How to Move Heavy Furniture by Yourself in 6 Easy Steps

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how to move heavy furniture by yourself

The moving process is not easy, starting from loading to unloading your belongings and rearranging them. When it comes to moving large and heavy furniture, it’s never easy, especially when doing it by yourself. You risk ruining your furniture or other belongings in your house. Also, moving heavy furniture incorrectly might result in injuries. However, worry less; this post will help you learn how to move heavy furniture yourself in 6 steps. Let’s begin!

What Tools Do You Need to Move Heavy Furniture Easily?

A 2-wheel hand dolly

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1. A ramp or a hydraulic lift table

A hydraulic lift table or a ramp will help you easily lift furniture to a moving truck.

2. 2-wheel hand dolly or 2 4-wheel furniture dollies

Instead of dragging the heavy furniture on the floor, use a 2-wheel hand truck or 2 4-wheel furniture dollies. This way, you will avoid damaging your floor.

3. Adjustable furniture dolly

An adjustable furniture roller is a platform on wheels that allows you to easily transport large, heavy things while directing them along the way.

4. Moving straps

Moving straps (also called lifting straps) usually increase your leverage while heavy lifting. They also relieve pressure on the legs and back when carrying heavy objects.

5. Moving blankets

Moving and packing blankets are handy for wrapping furniture and appliances and protecting them from damage when in transit or storage. You can also use them to protect your flooring from falling tools, materials, fixtures or when remodeling your home.

6. Plastic wrap

Plastic wrap allows you to secure your drawers, cords, furniture blankets, annoying doors, etc.- while protecting your furniture’s fabric from dirt and stains. This transparent stretch wrap doesn’t harm or leave residue on your furniture.

7. Bubble wrap

Bubble wrap is a clear plastic material that you use to protect fragile items. It has well-spaced, projecting air-filled hemispheres (bubbles) to cushion fragile things when moving or transporting them. You can use it on your glassy furniture.

Step by Step Guide on How to Move Heavy Furniture by Yourself

Step 1: Assess and create a plan

Since you are moving the furniture alone, you need to assess the situation and create a plan to be as efficient as possible. First, make a list of heavy items that need to be put into the moving truck, and then work out what needs to be loaded when and where.

Assess and create a plan

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Generally, you should place the heavy items at the back of the truck bed and along the sides to help balance the load and keep all of your stuff safe. So, that means you will lift the heavier furniture first, then fill in the spaces with lighter and smaller furniture pieces.

Although making a plan of attack may look like another task on your never-ending to-do list, it will save you the effort and time it would take later to move all that heavy furniture on the truck.

Step 2: Gather your tools

Gather your tools

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Moving heavy furniture by yourself is not an easy task, and that’s where equipment comes in. The good news is these tools (for movers) are readily available; you can buy or rent them from DIY movers. And if you feel that some are more expensive, you can try to improvise your DIY tricks. For instance, you can make furniture sliders from plastic container covers.

Step 3: Clear the pathway

Ensure you have a clear path before moving the furniture. This will allow you to see the path and prevent tripping. You should also remove anything that the furniture might damage. Moreover, ensure that all children and pets are securely in another room. This guarantees that you don’t accidentally run into anyone or anything and that if you need to put the furniture down, you can do so safely.

Also, use a liner to protect the floor from scuffing or damage. You can as well use a moving blanket or a roll-out plastic liner. Finally, to avoid accidents, we recommend wearing closed-toed, non-slip shoes.

Step 4: Preparing & Protecting the furniture

Disassemble the furniture

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i). Remove any extra weight inside or on top of the furniture

If you’re moving a desk or dresser, we recommend removing all the drawers and setting them aside. Also, remove any knickknacks or display items from your furniture’s top and put them in a box or somewhere out of the way. Besides, if you’re moving a bed, remove the mattress before trying to remove the bed frames.

ii). Disassemble the furniture

It’s not a surprise that moving heavy furniture into small pieces is much easier. Therefore, disassemble your furniture by removing headboards from bed frames and unscrewing the legs of dressers and desks. You can disassemble most furniture with a drill or a screwdriver.

iii). Wrap fragile furniture in a moving blanket

We recommend using a soft blanket to wrap the sides and edges if you have old furniture that is easily scratched. Besides, this is a good idea to prevent wall damage if the furniture has sharp edges. Ensure the blanket covers all of the parts of your furniture that might be damaged during the move. And if you want further protection, you can purchase furniture blankets since they are heavier than regular blankets.

Step 5: Utilize equipment

Attach wheels to the bottom of the furniture

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i). Use furniture sliders on carpeted floors

Furniture sliders are small sheets of thin plastic that you place underneath large pieces of furniture to allow them to slide effortlessly. So, lift one end of a dresser or piece of furniture and slide a furniture slider underneath the legs. Also, slide another slider underneath all of the legs on the other side. Then, drag or push the furniture by pushing the top of the furniture piece or using the handles on the furniture slides.

ii). Place your furniture on a hand dolly

If you are not moving tall items, you can use a 2-wheel hand dolly. Although wheels on the bottom surface of furniture are handy for flat surfaces, a hand dolly is recommended when using a ramp. First, gently slide the dolly’s lip as far as it will go underneath one side of the furniture. Then, slowly lean backward with the furniture until you can roll it using the dolly’s wheels. For large pieces of furniture such as dressers and pianos, use 2 4-wheel furniture dollies.

iii). Use a lifting strap for small items

Lifting straps usually distribute the weight of the furniture and provide easy-to-use straps for putting on or carrying:

  1. Slide the strap underneath the furniture piece to use a one-person lifting strap.

  2. Place the straps over your shoulders or in both hands.

  3. Carefully walk with the furniture piece.

We discourage using a furniture strap for moving items that are tall or very heavy.

iv). Attach wheels to the bottom of the furniture

For extra-tall furniture such as dressers and armoires, it’s easy for them to tip over if you slide or push them. Therefore, we recommend buying furniture wheels and attaching them to the bottom of the furniture. To push your tall furniture more stable, turn it on its side and attach the wheels to the bottom. Then, lay the furniture on its side in the truck to prevent it from rolling around while you’re driving.

Step 6: Loading your furniture into a moving truck

Loading your furniture into a moving truck

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i). Set up a ramp

Park the truck on level ground near your house and pull out the ramp. Ensure the ramp is sturdy and secure before you place any furniture or go on it. To set up the truck ramp, you may require more space than a parking spot. Therefore, park your truck in an area with at least 6.1 m of space behind it to prevent hitting other cars. Besides, if your furniture is large or cumbersome, use moving straps to secure it.

ii). Use a hydraulic lift table

We recommend using a hydraulic lift table to load the furniture into your truck for extremely heavy furniture. Besides, it can really be hard to move heavy and bulky furniture into a flatbed truck by yourself. So, lift the furniture to the height of your truck using the foot pedal. Then, carefully move the furniture into the truck bed.

iii). Load your furniture

When loading your furniture, ensure you start with the heaviest pieces. Place the largest and heaviest furniture in the back of the truck, then put smaller pieces towards the front of the moving truck. This will ensure balance in the weight of the truck and that nothing falls over while driving.

Moreover, since your furniture may shift while your truck is in motion, we recommend packing smaller, softer items such as boxes, pillows, and cushions between the heavier pieces to ensure the furniture stays safe. Also, ensure the tall pieces are secure.

What Are the Safety Tips for Moving Heavy Furniture?

Avoid bending on your back; always bend with your knees

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1. Wear long sleeves and closed-toed shoes

We recommend wearing long sleeves and closed-toed shoes to protect your body since moving heavy furniture can be difficult, and you might trip and fall or hurt yourself in a sharp corner. Wearing sturdy, closed-toed shoes and a long-sleeved shirt will perhaps protect you from bodily harm. Working boots, hiking boots, and sneakers are the best shoes to wear when moving heavy furniture.

2. Avoid bending on your back; always bend with your knees.

Bend using your knees rather than your back. Place your feet shoulder-width apart. Then, squat in front of the furniture you want to lift by bending your knees. Besides, maintain a straight back. Then, hold the furniture close to your body with both hands. Using your legs, push yourself back to a standing position, maintaining your back straight.

3. Avoid twisting your body when moving or carrying furniture.

Moving or carrying heavy objects usually puts strain on your back. Therefore, try keeping your body ad still as possible; otherwise, a sudden twist may lead to injury. Remember to enable the hips to lead and follow the feel instead of the reverse when you want to turn or twist. Also, maintain a straight back parallel to your legs and neck.

4. Avoid bending your waist.

When moving or carrying heavy furniture on your back, avoid bending your waist; instead, try moving it using the weight in your legs. And instead of bending, hunch at the knees for an underneath lift to efficiently settle the weight. So, when you rise, you will put more weight on your legs and arms rather than your back.

5. Avoid injury by only carrying furniture you can safely lift

Usually, everyone has a limit to how much they can carry comfortably. Therefore, avoid forcing yourself to take up something you know you can’t manage simply because it needs to be moved. Instead, evaluate your strength and ask for help lifting excessively heavy furniture. And if you’re carrying a furniture piece and realize it’s too heavy, find a secure spot to lay it gently.

6. Always have a clear vision of where you are going.

When an armoire blocks your view, it gets inconvenient. So, when moving furniture, you must avoid being dazzled. To avoid this, keep your head up, not down, to ensure you are heading in the right direction.

7. Avoid moving heavy furniture up or down stairs alone.

Even if you use a handy tool like a dolly, doing this alone can be dangerous. At the absolute least, you should have a spotter or someone nearby in case something goes wrong. If you need assistance carrying heavy items up or down stairs, do not hesitate to ask for help.

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Christina Brown
Christina Brown

Christina Brown is a professional moving guide specialist. She is a self-proclaimed expert in moving and has been writing for the last 5 years about different topics related to it. Her articles are informative, helpful, and filled with opinionated points of view that make you reevaluate how you think about relocating. If you face any problem don't hesitate to contact her at

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