Over the years we've noticed that clients who choose to do a bit of the packing tend to make the same packing mistakes over and over again and for this reason we've put together a short list to highlight the most common:
Using weak and different sized supermarket boxes
These boxes are readily available to the general public but are not designed to carry heavy loads and simply cave in when stacking due to the weakness of the cardboard. Using similar sized boxes will make life easier and allow for better stacking.
Folding rugs instead of rolling them
If rugs are folded they may lose their shape and the creases can take for ages to clear. A tightly rolled-up rug is the best answer, especially if the rug has to be stored.
Using sealing tape directly on polished surfaces
Tape can leave nasty marks on furniture once peeled off, especially in warmer climates. It's also very time consuming to remove the residue left behind on glass and plastic surfaces.
Overfilling boxes until they bulge
If something doesn't fit properly in a box then look for a bigger box! You'll compromise the integrity of a box by overfilling it and the contents will also suffer.
Not using enough padding in a box
Boxes shouldn't be half full or they won't withstand the weight of the ones above, they'll simply cave in and collapse. You should pack tightly so nothing can rattle or move and always strive for a firm pack.
Not emptying the contents of drawers
Although it may seem like a good space saving idea, the piece of furniture housing the drawers may suffer damage because of the excessive load. Only leave lightweight items inside the drawers but never breakables such as perfumes, ornaments, mirrors, framed photos, etc.
Using bin liners to pack breakable items
These bags offer no protection for fragile items and should only be used for bedding, linen and generally anything soft and light. Don't pack anything that can cause harm to the removal crew such as cutlery and glass.
Not using the most appropriate box
Heavy items such as books and records should be placed into smaller boxes. There is no point in packing your entire record collection into one large box, spread the load into smaller and more manageable boxes. The weight of any single carton should not exceed 20kgs(44Lbs).
Not using enough wrapping paper
A sheet of paper might be sufficient protection for a cup but won't do much for a vase or a plate. When packing a box full of breakables, the aim should be to wrap every item so that it becomes padded and is able to absorb a certain degree of pressure. Packing in layers will also contribute to the desired compactness of the box.
Using newspaper to pack
The main disadvantage of using normal newspaper is the ink, this will transfer to your hands and eventually to anything you touch. Don't be penny wise and pound foolish, spend a bit on clean wrapping paper to avoid having to wash all the glasses and plates when you move in.
Packing the removal boxes upside down
This may seem trivial but it helps to know which is the correct way to handle a box. As boxes are normally packed in layers, heavy at the bottom and light at the top, if the box is placed upside down then the risk of damage increases significantly.
Packing books and magazines on their sides
Books should be laid flat in the box not on their sides. Packing them this way takes longer because you've to fill the gaps but it's definitely better practice.
Not labelling cartons properly
When you're moving, the amount of boxes around the house can be overwhelming so it makes sense to know what's in each box and have it placed in the right place. It only takes a few seconds to write the contents with a marker pen.
Packing half used bottles
This isn't a problem if you secure the tops and mark the box correctly with arrows but if you don't the spilled liquid can spread to the rest of the load and cause a lot of damage. Items you shouldn't pack include cooking oil, paint and bleach based cleaning materials.
Packing glasses and plates flat in the box
This is a big No-No, although many believe in packing glasses flat there can be no discussion regarding plates, these must be placed upright with plenty of padding below. A guaranteed way of breaking your dinner service is to lay the plates flat.