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Guidelines for Storage
General Storage Tips
When selecting a storage facility check for:
- Security for the facility and your unit.
- Access to your storage area when it’s convenient for you – hours, days, holidays.
- Vermin and pest control measures.
- Your lock, your key on YOUR storage unit.
- Any required deposit, billing dates and payment methods.
Prepare your goods for storage
- Make an inventory and take photos for your records.
- Blankets, Draperies and Clothing – have blankets, draperies and out-of-season clothing cleaned, then pack them right on the hanger in a wardrobe box.
- Books – pack them flat, not standing on end (which may cause damage to the spines). Books are extremely heavy, so don’t pack too many in one box or mix them with fragile items.
- Lawn Mowers and Powered Yard Equipment – drain gasoline and oil from all small engines.
- Mirrors and Pictures – large works should be stored in specially designed boxes. Smaller pictures can be wrapped in bubble wrap or packing paper and stored in boxes with clothing or linens.
- Mattresses – protect them and your furniture with plastic mattress covers and stand them on end.
- Furniture and Tables – Place a pallet or plastic sheet on the floor and stand sofas on end.
- Disassemble beds and tables to save storage space. Wrap with furniture pads to protect from soil and scratches. Wrap table legs in paper pads and if possible, tape them to the protective wrap around the corresponding item. Place a bedsheet over your furniture as a dust cover.
- Photos – old photographs tend to curl over time. To keep them flat, place them between two pieces of cardboard and tape them together. Do not store irreplaceable photos. Negatives take up little space. Consider keeping them with you.
- Appliances – A refrigerator or freezer should be thoroughly dry and stored with its door slightly ajar. Non-perishable goods may be stored inside large appliances and boxes can be stacked on top of stoves, refrigerators and freezers. Make sure that stoves and cooking equipment are cleaned before they are stored.
Organize your storage unit
- Leave a few inches of space between your items and the wall for better ventilation.
- Gather the things you are least likely to need during the time you are storing your belongings. Place these things in the room first.
- Store heaviest items on the bottom and lighter items on the top. Place cartons so that you can read the label which lists their contents.
- Use dresser tops for stacking cartons and dresser drawers for linens or small, delicate items. Keep upholstery off the floor. Most lightweight chairs can be stacked “seat to seat” or placed upside down on tables which cannot be disassembled.
- Place the things you are most likely to need closest to the door for easy access.
- Label boxes. Take home a list of labeled boxes for easy reference when you need to locate your goods.
- Do not lean items against walls. Leave a walk-way to the rear of your space for easy access.
- Store items that could be damaged by water off the floor.
- Securely latch and lock the door to your storage room when leaving.
Do not store:
- Flammables – Fuels – Ammunition – Paints – Liquids – Toxic/Hazardous Wastes
- Explosives – Animals – Perishables – Food Items