Moving is already a stressful situation to be in. Throw in the winter months and bad weather, and your stress level can go from bad to worse. At Simple Moves & Storage, we have been moving individuals, families, businesses and government agencies since 2010. That means we have ten winters under our belt in the moving industry, and this winter will be our 11th! Below are some great tips about moving in the winter that we would like to share with you based on our experience.
1. The essential thing in moving, or any industry for that matter, is safety. We highly recommend hiring a professional moving company for your winter move. There are several dangerous situations you can find yourself in if you perform the move yourself. The first is that the ground, walk board into the truck and truck floor itself can be pretty slippery in the winter due to rain, snow or ice. Carrying large items is hard enough as it is, so throws in the rain, ice or snow, and your move just gets, if you follow these tips, exponentially more complex and more dangerous. Another major factor when it comes to safety is driving the truck. Chances are you are not an experienced truck driver, so driving a large rental truck would be difficult on a good day. Throw in poor driving conditions, and your drive just got much more complex and more dangerous.
2. The second tip we have directly correlated with the first one. Make sure the entrance to your home, driveway and sidewalk are clear of all ice and snow. Whether you are doing the move yourself or having professional movers show up, this is essential to prevent the risk of injury. In icy and snow conditions, please make sure you use ice melt on these areas as well. If you are doing the move yourself and driving the truck, make sure it is equipped with everything needed for winter driving conditions; all seasons or snow tires, tire chains, shovel, window scraper etc. Also, make sure the truck has been serviced recently, and the engine can withstand cold driving conditions. A professional moving company will have their trucks adequately equipped with all of these items, as well as floor runners, so that your floors do not get wet, dirty and slippery.
3. Keep an eye on the weather. We understand your TV and radio may be packed up, so check your car radio or your phone as often as you can. You can also ask your friends or family to check the weather and report back to you. Remember that winter weather can change quickly.
4. Keep your winter weather supplies handy. Make sure snow shovels, ice melt and extra winter clothing are the last items on the truck, and the first to come off.
5. If you are embarking on a long-distance move and will be driving your vehicle to your destination, be sure to service your car before you head out entirely. Cars are susceptible when it’s cold out. If you are flying, keep an eye on the weather in both origin and destination cities and ensure your flights are not delayed.
6. Remember that not everything will make it through a cold move. If something freezes or breaks in the cold weather (such as wine), make sure to pack it separately in your vehicle if you are driving. If you are not driving, you may want to hire a 3rd party that can transport it in a temperature-controlled truck.
7. With professional moving companies, moving plants is always at the owner’s risk, meaning the moving company cannot guarantee they will be green when it is time to unload. Protect your live plants from the cold by wrapping them in plastic. Use grocery bags for smaller plants and garbage bags for bigger ones. Make sure the bags have a slit at the top so your plants can breathe and don’t let them touch the top or sides of the truck unless it is insulated.
8. Most electronic devices can handle the cold, but not extreme cold or condensation. Make sure that your electronics are well packed or well wrapped in moving blankets to insulate them. When you arrive at your destination, allow your electronics a full day to acclimate to your room temperature before plugging them in.
9. Call your new utility company at your destination ahead of time so the heat will be on when you get there. Nobody wants to move into a cold home.
Winter moves can be a challenge, but if you follow these tips you will be well prepared for a successful move. It is also important to remember that professional moving companies are less busy in the winter months, so their rates will be lower and you will save money compared to moving any other time of year, especially the spring and summer! If you have any questions about moving in the winter, please call us today!