You can probably handle moving most of your belongings without any help. But then there’s the glaring, sofa-shaped elephant in the room. When all of your friends mysteriously have the flu on moving day, what are you going to do about that hulking piece of furniture?
Believe it or not, you might very well move your sofa without any help at all. And it doesn’t really depend on how much muscle you’re packing, either.
As they say, work smarter, not harder. Here’s the smart way to get that sofa out of your house and onto a moving truck, hopefully without incident.
Prep the Sofa First
The key to moving most bulky items is to take apart everything that you can. That leaves the item lighter, which can save your muscles a lot of strain.
Some sofas only have removable legs. But take what you can get. A sofa with no legs won’t scratch the floor or get caught in the doorway as easily.
If legs are removable, they’ll twist off the same way as you’d remove a bolt or screw. Tilt the sofa over onto its back, grab a leg and try to turn it (gently!) to the left. If it budges, it’s probably removable. If not, don’t force it.
Wrap the sofa in blankets, then wrap the blankets in plastic mover’s wrap. It’s like kitchen plastic wrap, only much wider. This helps make the whole sofa easier to handle, and it also helps prevent damage.
Save Your Floors With Furniture Sliders
Moving sliders are one of the greatest gifts to furniture moving. They’re perfect for protecting floors and they make heavy, bulky items much easier to shift and navigate. You’ll want the oversized sliders for this job. They’re about the size of a saucer.
Raise one corner of the sofa slightly and push a slider under it. Repeat at each corner. The sofa should glide across the carpet, tile, vinyl and practically any flooring instead of sticking and scraping along the way.
An alternative slider method is the blanket slide. This takes a little more strength, but it can also give you a little more leverage than sliders.
Spread out a heavy, furniture-moving blanket on the floor. Tip the sofa over so that its flat back is lying on the blanket. Now grab a corner of the blanket and drag the sofa.
Caveat: If there are stairs involved, only use sliders or a blanket to move the sofa to a door. You’ll need a helper to get it down the stairs. No helper? No problem. Get a moving quote and let someone else handle it.
Let a Hand Truck or Dolly Share the Work
An appliance dolly isn’t safe for moving a sofa, but there are two good alternatives. One is a hand truck, and the other is a flat furniture dolly.
A hand truck is a flat platform, usually made of heavy metal, with casters on the bottom. It’s got a ratcheting handle that you can use to navigate the sofa as well as raise and lower it. It’s a great tool.
The other is a plain furniture dolly. It’s a small, square platform, usually made of wood, with casters on the bottom. You’ll need two of those. They’re good for moving almost any heavy furniture, including awkward beds.
Dollies aren’t safe for stairs. That’s a great, big bad idea. The only safe way to move a sofa down a flight of stairs is with a partner, unless, of course, you can rig up a set of pulleys and rope. We’re guessing that you’re not a rigger.
How to use a hand truck:
- Tip the sofa up on its end
- Slide the hand truck platform underneath
- Strap the sofa to the hand truck using ratchet straps
- Grab the hand truck handle, and away you go
How to use furniture dollies:
- Lift one end of the sofa and push one dolly under it
- Lift the other end of the sofa and push another dolly under it
- Strap the sofa to the dollies
- Roll the sofa across the floor (It’s really that simple)
In a perfect world, the safest and best way to move a sofa is to let someone else do it. But moving day is rarely perfect. The next best way is to have at least one good friend to share the load. Sadly, the mere act of buying moving supplies appears to trigger a flu epidemic. On to Plan-C.
You’re not the first person to wrestle with a sofa on your own, and you won’t be the last. Some people even sell bulky furniture to avoid moving it. But if you’re strong enough, have access to the right equipment and (hopefully) don’t live up a flight of stairs, you can probably move your sofa onto the truck without a trip to the ER.
If there’s a move in your future, think about hiring a pro to do the heavy lifting. It’s probably not as costly as you think, especially once you factor in your time, supplies, and rental items such as a hand truck. At Mover Junction, we connect you with vetted professionals who won’t let you or your sofa down. Get a moving quote today and prevent an aching back tomorrow.