When you’re moving your entire house, you have a lot of ‘big’ things to worry about. Packing, padding, selling, purging…it’s a lot of work! But logistically, when it comes time to move the big things (and not just the boxes), you’ll find that they can be a lot of work. Having the right tools can make all the difference. And that includes dollies.
But, different dollies do different things (for better or worse!). In this article, we’ll explain what the different types of dollies are, so you can get an idea of which ones you’ll need, depending on what you’re moving.
Upright, hand-truck 2-wheel dollies
These can be as simple as a metal rack with a small base and wheels. It’s up to you to tie things to it that may fall over during transport.
When you get into fancier models, they can also lay down flat and turn into a wagon-style dolly. So that would give them 4 wheels, but they don’t always have to stand on all fours.
And then, the features can include different types of wheels for different strengths you’ll need, plus foldability and so on.
Platform, 4-wheel dollies with handle bars or without
These dollies have 4 wheels and are meant to be used for bigger objects that need more of a base underneath them.
Sometimes, there is a handlebar, and that handlebar can fold down for easy storage. The casters are usually the swivel kind.
These dollies are wider, and that can also mean they are hard to go up and down stairs, or may not fit through typical house-sized doors.
That said, they can come in all types of sizes and materials. Some are good for industrial applications, and some are smaller and clearly made for moving household or office furniture and boxes, or the like.
Frame-style flat dollies on casters, 4-wheel, with or without handle bars
These moving dollies are similar to the above platform-style dollies. However, their base is not ‘filled in’ and consists of a frame bottom with a ‘hole’ in it.
The frame can be made out of steel or wood. Sometimes they are carpeted too. They always have at least 4 wheels, since they lay flat. And the wheels can be made of different materials, which can help to be aware of if you need to move across special types of floor or ground.
This the type of dolly that you may find when shopping at Home Depot or a hardware store (like the platform dollies mentioned above). They are often designed to move long, horizontal objects like rolls of carpet or lumber. In the case of household moving, they can be used for things like mattresses, bed frames and shelving.
These can have a platform-style base, or a ‘frame’ base. But they are built with protection on at least two sides. They push like a cart. And, like the other moving dollies mentioned above, they can be made of various materials. They also can have different names, like “panel cart” or “carpet dolly” and so on.
Some are narrow and tall, some are wide and flat, and some can be made for special uses.
Automotive dollies, also called caster wheel dollies
Depending what you need to move, sometimes automotive dollies come in handy. These are kind of like the platform dollies mentioned above, without handlebars, but they are indented or curved instead of being flat.
Specialty dollies for moving pianos, hot tubs, appliances and more
Aside from the multi-use dollies mentioned above, sometimes special cases require special dollies. For example, there are companies that make dollies specifically for moving pianos or hot tubs.
These will have a specific shape and purpose (of course). They are usually what professional movers will have on hand for carrying out big and careful moving jobs frequently. The investment to buy these things for your one-time move may not be worth it.
Make sure your professional movers have the right dollies for your move
When you hire a professional mover, you’ll know how experienced they are based on the tools they have ready for your job. They’ll also be able to make recommendations on how to move your furniture or appliances, etc. with ease. That may include some specialty dollies.