How to Pack and Store Your Stuff

3 Categories of Household Items You Can Place in Self Storage

If you're downgrading your home (moving to a smaller house) or you simply need to declutter your current home, self-storage units can help you store away stuff you actually want to have around but don't need on a day-to-day basis. This article highlights some household items you can pack in storage units, and what you need to do to ensure they remain well kept.

1. Power tools

If you have a large collection of power tools you no longer use often, you need to keep them dry and out of the reach of children. They should be protected from dust, moisture and elemental damage. Inside your unit, place power tools on an elevated surface, or they might rust from moisture on the ground. Cover with plastic or canvas to protect them from dust. You can get hard plastic cases to store batteries, cords and other small accessories. Label each case so that you can find what you need easily. Do not use cardboard boxes, which can easily absorb moisture and hence won't offer adequate protection. Battery-powered tools should be stored in climate-controlled units, since the extremely hot or cold temperatures can damage the batteries.

2. Documents

Business or personal documents must be stored in a climate-controlled unit because they can easily get damaged. Depending on the type of documents being stored, you may need to rent units which have robust security measures such as video surveillance, individual-unit alarm systems and computerized/keypad gated access. You will need sturdy archive boxes into which are kept after sorting, arranging and labelling properly to ease retrieval. If the boxes aren't full, you can use filler materials to prevent collapse when stacking. Filing cabinets would be ideal for long term storage. You can include desiccants such as silica gel sachets to prevent damage from moisture accumulation.

3. Fitness equipment

Sports equipment is very expensive, and hence should be stored carefully when not in use. Read the owner's manual for any special instructions for long-term storage and be sure to follow these instructions. Before storing gym equipment, ensure that they are cleaned properly. Lifting weights should be stored on a rack with the heaviest at the bottom and then covered with canvas to protect from dirt and moisture. Other equipment like treadmills or elliptical machines should also be covered with canvas. You can place wooden crates/pallets on the floor so that they don't touch the ground directly.

Bonus: Packing the unit

Be sure to inspect your storage unit regularly to ensure your items are in tip-top shape. Check for signs of moisture seepage such as growth of mildew on the walls or floor or damp-smelling atmosphere. If you have sensitive items, such as documents, move them to a drier location where they will not be damaged.