cannot legally transportFind out what you can and cannot legally transport when you move.

As you prepare for your Austin residential move or Austin commercial move, there are some things you should be prepared to move yourself or leave behind. Some things cannot legally transport.

Moving companies are not legally permitted to transport any hazardous materials!

This includes items that are flammable, corrosive or combustible. What does this mean for you? If you have a gas barbecue grill you will need to disconnect the tank and take it with you or the grill stays where it is. Your lawnmower and other power lawn tools must be emptied of fuel or they do not go on the truck.

You should also be sure to disconnect gas hookups for grills, dryers, water heaters and anything else that you plan to have your movers take; moving companies cannot handle gas connections. Your mover cannot legally transport such items in certain conditions.

Other non-allowable items include:

  • Sterno
  • Fire Extinguishers
  • Household Batteries
  • Matches
  • Aerosols
  • Chemistry Sets
  • Kerosene
  • Cleaning Solvents
  • Darkroom Chemicals
  • Gasoline, Ammonia
  • Pool Chemicals
  • Propane/Propane Tanks
  • Nail Polish, Nail Polish Remover
  • Motor Oil, Fireworks
  • Car Batteries, Charcoal
  • Charcoal Lighter
  • Liquid Bleach
  • Fertilizer
  • Paints (latex & oil-based)
  • Paint Thinner
  • Pesticides
  • Firearms
  • Ammunition
  • Poisons (such as weed killer)
  • Lamp Oils
  • Fuels.

Customers must make other arrangements to transport these items.

**If you ship any of these goods without our knowledge, you immediately void any and all liability by our company for any and all loss or damages, and you will be held responsible for any damages, fines, warehousing costs, and delays incurred by our company resulting from the transport of these materials.

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What you should take care of on the day of your move…

On the day of your move, your Aday of your movestin movers do not expect to pack any loose items, including garage tools, dishes and other kitchen items, clothing, books, knick knacks, etc. This is not to say they won’t! We are here to help and if you need a little assistance with some last minute packing your Austin movers can certainly take care of whatever you need. However, this may add to the time your move will take and could go over your estimate since this added service was not part of the original moving estimate.

If you need additional packing materials there is always some extra on the truck – just ask for a price list or tell the crew foreman what you need. If you have any questions or concerns the day of your move ask your crew foreman or call the office. Our friendly staff will make sure your move goes as quickly and smoothly as possible!

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your austin moversYour Austin movers are here to help!

On the day of your move your Austin movers from Elephant Moving crew expects to disassemble larger furniture and disconnect washers/dryers. When we move your furniture, everything will be wrapped in heavy duty moving blankets secured with tape. Televisions, stereo components, VCRs, DVD players, printers and other electronics that have not already been packed by you can go into large bins padded with heavy duty moving blankets at no extra charge.

Pictures, paintings, mirrors and glass table tops, shelves and doors will also be placed into bins and padded. Lamps and potted plants are dealt with in a similar fashion.

If you have rented wardrobe boxes, your movers will place hanging clothes into the boxes at your origin and hang them in closets at your destination. Everything will be unwrapped, reassembled and reconnected at your destination.

Furniture and boxes will be placed wherever you direct your crew to place them. If it’s not in the right spot, tell your crew! Your Austin movers will shift anything around according to your instructions. After all, you are paying for our services. Why should you need to move everything around once your movers have gone?

Leave the heavy lifting to us.

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hints for a smooth moveThere are some things that you can do to ensure everything goes well with our hints for a smooth move.

When your friendly Austin movers arrive at your home or office, we’ve got a few hints for a smooth move.  They expect to find everything ready to go. Unless you have arranged for packing services as well, your Austin movers are not planning on packing anything.

Chances are your Austin moving estimate did not account for packing if you did not request it. If your movers need to spend time packing, your move will end up costing more, both in time and packing materials.

Dresser drawers, night stands, china cabinets, desk drawers, file cabinets, etc should all be emptied and the contents packed in boxes or bags before the day of your move. These items cannot be moved while full – they are heavy, hard to maneuver, and tend to shift unexpectedly while in transit. If the furniture is made of pressed wood it is definitely not designed to withstand the stress of being moved while full. It may seem like a way to save money, but in the end it will cost you more.

Most Austin movers will not move furniture that has not been emptied of its contents. If you do get your mover to agree to it, you’ll have to sign a release saying the moving company is not liable for damages. Save yourself time, money and aggravation by packing appropriately before your move.

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your moving estimate Everything To Do With Your Moving Estimate…

Be sure to give your estimator as much information as you can in order to keep your cost as close to your estimate as possible.

Keep in mind that the estimator assumes, in every situation, the following:

  • You will not need additional supplies/packing materials to be provided by the mover.
  • You will have packed everything yourself that you had anticipated.
  • The scope of the work does not change markedly on the day of the move. In other words, you didn’t forget to tell the estimator about important (and heavy) stuff, such as:
  • The lawnmower your neighbor borrowed from you.
  • The unknown contents of your filled storage space.
  • The “priceless” junk in the basement you found under the tarp-the stuff that your wife was hoping would be left behind “by accident.”
  • Traffic from your old home to your new will not be worse than usual.


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moving estimateA tentative final bill for Elephant Moving’s services comes from the moving estimate using a simple formula…

Your moving estimate: (Number of movers + truck) x number of hours = final price

Estimating moves is an inexact science…

Many variables factor into how long a move will take. The professional moving estimators at Elephant Moving use their experience from doing similar moves in order to figure out how many hours your move will require. Their estimates factor in the number and type of items you have, stairs and walking distances, travel time and whether you are leaving town.

Each moving estimate will include the amount of time that will pass from the moment the movers first arrive at your location and your move begins until the movers are finished. They will then add in the cost of packing services, moving boxes, tape and other packing materials.

Elephant Moving’s easy to understand hourly rates include the crew of movers, one moving truck, disassembly/reassembly, wrapping of furniture in heavy duty moving blankets, travel time and all taxes.

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particle board furnitureA Bit About Particle Board Furniture…

A helpful tip from your friendly Austin movers: Furniture manufactured from press board and particle board furniture is designed to go into a box when it is moved from the manufacturer to the retailer then to the customer unassembled. It is not built to withstand the normal stresses of a move as an assembled unit.

Most are not designed with the extra wood structural pieces to adequately brace the unit for movement out of or into a residence or office, nor the normal moving truck vibration, even in air-ride moving trailers. Usually chips or dents are not repairable. Surface impressions can be made on the furniture when writing on a single piece of paper – you can imagine how it must fare when stacked in a moving truck.

Assembly instructions frequently suggest that connecting hardware pieces be glued in place. This does not significantly improve the structural integrity of the furniture, but does make disassembly impossible without creating substantial, irreparable damage.

For these reasons, moving companies and third party insurers do not offer increased insurance coverage for these types of items. Elephant Moving’s movers will do their best to transport these items for you in a safe and careful manner, but because pressed wood furniture is so unstable we are unable to offer increased cargo valuation or increased insurance on these pieces. If damage does occur you will be able to submit a claim only for the basic cargo valuation coverage of $.60 per pound. Full replacement value insurance excludes these items. Pressed wood and particle board furniture is moved at your own risk!

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advice for packingCheck out our tips, tricks and advice for packing…

Many of our customers choose to have their packing done by their movers, after all, they are professionals! It’s one less BIG thing to worry about as moving day approaches. We’ve got here some advice for packing whether you do it yourself or get help.

Keep in mind that moving companies generally are not liable for the contents of boxes the moving company did not pack.

Even so, some people do prefer to do their own packing. When you choose to pack yourself you should approach the project correctly to avoid costly damages. It can be a daunting task, but here are some packing tips to help your more fragile items make it to your new home in one piece!

Your most fragile china and crystal stemware should be carefully wrapped in paper and placed in dishpack cartons; cellular dividers are recommended for stemware. You may also want to look into insuring any items with values exceeding $100 per pound.

China & Glassware: Wrap all pieces of china and glassware individually. Using several sheets of clean paper, start from the corner, wrapping diagonally and continuously tucking in overlapping edges.

  • A generous amount of paper padding and cushioning is required for all china and glassware – don’t be cheap with the materials, it will cost you in the long run!!
  • A double layer of unprinted newsprint serves well as outer wrapping.
  • Label cartons with room, contents and “FRAGILE”THIS SIDE UP.”

Advice For Packing Flat China & Flat Glassware:

Place cushioning material in the bottom of a carton. Wrap each piece individually with clean paper, then wrap up to three in a bundle with a double layer of newsprint. Place these bundled items in the carton in a row on edge.

  • Larger china and glass plates, platters and other flat pieces are excellent as the lowest layer in a dish pack.
  • Surround each bundle with crushed paper, being careful to leave no voids or unfilled spaces.
  • Add two or three inches of wadded paper on top of the bundle to protect rims and make a level base for the next tier.
  • Horizontal cardboard dividers can be helpful in keeping layers level.
  • Smaller plates, saucers and shallow bowls could make up a second layer. Wrap and pack in the same way as larger items.


If not using cellular dividers, wrap cups individually first in a double layer of paper and place them upside down on rims in a row on an upper layer with all handles facing the same direction. Top off the layer with wadded newsprint. Even when using a dish pack and cellular dividers, wrap china cups individually first, protecting handles with an extra layer of clean paper. Then, pack cups upside down.

Silver & Flatware:

To protect silver pieces from tarnishing, they should be completely enclosed in newsprint or plastic wrap.
Hollow ware including bowls, tea sets and serving dishes should be wrapped carefully like fragile items and packed like china.

Loose flatware may be wrapped individually or in sets, and in paper, clear plastic or small gift boxes that are then secured with tape.Even if silverware is in a chest, consider wrapping the pieces individually and re position them in the chest. Or, fill all voids in the chest with newsprint to prevent shifting. The chest can be wrapped in a large bath towel.

Figurines, Curios and Other Delicate Items:

Be sure the items are well-protected with plenty of cushioning.

  • Wrap first in tissue paper, paper towels or facial tissue. Then, wrap carefully in paper that has been wadded and flattened out.
  • Small mirrors, plaques and pictures should be wrapped individually in tissue paper with an outer layer of newsprint.
  • A bath towel or small blanket makes an excellent outer wrapping and padding for glass.
  • Place flat items on edge in a carton.

Fragile Items: Consult with your moving company on the packing of exceptionally fragile items. If an item is extremely valuable as well as delicate, it might be wise to have it packed for you! Special materials might be needed for maximum protection.

Lamp Bases:

Some advice for packing lamp bases consist of after removing the light bulb and lamp harp, wrap the base, harp and bulb separately in newsprint. Place them together in a carton, filling voids with wadded paper.

  • Lamp Shades: Never wrap lamp shades in newspaper, as the ink will soil the shade. Instead, carefully wrap each shade in three or four sheets of packing paper, tissue paper, a pillowcase or a large lightweight towel.
  • Use a sturdy carton at least two inches bigger all around than the largest shade. Line it with clean paper, using crushed paper under the lamp shade to create a protective layer, but not around the shade.
  • A smaller shade may be nested inside a larger one, provided they do not touch.
  • Only one silk shade should be placed in a carton to avoid stretching the silk.
  • Do not pack other items with shades.

Chandeliers and Leaded Glass Shades:

It is best to have your moving company crate large leaded or other glass lamp shades or chandeliers.

Glass Table Tops, Marble Slabs, Large Mirrors, Paintings, Statues & Large Vases: It’s best to consult with your moving company about custom-made cartons and crates for items of this kind. Paper should never be permitted to touch the surface of an oil painting.

Table Leaves: Table leaves are best transported in paper pads or moving blankets, then taped to hold the padding in place. Don’t use plastic wrap, as moisture may get trapped and damage wood.

Draperies & Curtains: Wardrobe cartons are ideal for moving curtains and drapes. Fold them lengthwise, place over a padded hangar, pin securely and hang in the wardrobe. Draperies and curtains also may be folded and packed in cartons lined with clean paper or plastic wrap.

Rugs: Leave area rugs on the floor for the moving company to handle.

  • You may want to consider having your area rugs professionally cleaned before your move, you’ll get them back from the cleaners wrapped, rolled and ready for shipping.
  • Area rugs should be loaded last and unloaded first so the furniture coming off the truck can go right on top of the rug.

Furniture: Your moving company will wrap large items in heavy duty moving blankets the day of your move.

If you have any concerns the day of your move, always feel free to ask your movers. Your moving company is there to help, and trust us, your movers don’t want problems or damages cropping up any more than you do! A successful move for you is a successful move for your moving company.

elephant moving austinWelcome to the Elephant Moving Austin Blog!

Elephant Moving Austin is a fully licensed and insured residential and commercial moving company based in Austin, TX. Elephant Moving offers you all of the things you look for in a moving company yet hardly find!

Our trained professionals are experts in packing and moving techniques that will give you peace of mind for your valuables.

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We look forward to sharing our stories and experiences, as well as helpful moving and packing tips, with you here on our blog.

Thanks for visiting and come back to read more!

The Elephant Moving Austin Team