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Storage Tips

Self storage is actually an art and a science. Doing it properly and with some careful thought will ensure that the stacks will not fall over and possibly hurt you or damage other things. Also, this will help you know exactly where you put each item so that it will not be hard to find and retrieve. This way, you don’t have to open each box just to find one item. More importantly, packing and organizing your things will make them last longer and they’ll not be filled with dust or grime.

Here are some tips to help ensure success in using your self storage unit:

Tips on picking the right size unit:


  • Take into account the size of your item that you will be storing.

  • Plan how things could be stored in the unit.

  • Units are on average 8 foot tall so you will also have vertical storage, not just the floor space.

  • If items can not be broken down can you store small items inside, under, or on top of them.

  • Think about the option of having room to walk down the middle to access items you may have at the back.

  • If it is for long term use think about the items that will be stored at different times of the year.

  • You can also ask the manager to see the unit before you sign the agreement.


Tips on packing your boxes:


  • Before putting things in a box, make a list and assign each to their respective boxes. Make labels for each box and attach these labels to all sides of the box, as well as the top of the box. When making your list, also write down the estimated replacement value of each item, particularly if you want to insure your things. If there are breakables, place “fragile” stickers on the box.

  • Use no more than 2 sizes of boxes. This way, stacking the boxes will be easier and more organized. Boxes should be sturdy enough that the bottom box can withstand the weight of other boxes being stacked on it.

  • As much as possible, place what you can in boxes to prevent them from getting dusty.

  • Fill up the entire box but not all with heavy materials. You need to fill up a box to avoid the tendency for it to collapse or tip over. However, you should avoid filling it up with heavy stuff so that it won’t be hard for you to carry. When packing, fill the box with the heavy items first and then fill it to capacity with lighter items.

  • Putting items in sealed plastic bags may seem like a good idea but it can actually invite mildew.

  • When packing books, don’t fill up one big box with them. Use smaller book boxes. Also, don’t store the books standing on end. Rather, put them flat in the boxes so that their spines will not be damaged.

  • Freezers and refrigerators should be stored with the door slightly open. Electrical appliances should be completely dry – defrost freezers and refrigerators, drain washing machines completely.

  • Pack breakables in bubble wrap or packing paper. Wrap mirrors and picture frames with bubble wrap.

  • When packing clothes, we recommend that you make use of clothes or wardrobe boxes where you can hang the clothes inside and ensure that they retain their shape.

  • When wrapping your things, use cloth and not plastic.

  • When preparing metal tools and equipment for storage, you should drain these of fuel completely. A rub down with some oil will also help to prevent rust from forming.

  • Ward off dust by sealing boxes with packing tape.


Tips on organizing your self storage unit


  • Plan ahead. As the saying goes, “If you fail to plan, you plan to fail!”. Make a general plan of how you will place the boxes and furniture inside your storage unit.

  • Avoid putting in wet items as these may invite mildew, mold or other types of water damage.

  • Store mirrors and frames standing on end, never flat.

  • Stack boxes in such as way that each box can be easily accessed. Don’t store stacks and stacks of boxes together. Make an aisle that will allow you to access a box without having to move anything out of the way. (And remember to store the heavy boxes at the bottom, the lighter ones on top.)

  • Place the boxes with the things that you’ll most frequently need at the front part of storage unit.

  • Label your boxes so you know what items are in them.

  • To save space, you can dismantle furniture. For instance, to store a table, you can remove the legs. Just be sure that all bolts and screws are kept in a labeled container and that you actually know how to put the piece of furniture back again.

  • Create more space in your storage box by using the hollow areas of big furniture. For instance, you can put a box or two inside a wardrobe. The same goes for refrigerators, washing machines or stoves.

Know your insurance plan

Insuring your stored belongings is crucial, especially if you’re in it for the long-term.

Many storage users give little consideration to their insurance plan when they sign a storage contract.

Mount Airy Self Storage offers SafeStor starting at $7.95 a month.

If you have a homeowner/renters policy check with your agent to see if your item will be cover under your current policy.

The right way to pack and organize your things in a self storage facility will help prevent damage and ensure that your things will last for years to come.

Another important decision is your choice of the self storage facility. You should choose a facility that is secure and safe.  Mount Airy Self Storage is your place to go.

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