Our step-by-step guide to moving a washing machine without movers

two men in overalls moving a washing machine

At 60-80kgs, washing machines are heavy! It’s not just weight, moving a washing machine without the help of professional movers can be a recipe for disaster – causing damage to your appliance, yourself or your floor is easy to do. That’s why we’ve supplied this easy-to-follow guide on the best way how to move a washing machine, full of helpful tips to make moving a breeze.

Before you decide on moving a washing machine yourself

It’s important to remember that it’s unlikely that your appliance will be insured in transit. And without professional training and tools, it can be difficult to move washers safely. If you have any concerns at all there are tonnes of professionals out there from a man with a van to a removal company to help you.

However, if hiring a removal company or man with a van isn’t for you, then you’ll have to consider how you’re going to move this large and heavy appliance yourself. If you want to save money, a DIY washing machine moving job will do just that. But this carries both risks to you and the appliance.

How to move a washing machine yourself

If you’re sure that moving your washing machine by yourself is the way to go, then below are tips on how to move a washing machine yourself.

Getting ready for moving your washing machine

Here are some things you need to do before moving your washing machine. These steps are crucial to ensuring your DIY washing machine removal job goes smoothly. Skipping these steps may result in even more problems.

Get a friend or family to give a hand

You’ll need a friend or family member to help you move the washing machine. If you move it on your own, you run the risk of injuring yourself or damaging the washing machine or property. Make sure that the friend or family member you recruit is able to lift as washing machines are heavy appliances.

The necessary tools for washing machine removal

Once you have found a friend or family member to help out, you will need to prepare your transit bolts and acquire an appliance dolly.

Transit Bolts

Transit bolts, shipping bolts or washer locks are small metal rods that are to be inserted into special slots behind your washing machine. This keeps the drum immobilised and stable during transit. Moving your washing machine without transit bolts is not advised and increases the chances of damaging or breaking the washing machine. This is because the drum suspension mechanism is susceptible to damage from vibrations and sudden jerking motions.

It is strongly advised that you DO NOT attempt to move your washing machine without these bolts as it could lead to damaging your washing machine. If you cannot find shipping bolts that came with your washer, then you may be able to find some from your washing machine manufacturer or a local/online appliance retailer.

Order the tools for installation

Things could loosen in transit and once you have installed your washing machine, you might have to tighten the drum so plan ahead!

Appliance Dolly

You will need an appliance dolly to get the washing machine out of your property and into a moving van. You will need help lifting as there is no way of completing this move safely on your own.

If you are renting a van, it is advisable that your rent an appliance dolly as well. However, you may also consider buying one yourself for use in the future. Because appliance dollies can be handy for not only moving your washing machine but other large appliances such as fridges, ovens, tumble driers and many more.

Read your washing machine’s manual

Owner and user manuals are often put to one side once major appliances are taken out of the box and installed. However, they are always handy to keep for situations like this. This is because owner manuals often include recommendations and a guide on best practices for transporting the washing machine.

Lost your washing machine manual?

If you have lost or thrown away the user manual for your washing machine you can always do a quick Google search to find the manual. Often the manufacturers will have this on their website, especially if the same model is still being sold.

Alternatively, if it is not on the website, you can ring them up and they may be able to source the document for you. You can also try contacting the store where you purchased the washer, and they may be able to provide you with the owner’s manual. This can really make a difference if you’re stuck on how to move a washing machine of a particular make.

Measure up

The last thing you want is for your washing machine not to fit through your doorways or go up your stairs. So, before you move house or buy a new washing machine make sure to measure the narrowest point leading to where you’re installing. This could be doorways, corridors or stairways. Compare this to your washing machine measurements or look up the spec sheet online for the dimensions.

Have all the necessary supplies to hand

Finally, before moving your washing machine you will need to ensure you have the right equipment for disconnecting and transporting your washing machine. Here are the necessary supplies you will need to disconnect and transport your washer:

  • Furniture blankets or moving blankets
  • Bucket
  • Slip joint pliers
  • Rope, bungee straps or carrier straps
  • Packing tape or duct tape
  • Washer cleaner or bleach

How to move a washing machine without the help of professional movers

You now have all the necessary equipment to transport your washing machine. It’s time to being the process of physically moving your washing machine. Make sure that you read these steps carefully to ensure that nothing goes wrong in the move.

Disconnecting your washer safely

An essential step regarding how to move a washing machine is disconnecting and draining it correctly. You’ll want to do this 24 to 48 hours before moving your washing machine. Below are some tips we got from Plumguardian in relation to disconnecting your washing machine.

  1. Make sure that your washer is empty. Double check there isn’t any clothing or loose items still inside.
  2. Give your washing machine a clean out by running for a single wash cycle or clean cycle with a pack of washer cleaner or bleach, either is suitable. This will remove any detergent residue from the washing machine drum and drainpipe.
  3. Once the wash or clean cycle is done leave the washing machine door or lid open to let the inside dry out.
  4. Disconnect your washing machine from the electrical network by unplugging it. This is to prevent any chance of an electric shock.
  5. Turn off the water supply. For the majority of washing machines, you only need to turn a valve behind it clockwise. If you have to pull on the washing machine to reach the water supply valve, be careful not to pull anything loose while doing so.
  6. Use slip joint pliers to disconnect the water supply hose from the water valve. Have a bucket or basin to hand to catch any water coming from the house.
  7. Use pliers to detach the supply hose from the washing machine. Pack them into a plastic bag and seal it then place it into a cardboard box.
  8. Finally, disconnect the drain hose of the washer from the wastewater canal or the hose that connects to it. If there is any water remaining empty it into a bucket or basin, you can use the same one from earlier. Keep the drain hose attached to the washer connected while moving the unit.

Securing the washing machine during transport

  1. Attach the transit bolts onto the rear side of the washing machine. Once attached this should secure the drum or tub inside the washing machine and prepare it for transport. Inserting the bolts is straightforward to do, however, how to do it does differ depending on the make and model of the washing machine. To be safe, have the owner’s manual to hand as this will outline how to do it.
  2. Roll your washing machine’s electrical cord up and tie it using some string, rope or a cable tie to secure it. Then duct tape it to the washing machine
  3. Use moving blankets or washing blankets to wrap your washing machine and use tape to secure the blankets. This will prevent you from scratching or scraping the washing machine during transit.

Getting the washing machine into the vehicle

  1. Firstly, get the washing machine onto the dolly. Tip your washing machine slightly backwards and slide the dolly under the washing machine. Use a bungee cord or forearm forklift to secure the washing machine to the dolly.
  2. Carefully wheel the dolly through your property. When going through doors make sure to go through square to them as going through on an angle could scratch the washing machine and damage the paint.
  3. If you need to go down some stairs, then lower the dolly carefully step by step with someone spotting beneath it. If you need to go up some stairs, then pull the dolly behind you step by step and have someone standing underneath it.
  4. When you get to the vehicle, use a ramp to get the dolly onto the vehicle. If there isn’t a ramp, then use 2 people to carefully lift the dolly onto the vehicle. Always lift with your knees to prevent back injuries.
  5. Unload the washing machine near the cab of the moving vehicle. Keep the washing machine upright at all times. If possible, strap the machine down during transit to prevent it from getting damaged.

After the move

Now that’s all done, and the washing machine has been transported safely to your new property all that is left to do is to install it. To learn how to install your washing machine you are best off reading the instructions in the owner’s manual.

Follow the instructions

It’s important to follow the instructions and to do it correctly. Water hoses and pipes need to be secured and tightened to ensure there are no leaks. If this is not done properly, you risk damaging the washing machine and possibly your property too.

Don’t forget to remove the transit bolts too!

Also, make sure the washing machine is on a level surface and adjust the feet so that it doesn’t shake and move.

Still unsure whether you can handle moving a washing machine?

If you’re still unsure how to move your washing machine or it’s proving too difficult to do, then you’re best off hiring the experts. Our transport providers have decades of experience in the field and are professionals that can move any heavy furniture and appliances. Whether you’re just moving an item or two or moving a full house, VanaMango can help with that. It’s quick and easy to book a move with VanaMango – all you need to do is tell us your address, what items you’re moving and the date and time you’d like your items collected.

What to take away from this article?

  • Moving a washing machine isn’t easy. It requires preparation and the correct equipment. You also need multiple people to help with the moving and transport.
  • Ensure that you have a furniture dolly.
  • Remove the appliance from the socket and drain the water out of the hoses before moving.
  • Measure the doorways and the washing machine to make sure that the appliance will fit through the gap.