packing boxes

Picking the Best Tape for Packing Moving Boxes

Tape is essential for any household or business that’s planning on moving. And it’s an investment you don’t want to make lightly because choosing the wrong type of tape can cost you time and money. With so many options available, though, it can be hard to figure out which kind of tape to buy. This article explores the best tape for moving boxes and how to choose it.

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Differences between Shipping Tape vs. Packing Tape

Shipping tape and packing tape are both great options. But there are some key differences between the two that you should be aware of before making your purchase.

What is shipping tape?

Shipping tape is designed for heavy duty packaging, so it’s ideal for reinforcing large boxes or stacks of boxes. It has a longer shelf life than packing tape, meaning you can store it without worrying about moisture affecting its quality.

What is packing tape?

On the other hand, packing tape is perfect for light-duty tasks like sealing cardboard moving boxes or organizing smaller items in storage bins. Packing tape doesn’t leave a residue when you remove it from surfaces like concrete, tile, wood, carpeting, and drywall. That said, shipping tape works best on smooth surfaces, while packing tape sticks better to textured surfaces like brick walls or vinyl floors.

The Best Tape For Moving Boxes

What’s the best tape for moving boxes? For packing boxes you’ll need sticky tape that’s strong enough to keep them tightly closed during transit. Keep the width, thickness, and stickiness in mind when selecting tape. Regarding width, most shipping tape falls between 2 and 3 inches. Masking tape is typically not recommended for sealing boxes since it isn’t as sticky and can tear easily.

Best Tape For Storage Boxes

In appearance and size, storage tape resembles shipping tape. But the two tapes have different lengths of adhesion. It is constructed of acrylic adhesive, which is designed to be more durable for boxes that will be stored. This heavy duty tape should be able to hold up in all weather conditions, including humidity, and should last for years. Use this tape if you plan to store your boxes in a storage facility.

Choosing the Right Packaging Tape For Moving and Storage

The following factors may help you choose the best packaging tape for shipping and storage:


If you’re packing books, mirrors, or glassware, opt for low-adhesive tape like clear packing tape because it is less likely to leave a residue on your belongings. But if you’re moving things that might need extra cushioning, such as fragile electronics or dishes, use high-adhesive tape.


Some tapes are designed with added strength in mind and may be made from a different material than standard packing tape. These types can be great for heavy items but may be too expensive for lighter boxes. They also come in several colors so that you can match the color of your tape to the color of your box.


Waterproof tape is good for outdoor moves because it won’t lose its stickiness even when wet. It’s important to know what type of surface you’ll use this tape on before choosing one; waterproof tapes won’t work well on rough surfaces like brick or gravel.


When deciding on the best tape for your move, remember how much space you have to store the rolls after they’ve been used.

Things to Consider When Buying Tape for Packing Moving Boxes

Here are a few things to consider when choosing packing tape for your next move:

  • Will you be using it indoors or outdoors?
  • What type of surfaces will you be taping?
  • How long do you need the tape to last?
  • What is your budget?
  • Will you be moving in hot or cold weather?

Types of Tape for Packing Moving Boxes

types of packing tape

Different types of packing tape are available on the market, each with its unique set of benefits. Here are some types of tape:

Brown Paper Packing Tape

Brown paper tape is a popular packing tape used by professional movers because it is easy to tear and sticks well. It comes in rolls of various widths. The downside is that it isn’t as strong as other types of packing tapes, so it isn’t recommended for boxes containing heavy items. It’s also unclear how long it will last since there’s no guarantee about how much time you’ll have before replacing it.

Filament Packing Tape

A more durable option than brown paper tape, this type is made from polyethylene film and doesn’t curl when exposed to heat or moisture. The adhesive backing doesn’t leave any residue on surfaces like cardboard or fabric. The tape is available in 1” wide rolls and is great for large moves or if you’re concerned about running out of packing tape during your move.

Gummed Paper Tape

This type of packing tape has been around for centuries, made from gummed or waxed paper and having a cloth back. It can be torn easily, but tears are usually less straight than other types of tape. In addition, it doesn’t stick well to surfaces that aren’t flat, which can lead to problems with seam sealing.

Other Types of Tape and How to Use Them

Some other types of tapes include:

Duct Tape

Duct tape is heavy-duty packing tape and often comes in both clear and silver colors. It can be used as an adhesive and a sealant which means it’s great for sealing boxes closed or fixing things up around the house before you move out.

Clear Packaging Tape

Clear packaging tape may be best for those who want to take their time packaging their belongings. It provides a more durable barrier against moisture, so your stuff will stay dry inside your box.

Double-Sided Tape

If you’re moving into a carpeted home or office, this type of packing tape is perfect! It’s easy to peel off and doesn’t leave any residue behind.

Scotch Tape

Scotch tape is useful for securing packing paper or bubble wrap around delicate items, but should never be used to for sealing boxes.

There are a few different types of packing tape that you can choose from, so it’s important to pick the right one for your needs. Scotch, Clear Packaging Tape, Gorilla, and 3M all have great options for moving boxes. If you’re looking for an easy-to-use packing tape with a good hold, then Scotch or Clear Packaging Tape would be perfect.

For those who want high-quality and long-lasting packing tape, then Gorilla or 3M may be the best option. You must decide which type of packing tape will work best with your needs and personal preference. You might always want to choose a tape that has an easy-to-use tape dispenser, this can help speed up the packing process.

How Much Tape to Purchase

You’ll need packing tape if you’re moving across town or the country. But how much should you buy? The answer depends on a few factors, including the size of your home, how many boxes you have, and whether you plan on doing any of the packing yourself.

How to Properly Tape a Box

What’s the best way to tape a box for moving? When taping up boxes for your move, there are a few things you’ll want to keep in mind:

1. Choose the right type of tape. For example, if you’re moving heavy items, you’ll want to use stronger tape like duct tape.

2. Make sure you properly seal the bottom of the box. You don’t want your items falling out during the move. Do you tape the top of moving boxes? Yes, ensure you tape the bottom and top of shipping and storage boxes.

3. Don’t over-tape the box – this will make it more difficult to open later.

4. Be sure not to forget any items that should be included inside the box. Once you’ve sealed it up with the proper packing materials and taped it shut, give it a good shake to test how secure everything is before labeling and carrying the box outside to load into your car or truck.

Final Thoughts

Whether moving in or out of your apartment, it’s important to do the grunt work of packing and unpacking without damaging your stuff. Packing tape can help you avoid costly damages, but if you’re not using the right kind, you could end up doing more harm than good. So, it’s worth learning how to choose the best tape for moving boxes ahead of time.

Categories Moving Storage