How to Pack and Wrap Glass-Top Tables

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How to Pack and Move Tables with Glass Tops

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Do you have a coffee table that is mostly wood, but has glass panels on top? Maybe you have a dining table that is glass in a metal frame? Moving glass-topped tables can be difficult due to their large size and fragile tops. How can you pack and move something so big without breaking the glass?

Remove the glass from the frame of the table

Fortunately, most glass-topped tables' glass tops are removable. Some glass sections come out easily but others will take a little more work.

Easily removable glass:
Some tables (usually ones with wooden frames) have the glass panels simply held in place by gravity. Pushing upwards from the bottom on the glass will remove it from the frame easily. Be careful when doing this, because you may tie up your hands and need to balance a glass panel awkwardly. A second person can be very helpful in this situation.

Pushing hard against glass is very dangerous. If something should be easily removable but seems stuck, take a minute to consider the situation:
  • Sometimes a glass panel that should come out easily can get stuck. This can be due to warping of the wood frame or sticky substances that seeped into the space where the glass rests.
  • Is there some other way to remove the glass? Maybe it isn't laying in place and there are screws holding it in the frame. Look at the table from all angles to reveal any hidden problems.
  • The glass could be removable from the side, rather than from a push up. See if you can slide the glass section out of the frame if pushing doesn't work.
  • Turn the table horizontally so you aren't pushing the glass up. Place a thick blanket (a comforter may be best) beneath the table to catch the glass should you succeed in dislodging it.
  • Use a helper or something heavy to brace the sturdy frame while  you push against the glass.
  • Flipping the table completely upside down and pushing into a blanket may not give you the room to dislodge the glass and could apply too much pressure. You will be safer holding the table sideways and having the glass panel fall out onto a blanket.
  • Apply steady, even pressure to the glass while gradually increasing the force you are using. Maximize the surface area of your push to minimize the risk of breaking the glass.
  • Wear thick protective gloves that will protect you if you shatter the glass.
Screwed-on glass tops
Glass tables with tops that are screwed on require a different method of removal.
  • Place a thick blanket on the floor, making sure it is bigger than the surface of the glass table-top.
  • Flip the entire table upside down and gently place it glass first on the blanket. Use a helper if the table is too heavy.
  • From this position you should be able to unscrew or unfasten anything necessary to remove the glass top from the legs/frame.

Packing the table 

Once the glass top is separate from the frame or legs of the table, it is time to wrap them separately.
  • Sturdy frames or legs can be wrapped using a packing blanket. This should minimize scratching and is usually all the protection the more durable parts of a table need.
  • Wrap the glass in packing paper, making sure to completely cover it. You will then secure it with packing tape but make sure the tape does not touch the glass because its adhesive will leave residue on the glass.
  • Add a layer of bubble wrap to the glass for added protection. Using bubble wrap alone may leave smudges on the glass, so it is important not to skip the packing paper step.
  • Place the wrapped glass in a mirror/telescopic box or any box where it fits snugly. If the box you are using is too big, add extra packing paper or packing peanuts to fill the empty space.
  • Label the box "fragile".

Loading the glass top

 Incorrectly placing a glass table top in a moving truck can lead to damage even after thorough wrapping.
  • Keep the box vertical. Laying it flat could increase the likelihood of it breaking with bumps during the trip.
  • Do not place any items on top of the box.
  • Wedge the vertical box between heavy items in the truck. This should ensure that the glass table top doesn't fall and break during transport.
  • Use ropes, straps, or well-placed bedding for added protection.
If you can't trust yourself to safely pack and move your glass-topped table, you should hire professional movers to do it for you. They should have all the necessary materials on hand and you can insure your table should anything happen to it while they move it.

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on September 23, 2014 - Moving Expert
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