How to Move in Snowy Weather

Jon Fesmire |

Moving in the winter is tough. It’s cold, it’s around the holidays, and snow, ice, and wind combine to create a serious challenge.

If you have to move in snowy weather, it’s not ideal, but it’s not impossible. These tips should help you move safely during anything from mild snow to a moderate snow storm.

Pack Right

Moisture can be a big problem when moving during snowy weather. If you drop a box in the snow when carrying it to the truck and it gets snow on it, that snow can melt in the back of the truck and damage the items inside. For this reason, we suggest sticking primarily to plastic bins with tight lids.

When you must use cardboard, seal it with tape, covering any gaps, corners, and holes.

Check the Truck

Leaks in the roof of a moving truck can cause big problems. From inside the back, take a flashlight and examine all around the walls and ceiling for any holes. If you find any, cover them with duct tape, and check them periodically during your trip to make sure they remain sealed. This will help keep excess water out off your packed belongings.

Keep Warm

Wear warm clothing, and don’t forget warm hats and mittens. Dressing in layers will allow you to shed warmer items of clothing once you’re inside and unpacking.

For the drive, have warm drinks in thermoses, and prepare warm drinks immediately at the new home to help everyone warm up.

Prepare the Pathway

Clear a pathway at your old home and your new one. This will prevent slips from snow and ice, make it easier to back in and out of driveways, and it will also make it easier to clean up any water and dirt that gets tracked in on your boots.

Shovel the snow off not only the driveway, but the entire path from the house to the truck. Then, salt the ground with Ice Melt or another brand of snow salt. This will lower the freezing temperature of the snow and water there. The ground will still be wet, but this should keep ice from forming and will make walking safer.

Put down plastic sheeting or sheets of cardboard anywhere you’ll be walking in the house, and tape it securely to the ground. You may want to do the same in the truck and any other vehicle where you’ll put boxes.

Move Carefully

Drive a little more slowly than you usually would. Get a feel for the road. If you drive too fast, your wheels can end up on the surface of the water, which is called hydroplaning. If you then have to hit your brakes quickly, your vehicle can go into a dangerous skid.

Walk carefully in case there is any hidden ice. Slipping and falling suddenly on concrete is painful and it’s too easy to break a bone. So, take care.

Plan for the Worst

What if the snowy weather is so bad that moving would be too dangerous? In that case, postpone your move. Let everyone helping you know that you need to hold off on the move for a day or more, until the weather is more favorable. Inform your landlords at both residences about the situation, and be prepared to pay a little extra rent at the old place if necessary.

People are generally understanding when circumstances are out of your control. Just communicate with them.

Hire Movers

If ever there’s a time to hire professional movers, it’s when you have to move in snowy weather! If you’re moving from or to an area that gets snow every year, or both, they’ll have experience with these sorts of moves. They’ll know how to pack your belongings and carry them safely to your truck and other vehicles. Yes, movers can be expensive, but if you can afford to hire some, consider it seriously.

Follow these tips, be safe, and have a great move! You’ll be snug in your new home before you know it.