How to move your stove (and a few other big objects)

The first piece of advice on moving a stove, refrigerator, dishwasher, washing machine or dryer is don’t do it by yourself. Hiring a moving company is your best bet, especially for a gas stove which will need to be disconnected safely. But even if you don’t want professional help, you will still need at least one extra set of hands. These appliances are large objects that can hurt you if they fall over while you try to tip them or lift them by yourself.

Once the appliances are unplugged and disconnected, pull them away from the wall and clean them inside and out. Things that fill up with water like a dishwasher or washing machine should be left ajar for 24 hours to let any moisture dry. While you’re at it, make sure the path from the appliance to the trailer or truck is as clean as possible to avoid any slips or accidental sliding.

Use tape to secure all cords to the body of the appliance and hold any doors shut so they don’t flap open while you’re loading it. If there are any parts that can be removed, like the drawers of a refrigerator or oven racks, pull them out.

The most effective way to physically move the large appliance is with a special hand truck that is both wide enough to accommodate the machine and has a strap to secure it in place. Load the appliance onto the hand truck with the help of an assistant and tip it back so all the weight falls onto the wheels. If you encounter any stairs, make sure you have someone there to help you slowly and safely descend with your heavy load.

Another approach is to use a square of carpet to slide the appliance across a surface of plywood. You only need a few pieces of cardboard and some heavy lifting to move the appliance onto the upside-down carpet, but the wooly carpet surface will slide easily across the plywood. Once you come to the edge of your plywood surface, pick up the plywood from behind you and continue the path until you reach the loading vehicle.

If you don’t have a power lift like a hydraulic tailgate on your truck or trailer, you will need a ramp to load the appliance. A longer ramp is preferred to decrease the amount of strength needed. Once on board, strap the large appliance down to keep it upright during the journey.

If it’s heavy enough and you’re driving the truck, please remember that the additional mass will give the vehicle more momentum and reduce your stopping time. Once you arrive at the destination, be it a new home or a storage facility, simply repeat the steps in reverse and you’re done.