How to Pack Books for Your Move: A Practical Guide

As exciting as moving to a new place is, it’s also a lot of work. It doesn’t matter if you’re going from one apartment to another around campus or moving across the country – you still have all your stuff to transport.

Not to mention, it’s important to pack and move all your things with care. The last thing you want is to show up at your new place with broken plates, ripped clothes, or permanently damaged books, for example.

Thankfully, we have a few simple tricks to ensure such things don’t happen. Keep the following tips on how to pack books in mind when moving.

1. Cull Your Collection

Take a little time to review the books on your shelves. Determine if you want to move all the books in your collection. Donate unwanted books before you pay the cost to move them.

2. Use Small Boxes

You know those big boxes that are great for items around the house like lamps or pillows? They’re not suitable for moving books.

After a certain point, having too many books in one large box simply does not work. The weight makes the box too heavy to lift. Plus, too many books in a large box may cause stress on the box, weaken it, and cause the bottom of the box to give out.

Also, the pressure of all the books on top of one another may damage the bindings for those at the bottom.

Prevent these issues by using several small boxes instead.

3. Arrange Strategically

The binding damage mentioned above can happen in a few ways. That’s why it’s important to think about packing books like a puzzle.  Start by sorting the books by similar size.

After sorting, place crumpled packing paper in the bottom of the box. Pack books of similar sizes together. Place them on edge and alternate the bound sides. For instance, pack one book with the spine up and the next with the spine down. Continue to alternate the books – spine up, then spine down.

Depending on the size of the box and the weight, add another layer of books, again alternating the spines up and down. Place crumpled paper in any space left and add paper to the top before closing and taping the box shut.

Label each side of the box.

4. Pack Special Books With Extra Care

Before packing, individually wrap books with sentimental value like photo albums or expensively bound specialty books. When placed them in the boxes separate the books with cardboard to ensure that the spines remain upright and straight during the move. This will help prevent side-to-side friction that might damage the cover.

How to Pack Books and Keep Them Safe

Here’s one more tip on how to pack books when moving: let the professionals take care of it! This is the easiest way to have a stress-free move.

When you hire movers, you can manage how you want things packed, stored, and transported.

To learn more about what movers can do for you, click here.