Why You Should Hire Pool Table Movers
A pool table is a decorative yet functional piece of furniture that brings spaces and people together. Now that you’re preparing to move, it makes sense you want to take it with you. However, if you aren’t familiar with the different parts of a pool table, moving one is a daunting task. Luckily, we’re here to help. Moving a pool table on your own isn’t recommended, but with the right precautions and tools in place, it can be done.
Should I hire pool table movers? YES!
In short, yes! Moving something so large and unforgiving is a difficult task. Professionals have all the equipment, tools, and experience to avoid any issues and get the job done. Even if you’re confident you’ll do a great job, there are a variety of factors to keep in mind: the size of the room you’re moving it to, what kind of vehicle you have, and even the kind of pool table you own all play a role in the moving process.
If you hire movers, they will charge you extra to move your pool table. Items such as artwork, pianos, and pool tables are considered specialty items since they need extra care during a move. That can be reason enough for some people to try and move these objects without professional help. If you’re trying to save money, this is not where you should try to cut costs on your move. There are plenty of other ways to reduce the price of your move so it doesn’t break the bank.
And, if you do move completely on your own, you’re out of luck if anything gets damaged. Moving companies offer something called valuation, or moving insurance, that holds the company responsible if they break or damage your stuff.
If you hire pool table movers, there are a few things to expect:
The movers will ask you a few questions about your table to give you the most accurate quote. To get started, movers need to know the table’s model, how old it is, and whether or not it needs to be moved up or down stairs. Let them know if your new place has an elevator and how big that elevator is.
Movers will likely charge by the hour for short-distance moves. If your move is long-distance, you’ll be charged based on the weight of your table and how far away you’re moving. For a specific answer, contact your moving company for a custom quote.
Regardless of how you move, it is strongly suggested that you hire pool table movers. There are a number of steps to go through in order to move a pool table successfully, and even then, anything could happen. Professional movers have experience with these kinds of jobs. They also have all the tools and skills necessary. If you still insist on the do-it-yourself approach, here’s a guide to get you though.
If you insist on doing it yourself… what you need to know before moving a pool table yourself
You really have to prepare before moving a pool table. Plan ahead so moving the table is as easy as possible. Here’s what you need to do:
Get the necessary tools together
Pool tables aren’t single slabs of wood. They can be broken down into different parts with a bunch of little screws, bolts, and staples keeping everything together. The kinds of tools you need depend on the kind of pool table you have, but here’s a list of tools and supplies to start with:
A staple remover
A staple gun
Moving tarps and other protective materials
One large plastic bag
Identify what kind of table you have
Not all pool tables are the same. They can be made to fit many kinds of specifications. The type of table you have determines how to take it apart. However, it’s most likely that you have one of the following in your home:
Slate pool table: A more traditional kind of pool table where the game is played on slabs of slate under the felt.
Mechanical pool table: A table with some kind of mechanical component to it. This could mean that it can collect coins or retrieve balls that fall into the pockets. These are much harder to take apart and we highly suggest that you seek professional help for this disassembly process.
Keep all the pieces together and label them clearly. It’s a good idea to keep all the fasteners you’re reusing organized by type and what parts of the pool table they keep together.
Get the right amount of people
Even if you’re not hiring pool table movers you still need some help. Get four or five friends who don’t mind an extra workout. Trust us, you’ll need them throughout the process.
Measure the room you’re moving the pool table to
It would be frustrating to do all the work to move your table only to find out it won’t fit in the room you’ve chosen. And remember, you’ll need even more space to play pool comfortably. Refer to this diagram to get a good idea of the amount of space you need.
Disassemble the pool table
It may seem like extra work, but taking a pool table apart is key to moving it successfully. Plus, it lowers the chances of someone getting hurt or the table being damaged in the moving process.
How to disassemble a pool table
Like we said before, taking a table apart is difficult. Since you’re not hiring pool table movers, make sure you have the time and patience to get through taking it apart. For a slate pool table, follow the steps below to take it apart:
Remove the pockets on all four corners: These are stapled on. Use a staple remover to avoid damaging the pockets.
Take off the railing: Each side of the pool table has bolts keeping the rails in place underneath it. Use a wrench to remove these and once they’re off, place them off to the side. Keep the bolts in their own labeled baggie.
Remove the felt: With the rails gone, the stapes holding the felt in place is exposed. Remove the stapes carefully to avoid ripping the felt. Then fold the felt and store it separately from everything else in a plastic bag to avoid additional damage.
Remove the slates: With the felt gone, the slate of the pool table is exposed. Slate pool tables typically consist of one to three pieces of slate. These are drilled into place so use a drill to remove them. The slates are very heavy but fragile so get a couple of friends to help you move them.
Take apart the frame. You’re almost done. We promise. All that’s left is the frame. To take it apart, turn it upside down or on its side to reach the bolts underneath. The pool table frame may not be heavy, but it’s still large and bulky. Having someone else help you move this piece prevents you from accidentally damaging it. Finally, unbolt the legs, store and label any fasteners you may have missed, and you’re done!
Moving a mechanical table is an even bigger task. For the most part, you can follow the slate table disassembly process to take mechanical tables apart as well.
Take off the legs and rails: Do this before any step in the slate table process. You have to turn the table on its side or upside down to reach the bolts underneath. Some mechanical tables have a metal piece that covers these bolts. If so, they should be able to come off with a screwdriver. Then remove the legs and rails and put those bolts in their own labeled bag.
Follow the steps for the slate pool table to disassemble the rest. If your pool table has some kind of ball retrieval system, don’t take it apart without the manual. You can move this part while it’s inside the rest of the table.
What about all the mechanical parts inside?: The convenient thing about these kinds of pool tables is exactly that. All the mechanical parts are already safe inside the pool table. But if you’re going to try and take the table apart completely, you will need a professional on hand.
And congrats! You have a completely disassembled pool table. Now it’s much easier to move and you have less of a chance of hurting yourself during the move. But keep in mind that moving the pool table parts also requires a certain level of care.
Moving a disassembled pool table
Pool table movers have an advantage when it comes to transporting large items because they have the necessary equipment to keep items secure. Even if you’re not planning on renting a truck for your overall move, make an exception for your pool table. Because of all the larger pieces involved, it’s difficult to fit everything into a van and would take multiple trips to and from your new place to move everything.
The moving process itself can still damage your pool table and you need to protect all your pool table parts during transport. That’s where those tarps come in. Wrap each piece of your table in a tarp and secure it with tape. Make sure those slates move as little as possible. Too many bumps could crack or chip them. Secure the wrapped pieces of slate with furniture straps, then secure those straps to the truck or van.
Luckily for mechanical tables, you don’t have to take apart so many pieces, but small parts on the inside can also be damaged during a move. Use furniture straps to keep the table in place and avoid bumps in the road. Be sure to have a few people to help you move this table in and out of your vehicle or home.
Setting your table up in the new home
After all that, you now have to move your table into your new home. Another benefit of having taken the table apart before moving it is now you have better mobility. You don’t have to be as concerned about fitting past a tight corner or through a narrow hallway. Have friends help you bring everything inside.
Once you make it to your pool table’s designated room, reassembling is no different than taking the table apart. You simply do all the disassembly steps backward and your table will be the same as before.
Be careful with the felt, though. Aside from ripping, you also don’t want to stretch it out when you’re reapplying it over the slate. You want the slate to fight tightly across the table, but if it’s stretched too far in one direction you could end up with some lumps that will mess up any game of pool.
Now that you’ve successfully moved your pool table, you and your friends have become pool table movers yourselves. Now, you’re one step closer to having the entertainment hub you want. Play a game or two with these gracious friends who helped you move it or take some time to marvel in your achievement. Whatever you decide, remember that after all that work you certainly deserve a nap.