HOW TO ASSEMBLE KNOCK-DOWN FURNITURE
Knock-down (or flatpack) furniture is popular due to its cost-effectiveness. Because it is packaged flat and portable enough to pick up and load in the car yourself, you save on delivery costs. Ready-to-assemble (RTA), self-assembly or assembly-required furniture are also specifically prepared for simple construction, complete with instruction manuals that are clear and easy to follow. Nevertheless, sometimes things go wrong. Here are a few tips on how to assemble your knock-down furniture without hassles.
Determine beforehand if you’ll need another set of hands to help you take the box(s) of preassembled furniture from the store to your home. Ask the store for the estimated weight of each box. Furniture with hollow metal frames is lightweight, but if it has glass components, then it becomes heavy. Natural wood is about as heavy as pressed wood or particleboard. Long pieces of furniture like cabinets and tall shelves will be difficult to handle alone. Glass and mirrors need to be handled with care.
Decide whether you want to assemble the furniture by yourself or with the help of someone else. Most “assemble-it-yourself” furniture can be completed alone, but some require three or four hands. Assembling furniture with friends and family can be fun, but it can also be chaotic. Quality of assembly is also more difficult to ensure when too many hands are involved.
Designate an area that’s sufficient for unpacking and maneuvering the preassembled pieces. The finished item might have a small footprint, but the loose pieces will need to be laid out over a wider work area, so be sure you have enough elbowroom. And you know where you want to put the new furniture, so, don’t assemble it too far away.
Advise members of the household that assembly is ongoing. This means pets and toddlers need to be kept away from the construction area. And everyone must know where the first-aid kit is located.
Start unpacking only when you’re ready to devote the time required to complete the assembly. Leaving furniture assembly half done usually leads to scattered pieces getting in the way of daily routines. The sooner you can complete putting the item together, the sooner you can get it out of the way.
Open the box carefully and lay the cardboard flat to protect your floor and provide cushioning for the loose pieces during assembly. If the cardboard box is not sufficient, work over a carpet or rug.
Be ready with the basic handyman tools. Some knock-down furniture is simple enough to boast “no tools required,” but more complex pieces will probably call for a hammer and screwdrivers and maybe even a power drill. Allen wrenches are usually provided.
Spread out all the furniture pieces and accompanying hardware. Compare what you have with what’s listed in the instruction manual. Be sure you have everything before you start.
Follow the instructions carefully. No matter how simple the furniture looks, it helps to read the instructions for assembly sequence and tips.
When done, congratulate yourself and marvel at how much money you saved by doing the assembly yourself.
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