MOVING: Protecting Yourself

Protecting Yourself While You’re Loading

While there are certainly things you can do to ensure your belongings travel safely to your new home, you’ll also want to ensure an injury-free moving day. Share the tips below with anyone planning to help with loading or unloading your shipment.

  • Have someone available to help lift heavy items. Don’t overdo it. If you have to strain to carry the load, it’s too heavy.
  • If you need assistance with loading or unloading, ask your U-Pack representative; we can help!
  • If you have heavy items, consider using a dolly.
  • Avoid wearing clothing that may get snagged while carrying furniture out of doorways and into the moving truck.
  • Wear leather gloves when handling large, heavy objects with sharp edges (you’ll need these for installing the trailer ramp and bulkhead, too. See U-Pack’s ramp set-up and ramp removal instructions and bulkhead installation instructions).
  • Wear durable, supportive footwear with a good grip (avoid sandals or open-toed shoes).
  • Pace yourself. If you have a lot to move, take small breaks throughout the process.
  • Make sure you can see where you’re walking.
  • Avoid walking on slippery, uneven surfaces.
  • Bend your knees – not from your waist – when picking up and setting down objects.
  • Always lift with your legs and not with your back.
  • Keep your back as straight and vertical as possible – don’t arch your back or reach out for an object.
  • Get a firm footing before picking up a heavy object (parting your feet and putting one foot slightly in front of the other helps give you good balance).
  • When lifting, stand close to the item with your feet shoulder-width apart, elbows tucked in, and chin down.
  • Use slow and smooth movements.
  • Keep your body facing the object while you lift it – avoid twisting.
  • Try to carry the object in the space between your shoulder and waist; this puts less strain on your back.
  • When using a dolly, make sure the blades are centered and completely under the load.
  • Always walk with the dolly in front of you and keep the load balanced, with heavier items on the bottom.
  • Avoid loading items onto the dolly higher than chest-level.
  • When going up or down the ramp or steps, have a second person help support the item.



MOVING: Loading The Moving Truck

Loading Your Items

  • Make sure you have an obstacle-free route from the door to the moving trailer/ReloCube.
  • Lay a tarp or plastic wrap on the floor of the trailer to protect against dust/dirt.
  • Designate one or two people to remain on the truck while the others are carrying items. They will be responsible for stacking and loading everything tightly.
  • Begin by loading into the front of the truck (near the cab) and work your way toward the back.
  • Stack items from floor to ceiling, putting heavy items on the bottom and lighter items on the top.
  • Create 2′ – 3′ tiers as you are loading. Each tier should be close to the top of the trailer/ReloCube ceiling before beginning the next tier.
  • “Square” the load by creating a flat surface with boxes. This makes each level easier to stack.
  • Pack items tight, like a jigsaw puzzle – all space should be filled to avoid shifting in transit. Use “fillers” for any open space.
  • Tie each tier off with ratchet straps/rope, etc. to secure.
  • Load the largest, heaviest furniture and appliances first (against the walls to help distribute the weight evenly throughout the truck). The sofa/loveseat should be placed on end if possible. If the legs are not removable, point them toward the wall and pack “fillers” in the space between the wall and the sofa/loveseat (don’t forget to wrap each item).
  • Remove cushions from the couch and wrap or place in plastic bags.
  • Place wrapped pictures and mirrors upright between mattresses.
  • Place wrapped headboards and footboards between mattresses (not the same mattress your pictures/mirrors are between).
  • Remove drawers and contents of drawers before moving desks, cabinets or dressers. Once the items are loaded on to the truck, replace the drawers and secure with self-adhesive plastic wrap.
  • Make sure items that could potentially cause damage are not loaded against fabric or wood furniture. For example, a piece with protruding metal could puncture a sofa or mattress.
  • Avoid loading thin-legged tables on bottom; they may not be able to handle the weight of items loaded on top.
  • Avoid loading the feet of an item directly on top of a finished piece of furniture; this could dent or puncture the finish.
  • Avoid loading furniture against other furniture or truck walls without proper padding (furniture pads, paper pads, cardboard, etc.).
  • Load the heaviest and largest boxes first. Place them on top of appliances and furniture and fill any cavities beneath tables, desks and chair seats.
  • Stack lighter boxes on top of heaver boxes.
  • Place fragile items or awkward shaped items on last and secure tightly (make sure they’re marked “fragile”).
  • Place light-weight loose items like plastic plants, small rolled up rugs, bundled mops and brooms, etc. on top.
  • Rolled up rugs, bags of linens, etc., can be used to help fill void areas.
  • Keep gas operated items like lawn mowers, weed eaters, etc., on the truck floor, covered with tarp or plastic sheeting and away from fabric items (after you drain flammable fluids).
  • When moving motorcycles, riding lawn mowers or small ATVs use strong ratchet straps to secure the items and ensure they stay in place during transit. If moving in a trailer, we recommend nailing wooden blocks into the trailer floor for added bracing. All fuel must be completely drained.
  • Use ratchet straps/rope/cord, etc., throughout the process to keep items safe in secure. While strapping it all in at the end is important, it’s just as important to secure the items as you load.• Make sure you have an obstacle-free route from the door to the moving trailer.