How to pack books is a question we don’t ask often. But truth is, improperly packed books often are the reason for an accidental mess in the back of the moving van.
We covered a whole topic about packing before. But packing books is another story.
A Book Lover’s Painful Moments
For a true bibliophile, there’s nothing more flustering than:
- ripped pages;
- bent spines;
- dog-eared corners.
Unsurprisingly, moving house can be a stressful time for book lovers. It’s not just the potential for damage that makes moving your books a nightmare, though. It’s important to know the best way to pack books, so they don’t get damaged.
Now, let’s shed some light on how to pack books for moving.
Packed Books Are Seriously Heavy!
Overfill a box of books, and you can soon find it impossible to lift. Perhaps worse are those boxes that are merely awkward. You only need to carry a few, before you’ll start to feel the strain in your back.
On top of the practical issues involved, you’ll have probably developed a neat, organised system for arranging your home library. And nothing messes that up quite like having to move the whole lot to a new house.
So, taking all of the above into account, here’s a guide on how to pack books in the most delicate and efficient way possible.
Materials You’ll Need
- A decent number of strong cardboard boxes. Some people will recommend that you buy your boxes new. You can get pretty high quality boxes easy, if you search the right places. Look for small, sturdy ones, ideally no deeper than about 16”, with corrugated cardboard offering the best protection;
- Lots of tape. Brown packing tape is the best thing to keep the boxes closed. But masking tape is easier to remove and less likely to do damage should it come into contact with the book itself. So, it’s your choice;
- Rags, newspapers, stuff that can fill empty gaps in the box.
How to Pack Books in Boxes
- Look for strong, but not too big cardboard boxes. The smaller the box, the more heavy items it can contain. And, books are heavy.
- Line the boxes with tissue or packing paper before filling them. This is a good idea if you’re packing hardback books which feature attractive slip covers.
- Load in your largest, heaviest books first. According to gravity, this is best.
- Pack the books flat. Having them up on end will force them to take the whole weight of any other boxes you stack on top of this one. Depending on the size and shape of your packing boxes for books, you should usually be able to fit in perhaps two separate stacks of flat packed books.
- Do not overfill a box. Don’t be afraid to leave a gap of an inch or so before the top.
- Fill the gaps in the box. It will secure the books in place. You can use an old newspaper for this, also clothes, bedding or towels will do the job nicely.
- Don’t be shy with the packing tape. You can wrap tape several times around the whole box, making certain to cover everything.
- Don’t forget to label the boxes. It’s important to state that the box contains books, so the movers would know it’s a heavy one and put it on the bottom.
Moving home is always going to be a very stressful event for anyone, not just book lovers. Packing and moving all your stuff will take time and effort that most do not like to spare. But, even so, if you are on a budged, it’s better to pack everything yourself than give the task to someone else. And now, you at least know how to pack books for a move, so your precious darlings are safe and sound.