How to Keep Pests Out of Your Storage Unit

The whole idea behind self storage is that you can leave your belongings in a secure unit, and they will be there, safe and in the same condition as you left them, when you want to access them again. But if you’re not checking in on your belongings for long periods at a time, you might need to think a bit more proactively about how you protect them. One of the biggest concerns, both for the storage company and for customers, is pests. Mice, rats and bugs can cause a lot of problems if they gain access to a storage facility, and they can even be the reason you have to claim on your insurance policy. But if you’ve taken a few basic precautions, then you should never need to worry about pests at all.


Use Suitable Containers

Choosing the right containers for your belongings is a critical part of self storage. Using plastic, sealable crates is always your best bet – and the higher quality, the better. These tend to be reinforced at the edges and easily stackable, which is great for maximising the space you have. But they are also the best deterrent for pests. Rodents are not going to be able to chew through layers of hard plastic, and so the things you store inside will be left in act. But do make sure you’ve checked the items you put inside for signs of mould or mildew, and that everything is thoroughly dry before you seal them up. Temperature and humidity fluctuate in storage facilities (ones that aren’t climate controlled anyway), and if you have any mould or mildew in there it will only get worse.


Clean Textiles Before Storage

If you’re going to be storing anything soft in your unit – like soft furnishings, upholstered furniture, toys, clothes – make sure they have been cleaned before you put them in storage. The fewer things you can bring into the unit in and on these items, the less chance you have of bringing in bug eggs that could run rampant during storage. All textiles should be thoroughly dried as well, to avoid mould growing! If you’re storing a lot of clothes, consider putting them in sealable containers rather than just hung up or in boxes, to make them less appealing as nesting material for potential pests.


Check the Unit First

Before you move anything into your unit, give it a once over and check for any signs that there have been pests in there before. Inside the unit this means looking for droppings and for access points – even the smallest holes could be a way for mice and rats to make their way in. Make sure your unit is thoroughly swept out before you move anything in. You should also check the outside of the building for signs of pest control. If they have pest control boxes visible, this is a good thing – it means they are actively preventing pests!


Don’t Store Perishables

This one should seem obvious, but you would be amazed how many people ignore it and run into problems later. Almost every professional storage facility will have a policy that any perishable items (food, plants etc) absolutely cannot be stored in their units. The main reason for this is that it attracts pests and can create a health hazard if left and forgotten about. Pests, particularly mice, have an excellent sense of smell, and can fit through the smallest of gaps – as small as the width of a pencil in some cases! So they can and will sniff out any perishables you leave in the unit and find a way inside. Plus, if you’ve left perishables inside your unit, you will have not only invalidated your agreement with the provider, but also potentially your insurance as well, so you may not be able to claim for damages. In short, don’t store perishables in your unit. Ever.


At Blue Box Self Storage, we pride ourselves on our efforts to protect your belongings from pests. We make every effort to pest-proof our facility, and support our customers in ensuring their unit is protected from pests as well. We are always on hand to provide free advice and tips, so if you’re not sure what the best way to store your belongings is, all you have to do is ask! For more information, just get in touch with our team today.

Centres in Watford , Maida Vale , Hemel Hempstead , Farnborough Call us FREE on 0800 9171221