When was the last time you were inside a home that had no pieces of electronics in it? Do you remember ever being inside such a residence?
With the evolution and ever-presence of technology in our daily lives, it’s hard to imagine that a modern house or apartment can be devoid of at least one TV set, or a personal computer of some sort – a desktop, or a laptop. Needless to say, most homes during the Information Age have much more pieces of electronics – audio systems, home theater systems, gaming consoles, computer peripheral devices – monitors, printers, scanners, projectors, and so on.
And if you happen to be facing a house move anytime soon, then the question of how to pack electronics for moving so that your expensive gadgets arrive in your new home in one piece, and in good working order, becomes essential. Yes, most electronic devices are too fragile and can be easily damaged if you fail to take the necessary safety steps when packing them for shipping.
What to know and what to have when packing electronics for moving
The good news is that when packing electronics for moving, you won’t have to worry about the handheld devices you own (smartphones, tablets, or another portable gadget) as 1) they will stay with your throughout the move, and 2) they should already be well protected by their respective cases. And in addition to the protective cases, pouches, or bags, your pockets and carry-on bags will serve as another level of protection during the often chaotic period of house relocation.
So, before we move on to explain how you should prepare your electronic devices for packing, let’s say a few words about what type of packing materials you will need for the electronics packing task ahead of you.
Original packages. If you keep the original packages that your various electronic devices came in, then you have little to worry about. Original packing boxes are designed to best protect the products that leave their respective production factories, so you can be sure that such packages will do an excellent job protecting your electronics while you’re moving to a new home. If you don’t keep those packages, then you will need to find other packing boxes that are just big enough to accommodate your separate pieces of electronic equipment. Local moving companies should have special electronics boxes which provide improved protection (thicker cardboard and double walls) and come in different shapes and sizes.
Bubble wrap. It’s important to know that bubble wrap is your best bet when packing your electronics for moving as it creates an outstanding cushioning effect against unfavorable factors during transit. Opt for anti-static bubble wrap to also avoid the possible harmful effects of static electricity on your electronic devices.
Packing paper. Soft packing paper is a must when you’re packing electronics for a move, for it will keep dust from entering the packed gadgets and will serve as a cushion against external impacts at the same time.
How to prepare your electronics for packing
Before you’re ready to pack your electronics for moving, you will need to make sure that your equipment is ready to be packed up safely for the road ahead.
Before you disconnect an electronic device, take a photo with your smartphone or digital camera of how the cables are connected and wired up, especially if there are numerous cords coming in and going out of the equipment piece. This way, you will save loads of time and nerves when you reach the re-connection moment after the move is over. And, of course, you will eliminate the possibility of damage due to improper installation.
Roll up and secure the disconnected cables with rubber bands or zip ties to avoid possible entanglement during the house move.
It’s a good idea to backup important information from computer storage devices such as HDD or SSD drives. Use online storage, an external hard drive or a flash memory stick to keep essential files safe from the unpredictability of a residential move.
Consider removing the batteries from specific electronic devices if you think there’s a chance of battery leakage or if you’re moving during very hot spells in the summer.
Also, if you’re taking your printer with you, consider removing its ink or toner cartridges to prevent spills.
If you’re about to move very expensive electronic equipment to your new home, speak with your moving company for adequate insurance coverage to stay on the safe side of things.
MUST READ: Should I get moving insurance?
How to pack electronics for moving
Once you have the necessary packing supplies and have completed the pre-packing steps, it’s time to get down to work. Here are the successive steps and tips for packing electronics for moving.
Step 1: Use soft wrapping paper or newsprint to create a protective cushioning layer on the bottom of each electronics box. That layer will actually absorb the vibrations and shocks along the way and will thus keep the piece of electronics safe and sound.
Step 2: Again, use soft packing paper to wrap up an electronic device first and then use packing tape to secure the bundle.
Step 3: The electronics packing checklist continues with the most important protective layer of them all – the bubble wrap layer. The air-filled bubbles should provide the ultimate level of safety but you need to make sure the bubble wrap sheet is well secured over the piece of fragile and sensitive equipment – use tape generously.
Step 4: If you intend to pack more than one pieces of electronics in a single cardboard box, then remember to place the heavier and larger device on the bottom, and then keep the lighter and smaller pieces on top of them.
Step 5: To avoid damage, there shouldn’t be any empty spaces inside a box once the electronic pieces have been packed in it. Shifts are highly undesirable so fill all visible holes with paper or pieces of clothing.
Step 6: If available, user manuals or other relevant documents or spare parts should be kept inside their respective boxes for easier re-installation after the relocation.
Step 7: Before closing up the lids of a cardboard box, be sure to place protective sheets of bubble wrap and/or packing paper on the very top to complete the cushioning protection on the bottom.
Step 8. Seal a packed boxed with quality packing tape, including its bottom.
Step 9. Use a soft marker pen to write the contents, destination room and handling instructions on each electronics packaging box, for example: SCANNER, LIVING ROOM, FRAGILE, THIS SIDE UP.
Step 10. Don’t be quick to plug in an electronic device right after you find yourself in your new home but give it enough time to acclimate to the different temperature and humidity values.
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