Taking furniture pieces up or down stairs is the ultimate moving challenge. There are things to know when moving large items. Luckily, we prepared some simple tips that should help you go through the process safely. Read on to find tips for moving furniture up stairs.
Before you even start packing and moving heavy items, such as furniture, make sure you have at least one helper. Enlisting your friends is one option. In case you can’t find anyone close to help you out, hire a professional NYC moving company. Also, you can opt for moving labor vs. traditional movers and pay an hourly rate. They will help you with any moving-related tasks for a needed amount of time.
One crucial tip for moving furniture up stairs is to have a proper plan in place. First, measure the space so you’re sure your furniture can fit without any trouble. Next, consider the type of stairs. Some stairs are easy to work with while others are challenging. Protect your property – stair edges, floors, and walls should be covered to avoid property damage.
Get proper equipment
There is professional moving equipment for a safe and smooth move you can use to move heavy items safely. Consider getting equipment like moving straps, hand trucks, etc. Things like high-quality working gloves, closed-toe shoes, and comfortable clothes are a bonus.
How to move furniture up stairs?
Here are a few common approaches to consider when you have a piece of furniture and a flight of stairs to deal with:
Carry the piece
The old-fashioned approach is sometimes the best solution. If you decide to go this way, you’ll lift the piece of furniture and carry it up stars by hand. This method is suitable for moving lighter and smaller pieces of furniture but can also be used for heavier items in some scenarios. This is the only option in case you don’t have any professional tools and you must move furniture as soon as possible. Start by positioning yourself on one side of the furniture and have your helper on the opposite side. Go ahead and lift the furniture from both sides. You’ll want to be extremely careful and take one step at a time. Make sure the stronger person stays on the lower side of the stairs because that’s where most of the item’s weight will be.
The person lower on the steps should hold the item from the bottom. The person that’s walking first (higher at the steps) should hold the piece from the top end. This allows for the best grip and makes navigating easier. Watch each step and communicate. You and your helper should make a step at the same time so you would be in sync and avoid injuries. If you’re walking first, you’ll be walking backward so it’s extremely important you go slow and be careful. Remember that you can take a break at any moment. If the piece of furniture is too heavy, lift it a couple of stairs and stop. Take a short break and then carry on until the job is done.
While carrying furniture is always an option, you should, by all means, utilize any handy tools you can. One of those tools is moving straps aka shoulder dolly. Once you learn how to use moving straps, it will allow you to lift a much heavier item than you normally could lift only by hands. You’ll want to secure the shoulder harnesses around your shoulders. The person helping you should do the same. Grab the carrying strap and slip it under the piece you’re moving. One end of the strap attaches to your harness and the other side to your partner’s harness. Once that is done, it’s time to lift the item. To avoid injuries when moving, make sure you follow safe lifting techniques. Bend your knees – never lift from your back.
Once your knees are bent, both you and your helper should get a good grip on the item. Stand up straight, making sure you use the strength of your leg muscles instead of putting pressure on your back. This will help you use straps as leverage to lift the heavy item. The process from there is the same as the regular carrying you’ve read about in the previous section of this article. The stronger helper should be at the lower part of the stairs. The person that walks up stirs first should keep the furniture steady and navigate.
The next approach involves another very helpful moving tool – a hand truck. The hand truck is especially handy when you have to lift an item that’s extremely heavy but not too big. You will definitely need a helper to load the item onto the hand truck. Once it’s on, position it to line up with the dolly. You’ll do so by positioning the item on the center part of the dolly and keeping the longest part of the item aligned with the upright ladder support. Once the weight is distributed on the hand truck evenly, secure the furniture piece in place. This is easily done by using bungee cords or similar tools. Now you’re ready to take your furniture up stairs. Stand behind the dolly and get a firm grip on its handles.
Tilt the truck slightly towards yourself. Then walk backward slowly and roll the dolly to the stairs. Step on the stairs first then pull the dolly up – you’ll have wheels on the step below you. Again, take another step, then pull the dolly up again. Repeat the process until you lift the dolly all the way up. Make sure you only take one step at a time. You should also have one helper while using the hand truck to lift furniture up stairs. This person should stay on the front side of the dolly, helping you lift it one step at a time. Hold the dolly handles very firmly – you don’t want to drop a dolly and put your helper in danger. Note that this approach is only suitable for smaller items. You should use a different method for lifting your heavy and bulky items.