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    Long-Term Storage Tips: How to Keep Your Items Safe and Secure

    Long-Term Storage Tips: How to Keep Your Items Safe and Secure

    By Karen Thorogood | May 16, 2023

    Many rely on long-term storage solutions to keep their belongings safe and secure. Whether moving to a new place or simply decluttering your current space, proper long-term storage is essential to ensure that your items remain in good condition and are easily accessible when needed. Here are some helpful tips to keep your things safe and secure in long-term storage:

    Choose the Right Storage Unit

    A reputable facility should have an established history of providing exceptional customer service. You should look for a facility with good reviews and satisfied customers who have used their services.

    A facility with a good reputation for security should have 24-hour surveillance, gated access, and fire protection to protect your belongings from theft, vandalism, and other threats. Additionally, climate control and a clean environment are important factors to consider when selecting a storage facility, as they can help prevent damage caused by humidity, pests, and dirt.

    Use High-Quality Packing Materials

    Sturdy boxes are a must, as they can protect your items from damage caused by weight, pressure or shifting during transport and storage. Bubble wrap is another important packing material that can help protect items from scratches or cracks. It’s also helpful to use packing tape as it provides extra security and prevents the boxes from opening up during transportation.

    Furniture covers are important to prevent dust accumulation on your furniture. Moreover, moisture can cause irreparable damage to items stored long-term. Hence, packing materials that prevent moisture intrusion will prevent mould, mildew and water damage. Proper packing materials, therefore, play a critical role in ensuring that your items remain in good condition during long-term storage.

    Label Everything

    Labelling each box with its contents and making a detailed inventory list is crucial when storing items for long periods. This makes it easier to locate specific items when needed without digging through multiple boxes to find what you need. It also helps to track your belongings and ensure you remember all the items you’ve stored away.

    A detailed inventory list can be attached to the outside of the boxes or kept separately in a safe place. Additionally, it’s important to label each box with clear and legible information that accurately describes its contents. This will make identifying each box’s contents easier without opening them up. Proper labelling also reduces the risk of damaging fragile items by avoiding unnecessary handling.

    Keep Everything Elevated

    Keeping items elevated off the floor is an important measure to take when storing items for long periods. By using pallets or shelving units to keep your things off the ground, you can protect them from potential hazards like moisture damage, pests, and dirt. Moisture can seep through the floor and cause irreparable damage to certain materials.

    Pests like rodents and insects can easily access items stored on the floor, causing damage and contamination. Dirt and debris can also accumulate on items stored on the floor, making them difficult to clean and potentially ruining their appearance. Pallets or shelving units protect your items and keep them organised and easily accessible. Shelving units can store boxes and smaller items, while pallets can store furniture and larger items.

    It’s vital to ensure that the shelving units or pallets are sturdy and can hold the weight of your items. Proper organisation and elevation can reduce the risk of damage and ensure that your items remain in good condition throughout their storage period.

    Climate Control

    Climate-controlled storage units help regulate the internal environment by maintaining a consistent temperature and humidity. This helps protect your items from damage caused by extreme temperatures, moisture, and other environmental factors. This is especially important if you plan on storing items sensitive to temperature and humidity changes, such as electronics or antiques. Some items may warp, crack, or even develop mould without climate control.

    Climate-controlled storage units offer an extra layer of protection that can give you peace of mind when storing kitchen appliances and other valuable items for long periods. Additionally, climate-controlled units protect your belongings from pests that thrive in humid environments, thereby preventing damage to your property.

    Regularly Check on Your Items

    Catching issues early can prevent further damage to your items, saving you time, money, and frustration. Signs of damage may include water damage, mould or mildew growth, or scratches and dents on furniture. If you detect pests like rodents, insects, or termites, you can immediately eradicate them before they cause extensive damage

    Proper inspections and maintenance of your items can help extend their lifespan and reduce the risk of damage or loss. Regular visits to your storage unit also allow you to rearrange and organise your items to keep them in good condition. In addition, these visits provide an opportunity to update your inventory list and ensure that your items are correctly labelled and accounted for.

    Use Mothballs or Cedar Blocks Inside the Self-Storage Units

    Protecting your clothing and other textiles from moths is important for long-term storage. Moths can cause significant damage to fabrics, including holes, discolouration, and general wear and tear. One way to prevent moths from causing damage is by using mothballs or cedar blocks. Mothballs are small balls made of a chemical compound that releases a toxic gas to moths and their larvae. These can be placed in storage containers with fabric items to repel moths. Cedar blocks, on the other hand, work by emitting a natural aroma that deters moths.

    By using mothballs or cedar blocks, you can protect your clothing and other textiles from moths and prevent costly damage in the long run. They are a more eco-friendly alternative to mothballs and have the added benefit of being non-toxic. You can place cedar blocks in storage containers or hang them in closets with clothing items to repel moths. Keeping these repellents away from direct contact with clothing is essential to prevent any potential damage or staining. Replacing these repellents regularly is vital to ensure their effectiveness over time.

    Disassemble Large Items for More Space

    If you plan to store large items like furniture in your storage unit, consider disassembling them first. Not only will taking apart these items help you save space, but it can also make moving them in and out of the unit easier. However, you must have all the necessary tools and equipment before disassembling anything.

    Once you’ve gathered everything you need, start by labelling all the parts and hardware so you can easily reassemble them later. Masking tape or labels can mark each piece and track which part goes where. This will save you time and frustration when you’re ready to put everything back together again. So, prepare your toolkit and remove those bulky items to maximise your storage unit space.

    Keep Important Documents Safe

    Many people use storage units to store important documents, such as birth certificates, passports, and other legal papers. This can be a great way to keep your records safe from water or fire damage.

    However, taking extra precautions is essential when storing these items for long periods. First and foremost, ensure all your documents are correctly labelled and accounted for. Labelling them will help you track where everything is located and save you time if you need to access a specific document quickly. Additionally, it’s essential to store these documents in an airtight container with a lid to protect them from humidity and moisture.

    Don’t Overpack Boxes

    As you pack items for your storage unit, it’s important to fill the boxes evenly. Packing too much in a single box can prevent it from becoming too heavy and difficult to move around. Additionally, overpacking can make it more challenging to find specific items quickly if you need them in a hurry.

    To avoid this, place only a few items into a single box. Use multiple smaller boxes to store different items if necessary instead of packing everything into one large container. This will make it much easier to move around and find what you need quickly when needed.

    Cover Furniture Inside Self Storage Facilities

    If you’re storing furniture in your storage unit, protecting it from dust, dirt, and other debris is important. Cover the furniture with a sheet or blanket before putting it into the storage unit. This will help prevent dust and dirt from settling on the furniture and causing damage over time.

    Additionally, ensure any wood furniture is covered with a cloth or plastic to prevent moisture damage. This will help ensure your furniture stays in good condition while in storage and can be used again when ready to take it out.

    Use Desiccant Packs in the Self-Storage Unit

    Desiccant packs are a great way to keep your items safe and dry in storage. These packs help shield against any potential harm from humidity by absorbing moisture from the air. You can purchase desiccant packs at most hardware stores or make your own using silica gel beads, rice, or oatmeal.

    Place the packs in your storage unit and check on them periodically to ensure they work. This simple step can help keep your items safe and secure from moisture-related damage.


    In conclusion, keeping your items safe and secure in a storage unit ensures longevity. The tips outlined above will help protect your items from dust, dirt, moisture, and other potential damages. If you’re looking for extra peace of mind when renting a storage unit, consider hiring Optimove for removalist services and storage. Besides preparing the items for transporting, they can also help you choose the best storage facilities for your kitchen appliances, household goods, and furniture. You can store washing machines, store mattresses, picture frames, and other belongings safely.

    You don’t have to worry about space or the safety of your stored items when moving house – just trust Optimove!

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