Moving Your Music Collection: What You Need to Know

If you are a music lover and have a vast collection of instruments, sound equipment, and records, moving day can be even more nerve wracking than it already is for most people. Fortunately, with some of the guidelines in this article, you will have more success with getting your entire music collection and various paraphernalia to your new home safely.


Musical instruments represent a significant investment, especially if they are museum pieces or heirlooms. To make sure that none of your instruments are damaged, follow these tips:

  • Pack instruments in their corresponding cases (if they have them) and store them in a dry place until moving day. Humidity can ruin the structure of an instrument case, causing it to stretch under pressure. Have instrument cases set to the side so they are not stacked with boxes of other heavy household items. Be sure to loosen the strings of guitars, violins, cellos, and other similar instruments to prevent breakage/warping. If there is space in a case for the instrument to move around, pack the loose spaces with paper or bubble wrap.
  • If your instruments do not have cases (antiques or drum kits might not have boxes that custom fit the piece), dismantle the item as much as it can be and wrap each piece in protective layers. For example, drums can be wrapped with bubble wrap. Antique instruments can be laid carefully in packing peanuts. If you are worried about the antique finish of wood or metal instruments becoming marred, seal the instrument in a loose plastic coating before placing it in packing materials. Use a separate box for each instrument.
  • Use professional movers for large and expensive instruments like pianos or harps. These need to be handled with care, and inexperienced movers could injure the instrument or themselves in the moving process.

Once you get to your new home, unpack your instruments as soon as possible and let them stand for at least a day before picking them up to play. Woodwind and string instruments need time to acclimate to your new house. After the waiting period, tune and tighten your strings and woodwinds and have your piano tuned.


Be sure that each record is properly wrapped. Vinyl records should be covered by acid-free paper, the album cover, or a replacement cover if you no longer have the original, and then each album should be protected by a plastic sleeve. Pack them vertically in a well-fitting box—laying them horizontally stresses the records. Pack them tightly enough that they don't move in the box too much, but don't squeeze extra records in by force, as a too-tight packing scheme leads to breakage or warped records. Packing a record too tightly can also leave a circle imprint on the album cover. If you are very worried about the covers becoming disfigured, you can pack them separately from the vinyl, but only if you have sleeves and acid paper for each record, as the record itself is more important than the appearance of the cover. 

Fill the remaining box space with some peanuts or bubble wrap. This allows the records some give, but prevents them from moving too much. Label the box "this side up" and "fragile" to be sure it is not crushed by a heavier box in the moving truck or packed on its side. 

Sound Equipment

Music sound equipment can be treated like any type of electronics. Microphones should be packed in foam boxes, and stands should be folded and secured. Wrap cords up and label them with masking tap so you do not lose or confuse any connections. If possible, secure sound dials, buttons, and levers with painters tape to prevent them from being knocked off accidentally during the move. Above all, be sure to pad the equipment and label the boxes so nothing gets dented or damaged during the move.

To hire professional movers, contact a service like Wheaton World Wide Moving