When it comes to preparing items for storage, proper planning and packing are key to ensuring that your items remain in good condition during their time in storage.
Whether you’re storing your items temporarily during a move or for an extended period, these tips will help you prepare your items for storage effectively:
- Gather Your Packing Materials Before you start packing, make sure you have all the necessary packing materials on hand. You’ll need packing paper, bubble wrap, strong cardboard boxes, and tools for dismantling furniture and appliances if necessary.
- Inspect Your Boxes Check all cardboard boxes for strength, dryness, and any signs of damage or infestation. Consider using durable plastic bins for long-term storage, as they offer better protection, are reusable and stackable and make good use of space using the height inside the unit.
- Use Appropriate Packing Materials Use acid-free and print-free packing paper to wrap your items. Avoid using newspapers, as the ink can transfer onto delicate items. Plastic bags should also be avoided, as they can trap moisture and lead to mould growth.
- Evaluate Your Belongings Decide which items are worth storing and which ones you should discard. Items for storage should be those you’ll need and use in the future.
- Dispose of Hazardous Items Do not store flammable, explosive, corrosive, food, plants, or scented items in storage units. Follow safety guidelines for storing potentially hazardous materials.
- Create an Inventory List Keep track of the items you’re storing by creating an inventory list. Make a copy and store it in a safe place for reference. Ustore Depot has an inventory list as part of our welcome pack and is available to pick up in the office.
- Clean Your Items Clean all items you plan to store, especially furniture and appliances. Use disinfectant wipes or cleaning products to ensure they are free from dirt and debris.
- Ensure Items Are Dry Before packing, make sure every item is completely dry to prevent mould growth. Moisture can quickly spread to other items in storage.
- Treat Leather Items Condition leather furniture and other leather items with a special leather conditioner to prolong their life and protect them during storage.
- Disassemble Large Furniture If necessary, disassemble large furniture items for easier storage. Keep all fastening elements in sealable plastic bags and attach them to the corresponding furniture piece.
- Protect Furniture with Padding Wrap furniture in thick padding blankets to safeguard them from damage during the moving and storage process. Movers blankets and packaging are available in-store.
- Check Mattresses Ensure mattresses are 100% dry before placing them in mattress storage bags to prevent mildew and mould. The bags also protect against dust.
- Secure Cables and Hoses Secure cables and hoses of appliances with masking tape or cable ties, and wrap appliances in protective blankets.
- Pack Electronics Carefully Use white, soft, ink-free packing paper for electronic equipment. Use anti-static bubble wrap or the original boxes for protection whenever possible.
- Keep Valuable Electronics Avoid leaving expensive electronics in storage units for safety reasons, especially if they are portable.
- Pack Clothes Properly Pack clothes in large moving boxes or wardrobe boxes for more expensive designer garments. Wardrobe boxes keep clothes wrinkle-free and dust-free.
- Consider Seasonal Storage Store seasonal clothing, such as winter clothes during summer, to free up space in your home.
- Use Vacuum Bags Store voluminous clothing items, bedding, and draperies in vacuum bags to save space in your storage unit.
- Prepare Shoes Clean and dry shoes, wrap them in soft packing paper, and pack them in their original shoe boxes or similar-sized cardboard containers.
- Ensure Dry Books Ensure books are completely dry before packing them in small to medium boxes. Valuable books should be wrapped in soft acid-free paper.
- Protect Fragile Items Wrap fragile items like China dishes and glassware individually in packing paper to prevent breakage.
- Safeguard Artwork Protect framed artwork by placing masking tape in an X pattern on the glass surface. Wrap artwork in acid-free paper and use cardboard for extra fragile elements.
- Remove Batteries Take batteries out of battery-operated items to prevent leakage during storage.
- Label Boxes Label all boxes intended for storage to easily locate items in the future. Organise boxes of similar sizes with heavier ones at the bottom. Colour coding boxes make it easier to store and zone your unit, also if there are items you think you will need to get quick access to from time to time please place these at the front of your unit. Also, mark a star on the boxes you have important items you may need to get to.
- Organise Your Storage Unit Arrange your storage unit sensibly, stacking boxes of similar sizes and leaving a passageway for easy access. Allow space between items and walls to promote air circulation and prevent mould build-up.
By following these tips for preparing items for storage, you can ensure that your belongings remain in excellent condition during their time in storage. Properly packed and organised items will make it easier for you to access what you need when the time comes. Pay particular attention when storing items that contain liquids i.e. washing machine/fridge freezer, please ensure they are fully defrosted and free from water before storing. The smallest bit of water can cause damage to goods.