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How to Pack and Move a Garage, Shed, or Basement

Moving a Lawnmower

You probably haven't moved your lawnmower since you purchased it and brought it home — and it was packed neatly in a box at that time. Fortunately, moving a lawnmower the second time around is not as hard as you might imagine.

Before you move, you may as well mow the lawn one last time, hopefully emptying the mower's gas tank. That way, you don't have to worry about draining gas. Assuming the gas tank is empty, disconnect the spark plug so you don't accidentally start the mower. Then, drain the oil from the mower. If there is any gas left in the tank, siphon it into a travel-safe gas container.

Cover the lawn mower blades with duct tape, or remove them altogether, for safer transport. Then simply wheel the mower into the moving van and you're set.

Follow the same steps to move a ride-on mower, but ride the mower onto the moving vehicle via a ramp before emptying the fluids. It's not completely impossible to move a ride-on mower that has no power, but why make your move more difficult?

Moving a String Trimmer, Leaf Blower, or Snow Blower

If you have a gas string trimmer, siphon the gas into another container first to avoid risking a dangerous spill. You can pack your trimmer in a box, together with any extra strings, or simply transport it in the moving vehicle with no box. If you're meticulous about your tools, wrapping the trimmer in bubble wrap can prevent any scratches during transport.

Move a gas-powered leaf blower or snow blower the same way. For electric tools, secure the cord to the appliance using a zip tie before packing the tool in a box or loading it on the van. If there's a key on it to start it, make sure you remove that as well.

Moving Heavy Shop Tools

If your workshop includes heavy woodworking tools such as a table saw, drill press, band saw or planer, you have a few options to move these items. Moving experts recommend calling riggers, professionals with the right equipment to move heavy items.

If you want to do it yourself, you can dismantle the more delicate components, such as the table on a band saw, both to reduce the weight of the item's base and to protect these parts. Wrap the parts separately in bubble wrap and pack them in labeled boxes for easy reassembly at your new home.

To move the tools onto the moving truck, you can invest in — or build — mobile platforms. Use two-by-fours and heavy-duty locking casters to build a base, allowing you to wheel your tools straight out of the garage and onto the moving van.

Moving Hand Tools and Power Tools

Wrap hand tools in bubble wrap to protect them from scratches, and pack in boxes the same as you would any other household items, keeping the heavier items on the bottom. Use zip ties to secure any cords on power tools. Disconnect the batteries from cordless tools, but keep tools, their batteries, and chargers in the same box, if possible.

Keep some small hand tools unpacked, in a separate bag or in a tool belt, for disassembling furniture and reassembling it at your new location. Your screwdrivers (Phillips head and regular, in a few sizes), Allen keys (metric and standard), adjustable wrench, socket set, and cordless drill are likely to be your best friends during your move.

Moving a Tool Bench or Tool Box

If you're moving a tool bench or a large tool box, you'll need a moving van with a ramp or a liftgate that lowers to the ground, permitting you to roll the item right onto the truck.

You have a few choices to move your tool bench. You can use tie-down straps to secure the drawers in place, or lock them shut if you have that option. If you don't have any stairs to navigate and are only wheeling the toolbox a short distance, this is the easiest way. If you have to move the toolbox upstairs or lift it onto the moving van, you'll need to empty the drawers and move each piece separately.

Wrap the drawers in bubble wrap or moving blankets, and remember to wrap the toolbox too. Tool boxes are an investment, like any other piece of furniture in your home, and you don't want the box scratched, damaged, or dented in the move.