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Plastic Bins vs. Cardboard Moving Boxes – Choosing the Right Moving Materials

When preparing for a move, one of the first and most crucial decisions you’ll face is choosing the right type of containers to pack and transport your belongings. The common dilemma is whether to opt for traditional cardboard boxes or more durable plastic bins. Both options have their benefits and can significantly influence the efficiency and ease of your move.

Stack Moves is a box rental company that helps organize a smooth move for individuals during a relocation process. We specialize in providing sturdy reusable moving boxes for rent. Our goal is to provide you with a convenient and eco-friendly alternative to buying new boxes for moving . 

Additionally, we also offer free consultations to help plan your move. Reach out to us today for a stress-free move!

In this blog post, we will compare and contrast plastic bins and cardboard boxes. At the end of the blog, you will have gotten detailed insights to make an informed decision when moving. 

Plastic Moving Bins

Plastic Moving Bins

Plastic moving boxes are usually sturdy and versatile. They are used for transporting and storing belongings during a move. These plastic bins usually come in different sizes and are commonly used for both residential and commercial relocations. The most common size you would see for a plastic bin during a move is a bin that measures 27” by 17” at the top, 24.5” by 14.5” at the bottom, and 13” tall.

If you do not want to buy plastic moving boxes, your best option is to rent. At Stack Moves, we offer a moving box calculator tool that can help you determine how many bins you’ll need for your move. This way, you’ll be better prepared for your upcoming move. 

Advantages of Using Plastic Bins

One would typically opt for a plastic bin because of its durability. It provides protection against physical damage compared to cardboard boxes. Its rigid structure helps safeguard content from impact and compressive forces. 

In addition, plastic bins are also water resistant. Therefore, plastic bins are ideal for moving during rainy weather or for long-term storage of items in a damp environment, unlike cardboard boxes. Also, you can reuse plastic bins multiple times. Thus, reducing waste and resource consumption. 

The best size box for moving is a standard-size bin that measures 27” by 17” at the top, 24.5” by 14.5” at the bottom, and 13” tall. It is perfect for both residential moves and commercial moving. 

Disadvantages of Using Plastic Bins

Although plastic bins have their advantages, there are also downsides to using them like the initial cost. Although reusable, plastic bins can be more expensive upfront compared to cardboard boxes which may be available for free or at a lower cost. 

Another disadvantage of plastic bins is that they take up more space than cardboard boxes. In addition, there are some environmental concerns surrounding the use of plastic bins as their production involves materials that are less eco-friendly than the recycled content of cardboard boxes. 

Cardboard Moving Boxes for Moves

Cardboard Moving Boxes for Moves

Cardboard moving boxes are helpful in both residential and commercial moves. They can be used to transport a variety of items from one location to another.

These boxes come in numerous types, including standard moving boxes, cardboard wardrobe boxes, dish pack boxes, and specialized boxes for fragile items. You can use cardboard boxes for packing everything from everyday household items to securely moving bulky or heavy goods such as books and furniture.

Advantages of using Cardboard Moving Boxes

An advantage of using cardboard boxes is that it is cost-effective. Cardboard boxes are typically cheaper than plastic tubs. You can often get cardboard boxes at a low cost or even for free from local stores or via online marketplaces. 

It also comes in handy that cardboard boxes tend to be readily available at many outlets. This makes them a convenient choice for last-minute packing needs. In addition, cardboard boxes can be easily recycled. This makes them an environmentally friendly option for those concerned with sustainability. 

Disadvantages of using Cardboard Moving Boxes

Despite having some advantages, a cardboard box suffers from durability issues. Cardboard boxes are susceptible to tearing and can collapse under too much weight. This makes them less ideal for long-term storage or for very heavy items.

Furthermore, cardboard boxes absorb moisture. Thus, they are susceptible to water damage and cannot be used during the rainy season or in damp environments. Cardboard boxes also lack security as they must be sealed with tape and can be easy to open. They are less secure when compared to plastic boxes that come with locking lids. 

Moving Boxes vs Plastic Bins – Factors to Consider

Moving Boxes vs Plastic Bins - Factors to Consider

When deciding between moving boxes and plastic bins for your relocation, you will need to consider several factors to ensure that you’re making the most suitable choice for your needs. These factors include the nature of the items being moved, the distance of the move, budget constraints, environmental concerns, and storage requirements post-move. Are the items you’re moving fragile? Delicate items might require the sturdier protection offered by plastic boxes.

Using plastic containers safeguards the content against bumps and drops. The size and weight of the items also matter. Large or heavy items might be better suited to cardboard boxes, which are available in a variety of sizes and can be easily customized with additional padding. However, very heavy items may need the durability of plastic bins to handle the load without tearing.

You also need to consider the distance of the move as cardboard boxes are suitable and economical for short and local moves. However, plastic bins offer more durability and security for long-distance moves. 

Your budget for the move also plays a role when you’re trying to choose between cardboard boxes and plastic containers. Cardboard boxes are typically cheaper and sometimes free. On the other hand, plastic bins are more costly when you have to buy them upfront. However, renting plastic moving boxes can help you save money. 

Furthermore, it also helps to consider environmental concerns like recyclability and waste reduction. Cardboard is easily recycled and a more environmentally friendly option. However, plastic bins have reuse potential and reduce the need for continual production and disposal of packing materials. 

Another factor to consider would be your storage needs after moving. Cardboard boxes are suitable for temporary storage as they take up less space when not in use. They are fully collapsible when empty, making them suitable for tight spaces. However, plastic bins are better for long periods. They are easily stacked and durable, which makes them excellent for maintaining the integrity of stored items over time. 

Tips for Efficient Packing Regardless of Choice

Tips for Efficient Packing Regardless of Choice

The best practice for packing boxes and bins starts with choosing the right size of boxes or bins. Heavier items like books should go in small boxes or durable plastic bins to prevent overloading. Lighter items can be packed in larger boxes without the risk of them becoming too heavy. Items should also be packed tightly to prevent movement. However, they should not be packed too tight to cause damage. It helps to use packing materials such as bubble wrap, packing paper, or towels to fill empty spaces and provide cushioning for fragile items.

Additionally, you should always place heavier items at the bottom of the box or bin and lighter items on top to prevent damage. For fragile items, consider using specialty cardboard boxes such as dish packs or wardrobe boxes, which provide greater protection and are designed for specific needs. It is also important to ensure that cardboard boxes are taped securely at the bottom and top. Plastic totes with lids should be closed and secured to prevent them from opening during the move.

Labeling your containers is also necessary for an easier move. To do this, use a bold marker to label every box and bin. Also, include the content and the room it belongs to. For plastic bins, you might use labels or sticky notes since markers can be less visible on surfaces. Aside from using markers, you can also decide to color code. Assign a color to each room and use colored stickers or tape to label the boxes and bins. This visual guide will help movers know where to place each container in the new house.

Importantly, pack a plastic box or bin with the essentials you’ll need on the first day in your new home. These essentials could be toiletries, medications, chargers, snacks, and basic tools. Make sure this is labeled clearly and loaded last so it can be accessed first.

Need Moving Boxes for Rent?

In this blog post, we’ve explained the difference between plastic boxes and cardboard boxes, including their uses, advantages, and disadvantages. We’ve also outlined factors to consider before choosing between plastic boxes and cardboard boxes. These factors include environmental impact, budget, post-move storage needs, etc. 

If you’re considering renting moving boxes, Stack Moves is here for you. We offer a range of options that could fit your needs perfectly at affordable pricing. Our goal is to ensure you have a stress-free move by helping you tailor your move to your specific needs and circumstances. Reach out to us today!