Moving a fridge: Everything you need to know

If there’s one challenge we always face when changing residences, it’s moving the refrigerator. Obviously, its size makes it difficult to move. Additionally, many of us wonder if there are any particular procedures we should follow to make sure the appliance continues working properly. For example, should we empty it before transporting it? And what’s the best way to keep our food fresh during the transition?

If you’re concerned about keeping your refrigerator intact despite all the commotion, here are a few expert tips to help you move it in accordance with best practices.

Emptying the refrigerator

You guessed it! Your fridge should be entirely free of content before being transported. Make sure that every single compartment is empty. Nothing should remain, not even the ice cubes in the freezer or the refrigerator magnets on the door! You must take every precaution to prevent the refrigerator from tipping over.

To avoid wasting food, you should try to use up as much as you can and maybe give away the rest. Ideally, you should plan your meals during the final week based on what’s left in the refrigerator. Another plus is that you won’t have as many food items to transport.

When should you unplug the fridge?

As a rule of thumb, you should unplug the refrigerator twelve hours before departure. Since the freezer may take six to eight hours to defrost completely, consider placing absorbent material on the floor to soak up any water resulting from the melting ice. Once everything is defrosted, wash and dry all of the surfaces to prevent rust and foul odors. To prevent mold and mildew, it’s recommended to leave the doors of the refrigerator and freezer open until it’s time to move.

Once the refrigerator is in its new home, it’s essential that you wait at least three hours before plugging it in again. This will give the fluids inside the compressor enough time to stabilize. Otherwise, you might damage the appliance. Once you do plug it in, it could take up to three hours for the fridge and especially the freezer to reach their normal operating temperatures.

Transport: finding the right angle

To move a fridge successfully, the transport method is of utmost importance. The first thing to do is to stabilize all of the moving parts, including the shelves, bins and buttons. Use a strap to immobilize the doors.

Secure the refrigerator on a hand truck in an upright position with the motor facing down. Do not lay it horizontally or on its side! Otherwise, you run the risk of the motor oil leaking into the circuitry. During transport, the refrigerator should be tilted slightly.

Tips for avoiding injuries

During a move, the refrigerator is one of the bulkiest items you’ll have to transport. Even if you’re in good physical shape, don’t overestimate your strength. You should always ask another person to help you. Trying to move a refrigerator by oneself is strongly discouraged!

To minimize the risk of injury, be mindful of your posture. When lifting heavy objects, you should always use your legs, bending at the hips and knees, while keeping your back straight with a slight arch. It’s also recommendable to wear a harness or lumbar belt.

Need help moving a fridge?

Do you need a helping hand for your next move in Vaudreuil-Dorion, the West Island area or Montreal? You can entrust your heavy objects to the dedicated team at Martineau Movers! Whether big moves or small, we do it all!