Storage Tips

Make the most out of your self storage unit and keep your items protected with Monster Self Storage

Bedding, Clothing, Curtains, Drapes and Linens

Have blankets, draperies and clothing cleaned, then pack them on hangers in wardrobe boxes.


A refrigerator or freezer should be thoroughly dry and stored with its door slightly ajar. Some goods can be stored inside large appliances. Be sure to make a note if you place anything inside. Boxes can be stacked on top of stoves, refrigerators, and freezers. Make sure that stoves and cooking equipment are clean and dry before you pack them.

Dishes and Glassware

Store these items in specially made boxes called dishpacks.


Place blankets over furniture to protect from scratches and dust. Keep furniture items off the floor by placing them on pallets.

Books and Documents

Pack books flat to protect the spines. Do not place boxes directly on concrete floors, but use pallets or skids to prevent moisture absorption. Use packing to fill all empty pockets in each box. Do not pack fragile items in the same box with books and do not overload.

Holiday Decorations

Save the original cartons that contained delicate ornaments. Pad the ornaments with packing paper or newsprint. Wrap strings of lights around a piece of cardboard before placing in a carton lined with packing paper.

Mirrors, Windows, Glass Sheeting and Screens

Store mirrors and pictures inside similarly sized knocked down boxes. This affords them protection from scratches and dust.


Metal tools should be cleaned and wiped with a rag containing a few drops of machine oil to prevent rust. Long handled tools such as rakes, shovels and hoes should be clean, lightly oiled and tied in bundles.

Bicycles and Other Metal Items

To avoid rust, wipe all metal surfaces with a rag containing a few drops of machine oil.

Mark Your Calendar

Make a timeline leading up to moving day for cleaning out, labeling, and organizing your life before you move. Take a little time each week or day to check off the list, one room or closet at a time.

Don't Rush

Taking time to carefully load your storage space will ensure the best results for your belongings.

Leave Some Room

Leave air space around the perimeter to aid ventilation. Boxes of the same size make for easy stacking.

Clear a Path

Leave a walkway to the rear of your space for convenient access to all items.

Think Outside of the Box

Using plastic storage containers is a great option for accessibility without the hassle of packing tape.

Use Quality Materials

Use high-quality packing boxes designed especially for the job and seal them completely with packing tape.

Make a List and Plan Ahead

Create a list of labeled boxes for easy reference. Color coordinating or numbering each box is a great trick to stay organized.

Also, gather up plenty of sturdy, corrugated cartons, packing paper, bubble wrap, sealing tape and marker pens, along with any furniture covers or shelving you intend to use in your storage unit.

Keep, Give, Trash

A month before you move is a great time to clean house. Plan a trip to your local donation center with old clothes, toys or sporting equipment, garage and lawn gear. If something is broken, expired, or no longer of use, lighten your load and throw away what you won’t be taking with you.

Pack Efficiently

Pack as much as you can in the same size boxes. Fill boxes tightly, but take care to neither overpack nor underpack. (Bulging cartons tip when stacked, while half full boxes tend to collapse). Use wadded up newsprint, bubblewrap, rags, towels, or blankets to fill in empty spaces. For maximum protection seal cartons with tape.

Manage Weight

Pack heavy items such as books and tools in small boxes. For easier handling limit the weight of all cartons, regardless of size, to 30 lbs. or less.

Label All Boxes

Clearly label boxes so you know their contents, and keep a list (as well as pictures and descriptions) at your home or office for reference. Mark clearly all boxes containing fragile items.

Clean Stored Items

Clean and dry appliances before storing. Secure all movable parts with paper, or wedge and wrap a paper pad around each item for protection. During transport tape all doors shut, but remember to wedge them open for storage.


Store items you’ll need most often at the front of the unit. When you pack your storage unit, create a center aisle for access to all items.

Preparation Prior to Your Move
  • Buy packing supplies 
  • Start packing boxes as soon as possible 
  • Send address change cards 
  • Get copy of school records 
  • Have clothing dry cleaned 
  • Check on items in repair shops 
  • Notify utilities and telephone companies 
  • Set a date for utility disconnection and hookup 
  • Return borrowed items and things you’ve lent out
Small Items

Place all smaller items in uniformly sized boxes. Completely fill each box with heavier items on the bottom and lighter items on the top. Uniformly sized boxes stack easier and conserve storage space.

Lawn Mowers

Drain gasoline and oil from all small engines. This precaution will protect both your stored property and the property of others from the dangers of fire and explosion.

Use Drawers

Use bureau drawers to store small, fragile items. Secure items in drawer by filling empty spaces with towels or packing paper.


Photographs tend to curl over time. To keep them flat, place them between pieces of cardboard and tape them together. Do not store irreplaceable photos. Photos and negatives take up very little space. Try to keep these items with you.

Organizing Your Storage Unit
  • Use a high-quality disc (round) lock to secure your storage unit. This type of lock is difficult to cut or break and offers maximum protection for very little money. 

  • Keep your season clothes accessible, you may have your belongings in storage longer than anticipated.

  • Be aware of your surroundings when you are in your unit. If you see a potential problem or anything suspicious, alert the manager.

  • If it is possible store couches on end. Stack chairs seat to seat. Use the inside of appliances and drawers to store smaller items. When stacking furniture use paper pads in between the items to avoid scratching.

  • Disassemble items such as tables, bed frames, etc. This will save space. Wrap and label all pieces for an easier time when you have to reassemble them. Put all hardware in bags and mark the bags accordingly.

  • When you disassemble electronics, such as computers, stereos, things that have numerous cords, place small colored stickers on the cord and the same color sticker where the cord goes. This will save you the hassle of trying to figure out what goes where when it comes time to reassemble your electronics. If possible, use the original boxes to store your electronics and other items.

  • Sealable plastic containers are great to store your items. They have tight-fitting lids and stack easily. Keep the more valuable items in the rear of the unit. This will prevent others from seeing them when you are in your unit.

  • Utilize all the space in your unit. Make a plan as to how you are going to arrange your items. A good plan will save you the time of having to rearrange your unit. Leave an aisle in the center of your unit so that you have a walkway to the back of the unit.

  • Use freestanding shelves to help organize your unit.

  • Store items that will not be needed to the rear of the storage unit and items you will need access to toward the front of the unit.

  • Store heavy items on the bottom and lightweight items on top.

  • Store smaller, more valuable items to the rear of the storage unit and large items toward the front of the unit.

  • Label the boxes on all six sides and keep a list for easy reference. This will save you time if you have to look for something in particular.

  • When packing boxes fill them without making them too heavy to lift.

  • Always put the heavier boxes on the bottom and the lighter ones on top of the heavier ones. This will prevent boxes from being crushed.

  • Keep boxes off the floor.

  • Store mirrors and paintings on end, not flat. Pack books flat to protect their spines.

  • Clothing and draperies should be stored in wardrobe boxes, on hangers, to retain their original shapes.

  • Be sure to check your unit once a month.

Cover Chairs

Protect chair legs by wrapping them in packing paper. Leave slipcovers on upholstered chairs and cover them with plastic chair covers.

Moving Tips
  • Cancel all utilities at your old residence.

  • Make arrangements to ensure all utilities will be on when you arrive at your destination (water, wastewater, cable, electric, Internet, etc.)

  • Inform proper authorities of the change of address e.g. Postal Service, Bank, Credit Card companies.

  • Fill out an IRS change of address form.

  • Have school and medical records transferred if required.

  • Prepare all major appliances for move i.e. clean, defrost etc.

  • Place baking soda in the refrigerator to absorb all moisture.

  • Ensure all valuables are covered by insurance.

  • Have all important documents easily available, school records, insurance etc.

  • Find out about auto licensing at your new destination.

  • Remember whatever is loaded first onto a movers truck will be last off, so plan accordingly.

  • Keep in touch with your destination to ensure you become aware of any problems that will affect your move.

  • Ensure you have adequate storage for any items you may wish to store.

Use Paper for Breakables

Use lots of paper to pack dishes and glassware. Place a layer of packing paper inside the bottom and top of cartons. Wrap each dish and glass separately and cushion them with crumpled paper. Plates are best stacked on edge. Pad mirrors and paintings with paper. Place them in special mirror packs or large boxes; mark boxes.

Separate Lamps and Lampshades

Wrap large lamp bases in padding and wrap smaller lamps completely before placing them in boxes. Pack delicate lamp shades separately. Do not use newsprint to wrap lamp shades or any other goods that may be damaged by ink stains. You can purchase unprinted wrapping paper, foam wrap or bubble wrap at our location to help protect delicate items. Do not store heavy items on top of cartons containing lamps or lampshades.

Don't Put Boxes on the Floor

Do not place boxes directly on concrete floors, but use pallets or skids to prevent moisture absorption.

Moving Day!
  • Discard all flammables, such as paint and gasoline
  • Finish packing. Leave out items for moving day
  • Empty and defrost refrigerator and freezer
  • Have everything packed, except bedding
  • Pick up ice and beverages
  • Strip beds. Cover mattresses with mattress bags unless they are going in storage
  • Turn water and lights off
  • Lock windows and doors

Storage Tips from Monster Self Storage

As part of our dedication to being your local self storage experts, we have put together this list of storage tips.

These tricks are sure to improve how you pack your storage unit and keep your items safe at Moster Self Storage.

If you have any further questions not answered here, please contact our team!

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