Your basement and attic are overflowing, your child just left for college, you are moving and there is a gap in time between residences…these are just a few of the reasons that people place items in a storage unit. D & D Storage and Moving, your Cincinnati, Ohio Storage expert, wants to insure that your items come out of storage in the same condition that they went in. Many people fail to plan their storage experience and risk damage to their valuables. We are here to make sure that doesn’t happen to you. Here are a few of the most common storage mistakes that people make when using a storage unit.
Selecting the wrong unit
The cost of your unit is based upon size and climate. Avoid these common storage mistakes
- Too small-When planning to move items into storage, be realistic about how much space you need. If your unit is too small your items won’t fit or might get broken as you attempt to cram in a few more things. Select a unit that is large enough for breathable space around your items and a walkway from front to back of your unit.
- Too large-A unit that is too large is a waste of money.
- Not climate controlled storage- Extreme heat or cold can damage many valuables even if they are packed appropriately. Items that require climate control include photographs, furs (need to be kept cool), antiques, computers, linens, electronics, musical instruments including pianos
Storing items that are dangerous
- Paint, gasoline, oil or other flammable create fire hazards. Drain any gas powered appliances before placing them in your storage unit.
- Food might attract rodents and is a source of moisture that could cause mildew in your unit.
- Washing your china before storage and not allowing it to adequately dry before packing can cause mildew to form.
- Appliances with closed doors may mildew. Store all appliances with open doors.
- Pets and plants do not do well in storage
Packing Storage Mistakes
Space is valuable when packing your storage unit. Here are some common mistakes in packing.
- Packing large furniture pieces intact. If your table can be disassembled, remove legs and put hardware in a labeled plastic bag taped to the underside of the table top.
- Using newspaper to protect valuables-Newspaper is not a good wrapping material as the ink from the paper can stain your stored items. For breakables, newspaper does not have enough strength to protect your valuables. Use bubble wrap or Plain wrapping paper
- Using multiple sized boxes can have you feeling like you are putting together a jigsaw puzzle as you load your unit. Use same sized boxes for easier stacking. Consider plastic storage bins for added strength and stack-ability.
- Boxes that are packed too heavy to lift comfortably.
- Boxes that are not full or are overfull. Because you re planning to stack the boxes in your unit, you need to make sure that the boxes are full so they won’t collapse. If filling the box fully would make it too heavy, fill the extra space with packing peanuts or plain wrapping paper scrunched to fit the vacant space. Overfull boxes may bulge or break open.
- Unlabeled or improperly labeled boxes will make finding items difficult. When you stack boxes you won’t be able to see a label on the top. Label boxes on all four sides, as well as on the top. Use a wide permanent black marker for ease in reading. Ink pens or fine tipped markers do not give enough visibility. Sticky labels may fall off.
It is not uncommon to underestimate how long your valuable will be in storage. To prevent headaches down the road, avoid these common storage mistakes.
- Packing your unit as tight as possible. You should always leave about an inch of space around the outside of your unit to allow for good air flow. If you pack up all the way to the edge of your unit you create the potential for mildew.
- Failing to leave an isle down the center of your unit. In case you need to find something, leaving an isle down the center makes it possible to access your wanted valuable.
- Failing to map your unit. Make a map of your unit as you pack it to make it easier to find items.
- Light to heavy. Placing heavy items on top can make lower boxes collapse. Plan ahead and place heavy boxes on the bottom.
- Short to tall. Place taller items towards the back of the unit to allow for better visibility.
- Items needed in the back. Plan ahead an put items that may be needed closer to the front.
- Failure to insure-Don’t assume that your homeowners insurance will cover the items placed in storage. Make sure that you have adequate insurance for all valuables.
- Not protecting your passcode or key. Access to your unit should be restricted. Most storage facility thefts can be tracked to unauthorized access because of shared passcodes.
- Easily visible valuables. Place valuable items away from the front of your unit. You don’t want someone seeing valuable items if they walk by while you are visiting your unit.
D & D Storage and Moving is Greater Cincinnati’s answer to your storage needs. As a Steven’s World Wide Van Lines Agent we offer full service for your moving needs. Call today for a free estimate.