Moving and storing your stuff during the winter adds an extra layer of stress and challenges, no doubt. The weather can be a huge factor, especially if snow is in the forecast. Then there’s the (sometimes) bitter cold, which can numb fingers and toes and damage delicate items. Ice, sleet, and freezing rain don’t help things either, making winter one of the worst times to move. If you have to do it, though, we’ve got some great advice and suggestions to help. Read on to discover the best tips you need for winter moving and storage.
Top Tips for Winter Moving and Storage
If the day you move is dry, winter moving and storage shouldn’t be any more difficult than usual. If, however, it’s raining, snowing, sleeting, or hailing, preparing your floors is essential. That’s because tracking in mud, debris, snow, and ice can quickly damage a wood floor or destroy your carpeting. To prevent that, you need to put down some floor protection, stat! Below are a few excellent suggestions:
- Cut open some large boxes and place them flat on the floor at every entrance and doorway. Tape the boxes down, so they don’t slip and slide (and cause accidents).
- Lay old moving pads on the floor. (Tape them down also!)
- Purchase a large, wide roll of brown paper and put that down on the floors and carpets.
- Purchase a plastic dropcloth to protect your floors and rugs.
- Place old towels outside of doors and entrances to wipe your feet as you enter.
Keep Up with the Weather Before Your Move
During winter moving and storage, the weather can change drastically and quickly. Even though you can’t stop that from happening, you can stay prepared for the worst. Download The Weather Channel app to your smartphone, for example, or watch your local weather report on TV. You can’t do anything about the weather Mother Nature throws at you; it’s true. But, if you know what she’s planning, you can at least equip yourself with the tools to handle it.
Make Sure Your Family, Friends, and Movers are OK
The cold can cause several problems for the people who are helping you with your winter moving and storage. It’s cold enough to numb fingers and toes, and ice can easily cause someone to trip and fall. If they’re carrying a large piece of furniture, that could be a disaster. Below are a few tips to keep that from happening and make sure everyone stays healthy:
- Have rock salt ready to melt any ice in front of doorways.
- Prepare lots of hot beverages like coffee and cocoa.
- Have hot food on hand like soup.
- Check with everyone frequently to make sure they’re OK.
Wear the Correct Gear and Clothing
Here’s the thing about winter moving and storage; you might not need as many layers as you think. The fact is, if you’re constantly moving and carrying big stuff, your body is going to get hot quickly. If you’re wearing 3 or 4 layers of clothing, there’s a good chance you’ll overheat. Of course, you can always take off a layer or two if necessary. If you aren’t wearing enough, however, you could get cold quickly.
Footwear is also essential when moving during the winter. Boots with a decent tread on the sole are great, as well as new-ish sneakers. The most important thing on whatever shoes you wear is the tread so that you don’t slip. As with clothing, your feet will likely get hot if you’re moving a lot.
Tips For Winter Moving and Storage
Like moving during the winter, storage during the winter simply takes some good preparation and storage unit organization. Below are some excellent tips to help you store your things well when the temperatures drop:
- Choose temperature-controlled storage. That way, you won’t expose your stored stuff to extreme cold or, next summer, heat.
- If possible, don’t move things into your storage unit while it’s snowing or raining. Even slightly damp furniture can get moldy in storage.
- If you have drive-up storage, bring some rock salt to melt any ice in front of your unit’s door.
- Clean everything well before storage to prevent stains, grease, and other gunk from ruining your furniture.
- Prepare vehicles like cars, trucks, motorcycles, and boats well.
Planning is the Key to Successful Winter Moving & Storage
Here at Moove In Self Storage, we’ve helped many people move and store their things during wintertime. We know it’s not much fun, but we’re positive that planning and preparation can make it less stressful. If you have questions about moving or storage during the winter, chat with us online anytime. Even better, visit your local Moove In storage center and say hello to the on-site manager. They’re super friendly, can answer all your questions, and explain the entire process. They can also show you our clean, safe, and secure storage units, both drive-up and inside. Until then, best of luck with your moving and storage chores during the winter. We wish you a moving day that’s dry, sunny, and clear!
More tips for moving and storage on the blog!
We originally published this article on 1/28/14 and updated it on 8/30/21.