Mantel Mount | June 28, 2024

Getting Ready to Move This Season? Here's How to Safely Pack and Transport Your TV

It should come as no surprise, with change in the air, that spring and summer mark the beginning of move-in seasons when leases end and homeowners list their homes for sale. In fact, according to USA Today, nearly 70% of people in the United States move between April and August.

If you’re one of those Americans with a looming move-in date, we may not carry all of the answers to make the transition as smooth as possible, but we can weigh in on one very important aspect of your move: how do you pack and safely transport your TV from point A to point B during a move? Read on to discover our practical packing tips for protecting your TV.

Safely Remove the TV From the Wall Mount or TV Stand

We’ve written extensively about some of the safest and best ways to mount your TV. Whether you’re looking for a renter-friendly solution or a strong TV mount that can hold up to brick walls, stone walls, or drywall, stucco, and plaster walls, MantelMount offers a smooth, counterbalanced pull down TV mount that works in any room and for every television-viewer.

But what happens when you’re preparing to move, planning a renovation, or you’re simply replacing an old flat screen TV with a bigger (and likely better) new TV? In any scenario you find yourself in, the first step is to safely remove your TV from its existing mount and carefully store it for whichever journey lies ahead.

To get started uninstalling your TV, it might be wise to grab a “spotter” as flat screens (particularly large ones) can be heavy and cumbersome. Once you’ve found someone to assist you, removing your TV from a wall mount is rather simple.

Step 1. Place packing supplies, including a blanket or soft material, on the floor

It’s best to do this step before you remove any wires, or the TV itself, because once your hands are full, lifting your flat screen out of the mount, you won’t have a chance to put down any protective material.

Find a soft blanket or a sheet of bubble wrap to lay on the floor near the TV. This will protect the screen when you put the TV face down to remove the bracket. Since you’re at it, we recommend you grab any other packing supplies you think you might need and place nearby. 

That way — whether you need your TV’s original packaging, any styrofoam pieces for creating a secure packing quarter, or a separate box for cables, HDMI cords, and the like — you have everything at arm’s length and don’t have to go scrounging for the materials.

Step 2. Take a picture of your wire set up & unplug everything

This is an important step and one that can be often overlooked, so make sure you don’t just scan past it. If you have a soundbar, video game console, or a cable box, remove those cables and wires that feed into the back of your TV — but before you do, take a picture of your assembly for easy installation when you’re ready to set up your tv again.

If you haven’t already done so with this TV mount installation, consider cable management to be part of the installation once you’re completed with the move. Having cables and cords managed in a tidy way will make the TV aesthetic look better and incorporates entertainment safety.

If you do have cable management involved with this TV mount setup, make sure to secure the wires just how they are, together, and then place them to the side to clear your path so you don’t trip as you pull the TV off of its mount.

Step 3. Check for a locking mechanism on the TV mount

Before you lift the flat screen off of the mount, check for any locking mechanisms that may hold the TV in place. If you start to lift the TV out of the mount and you feel resistance, stop lifting and check the back of your TV. You’ll need to use a screwdriver to safely unlock your television.

Be aware that the safety locking mechanism comes into play with installation as well as when uninstalling or changing televisions. The safety bolt is used to keep the arm in place so that it doesn't swing upwards under the tension of the gas springs. If a television is being removed or adjusted, the safety bolt will need to be used.

Step 4. Tilt and lift your TV

This is the step that may require you to enlist the help of another. With a firm grasp on the bottom of your flat screen, tilt your TV toward you while making sure the top section of the TV remains against the wall. If you’re struggling to keep the top of the TV angled toward the wall, have another party guide the top part of the TV up and away from you. Once you’ve discovered the correct angle, the bracket on the back of the TV should easily lift out of the mount.

Step 5. Unscrew your TV bracket

Gently lower your TV — face down — onto the blanket on the floor. This is an important measure for protecting your TV’s screen. With the right screwdriver, unscrew the bracket from the back of the TV and set to the side for proper packing and securing for storage.

Step 6. Remove the wall mount

Now all that is left to do is unscrew the metal wall mount from the wall and fix any holes. With your screwdriver, take out the screws and remove the mount from the wall. Patch up any holes with spackling and touch up the wall with paint.

Now that your TV is safely off of the wall or removed from its TV stand, you can start making preparations for packing your flat screen into storage or getting it ready for a move.

How to Pack a Flat Screen TV for Moving

You might want to hang on to that bubble wrap and that blanket from the previous steps because the second step in figuring out how to pack a TV for a move requires gathering all the necessary materials.

Here are our recommendations for packing material to get your TV, unbroken, from point A to point B:

  • The original box and packing material or a flat screen TV box
  • Foam corners
  • Bubble wrap
  • A blanket
  • Stretch wrap
  • Packing tape

If you aren’t sure exactly which material you’ll need, think about how you intend to move the TV.

  • Are you transporting it yourself in a small car or van or U-haul-type truck and you’ll figure out how to finagle the way to make the TV flat and secure?
  • Are you using a professional moving company with a large box truck, one in which the TV box may stand in an upright position?
  • Are you simply relocating to a new home a few blocks away and are going to walk and carry the box?
  • Do you have access to the original packing material fitted to your specific flat screen or will you need to purchase standardized material?

However you intend to transport your TV, we can walk you through safely packing your flat screen to make sure it’s safe before, during, and after your move.

If you have the original box

When it comes to how to pack a flat screen TV for moving, we will always recommend placing the TV in its original box. The original box is designed with the specific dimensions of your TV and will provide the best support during transportation.

Having the original box may also mean you still have the styrofoam inserts (unless you already threw them away when you bought the TV!) meant to protect corners and prevent the TV from rocking inside the box during your move. This is the safest way for moving a television and preventing screen damage.

  • Place the foam inserts properly around the TV
  • Slide the TV into the original box
  • Tape the box to secure openings and prevent the TV from sliding out during transportation
  • Place a “FRAGILE” label on the box

If you’re packing a flat screen in a moving box

If you don’t have your TV’s original box, the next best option is to purchase a moving box designed for a flat screen. You can get these at any Home Depot, a local hardware store, or a moving company.

Many flat screen moving boxes are adjustable and come with the foam corners to protect your screen. All you need to do is secure the box’s openings with packing tape.

  • Wrap the TV in bubble wrap
  • Pad the corners with foam or a soft material
  • Slide the TV into the moving box
  • Tape the box securely
  • Place a “FRAGILE” label on the box

If you’re transporting a TV without a box

While this is the least secure way for transporting a TV, we get that life gets in the way. Not everyone has access to their TV’s original box and if your local hardware store or Home Depot is sold out of the TV box size you need, you can safely get your television from one home to the next with some strategically placed bubble wrap.

  • Start at the top of the TV and wrap 2-3 layers of bubble wrap around the screen
  • Place soft material, like foam or blankets, around the TV’s corners and secure that material in place
  • Place a moving blanket on the floor and put the TV face-up in the center
  • Pull the corners of the blanket to the center of the TV’s screen to safely wrap the television
  • Use stretch wrap to add another protective layer around the blanket from top to bottom and then again from side to side

Keeping Your TV Safe During Transport

The final step within the lengthy process of packing and moving a TV is to keep the precious object safe while in the moving truck or your car. TVs are weight-balanced and built to sit upright, so be careful as laying a flat screen flat in a moving truck could cause internal damage.

Additionally, place the TV box away from the walls of the moving truck as they will likely shake and vibrate during the move. Any jostling or bumps could crack the delicate screen. It is likely best to place the TV box between two larger, sturdy objects, like a mattress or the flat back of a couch, to keep the TV upright and safe from shaking.

If you’re transporting a large TV, say anything larger than a 65-inch model, it’s best not to force a TV of this size into a small, compact car. Again, we recommend putting larger, delicate items in a secure place in a moving van so your TV and other valuables arrive safe and sound.

For more TV safety moving tips or TV room inspiration, check back in with our blogs here at MantelMount — we’re always discovering new and creative ways to make TV-viewing better.