Packing and Storage Tips
What to do before moving into a unit? How to pack and store like a pro?
The 10 Commandments of Self Storage
- Use boxes that are a uniform size – they will stack much easier and utilize space better.
- As you stack, place heavy boxes on the bottom and lighter on the top.
- Leave walkways between boxes so you can access them easier.
- Half full boxes tend to collapse easier during stacking.
- Leave a little space between your unit walls and boxes – helps air circulate
- Storing a refrigerator or washer/dryer? Leave doors slightly ajar – prevents mold.
- NO flammables or combustibles allowed in any of the storage units.
- Photo or Video documents your stored items.
- Label your boxes for quick ID.
- Bubble wrap and newspaper fragile items.
Preparing Items for Storage
Place all smaller items in uniformly sized boxes. Completely fill each box with heavier items on the bottom and lighter items on the top. Uniformly sized boxes stack easier and conserve storage space.
- Clean and dry all appliances prior to storage. Do not leave anything inside of appliances to be stored. Store all appliances upright with doors ajar to allow ventilation.
- Blankets, Draperies and Clothing. Have blankets, draperies and clothing cleaned, then pack them on hangers in wardrobe boxes.
- Books. Pack books flat, not standing on end. This will protect the spines, which will bend and warp over time if stood upright. Books are very heavy. So, pack them in small boxes, and don’t put them in boxes with other, more fragile, items.
- Breakable Items. Wrap breakable items inside bubble wrap and store with linens.
- Dishes and Glassware. Store these items in specially made boxes called dishpacks.
- Furniture and Tables. Place blankets over furniture to protect from scratches and dust.
- Label boxed items. You’ll know what is in each box without opening it.
- Lawn Mowers. Drain gasoline and oil from all small engines. This precaution will protect both your stored property and the property of others from the dangers of fire and explosion.
- Leather Items. Treat leather items (couches, clothes, etc.) with a leather conditioner prior to storing them. Keep furniture items off the floor by placing them on pallets.
- Place mattresses in plastic slip-on covers to protect them from dust and moisture.
- Mirrors and Pictures. Store mirrors and pictures inside similarly sized knocked down boxes. This affords them protection from scratches and dust.
- Photographs tend to curl over time. To keep them flat, place between pieces of cardboard and tape them together. Do not store irreplaceable photos. Photos and negatives take up very little space. Try to keep these items with you.
- Pillows and Toys. Store smaller items like this in large plastic garbage bags.
DO NOT STORE THESE ITEMS: Furs, jewelry and other expensive items, irreplaceable items, any living thing, used tires, firearms, explosives, flammables of any kind (gas, diesel, oil, paint, etc.), drugs or drug paraphernalia, stolen items, any type of hazardous items, perishable items of any kind, hazardous waste materials of any kind, items that produce odors or any item that will in any way make other tenants or the manager unhappy.
Organizing your Storage Unit
- Place wooden pallets or boards underneath furniture and boxes. This will prevent condensation from damaging them.
- Leave a small airspace between your stored items and the wall of the storage unit for ventilation.
- Store items that will not be needed to the rear of the storage unit, and items you will need to access toward the front of the unit.
- Store heavy items on the bottom and lightweight items on top.
- Store smaller, more valuable items to the rear of the storage unit and larger items toward the front of the unit.
- Cover everything with plastic sheeting. Wooden furniture should first be covered with blankets to avoid abrasion and moisture damage. Plastic sheeting will protect your stored goods from both dust and water damage.
- Pack your storage unit as tightly as possible. Tighter packing helps to protect stored items from moisture and dust and reduces the space needed to store you property.
- Use a high quality disc (round) padlock to secure your storage unit. This type of lock is difficult to cut or break and offers maximum protection for very little money.