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Tips to Prepare Major Appliances for Moving or Storage


Major appliances are often the most valuable household items you will be moving or putting into a self storage unit. Professional movers offer limited services to assist with preparing appliances for a move and often charge a fee. If you are planning to pack up your appliances yourself, here are some tips for making sure they are protected and in working condition when you need them again.


  1. Know your appliance!

One of the most important things is knowing exactly how to handle your appliance. If you have your manual, take a look at it for specific moving instructions for all major appliances. If you do not have it, most manufacturers offer copies of their owners’ manuals online.

  1. Consider Having Your Appliances Serviced before Packing

Make sure you have performed all scheduled or necessary maintenance on your items, as you want to make sure they are in good condition for the move or storage. Items that have high-voltage connections or have gas connections will need a service technician to disconnect them. It is important for your safety that you do not do this yourself. Most moving companies will not perform these services for you, and if they do, will charge you extra.

  1. Unplug the Fridge and Freezer in Advance

It is important that the refrigerator and freezer should be unplugged at least 24 hours prior to the move, but to be safe 48 hours should do the trick. Freezers may require even longer, especially if they need to be defrosted. Throw out all perishables and clean the surfaces with a bleach cleaner to make sure no mildew or bacteria can grow. It is important that it is as dry as possible. Be sure to remove all racks and bins or secure them so they do not shift during the move. Disconnect any water lines as well and make sure they are completely drained before packing.

  1. Clean and Prep the Stove, Oven or Microwave

Thoroughly clean the inside and outside of the stove or oven. A wet drag with some soap helps to remove any leftover stains or marks. If your unit has a self-cleaning feature be sure to run that prior to the move and allow it to cool before giving it one last wipe down. Be sure to remove and clean the racks and move them separately to protect the inside of your stove or oven. For your microwave, clean the inside and out and remove the carousel tray and pack it separately in bubble wrap to avoid breakage. Lastly, be sure to consult a gas technician or your gas company before disconnecting any gas lines.


  1. Preparing the Dishwasher

Empty the dishwasher and run a cleaning cycle while empty. Allow the dishwasher to dry thoroughly with the door open. Remove the utensil holder or any other holder and pack it separately, or it will bounce around inside the dishwasher during the move. Lastly, tape the door shut with strapping tape to keep it from opening.

  1. Secure Cords and Tape all Doors and Lids Shut

Finally, unplug each unit and secure the plug to the back of the appliance using strong packing tape. Dangling cords can be easily crushed or damaged during moving. It also helps avoid a tripping hazard! Tape all lids and doors shut and make sure you save any fasteners that will be needed later for re-installation. Place nuts, bolts, and screws into a plastic bag that is labeled with each appliance it is for.

Regardless of where you are moving or how much you are moving, Storage Etc. always has your back and is more than happy to assist you in locating storage for your items during your move. Don’t hesitate to reach out to us at Storage Etc! Our knowledgeable staff can assist you with selecting the best storage solution for you!