stuff you need, it’s time to pack. We advise packing items room per room and labeling the boxes to make the unpacking process less complicated. Try to fill all the gaps inside the moving boxes by adding towels, clothing, or bubble wrap.

It’s also beneficial to label any fragile boxes to avoid them breaking along the way.

A man unpacks a box with a domestic electric heater
Image By: Yevhen Prozhyrko, Shutterstock

4. Ask for Help

Moving can be exhausting, and it’s challenging to do everything yourself. There’s no shame in asking for help which is why you should reach out to your friends and family to help you with the move.

They can help you during the packing and disassembling process, as well as loading the moving truck. That part can be particularly tricky as some things may be heavy, making it unsafe to do the job without help. Also, having someone give you a hand during the move will make the whole moving process faster.

5. Load the Moving Truck

Once everything is ready, you should load the moving truck. Although that seems simple, there are a couple of different rules you should follow to make the most out of the available space.

Heavy Items Go First

When loading the moving truck, the heaviest and bulkiest items should go first.

That includes:
  • Tables
  • Chairs
  • Mattresses
  • Couches
  • Appliances (Stove, oven, refrigerator, washer, dryer, etc.)

That counts for everything else that’s large and weighty. Because of the size and weight of these items, they should be placed at the bottom to prevent other things from being crushed or getting damaged.

Try to place all of these items as close as possible to the driver to spread the weight evenly inside the truck. To save up on space, you can place smaller items inside the larger pieces if possible.

Long Items Go Vertically

Long and large items take up more space when you place them horizontally, which is why you should place them vertically. Placing tables, couches, and similar items in an upright position will save a lot of space in the moving truck.

Don’t forget to add extra protection by using padding and moving blankets. That way, both your larger and smaller items will remain safe and not get damaged until you reach your new home.

Light Items Go Last

Once you pack all the heavy items, it’s time to load the lighter items. This includes light boxes, smaller furniture pieces, and breakable possessions. Try to place them on top of the heavy items instead of placing them at the bottom to avoid damage.

It’s crucial to provide safety for all your items, so after loading the truck, fill in the gaps and empty spaces with either additional stuff or moving blankets. Remember to keep a bag of moving essentials such as pajamas and toiletries in a visible spot, so they’re easily accessible.

van full of boxes near house
Image By: New Africa, Shutterstock

6. Secure Your Stuff

All the items inside the moving truck need to be adequately secured, which is why you should use moving straps. That way, you’ll prevent your belongings from shifting during transit.

It’s best to strap one section at a time after each load to add more stability. These are especially important for large, bulky items as they would damage your other things if they fall or move during the drive.

7. Hire Professionals

Some people don’t want to deal with the moving process, which is completely okay. If you find moving too challenging and not something you want to do, you can hire professionals to do everything for you.

They can come to your home, pack everything, load the truck, and unload it at your new location. This service can be pricey, although it will vary depending on the amount of stuff you have and the distance between your current and your new home.

mover transporting boxes
Image By: LightField Studios, Shutterstock

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What Shouldn’t You Pack in a Moving Truck?

While we’ve been discussing everything you should pack and the way to do it, you should also know what not to pack inside a moving truck. Primarily, if you have any valuables and jewelry, you should place them in a separate box and keep them in your car. That also counts for important documents and files.

Here’s a list of things you should never pack inside a moving truck:
  • Anything flammable
  • Firearms
  • Plants
  • Laptops and desktop computers
  • Cleaning and garden chemicals
  • Beauty products
  • Alcohol
  • Food

These items can be explosive, corrosive, or poisonous, so you shouldn’t keep them near your other belongings during the move. Keeping these inside your car is more responsible.

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Final Thoughts

We know that moving is not easy and that many will likely feel overwhelmed and frustrated until the moving process ends. However, by utilizing these tips and tricks, your move will flow more smoothly, and you’ll be able to finish it quicker.

Remember it’s okay to ask others for help during the transition, while you can always hire a moving company if moving is not your thing.

Featured Image Credit: New Africa, Shutterstock


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