In an ideal world, you would be able to check on your stored belongings monthly to make sure they are free from damage. Unfortunately, this isn't always the case. Moving out of the area temporarily, or just the busyness of everyday life, can make it difficult to keep an eye on your things. This is why it's vital that you prepare to store your things properly for the long-term.
Begin With the Right Unit
The type of unit you choose depends on what you are storing. For long-term storage, a temperature and humidity controlled unit is the best option. These will prevent heat and moisture damage to books, photographs, electronics, textiles, and wooden items. It doesn't take much moisture to lead to a mold and mildew problem in your storage unit.
Prepare The Unit
The unit itself will require some preparation before you move in your things. First, make sure it is swept out and clean. If you're worried about pests, you can spray the unit for bugs at this time. Check with the facility management before doing so, though. Some facilities make a it a regular practice to treat the inside of each unit before renting.
Finally, put in some flooring. Moisture is most likely to come in through the floor. Lay pallets on the ground to set your stuff on top off, which will add a layer of protection against any ground moisture.
Clean Your Things
Don't store dirty items. Wipe out appliances and launder all fabric items before you store them. Even small amount of food or soil can attract insect pests to feed on your items. Make sure everything is completely dry before you put it into storage, too, or you might come back to find mildew or mold stains.
Box It Properly
Whether you use cardboard boxes or plastic totes is up to you – there are pros and cons for both. Cardboard breathes, so humidity is less likely to become trapped inside, but it can also attract insects. Plastic provides thorough protection, but moisture can build up inside. If you opt for plastic, make sure to place some silica gel packets inside each tote. This will help absorb any excess moisture.
Anything that isn't boxed, such as furniture, needs a dust cover. Skip plastic tarps – these trap moisture. Instead, use old sheets or a cloth dropcloth. These keep the dust off while still allowing air circulation.
For more information, contact a company like Coastal Mini Storage.