It’s a frequently Googled question, but sadly the answer is –
No, movers don’t generally hook up washers, dryers, or any other appliances.
Unscrewing water lines, tightening valves, and unplugging power cords take just a few minutes, but liability keeps almost all movers from offering these services.
And in our litigious world who can blame them.
Moving companies will gladly move washers, dryers, ovens, dishwashers, refrigerators and freezers.
But that said, they –
- Won’t disconnect or reconnect gas, water, or electric lines
- Won’t accept liability for their mechanical condition after your move
- Will probably ask you to sign a waiver before moving them
Thankfully getting your appliances serviced and moved properly and affordably isn’t a big deal.
Did You Know?
Moving companies partner with specialty moving service providers who disconnect, prepare appliances for transport and reconnect them after delivery.
These services cost extra, but for many families, they’re well worth the price.
Be sure to hire a reputable moving company that will aid your move for the most stress-free relocation possible.
Whether you have an old top-load washing machine or a new front-loader, it’ll need to be disconnected and serviced properly before it’s moved.
How to Prepare a Washing Machine for Transport –
- Unplug or disconnect the power line
- Turn off the water supply from the wall
- Disconnect the water line(s)
- Stabilize the drums
Of these, drum stabilization is the trickiest.
With older top-load machines your mover may provide a styrofoam “washer pack” which they’ll insert between the drum and frame to hold everything in place during transit.
But on front-load machines, metal hardware must be installed – and you’ll need tools, instructions, and at least a modicum of mechanical know-how.
The hardware comes with every new machine, and though the process is usually straightforward, many homeowners choose not to do it on their own.
If you fall into this category or lost your original instructions you can go to your washing machine manufacturer’s website (like Maytag) or watch a YouTube video like this one to get yourself up to speed.
Still not comfortable?
Then hiring a specialty company is probably the way to go.
Insider’s Tips: Once you’ve disconnected the washer from the power and water, carefully tip it backward at least 45 degrees to get the excess water out.
If possible, do this a day or two before the movers arrive, and weather permitting leave a door or window open to facilitate the evaporation of residual water trapped inside which can cause mold, mildew, and funky odors.
Compared to washing machines, preparing dryers for moving is relatively easy.
However, if your dryer is powered by gas you may want to have a trained service technician disconnect it, prepare it for transport, and cap the exposed gas line.
How to Prepare an Electric Dryer for Transport –
- Unplug the power cord
- Tilt it forward and remove the vent (exhaust) line hose clamp
- With a helper, place a moving blanket underneath and slide it away from the wall
- Thoroughly clean the lint screen
At your destination, you’ll have the option of hiring a company to reconnect your dryer, or you can do it yourself.
Insider’s Tip: Remember to take the exhaust and gas lines with you so you won’t have to waste time and money replacing them when you get to your new home.
Refrigerators and Freezers
First off, it’s wise to disconnect your refrigerator and prepare it for transport at least a day before actually moving it.
But if you live in a humid area, 2 days is better.
How to Prepare Refrigerators and Freezers for Transport –
- Empty the contents
- Defrost the freezer (instructions my be printed inside or in your owner’s manual)
- Unplug the power cord
- If it has a water line and ice maker, shut off the water valve at the wall and disconnect them
- Drain the reservoir
- Prop the doors open and periodically wipe away any water that collects
- To help with the evaporation of residual water, open a window or put a floor fan nearby for a few hours
- Before moving, drop in an “odor pack”
Did You Know?
A sock or stocking filled with coffee grounds, fresh kitty litter, or baking soda – known as an “odor pack” – will absorb moisture and prevent odors when moving and storing appliances like refrigerators, freezers, and washing machines.
When storing appliances, make sure their doors are propped open to increase airflow too.
Dishwashers are usually included in the sale of a home, so they’re not commonly moved.
But some homeowners with high-dollar brands choose to take them.
If this sounds like you, you’ll have to contend with countertops, flooring, plumbing, and electricity, and dishwashers don’t just slide out of place like refrigerators, washers, and dryers.
Many a not-too-handy homeowner has tried to save himself (or herself) a few bucks by disconnecting and moving their dishwasher only to damage it, as well as the parts of the kitchen to which it was once attached.
Unless you’re a plumber, electrician, and experienced kitchen remodeler it’s probably best to let professionals prepare your dishwasher for transportation.
Stoves, Ranges, and Ovens
Stoves, ranges, and ovens can either be electric or gas and like dishwashers, they usually stay with a home when it’s sold.
In addition to potentially dangerous electricity and gas issues, they’re often connected to floors, walls, and adjacent cabinets which make disconnecting and moving them tricky for all but the most experienced professionals.
It’s rarely a good idea to disconnect and service stoves, ranges, and ovens yourself.
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1. Can I move perishable items inside my refrigerator and freezer?
No, refrigerators and freezers aren’t designed for transporting items and movers will only move them if they’re empty.
Though you can try it if you’re moving yourself, the weight of items bouncing around as the truck drives down the road will likely break plastic shelves, trays, and even the walls, so it’s not worth it.
If you’re moving locally, put perishable items in a cooler and move them that way.
2. Why won’t my mover disconnect or reconnect my appliances?
Movers won’t disconnect or reconnect appliances due to potential liability from home damage, gas and water leaks and electrical mishaps.
3. What are relocation services companies?
Relocation services companies disconnect and reconnect appliances and hot tubs, prepare them for transport, and offer lots of other services like custom crating, hanging chandeliers and artwork, and disassembling and reassembling home gyms, entertainment centers, and playground equipment.
4. Should I hire a company to service my appliances on my own or use the one my mover recommends?
If you’ve chosen a reputable mover, chances are they’ve partnered with a reputable and experienced relocation services company and that their prices are competitive.
Not only that, your mover will note exactly what services you need and schedule them for you.
They will add a mark up to each service, but it’s usually minimal.
5. What if my appliances don’t work at my new home?
Movers generally don’t accept responsibility for appliances’ mechanical condition after they’ve been moved.
Even when moved properly and carefully, there’s no guarantee that a tiny part inside won’t break rendering the whole machine useless until it’s repaired or replaced.
However, if there’s visible damage on the outside of your appliance that proves it was mishandled, you may have a valid claim.