background

What to Pack in Your Car on Your Move to Portland

If you’re moving a long distance to or from Portland, you’ll no doubt be faced with efficiently packing up your vehicle – even if you hire movers for the big stuff.

This can be an overwhelming process, but take it slow and come up with a plan. Here’s what you should pack in your car for the trip. The rest can go in the truck.

family putting suitcases into car

Spare Keys

It’s quite possible you could lose your keys at a gas station or drop them at the convenience store when getting snacks. That’s why it’s a good idea to put a spare key in your purse or wallet so you don’t get stranded.

Extra Clothes

Don’t pack every single item of clothing and shoes in boxes. Save a few pieces for the road, or for the new home if you get there before the movers do. In this bag, pack extra:

  • Underwear and socks
  • T-shirts
  • Sweaters
  • Jeans
  • Pajamas
  • Shoes

Bathroom Bag

Likewise, you’ll need a small bag of bathroom essentials. Just be sure to add shampoo and lotion bottles to plastic bags so if they leak, the contents won’t get all over your clothing and other stored belongings. In this bag, pack:

  • Shampoo and conditioner
  • Body and face wash
  • Face cloths
  • Toothpaste and toothbrush
  • Saline solution
  • Mouthwash
  • Lotion

Pillows and Blankets

Especially if you have kids, pack everyone a blanket and pillow so they can nap along the way. Being in a car for hours can get mighty uncomfortable, especially if you’re traveling overnight.

Snacks and Drinks

You can’t have a road trip without yummy snacks and beverages! Gather some treats as well as healthy snacks such as trail mix. You should also bring water bottles and a cooler to keep yogurt tubes and juice boxes cold. Good snack choices include:

  • Veggies and hummus
  • Grapes
  • Baby carrots
  • Strawberries
  • Pepperoni and cheese
  • Crackers
  • Bottles of water
  • Juice boxes

family stuffing car with suitcases and stuff

Cleaning Supplies

Messes happen, so be prepared for spills with a cleaning supply kit. Pack a plastic storage tub with:

  • Tissues
  • Wipes
  • Hand sanitizer
  • Floss
  • Paper towels
  • Toilet paper

Music

Keep yourself and your passengers entertained by creating playlists and downloading tunes, audio books and podcasts ahead of time.

First Aid Kit

A first aid kit is essential for those times someone gets sick or scrapes their knee. This kit should include:

  • Medicine
  • Prescriptions
  • Scissors
  • Tweezers
  • Bandages
  • Alcohol pads
  • Antibiotic ointment

Emergency Kit

Roadside emergencies can and do happen. Keep these items in your trunk:

  • Spare tire and lift kit
  • Flashlight
  • Folding shovel
  • Gloves
  • Roadside flares

Trash Bags

It’s easy for your car to get overrun with food wrappers, paper towels and garbage. Bring a couple of trash bags or plastic bags from the grocery store to accumulate trash. Dispose of those bags when you stop at gas stations or for food.

Tips: Don’t Overload Your Car!

Now that you know what to bring in your car, you should be mindful when packing things in there. Overloading can lead to:

  • Higher risk of tire blowouts due to stress on tires
  • Poor steering capability thanks to bigger loads
  • Increased braking distances, as it takes longer to stop in traffic with all that extra weight
  • Damage to the suspension system
  • Reduced top speed, as you can’t go as fast in an overloaded car as an empty one

Unfortunately, vehicle overloading is common so it’s important to be mindful of ways to avoid overloading your car and of safeguarding your car against damage. You also want to protect the safety of your passengers.

Here are some more tips:

Portland-move-commercial-moving

1.    Check Your Tires’ Max Weight Rating

Before setting out on your road trip, check the max weight rating of your car’s tires. This rating will show you what the car can carry without risking brake and suspension damage. You’ll find this in the driver’s manual.

Find the maximum weight by looking on the tire’s sidewall, then consult this tire load index table to learn more.

Place Heavy Items in the Middle

Be sure to put the heaviest items in the middle of the car so they don’t exert more force on the tires. That’s what happens when heavy loads are placed close to the tires. You don’t want a blowout, so keep light items on the sides.

Spread Weight Symmetrically

Steering difficulties can arise if one side of the vehicle is a lot heavier than the other, particularly at high rates of speed. Disperse weight evenly on both sides so it’s as balanced as possible. Think about the combined weight of your passengers, too, and make sure they’re also spaced out.

Hire a Mover

Hiring movers is the best way to ensure your vehicle is not overloaded. That’s because they bring large trucks that can hold thousands of pounds, backed by top-notch suspension systems and tires. In addition to transporting your stuff, movers can visit your home prior to moving day and pack up your belongings. Then, they can place it in the truck for the most secure transport.

Just remember that overloading a vehicle with boxes may pose a danger in terms of driver safety. You don’t want anything to block windows and mirrors, which will reduce your line of sight and put you at higher risk of getting into a collision. Don’t exacerbate your existing blind spots by obstructing them with piles of stuff. And the last thing you want to do is get pulled over for driving an overloaded vehicle, which can happen when you’re overcompensating by going too slow on the highway.

Contact Portland Move

One great way to avoid overpacking your car is to hire movers like those here at Portland Move. We can take all your bulkiest and heaviest things with us in the truck so you only have to take yourself and a few small items in your vehicle. Call us today for a free quote at (971) 226-6687.

 

Check out our latest news

Explore all
How to Choose the Best Beaverton Packers

29

May

How to Choose the Best Beaverton Packers

When you’re ready to set down roots in a new town like Beaverton, your first task should be to book your movers. But you should also ascertain if you...
A Guide to the Best Schools in Gresham, Oregon

18

May

A Guide to the Best Schools in Gresham, Oregon

You’ve moved to Gresham, Oregon. Tick! You’ve purchased a new home. Tick! You’ve enrolled your child into elementary school. Tic–not quite! When moving to a new town, it’s often hard to...
Challenges of Upsizing to a Bigger Home in Portland

28

Apr

Challenges of Upsizing to a Bigger Home in Portland

Whether you recently got a promotion and pay raise at work or your family is growing quickly, you may have made the decision to upsize to a bigger home...
Best Companies to Work for in Portland, Oregon: What You Should Know

04

Apr

Best Companies to Work for in Portland, Oregon: What You Should Know

Oregon is the second-most-popular state in the country to move to. Companies in Portland, Oregon are seeking new hires, and it’s a great place to work! Whether you find yourself Googling...
What to Pack in Your Car on Your Move to Portland

27

Mar

What to Pack in Your Car on Your Move to Portland

If you’re moving a long distance to or from Portland, you’ll no doubt be faced with efficiently packing up your vehicle – even if you hire movers for the...
Top Things to do in Beaverton, OR

07

Mar

Top Things to do in Beaverton, OR

Beaverton is the seventh-largest city in Oregon and is situated just a short distance outside of Portland. The beautiful city is home to big corporations such as Nike but is also...
Why You Should Hire Antiques Movers in Portland

28

Feb

Why You Should Hire Antiques Movers in Portland

Looking to hire antique movers in Portland? Contact Portland Move today! You likely bought your antique furniture, artwork and other statement pieces because they made you happy and looked...
It’s Raining on Moving Day: What to Do

27

Jan

It’s Raining on Moving Day: What to Do

Do you think it is going to be raining on moving day? It’s no secret that it rains – a lot – in Portland. So most movers in this...
Moving a Piano the Right Way

29

Dec

Moving a Piano the Right Way

Do you need piano movers in Portland? We don’t recommend moving a piano on your own, as you could damage the instrument itself, as well as the surrounding walls...
Challenges of Downsizing in Portland

30

Nov

Challenges of Downsizing in Portland

There are many challenges of downsizing in Portland. Even if you’re only moving across town, if you have to move from a 7,000 square foot home to a 3,000...
How Many Movers Do You Need?

27

Oct

How Many Movers Do You Need?

How many movers do I need in my Portland move? There’s no across-the-board answer for this question. Every move is different, and the number of movers required will depend...
Moving to Portland on a Budget

27

Oct

Moving to Portland on a Budget

It can be exciting and energizing to move to a new apartment or home. But the prospect of settling into a new place, especially when you’re on a budget,...
Moving Checklist: Tips To Help You Move

19

Sep

Moving Checklist: Tips To Help You Move

If you are getting ready to move, check out our handy moving checklist to get prepared. Whether you’re moving this month or a few months from now, it’s important...
How to Pack Small Boxes for a Move

17

Sep

How to Pack Small Boxes for a Move

Trying to figure out how to pack small boxes? If you’re facing a move, you know how essential boxes are to the packing process. First off, let’s go into...

Ready to book your move or get a quote?