Packing Your Self Storage Space

Packing for Self Storage

Packing your gear into your Self Storage space is easy, but our tips will make it easier and help you save money. You’ll need to put some thought into it before you begin. The core advantage of using a Self Storage facility is the fact that you can continue to access your items, unlike at most removalists.

The key is to pack in such a way that you can find things at a later date easily and quickly and without unloading absolutely everything you’ve put away. Make a list of what you’ve packed and where it is as you go along. Other packing and storage preparation tips include:

  • Make an estimate of the replacement value of each item you store to help with accurate insurance policies and in case of unforeseen damage in the Self Storage facility. The Facility Manager can advise you on the cover you need.
  • Invest in good quality sturdy boxes and packing materials – box strength degrades with use. If you buy boxes of similar sizes it’ll be easier to stack them securely in the Self Storage facility and this will save you space. Boxes are available from the office.
  • Box everything that you can – everything that is left unboxed in a Self Storage facility can get a bit dusty.
  • Fill boxes to the top wherever possible to avoid breakages and avoid making them too heavy – remember you’ll will have to lift them. You can use materials such as paper or towels or can buy special packing to fill spaces if necessary. Depending on the space you opt to rent, you might be stacking boxes on top of each other so make sure the lower boxes are sturdy enough to stacked on. Boxes that are only partly filled can tip over or collapse.
  • Label all boxes clearly so you can identify the contents and keep a list. Label them on more than one side so you can see what’s what. Mark ‘Fragile’ on any boxes containing breakable items. Stack them low so if they do fall over the fall is small.
  • Don’t be tempted to fill large boxes with heavy items such as books as they’ll quickly become impossible to carry and may break. You can buy small book cartons from the office that will do the job just fine. If you do pack heavy items in a large box put in just a few and then fill the box up with lighter items.
  • Don’t pack items into sealed plastic bags, as humidity can cause mildew.
  • Cartons available from
  • Pack books flat to avoid damaging their spines.
  • Don’t store wet items in your space as they can cause water damage, mould and mildew.
  • Large appliances need care before placing in a unit – make sure you defrost fridges and freezers thoroughly before storing them otherwise you’ll be leaving yourself open to water damage and mould. Wipe the insides with Vanilla extract to keep them smelling fresh. Tie doors up for the move, although you should leave them slightly ajar once in storage to stop condensation forming and help ward off bad odours. Drain washing machines before storing them and tie down hoses etc. dust off the back as dust can attract vermin. Appliances should be clean and dry.
  • Wrap all fragile items and breakables such as dishes, glasses, ornaments etc separately. Paper will do and the office has special warapping paper that is chemical free and bubble wrap is a good investment. Pack them tightly into strong boxes, filling any gaps with paper or filler. Try to avoid putting heavy items on top of fragile ones in a Self Storage facility. Do not use Newspaper as the ink bleaches our of the pages onto glassware and is almost impossible to clean up later.
  • If you’re going to store clothes, think about buying clothes boxes or port-a-robes – you’ll then be able to simply hang the clothes in them and they’ll keep their shape. It’s not wise to put your clothes in bin liners in a unit as moisture can get trapped inside when they’re sealed and your clothes may be ruined. All clothes contain moisture.
  • For the best protection for mirrors and pictures in a unit, wrap them in a protective covering such as bubble wrap and stack them on their ends. Mirrors and pictures should never be stored flat. Mark them as ‘Fragile’. Use a blanket if needed.
  • Separate lamp bases and lampshades and wrap them for protection.
  • If you’re storing upholstered products such as mattresses and sofas in a unit, invest in covers, bags or sheeting to give them some additional protection. Stand sofas and mattresses on end wherever possible to save space and don’t stack too much on top of soft furnishings. Mattresses are best stored on the long end (covered to keep dust out) and should be ideally raised above floor level or laid on protective sheeting.
  • Storing furniture on top of each other, use a simple dust sheet or cover placed between items will minimize scratching and damage.
  • You can save space if you dismantle furniture such as beds and tables before you store it. Make sure you keep hold of all the nuts and bolts, put them in a plastic bag and tape that to the item! Wrap and cover furniture sections and keep them together, clearly marked, for quick retrieval.
  • Store large pieces of furniture vertically to save space in the facility.
  • Chairs can be stacked seat to seat to save space. Cover chair legs with protective wrapping for extra protection.
  • Spray your wood furniture with a good quality furniture spray before storing it in the facility to give it some added protection.
  • Electrical equipment such as TVs, stereos and computers should be packed in their original boxes wherever possible. If this isn’t possible, pack them into boxes that are about the right size making sure that you pack gaps with paper etc. Make sure you tie down the player arm of a record player and secure your turntable.
  • If you’re storing items with fuel tanks such as lawn mowers, brush cutters and cars etc in a unit, expect to be asked to drain the tanks before you put them in storage. Fuel is one of the few things that you CANNOT store in a unit.
  • Wipe down metal objects and tools with a little oil before storing to avoid rust formation.
  • You can tie tools and long-handled items in bundles. Don’t store a brush resting on the bristles.
  • Don’t store vacuum cleaners with the bag in – throw it away before you store them.
  • Treat leather items with a leather conditioner before you store them.
  • Think hard about whether you really want to store photographs in a unit. If you do store loose photographs, place them between pieces of clean cardboard and tape them together to avoid curling. Photographs will suffer temperature damage. If possible put them in boxes underneath other boxes to help insulate them.
  • Think creatively and you’ll make more space. Plan to use furniture drawers as an extra box (they are especially good for fragile items) and you can use the inside of wardrobes to store boxes. Kitchen appliances such as stoves and fridges can also be used in this way.
  • Seal all your boxes with packing tape before you put them in a unit – this will help keep dust out of the contents.