How to Move Awkward Things: Electronics and Expensive Clothes

Here’s another post in our “How to Move Awkward Things” series!


  1. Back up your computers! Beyond being an expensive hassle, a damaged computer can also mean lost documents, photos, music and movies. Invest in an external hard-drive or some online cloud storage (or both).

  2. Remove batteries, CDs, DVDs, ink cartridges, etc.

  3. Before disconnecting wires, use color-coded stickers to mark which wires go where, or take photos, for easy reinstallation in your new home.

  4. Pack multi-part stereo systems and the like together, and keep wires, remotes, etc. with the things they go to.

  5. The best way to pack electronics is to use the original boxes and padded foam inserts. Make sure to wrap the electronics in plastic bags first, or wrap in clean linens or packing paper, to keep out dust. If you have the manuals, check them for any specific instructions they have regarding moving the device.

  6. You can sometimes buy replacement packaging from the manufacturer, including the foam inserts.

  7. You can also find most manuals online these days.

  8. If you don’t have the original boxes, follow the same dust-avoidance step as above, and then wrap each piece in bubble wrap, blankets or moving pads for extra protection. Don’t be afraid to go overboard here — the more protection the better!

  9. Consider packing each piece of electronics in two boxes for extra protection. Pack the device in one box, using peanuts or padding to ensure a snug and secure fit, then put that box into a bigger box, with more padding or peanuts.

  10. Pack speakers and screens standing right-side up.

  11. Large flat-screen TVs may require special wooden crating. Be careful and don’t injure yourself while moving!

  12. Write FRAGILE, and THIS WAY UP on at least two opposite sides of each box.

  13. Electronics are extremely heat-sensitive, and should be kept in climate-controlled areas when moving. As the back of a moving truck is not climate-controlled, this means keeping electronics with you in your car whenever possible.

  14. Finally, consider purchasing extra insurance coverage for all your electronics. As explained in our guide to moving insurance, most moving companies’ basic insurance coverage will not fully cover the cost of valuable items like electronics.

Expensive Clothes

  • First time movers may not know that there is such a thing as a wardrobe box! These helpful boxes come with a built in metal rod for you to hang clothes from. This is your best bet when you are moving expensive, designer clothes.

  • If you haven’t already, now is the time to ditch the wire-hangers and invest in some quality, wooden or padded hangers.

  • Fill shoes with balled up socks to help them keep their shape, and wrap them in tissue paper and bubble wrap or paper to avoid scratches.

  • If you know your clothes will be in long-term storage, you might want to use mothballs or natural alternatives such as sachets of lavender, cloves or cedar chips. Also, avoid plastic containers as clothes cannot breathe in them well and could end up damaged.

For help moving other awkward things, check out our guides on Art and Aquariums and China and Couches.

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