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How to Move Your Grandfather Clock

One of the more challenging items included in a residential move is a grandfather clock. These decorative pendulum clocks are often precious family heirlooms passed down from generation to generation. Although each and every item included in a move is treated with care, a grandfather clock’s charm and sentimental value increase the importance of taking the extra steps necessary to handle it with care during a move.

Each grandfather clock is a bit unique depending on its manufacturer and age but each should feature a pendulum, clock face and several weights along with cable or chains to suspend the weights inside the body of the clock.

For a local move, these heirlooms must be properly disassembled and wrapped. Plan to spend 45 minutes to an hour of time to properly prepare the clock for its move.

Please keep the following in mind when preparing your clock for its move.

  1. Prior to moving a grandfather clock you must remove the fragile parts, including the pendulum, pendulum guide, glass panels, and hanging weights, from the interior. Your clock could sustain serious damage if you do not take it apart first and properly store all the components.
  2. All fragile parts must be individually wrapped in bubble wrap and/or blankets to protect them from any damage. The pendulum chains should be secured with twist ties and then wrapped in a blanket to prevent them from tangling. Be sure to remove the weights, wrap them in packing paper for protection. Label each individual weight with its corresponding location inside the clock (left, center, right). This simple step will help you reinstall the weights in their correction location.
  3. Consider wearing gloves when removing and storing the fragile portions of the clock to protect your hands from any sharp pieces.
  4. Prepare a plan of where you will store these parts while the clock is being transported prior to beginning the disassembly. You’ll also want to have packing supplies like moving blankets, padding and bubble wrap to protect each of the parts inside and outside of the grandfather clock. It may be helpful to take some photos of the clock fully assembled prior to disassembly to use as a reference when reassembling.
  5. If you plan to move the clock yourself, use a truck rental, or large vehicle. Many of the grandfather clocks are too large and fragile to move them with a car. A grandfather clock should be kept upright during its move.
  6. When reassembling the grandfather clock after the move, we recommend wiping it down with a soft damp cloth to remove dust and debris. If you decide you want to clean the clock, enlist a professional so that it’s done right.
  7. Always refer to the manufacturer’s instruction, when available, to assure the proper treatment of the clock.
  8. Grandfather clocks weigh between 100 to 300 pounds. You will need more than one person to assist with loading and unloading the clock. Most grandfather clocks are tall so you may need someone to balance the clock on the hand truck or dolly. A professional moving crew will utilize two professional movers for this task.

Frequently asked questions about moving a grandfather clock

How much does it cost to have a grandfather clock moved by professional movers?

Most local movers have a minimum charge for a move. So, if you’re only moving a grandfather clock – and nothing else – then you may need to pay the minimum. It will be more economical if you can combine moving the clock with other items.

How many people does it take to move a grandfather clock?

At least two. Due to its weight and construction you will want to have two people to move the clock to protect the clock and yourself.

The team at Cross Town Movers is experienced with moving grandfather clocks and would love to help you with your move. Please reach out to us at (208) 378-0226 to discuss the process in greater detail and book your move.

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