Lamps. They come in all shapes, sizes and wattages and serve a very useful purpose – to provide us with light. But no matter what type, style or size they are, one thing is certain – they are hard to pack for a move. Their irregular shape and fragility are the two main reasons for this. Luckily, we have just the tips to make packing your lamps simple, so read on!
What You’ll Need
When packing for a move, it’s crucial to have the right supplies. Here’s what you’ll need to pack your lamps correctly.
Packing boxes. If you happen to have the original packaging your lamps came in when purchased, use them! It will save you a lot of money and extra work. If you don’t have the original packaging, however, you will need to find cardboard boxes to use instead. These boxes should be large enough to fit your lamps, including the lampshades.
Packing paper. Packing paper is a must when boxing fragile items. It’s clean, soft and works as a great cushion for breakables like lamps. Newspaper may be on the soft side, but it’s best to avoid using it when packing because it could lead to ink-stained lampshades and hands.
Bubble wrap. Packing paper is great when moving, but there’s one thing that is even better – bubble wrap. Bubble wrap is considered the best protective material when packing fragile items for a move because its air-filled pockets provide excellent cushion and protection. Be sure to stock up on this much-needed supply and purchase several rolls from a local moving company or store like Home Depot.
Packing tape. Packing tape comes in very handy when sealing up moving boxes. It can even be used to secure paper and bubble wrap in place. Just be sure to never place tape directly on delicate items like a lamp because it can ruin the finish.
Permanent marker. After you go through the steps of packing your lamp for moving day, it will be important to have a permanent marker on hand to label all boxes you use.
How to Do It
Now, onto the steps that will tell you how to pack your lamps when moving.
Prepare boxes. Before packing your lamp base, it’s important to ensure that your moving boxes will provide adequate protection and support. To do this, use high-quality packing tape to reinforce the bottom of each box. Even if you are using new boxes, this step should still be done.
Next, crumple packing paper and place it on the bottom inside of each box. This will provide a cushion layer that will absorb any potentially damaging bumps that occur during transit.
Remove the lampshade. One good thing about lamps is that you can make them less awkward in shape by removing their shade. How you remove it will depend on the model, brand and design of your lamp. For most lamps, you will either unscrew the finial and then remove the shade, or simply lift up the shade and pull it off.
If you are packing a table or floor lamp, check to see if it has a harp – the U-shaped metal or plastic frame that holds the shade in place. If it does, remove the harp from the lamp and set it aside in a safe spot until further notice.
Unscrew the bulb. Not all light bulbs are the same, but all should be removed before packing your lamp. This is because light bulbs are extremely fragile and their chance of surviving a move is very low – unless packed correctly. If you have your light bulb’s original packaging, then be sure to use it when packing. If not, wrap your bulbs in bubble wrap and carefully place them inside a special box or container – one that is unlikely to be damaged during a move.
Secure cable. For a lamp to work, it must be plugged into a power outlet. Because of this, they all typically come with a power cord. You don’t want to risk tripping on a cord during your move, and you also don’t want the cord or plug to get damaged, so be sure to secure it to remove these risks.
To do this, bundle the cable around the base of the lamp. Then, use a cable tie to hold it in place. Avoid using tape to secure the cord because it could damage the base of the lamp.
Wrap the lamp base and harp. Place your lamp base in the middle of a large piece of bubble wrap. Then, slowly roll the lamp inside the protective material. When covered in a few layers of bubble wrap, tape it in place with packing tape. Again, don’t use tape directly on the base of the lamp so you won’t risk damaging it.
After the lamp base is completely covered in bubble wrap, follow the same wrapping technique with the lamp harp you set aside earlier.
Box the lamp base. Now that your lamp base is properly protected in several layers of bubble wrap, place it upright inside your moving box. If you have more than one lamp base (and your box is big enough), you can arrange several lamp bases in the same box, one next to the other. Just be sure to place crumpled packing paper between them so the bases aren’t directly touching each other.
Fill empty gaps. When packing fragile items, it’s important to make sure there is no empty space inside your box. To remove it, fill these areas with crumpled paper or old pieces of clothing. This will ensure nothing shifts inside the box during transit.
Seal and label boxes. When your box is packed, close the lid, seal it shut with packing tape and label the box with a permanent marker. Be sure to mark the box as fragile!
Now that you have packed your lamp base, you can move on to packing the lampshade. To do this:
Wrap and box lampshade. Using two sheets of packing paper, wrap it around your lampshade and tape it in place. Then, wrap it again with a few sheets of bubble wrap and secure these in place with tape, too.
Use extra padding. Lampshades are very delicate, which means they can get damaged easily, especially during a move. So do yourself a favor and use extra padding materials inside your moving box and around your lampshade to protect and immobilize it.
Seal and label the box. Finally, seal up the box with packing tape and label it with words like “fragile” in big, bold letters.
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