Are you a snowbird or an avid traveler? Are you moving or downsizing? Either way, you may have to put some of your extra belongings in storage. One concern that you may have is how to prevent mold on your items in storage.
Southwest Florida has a reputation for beautiful beaches and brutal humidity. Although the beaches are great, the humidity can cause serious issues and is the main culprit for mold. If you plan to store your precious belongings in a storage facility, do you know the precautions you need to take to help prevent mold?
Where are you storing your items?
You have finally packed everything up! So, where do you put it? If your bedrooms and closets are not your space of choice, you may head to your attic or garage. Although both are great for storing items, they are also very high in humidity and potential mold. Even if you choose to rent out a storage room in a facility, checking for mold is important regardless of where you put the boxes.
Moisture tends to build around these boxes where there is high humidity. This can attract mold spores, which then can spread to all the items inside. If you do not see the mold and continue to use the items in your home at a later date, you may notice a spread.
What Do I Do?
The first thing you need to do prior to storing your items is to get a mold test. Knowing if there is already mold in the area will give you an idea of what to do with your items. This will also help you consider what you are putting where. Certain items that can’t be around high humidity should go to different places or in different containers.
The test will detect any mold that is present in the area currently and remove that so you don’t store your boxes there. We can also let you know the humidity levels and if mold is likely to happen in that area.
You can do some things on a regular basis to make sure that your belongings are not infiltrated by mold.
Find a climate-controlled environment. Some storage facilities offer these features, which would be ideal for expensive or special items. Consider using these items for clothes, wooden items, or metal products.
Check the boxes often. Even though you are putting the items away, you should still check on them every few months. Keeping an eye out for any moisture, humidity changes, or mold growth is very important. If you notice any of these changes, it is time to move your items or figure out what caused the changes.
Clean and Dry items before storing them. If you are choosing to store some items after a cleaning spree, you may not realize that you may be adding to the issue. Cleaning products or water may still be on the items, and it is crucial that they are completely dry before you pack them away!
Choose the Right Containers. If you have noticed mold growth or are aware of high humidity in the unit, consider switching containers. Mold needs oxygen to grow, so airtight containers are better for storage. No oxygen means mold spores should stay far away from your personal items!
Air Flow! Try to avoid putting the boxes directly up against walls. Piling things and getting all your items too close together could attract moisture from the ground. Make sure to spread items out as much as you can so that there is room for the items to breathe. This is even more true for storage units due to the concrete floors and walls.
Items to avoid putting in Storage
If you have to put things away, choose wisely when it comes to which ones you store. Some items that you should avoid putting in storage are:
Any kind of food
Nothing Hazardous or Dangerous
If you are planning to move in the future, downsize, or want to put some things away in the near future, take this into consideration. Storing our items away is a process of its own. Making sure that our precious belongings stay mold-free is something we need to think about before we pack up.
The main takeaways are to get that mold test first. Find out the humidity levels and adjust your storage plans. The main goal is to create more space while still owning your stuff and making sure it stays intact. Mold on your items could have the capabilities to spread, and using these tips will help you to keep all of your items in good shape. For more questions on how we can help keep mold off your stored items, reach out to our team today.