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Gear Wrangling: Tips For Moving With Gadgets

by Adriana Lee | September 11, 2011September 11, 2011 10:45 am PDT

Fall’s on the way, and you know what that means — moving time! Whether it’s because that summer share is winding down, or you’re packing up for school, take heart — relocating your gear doesn’t have to be a colossal headache.

GeekSugar actually had some handy advice, so check them out below, along with some of my own Do’s and Don’ts for stashing all that kit!

DO… start packing early.

DON’T… mix up the important gear with your non urgent stuff. Example: You’re probably able to live without a PSP or DVD player until you unpack everything and settle in, but think about the misery of going without a laptop or cell phone for a day or two. So keep that stuff separated, well-labeled and supremely accessible to you.

DO… keep two-piece power cables together. No need to disconnect them and risk losing one.

DON’T… just yank the cords out of the back of your electronics! Unless you’re like the Gadget Whisperer or something, you might wind up struggling to remember which cable goes into what port.

DO… snap a photo of the rear of your DVD player, stereo, TV, game console or any other electronic with a mess o’ cords, so you know where everything is supposed to go when you’re setting all that back up. Better yet, use color coding or obvious labels for each cord, to indicate where they should go. (A friend of mine uses orthodontic rubber bands for color coding. She tapes the color next to the port, and puts the same color band on the cord.)

DO… reuse original packaging if you still have it — especially for pricey or precious gadgets. Manufacturers often pack their products in custom-fit, impact-resistant material, and isn’t that why you saved it in the first place?

DON’T… toss all your cords haphazardly into one box, unless you enjoy spending your first night in your new place untangling the mother of all cable clusters. If you’re a neat freak, you could buy cord winders like the PowerCurl (Mac, $15), Proporta headphone tidy ($6) or the immensely cool Sling Back wire retractor ($15). But if you’re like me, with tons of cables, then shelling out money for each might be a bit steep. Save yourself some bucks and do what I do: Wind them in circles, and use rubberbands to keep them contained. (But consider that Sling Back for future use!)

DO… put cords in a ziploc, especially if you have several that go with one device. Or use clear boxes when you have several little parts, accessories or cords that you may need to identify on sight. The Container Store sells transparent shoe boxes for less than $2 a pop.

DO… label your cables. You could use a Cord Control Kit ($19), some tape and post-its, or a sheet of sticky labels. If you’re using ziplocs, then no problem — just write on the bags with a sharpie.

DON’T… tape up boxes right away, because there’s always one cord, cable or device that will need to go in there after the rest.

DO… identify each box on the top AND on the sides. No joke, this will save you a ton of time when you unpack.

Got any other great tips to share for moving with gadgets in tow? Let us know how you rock the relocation in the comments below.


Adriana Lee

Adriana is the resident writer-slash-culture vulture who has written about everything from smartphones, tablets, apps, accessories, and small biz...

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