Self-Storing Furniture

By Sarah Hughes on 22 Feb 2022

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Whether you are moving house, decorating, renovating your home, or decluttering, self-storage can be a safe and secure solution to store your furniture. Storing your furniture does not need to be stressful or complicated. If you are storing short-term or long-term, we have 10 tips which can help to ensure your furniture remains in good condition.

1. Choosing the Right Size Storage Container

One of the hardest decisions, once you have decided to use self-storage, is choosing the right sized storage container for your items. The volume of contents is different for every household but, to try to make this easier, we have included the measurements and relatively capacities of our containers and what these could potentially hold. Our 20ft units can typically hold the contents of a single garage; whilst our containers are slightly narrower than a regular single garage they are also longer and taller, so you can use this as a rough guide. 

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2. Clean Your Furniture

Once you have chosen the size of your container and booked your storage, you should thoroughly vacuum and clean your furniture to ensure any odours, dust and hair are removed. This will help to significantly reduce any risk of damp or mould appearing in your container.

When storing fabric items, it is a good idea to use the correct fabric cleaner and ensure the item is completely dry before placing into your storage container. 

Polishing wooden furniture will help to ensure the finish is protected and using a metal cleaner with a polishing cloth on any metal items will help to remove any existing oxidation and delay the build-up of tarnish.

Steam cleaning rugs or carpets is the best way to ensure they remain fresh and clean in your container.

3. Storing Clothes, Bedding or Cushions

Once you have cleaned these items and they are thoroughly dry you can place them into plastic bags to reduce the likelihood of damp or mould. Some of our customers use vacuum sealed bags to ensure they are airtight and reduce the space they will take up in the storage container.  

4. Disassembling Furniture

When storing larger items, such as desks, tables, wardrobes, bookshelves, sideboards etc it may be more efficient for you to move and store if you are able to dismantle them. This will also help to reduce any breakages, scuffs, or scratches.

Any screws, nuts, bolts, or handles can be placed in a small bag and taped to the furniture item it belongs to. 

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5. Wrapping Furniture for Storage

For however long you plan to store your furniture it would be best practice to wrap your items to ensure ultimate protection:

Wrap picture frames, ornaments, mirrors, crockery, glass, and anything else which may be fragile in bubble wrap. Use a good strong box to place these items in.

Use a mattress protector on your mattress to decrease the risk of damp, mould or any damage / marks that could be caused during loading and unloading. 

Loosely drape dust sheets or blankets over sofas and chairs, this will ensure they remain dust free and allows it to breathe. 
Antique and wooden furniture are best protected by dust sheets as this will protect them whilst remaining breathable. 

Never use thick plastic to protect your items as this is unbreathable and can attract condensation and moisture with a risk of mould developing.

6. White Goods

Ensure white goods such as washing machines, fridges and freezers are fully defrosted, drained down and free of any organic matter. You don’t want to take moisture into a storage container as this will lead to condensation and damp which could damage your possessions. 

7.  Never Store Food or Perishable Items

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Never store food or perishable items either short term or long term in a storage container as this can attract bugs or vermin. Although our storage facilities have regular pest control programmes in place, you can never be too careful. It would also leave a very unpleasant smell that would hit you as soon as you open the doors.

It is also a good idea to ensure any bags or boxes you are using do not come from a grocery store as they could be soiled and could be a risk of mould occurring.

8. Use Your Storage Space Efficiently

The best way to store your furniture is to give yourself enough time to methodically and strategically place your items to prevent any accidents of furniture falling or becoming damaged. Place larger and heavy items to the rear of the container and at floor level with lighter items on the top. Don’t be afraid to stack to the ceiling, but it’s a good idea to leave an inch gap to the walls and leave the air vents free to allow air to circulate.  

9. Create an Aisle / Walkway

If you have the space then it's worthwhile leaving an aisle up the middle of your container or a walkway down one side so that you can access things more easily during storage, should you need to. Take time to think about what you may need to access so this is within easy reach with labels on boxes facing the aisle / walkway.

10. Storage Inside Storage

Try not to leave hollow spaces. If you’re storing cupboards and drawers then use these to store items too. You can even use fridges and freezers for books and DVD’s (although it’s worth leaving the doors ajar for circulation). As we previously advised, be sure all white goods such as fridges, freezers and washing machines etc, are fully defrosted and drained down.

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