What’s the Best Way to Move a Pool Table Without Damaging It?

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Charlie Nguyen, Ping Pong Professional & Site Founder

A veritable ping pong master, with 20 years of experience, Charlie strives to educate and empower people through getting the right sports gear and skill


Little known fact about pool tables: they’re really heavy. Or, maybe you knew that already, because you tried to casually shift around a pool table some time. Unless you can easily drag around over 800 lbs., you’re probably going to have a bit of trouble with it, to say the least.

This isn’t so bad if you’re moving the table a short distance, especially if you have a couple of loyal cohorts to help you lift and shimmy it a few feet, though you need to remember to be gentle with it.

However, the real trouble comes in when you need to truly MOVE a pool table, whether it be to another room or another home, moving something so heavy presents issues from the weight alone. This is compounded by how surprisingly fragile pool tables can be, as the key component underneath the pool cloth is not wood, but slate.

The Sensitive Part of a Pool Table

Slate is fairly tough in some ways, but it can be brittle, and even a small crack in it spells doom for your ability to play on that table. Basically, it’s really good at standing up to impacts from above, but not so much against impacts from the sides, due to the way force travels along a plane like that. This means that no matter what else you do, keep in mind that bumping the slate against the floor, a door frame, or something else of that nature might spell doom for your entire pool table. Avoid this at all costs.

On the bright side, moving a pool table even as far as the next room is fairly simple, as would be loading it up onto a truck…IF it has a sufficiently wide ramp.

Using the Right Equipment


What you’re going to need is furniture dollies, or similar packing supplies (like a very large cart, which you probably don’t have easy access to). This gives you nice little wheels to motor around the pool table with minimum effort.

So, get yourself a quartet of dollies and some helpers. Load up the pool table one leg at a time, ensuring that the dollies have their wheels locked while you’re doing so.

Once done, it’s just as simple as rolling the pool table around. If you’ve ever moved something heavy like this before, you know that while the process is simple, it’s not necessarily EASY, as things this large tend to have a lot of momentum. Make sure to start moving very slow and steady, keeping a handle on how fast you let the table move. You certainly don’t want to put all that work getting it on the dollies to waste by slamming it into a wall…which would likely not only bust your pool tale, but also knock a huge hole in your wall, or at the very least dent it (if you have drywall or hardwood respectively).

Moving through Tight Corners

Keep in mind that corners are your worst enemy here. During the move, there is no difference between pool and snooker because both tables are large, bulky, and most importantly: long. If you have a ton of tight corners in your space, this method might not work out well for you. Which is a shame, because the other method is a real pain.

If you need to maneuver around in tight corners or take your pool table up or down the dreaded stairs, then you’ve got a real problem. This packing and moving advice actually works well for ANY large piece of furniture you might want to move around your house, though: take it apart.

The problem in this specific circumstance is, again, the slate which is the most important part you need to protect. However, presumably you were able to get the slate INTO the room you currently have the pool table in, so can likewise presumably get it out again. You want to make double super extra sure that you can get the slate into the new room space needed for a pool table.

It might be worth it to buy a cut of wood that’s the same size as your pool table slate and see how easy it is to maneuver around. Trust me, that little bit of lumber is going to be a lot cheaper than replacing or repairing your slate if it cracks, and you can always use it for some other project in the future, like boarding over your windows during hurricane season.

How to Disassemble A Pool Table?

Taking apart your pool table is also a bit of a complex task, again because of the slate. The weight involved means you can’t just haphazardly start removing screws and legs from the table.

There’s a simple but very specific order you need to remove the different pieces of your pool table, and thankfully you can do it with very simple household tools; no specialized tools needed.

You want to remove the pockets first, as they’re stapled onto the felt. Wear eye protection here and pry out the staples however is best for you (a staple remover, needle nose pliers, etc.). You’ll need to crawl under the table for this.

Then, work on getting the rails off. They unscrew easily enough. Set these aside.

Next, remove the felt. This is the most annoying part, sadly, but we do have an in-depth guide for doing so that should help matters.

Now, very carefully pull off the slate and set it aside somewhere it won’t get damaged. There are some screws to undo here, but that’s simple enough to deal with. Make sure you have a friend or two on hand to help you remove the slate; it can weigh nearly 500 lbs. on its own.

Finally, disassemble the legs. There’s some more simple unscrewing needed here, but no big deal again.

Now, move all of the pieces (being extra careful with the slate, of course) to the new location, and do all of that again but in reverse. Once done, then you can move the minor furniture’s like storage racks or hangers for pool cues. If you want to find good pool equipment then we reviewed excellent pool cues within the budget.

If any of that seems like a pain (and it is, trust me), you can always call a professional mover. It can get pretty expensive, but it’s less expensive than trying to take on a job you can’t handle and busting your table up beyond repair.

Tom Erickson