Spring cleaning may get all the attention, but the winter is an excellent time to clear out clutter and get organized. With it getting colder, many of us spend more time indoors, which is a great opportunity to go through all our stuff. A storage unit can be a helpful tool for organization. Sometimes out of sight, out of mind really works, but before you send things away, you want to make sure you do it wisely and effectively. Here are five tips on storing things for the wintertime:
Choose to Store Summer Items: If you’re a style lover but don’t have the closet for it, your seasonal clothes are a great item to place in storage. Do it right – only take over clean clothes that are covered and placed off the floor of the unit. Lawn decorations are another great item to place in storage for the winter. Free up some space in the yard or in a shed by taking these items off-site. Recreational gear that will not be used all winter will benefit from a safe and secure unit. Free up garage space for the months you really want to park inside by storing these fair-weather items elsewhere.
Equipment and Tools: Yard equipment such as lawnmowers are great for storage units, but you must prep them first or they will not be allowed to stay on a storage site. Remove any gas first, clean them off, and place them in the unit completely dry. Shovels, rakes, and hoes can be stored, but make sure they’re secure so they don’t fall on other belongings and break other items in the unit.
Take Special Care of Electronics and Liquids: Electronics and batteries should not be placed into a box and tossed on the floor of a unit. Check the manuals for how to properly store items with batteries or any electronic device. At a minimum, no electronics should be placed on the ground due to its ability to lose heat easily. Items with liquid components will also need to be checked. Anything that can freeze should be handled with care before placed in a storage unit. Don’t get caught with a crack or a burst item because of frozen liquid inside.
Clean then Cover: Whatever you take to a unit needs to be properly cleaned first then covered as needed. Items that are dirty can attract pests and mold, but the dirt over the season can also damage your items. Once your items are cleaned, cover them properly with cotton or wool. Be wary of using covering that trap any moisture such as plastic. Newspaper can be a good idea as well or you can order packing peanuts for very fragile items.
Protect Sensitive Items: Some items that are sensitive to cold or are just extra special to you may require some more thought. You can create a makeshift wall inside the unit by bringing more sensitive items into the middle and the more durable items closer to the outside walls. Be cautious of what you place on the floor and how sturdy shelving is for the rest of your valuables.