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How to pack liquids for moving

Here’s a little fun experiment for you before you move out: take a good look around your home and search for various types of liquids. That’s right – liquids.

How many different types of liquids have you managed to find under your roof?

Don’t worry about water though as it’s not the type of liquid you should be worried about when packing up your things for a move.

What you should be concerned about is all the liquid-filled containers found under the kitchen sink (usually a number of cleaning supplies), the liquid-filled bottles and tubes found in the bathroom (shampoos, conditioners, shower gels, lotions, and various cosmetic products in liquid form), and the larger liquid-filled containers usually found in the garage and shed (oil, gasoline, pesticides, fertilizers, etc.).

Packing liquids for moving can be rather tricky because they tend to spill while being transported and can easily create a big mess during a move. What’s more, spills may ruin other items as well, thus potentially leading to much stronger headaches than you planned.

Read on to learn how to pack liquids so they don’t spill during a move. Also, find out whether you should bother packing those liquids in the first place.

What to do before packing liquids for moving

There’s a simplified way to approach the issue of how to pack liquids in a safe manner when moving from one home to another – pack and move as few liquids as possible.

As mentioned above, transporting liquids is a good recipe for disaster, so there are a few important things you should do to make sure your house move ends without any spilling incidents in the meantime.

  • Stop buying them. The first thing you should do is to stop buying any liquids in the weeks and days leading up to Moving day itself. This way, you won’t have to waste valuable time sorting out your liquids for moving, and then having to pack and move large quantities of fluids… unless you absolutely have to.
  • Use them up. The second thing you can do is to use up as many of the liquids in your home as you possibly can prior to the day of the move, again in an attempt to save packing time and efforts later during the height of the packing process.
  • Sort them out. You definitely don’t need to pack and move all of the liquids in your home – that would be really unnecessary and even destructive to you in terms of time, money, and energy. So, what you should do is sort out the liquids and set aside the ones that are not worth moving for one reason or another.
  • Get rid of them. Some of the liquids in your home will be forbidden for packing and moving – read on for more information. Other fluids will be expired or they will just have a little left in them – those are the ones that you should dispose of properly before Moving day comes around.
  • Give them away. One thing you should know is that most liquids are easily replaceable after the move is over, so it’s not usually a good idea to waste packing time and spend transportation money to move those liquids. One good option is to donate still unopened cosmetic products or personal care products to people who might need them.

Read also: How to declutter your home before moving

How to do with dangerous liquids before packing

It’s important to understand early enough in your preparation that some of the liquids in your home will be forbidden for packing and moving due to their hazardous nature. Such prohibited liquids include explosive liquids, poisons, corrosive materials, and toxic substances.

Here are some examples of liquids that are you not supposed to take with you when moving house:

  • Lighter fluid;
  • Acids/Ammonia;
  • Gasoline / Kerosene or other petroleum products;
  • Motor oil;
  • Lamp oil;
  • Antifreeze;
  • Dyes;
  • Pesticides / Fertilizers / Weed killers / Poisons;
  • Paint, paint thinners, and other paint-related materials;
  • Nail polish and nail polish remover;
  • Pool chemicals;
  • Cleaning supplies;
  • Bleach;
  • Nail polish remover; and
  • Any unidentified liquids.

Will movers move cleaning supplies? Under normal circumstances, they will not. So, don’t pack any of the above-mentioned items because professional movers will not load hazardous liquids on their truck. Get in touch with your moving company and ask them to send you their list of non-allowable items.

If you’re only moving a short distance away (moving locally), then you may be willing to take the risk and transport some of the less dangerous liquids – your cleaning supplies, for example – in your car.

However, if you’re moving long distance, then you must dispose of those liquids in a safe manner before you move away. Contact your nearest office of the Environmental Protection Agency to learn the best way to dispose of dangerous liquids before moving.

Or you can choose to give away some of those hazardous fluids to a friend or a neighbor who might need them, and then buy new ones when you reach your destination.

See also: What not to pack when moving

How to pack liquids for moving

To lessen the chance of liquid spills during your move, you’re going to have to know how to pack liquids when moving – pack them up in the safest way possible.

Here are the steps on how to pack liquids safely for a move:

  • SORT OUT all your liquid-filled containers and make a quick assessment of whether or not they are worth packing and moving.
  • USE UP half-filled bottles of liquid cosmetic products. Throw away (in an eco-friendly way, of course!) small amounts of liquids that remain in their respective containers. There’s really no point in packing and moving any containers that are almost empty.
  • DISPOSE of all or most of the hazardous liquids found in your home. Do not risk any accidents during an already stressful and eventful move.
  • USE plastic bins to pack and transport liquids, not cardboard boxes. It’s easy to see why – in case of a spill during transit, plastic bins will contain any spilled liquids whereas cardboard boxes will not, thus possibly creating a big mess and ruining other household items as well.
  • LINE the plastic bins with garbage bags as a second layer of protection against spills. Trash bags are really cheap so you won’t have to worry about spending any extra cash here.
  • REMOVE the top of each container that’s already been open, cover its opening with a piece of plastic wrap, place the cap or lid back on the container, tighten it, and then place a piece of packing tape over it for added protection.
  • PLACE each liquid container into a re-sealable Ziploc bag for extra protection against spills, then seal the bag. Do this regardless of whether the container been opened before or not. If there’s enough room, you can put several containers in a single Ziploc bag as long as they are in an upright position.
  • ARRANGE all sealed liquid containers in the plastic bin in such a way that they remain upright at all times – that is, keep them close together. To make sure those containers don’t shift during transport, fill up the open spaces between them crumpled paper – newspapers work fine.
  • CLOSE the plastic bin and secure its lid with packing tape.
  • PLACE a label on the plastic bin and write LIQUIDS and FRAGILE on it. Don’t use a marker directly onto the bin as you’ll want to re-use it again in the future.

Must-read: The best packing tips for your move


Published at Thu, 30 May 2019 12:15:04 +0000