How to Pack and Move a Dishwasher: Complete Step-By-Step Guide
A successful move between two homes often comes down to making the right decisions when it matters the most. Mistakes are ok to make as long as those errors are not serious and will not endanger the overall success of the house moving operation.
Forgetting to label a few boxes is not a serious mistake. Packing and moving a large and heavy household appliance for no good reason is.
The majority of homes in the country come pre-equipped with dishwashers in their kitchens and that’s exactly why people won’t usually bother packing and moving their dishwashers to the new place. However, each relocation case is different and you may want to move your dishwasher for a personal reason.
Is it easy to move a dishwasher? No, it’s not. But the good news is that it’s not super hard either – you’ll just need a few reliable helpers, as well as some tools, packing materials and pieces of moving equipment to transport your dishwasher to the new house or apartment.
Of course, the easiest way to move a dishwasher is to leave that complicated task to professional movers. But that’ll cost you extra money, so you may as well learn how to move a dishwasher by yourself. Not entirely on your own but together with a couple of friends, that is.
So, read on the following tips for moving a dishwasher and get down to the task at hand as soon as you can.
What to do before moving your dishwasher
Before you can reach the steps to packing and moving your dishwasher, there are a few critical things you should do first to ensure the dishwasher moving task goes smoothly and according to plan.
1. Ask yourself the right questions
Needless to say, before you pack and move your dishwasher, you’ll need to be 100% sure that moving that dishwashing machine to the new place is worth the trouble – time lost, money spent, and efforts invested. Should you move your dishwasher in the first place?
Does the new place already have a dishwasher installed in the kitchen? You definitely don’t need to duplicate your big and heavy kitchen appliances.
Do you own the dishwasher you intend to take with you? That’s obvious – you can’t move any household items out of the current place if you don’t own those things.
Will moving your dishwasher cost more than purchasing a brand-new one after the move? Do the math in advance to stop wasting your hard-earned money.
If you’re moving only a short distance (a local move), then yes, it might be a good idea to take your trusted dishwasher with you. On the other hand, if you’re moving long distance to another faraway town or city in the country, then packing and moving your dishwashing machine will very rarely turn out to be a good decision.
2. Secure helpers you can trust
How to move a dishwasher
Get trustworthy helpers before you move your dishwasher.
Transporting a dishwasher when moving house requires enough manpower to load the bulky kitchen appliance onto a moving dolly and wheel it out of the home in the direction of the moving vehicle to be then loaded.
You cannot and should not try to complete that task entirely on your own because it’s too risky and dangerous.
And since you’ve already assessed the situation carefully and decided that you can do it all without paying professional movers to help you out, it’s only logical that you’re going to need a few non-professional dishwasher movers to give you hand.
3. Get the right tools and moving equipment
You’re going to need a few handy tools and pieces of moving equipment to be able to prepare your kitchen dishwasher for transport, and then to actually move it and load it safely into the moving truck.
An adjustable wrench;
A set of screwdrivers;
Several furniture blankets;
An appliance dolly;
Straps, rope or pieces of string;
Moving out of state checklist
How to pack and move a dishwasher: 13 steps
By now you should be ready to follow the dishwasher moving steps below – you have trustworthy helpers, you have the necessary tools and moving equipment, and most importantly – you have concluded that moving your dishwasher all the way to the new home’s kitchen will be worth it as far as time, money, and efforts are concerned.
Here’s the best way to move a dishwasher to a new home.
Step 1. Empty your dishwasher
Empty your dishwasher
You should empty the dishwasher before moving it.
The very first step to moving a dishwasher is to make sure that the large appliance is completely empty – that is, that they are no dishes, glasses, silverware pieces or anything else inside it at the time of moving it.
You wouldn’t want to open the dishwasher in the new kitchen only to find a complete mess of broken dishes and glasses, would you?
Pack your fragile kitchen items separately into suitable cardboard boxes, then label those boxes clearly and don’t forget to add the FRAGILE warning.
How to pack dishes for moving
Step 2. Clean the interior of your dishwasher
It’s a good idea to ensure that your dishwasher is clean inside so that there’s no risk of mold or bacteria growing inside it during the transportation stage.
So, after removing any dishes, glasses or silverware from the machine and before disconnecting the appliance from the electric network, run the dishwasher through a standard cleaning cycle with hot water to remove possible leftover food particles.
After the regular dishwashing cycle is complete, leave the door of the appliance for a few hours so that its interior can dry out. If you don’t that much time, then use a soft dry cloth to speed up the moisture drying task.
Step 3. Free the dishwashing machine from the kitchen cabinetry
Most of the dishwashers found in modern kitchens come embedded into the kitchen counter, most often near the kitchen sink. This step is all about freeing the kitchen appliance so that you can remove it partially (see below).
Open the dishwasher door, then find the screws of the bracket that holds the appliance fixed to the kitchen counter. Use an appropriate screwdriver to remove those multi-bracket screws, then place the small fastening elements into a small plastic bag to keep them getting misplaced or lost during the move.
Step 4. Loosen the dishwasher’s adjustable feet
The best way to move a dishwasher
Did you know that your dishwasher has feet?
Dishwashers have adjustable feet to help them get positioned perfectly level with the kitchen floor. So, you’ll have to screw up those feet in order to get the appliance out of its nesting place inside the kitchen cabinet.
Use the adjustable wrench to screw up the front legs first. Then, get a helper to tilt the whole appliance forward onto those screwed-up legs, then reach behind with your hand and loosen the rear feet as well, one by one. You should be able to do that without a wrench because those back legs will already be slightly off the ground and will offer no resistance whatsoever.
Step 5. Pull out the dishwasher only half-way
Slowly, pull the dishwasher out of the kitchen cabinet. Be extremely careful here because you don’t want to break any of the two water supply lines found behind the big appliance.
Pull out the dishwashing unit only partially as you’ll have to disconnect properly the 3 supply lines at the back of the appliance. Position large pieces of cardboard underneath the dishwasher legs to prevent any sort of floor damage.
Step 6. Disconnect the dishwasher from the power supply
You should never start work on an electric appliance before you’ve disconnected that appliance from the power supply. These are basic safety rules that you must follow at all times to protect yourself and the people around you from accidents.
Disconnecting your dishwasher from the power source should be easy enough – now that there’s enough space between the back of the unit and the kitchen all, simply unplug the power cable of the machine from the wall socket. If the power supply cable goes into the wall and there’s no socket there, then you’ll need to disconnect the dishwasher by flipping the corresponding breaker in the circuit breaker box.
To prevent tripping accidents, tie up the power cord into a neat bundle using cable ties and tape it to the back of the kitchen appliance to keep it out of the way.
Step 7. Turn off the water supply
Now that the electricity is safely turned off, it’s time you do the same with the water before transporting your dishwasher. To shut off the supply of water, find and turn off the water supply valve (usually found behind the unit) to stop the water from reaching the kitchen appliance.
Step 8. Disconnect the two water lines
How to drain a dishwasher for moving
When was the last time you looked behind your dishwasher?
Dishwashing machines have a couple of water lines: one for supplying the clean water and one for draining the used water. And you’re going to have to disconnect both water lines before pulling out the dishwasher completely and protecting it for the road.
WATER SUPPLY LINE. Disconnect the water tube from the water supply valve. To do that, you’ll need to unscrew the nut or the fastening ring that keeps the water supply tube in place. Use a small bucket to catch the water that’s been trapped inside the tube.
WASTE WATER DRAIN LINE. Here’s how to drain a dishwasher before moving it – follow the drain tube to the kitchen sink where it will be fastened to the main waste water draining tube for the sink. Then, free it – either by just pulling it out or by releasing the clamp that holds it in place. Again, catch any waste water remaining in the tube with the help of a small container – usually a small bucket.
How to move a washing machine by yourself
Step 9. Pull out the dishwasher all the way
Check again to be 100% sure that you’ve freed your dishwasher from the three lines: power supply line, water supply line, and water drain line. Only then should you proceed to the next step, which is to pull out completely the built-in dishwashing machine from its place inside the kitchen cabinet.
Together with your helpers, do that very carefully and slowly to prevent any type of damage. To prevent floor damage of any type, place pieces of thick cardboard underneath the legs before the latter come into contact with the kitchen floor.
Step 10. Remove any racks, trays, and baskets from the dishwasher
You’ve already taken out all plates, glasses, and silverware from the dishwashing machine in the beginning. Now it’s time to remove the racks, trays, and baskets from its interior and pack those dishwasher components separately in appropriate cardboard boxes.
The reason for this safety step is simple enough – those racks, trays, and baskets will move around the unit during transport and may cause damage to the dishwasher’s interior. So, it’s better to be safe than sorry.
Step 11. Wrap blankets around the dishwasher
Cover the freed dishwashing machine with thick furniture blankets to protect it during the haul. Don’t leave any areas unprotected because anything can happen on the road and you want to make sure the expensive kitchen appliance reaches the new home in the condition it left the old one.
Use packing tape to secure those moving blankets and keep them from unwrapping during the move. DO NOT use tape directly onto the surface of the appliance for fear of damaging its delicate finish.
Step 12. Load the dishwasher onto the moving dolly
Dishwasher moving tips
Ready to wheel your dishwasher out of your home? Maybe not.
A dishwasher can weigh anywhere between 150-180 pounds, so it cannot possibly be handled by a single person. And that’s the major reason you’ve had to secure reliable friends to lend you a hand in Step 2, remember? And now it’s the right time to use all the manpower you’ve managed to get on Moving day.
To move a dishwasher without scratching the floor, you’re going to need an appliance dolly. Rent one from a local moving company or purchase it from a large home depot store – owning a good-quality dolly will prove to be helpful and convenient long after your house move is over.
With the help of your friends, tilt the dishwasher slightly, get the appliance dolly underneath the appliance and then push the moving dolly backward until the heavy load gets balanced on the dolly’s rubber wheels. Then, secure the dishwasher with straps or rope to keep it immobilized.
Step 13. Load the dishwasher onto the moving truck
Wheel the large kitchen appliance out of your home by having two of your pals holding the big load to keep it balanced at all times. Go slowly and cautiously, with a good plan for action in case something goes wrong.
When you reach the moving vehicle, load the dishwashing machine into the truck using the loading ramp, then tie it securely with rope to the side of the truck.
You just learned how to move a built-in dishwasher to another home. However, in case you feel nervous about pulling it off without professional assistance, then do the sensible thing and pay professionals to move your dishwasher quickly and safely.