Aug 25, 2020

How to Prepare Household Items for Storage

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Whether it is your first time renting a storage unit or you are doing again. Proper preparation beforehand can help make your experience a positive one. Some items take a little more preparation when getting them ready to go into storage. That means you need to put in a little extra work beforehand, to prepare household items for storage.

Clean Items to Prepare Household Items for Storage

This may seem obvious, but the cleaner items are when they go in the cleaner they are when they come out. If you store something that is dirty it is more likely to rub up against something clean and make it dirty as well.

Many people don’t think about how odors can affect their things. If you put something that smells into your storage unit you can almost count on other objects absorbing that smell. Sometimes a good wash is all it takes to fix the smell but other times it can be completely ruined. By cleaning all your items before entering storage you are more likely to have clean and odorless items when they come out of storage.

How to Specifically Prepare Household Items for Storage


You have spent a lot of money on your furniture and want it to be in good shape when it comes out. Most furniture is made out of wood or metal. If made out of wood or just a wood frame you want to be aware of the climate you are storing it in. Humidity and temperature change can do some major damage to wood furniture items. You may want to think about how long you plan on storing these items. When storage might be longer than a month or two it can get smart to store these kinds of items in a climate-controlled storage unit.

Another option is to wrap furniture for long term storage. This will protect it from collecting dust and potentially damaging the furniture. Wrapping furniture is done with plastic or shrink-wrap completely around the furniture. Another option is to cover furniture with blankets or sheets as a way to extend the life of the furniture long after it comes out of your storage unit.


If you’re storing appliances they take a lot more preparation to get them ready for storage. Appliances like refrigerators, freezers, and washing machines contain a lot of moisture and need to be drained before putting them into your storage unit. For a freezer, this may mean taking a few extra days ahead of time to prepare it for storage. Start by using all your food up so you can unplug your freezer in order to thaw it out and drained.

Once your appliances are drained it is time to get cleaning. If you have ever had an appliance for a long time you know how dirty it can get and dirt collects odors. See “Clean Items Before Storage” for additional information about how odor can affect your things. Clean and sanitize your appliances inside and out. Something like a refrigerator can collect past food items in all sorts of nooks and crannies. Make sure to give it a good clean.

Once everything is all cleaned make sure to let it dry out well so it doesn’t bring any moisture into your storage unit. Even the smallest amounts of moisture can cause mold and mildew damage to your items. When moving your appliances into your storage unit leave the doors slightly ajar to prevent any residual moisture from creating mold inside. If you have ever encountered a turned off refrigerator where the door has been closed, you know how unpleasant the smell can be.


Pictures and mirrors can be fragile items that need to be looked after. You can fit them vertically to take up less space. Also, if you have a lot of them you can box them up but remember they can get heavy quickly. If it is artwork that you have then you want to make sure to put them into a climate-controlled storage unit. A climate-controlled storage unit will help prevent the paint from cracking due to the canvas becoming more or less taught.

With mirrors or large panes of glass, it is important to wrap them up well so that they are less fragile. Things like bubble wrap and newspapers can help prevent them from breaking. You still need to be careful when moving them but have a better chance of them staying safe.

 Lawn Care Equipment

Often when people are planning out a storage unit, they forget about the things in their storage area or garage. Remember that if you have anything in your storage space at your home you need to remember to account for those items. Many of the forgotten items are lawnmowers, snowblowers, and other lawn care equipment. Prepare your lawn care equipment similarly to how you would put it away for winter. Don’t know how to prepare your lawnmower for storage? Check out this step by step guide on how to prepare it for winter.

When you put lawn care equipment into storage it is important to make sure they are taken care of properly. Earlier in this post, we talked about cleaning items. This is essential for lawn care items. They can hold a lot of smells and layers of dirt on them. It is also really important to drain any fluids from your equipment. If you have ever spilled gas on your shoes,  clothes, or the garage floor, you know how smelly that can be. It can linger for long periods of time so any slight leak in your equipment will affect your other items.  Also, most movers will not move lawn items that still have fluids in them.