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Packing Books Like a Pro for Your Next Move

When you think about difficult-to-pack items, books might not be the first thing that pops to mind. After all, they're (mostly) rectangular or square, with straight edges and flat surfaces. But, taken one by one, they don't even weigh that much!

But that doesn’t mean you should throw them willy nilly into a big box and continue to the next task! Instead, you should pack your book collection carefully to keep it safe and make the moving process easier.

Books come in various shapes and sizes, making packing them in boxes tricky. But the real issue? When you put them together, books get heavy, really fast.

Over-packed, heavy boxes are more likely to burst during a move, leading to damage. Plus, an overpacked book box is a challenge to move. Here's how to pack books for your household move so they, and you, stay safe. 

Pare Down the Collection

Let's face it — books are one of those items that are easy to collect. Just interesting title here, one colorful cover there, and before you know it, you've got a library in your home. Of course, there's nothing wrong with that. But when it comes time to move, you may want to take the opportunity to curate your book collection. 

There's no need to move books you won't read. After all, unwanted items take up valuable space in that moving truck and at your new home! Set aside time to go through your library and create three piles:

  • Keep

  • Donate

  • Sell

Many schools, libraries, shelters, hospitals, and non-profits accept donations of used books. It's a great way to give back while clearing out clutter. 

If you have in-demand or valuable titles, consider selling them to a used bookstore or online auction sites. You might just make some money to put toward your move.

Choose the Right Packing Supplies

Now let's deal with that "keep" pile. Start by gathering sturdy, high-quality boxes. This isn't a time to skimp; you need strong, small boxes — no more than 1.5 cubic feet in volume. Choose containers made from thick cardboard with sturdy edges. 

You'll need packing paper or newspaper to line the bottom of each box. If you have incredibly fragile or rare titles to pack, you may use foam sheets or bubble wrap. 

Grab a marking pen and a roll of packing tape. Choose strong tape and make sure you have enough to lay a few lines of tape on the bottom and top of each box.

Pack Like a Librarian

Separate your books into piles of roughly the same size and shape. Grab a box, lay paper or foam in the bottom, and start stacking.

Don't place your books in a row; spine up as if they were on a shelf. Instead, put your books in columns that lay flat. Start with larger books near the bottom of the column and stack upward to the top of the box, getting smaller as you go. 

Insert books between the stacks if there's space. Just don't overfill the boxes. The last thing you want is the boxes to be so heavy they break open. 

Stack books to the top of the box. Lay a sheet of paper or foam wrap over the books before taping and labeling the box. 

On the Move

Packing books doesn't have to be a chore. These easy tips will protect your books and your back during a move. 

You don’t need to worry about carrying those boxes of books — we can help with your relocation. Contact us for a free quote