The Bekins Blog

Tips to Efficiently Pack and Move Your Workshop Tools

If you own a woodworking shop or have a garage full of tools, these items are probably top-of-mind as you begin packing for your move. They’re heavy, expensive, and can seem complicated to relocate. That’s where Bekins comes in. We’ve put together the following tips to help you efficiently and safely move your tools.

Whether your workshop tools are used for fun or for work, we understand the importance of keeping them safe and damage-free during your move. Luckily, at Bekins, we have experience moving all types of belongings, so we’ve compiled some tips for packing your workshop tools.

How to Efficiently Pack and Move Your Workshop Tools

1. Organize & Purge

Moving to a new location is a great time to take inventory of your tool collection. As you sort through all your workshop or garage items, separate the items into four piles:

  1. Large tools you want to take
  2. Large tools to give away or toss
  3. Small items you to take
  4. Small items to toss 

Creating these piles make it easier to know what type and how much packing supplies you’ll need. Plus, if you’re planning on giving away or selling your items, it allows you to see what you have available.

If your garage or workshop is a cluttered mess and there’s no room for any piles of goods, use your driveway or tarp on grass to start your piles. If you create your separate piles outside of your garage or workshop, you open up space in the garage to set the packed and boxed items that are ready for the move. It’s also easier to sweep and clean the space when tools aren’t crowding the floor.

2. Clean & Inspect

Before packing your tools, wipe them down and clean dirt and gunk from the surfaces. This way, you’ll have clean tools when you arrive at your new location! Keep in mind that stored tools are havens for spiders! Wear gloves before reaching into dark corners of your workshop or garage. Use damp rags, towels and cleaning agents to remove the following debris:

  • Dust, dried mud and dirt
  • Pollen
  • Sawdust
  • Grass clippings
  • Lubricant and oil spills
  • Cobwebs and spider eggs

3. Remove Fuel & Oil

Properly drain gasoline and fuels from your tools. Most moving companies will not allow you to move tools that are full of flammable fuels because gasoline can leak out of tools when the vibration of the moving van loosens their fuel caps.

Not only is leaking fuel a fire hazard, but the gasoline can drip or pool on other expensive household goods. Fuels can soak and stain boxes… and your goods end up smelling like gasoline.

How to Properly Remove Fuel & Oil from Your Tools

Never dump gas, oil or lubricants in your yard or down your drains. Take spent fuel and lubricants to an approved disposal site like an auto-service garage or local recycling facility.

4. Remove Blades & Bits

Take blades out of circular saws, table saws and other motorized saws. Otherwise, mounted blades can become warped or damaged during the move. Additionally, follow these tips to keep your tools safe:

  • Use rubber guards around saw teeth so they don’t puncture moving boxes
  • Pack saw blades upright when possible and allow plenty of cushioning between the blades
  • Remove drill bits from drills, impact wrenches and drivers
  • Pack bits separately from fasteners like nails and screws so they’re easier to locate in your new workshop or garage
  • Use pierce-proof containers to hold drill bits and fasteners inside your moving boxes

5. Support Larger Tools & Gear

Heavy tools need extra support to stay undamaged during the drive to your new location. Cushion the corners and all protruding parts with thick packing foam or bubble wrap.

If you plan to move your rolling tool chests, remove the tools to make the chests lighter. Don’t use tape to secure the doors—instead, wrap tool cabinets and chests with moving blankets. Use rope or tie-downs to secure the blankets around the large tool cases.

Whenever possible, break down your larger workshop tools into smaller parts. Take photos before disassembling the tools to make reassembling the tools easier. Protect your large tools with the following steps: 

  • Use boxes reinforced with plywood
  • Wrap motor shafts and mounts
  • Coil cords and tape to tools
  • Avoid using lightweight Styrofoam to pack sharp-edged tools

6. Research & Plan

If You’re Moving by Plane:

If you’re flying to your new home, you may be able to take some tools along. Tools generally aren’t allowed with your carry-on bags but must be packed with your luggage. Check with TSA to find out which of your tools is approved for airplane transport.

If You’re Moving by Car:

When driving to your new home, pack your necessary tools in a designated move-in toolbox.

Hand tools are valuable during move-in to unscrew light fixtures, hang pictures, mount drapery rods and perform other tasks. Plan ahead so you have the tools you need when you get to your new home. Tools you might want for your move include:

  • Hammer
  • Pliers
  • Screwdriver
  • Level
  • Scraper
  • Stud Finder

Bekins Van Lines: We’re Your #1 Moving Tool!

To learn more about moving your workshop tools and other belongings, get in touch with the relocation specialists at Bekins today! We offer supplies, moving advice and a plethora of moving services to meet your commercial or residential workshop needs.