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How To Load and Pack a Storage Unit

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Guide to Packing and Loading a Storage Unit

Packing a storage unit is an art form of sorts; you will have to put some thought into it if you want to make the most out the limited space and keep your items protected from damage. Here are some tips on how to pack a storage unit.


One of the best things about a self-storage facility is that you can access your items anytime you want, and you can make things easier if every item is properly accounted for. Make sure that each box is properly labeled. You can then make a list of the items in each box for easy reference.

At the planning stage, you should assess the items and determine if there are items that you may need to access frequently. Place them near the front of the storage unit. You might also want to consider leaving a narrow aisle in the middle so you could easily access the items at the back should you need to; this is especially recommended for larger storage units.

Protective Measures

Self-storage companies offer clean units but if you are worried that the floor space may not remain clean enough over time, you could place cardboard or wooden pallets on the floor. This could also help protect your items from damage. You may also use hollow spaces such as furniture drawers for fragile items. If you are going to store furniture on top of each other, dust sheets and other protective covers such as moving pads could help minimize scratches and damage. Seal the boxes with packing tape to prevent dust accumulation inside boxes.

Metal items should be covered by protective sheets to keep them from causing damage to other items. It is also best to wipe them with a little oil prior to storage to avoid rust formation. Electronic equipment such as computers and TVs should be packed in their original boxes as much as possible. If that cannot be done, they should at least be packed inside similar boxes. If you are going to store items that contain fuel such as lawn mowers, note that you will be asked to drain the tanks before putting them in storage.

Self-storage facilities are generally made to be moisture-resistant but if you want to be completely sure that your items would be safe, place moisture absorbents. You may also want to place vermin bait.


Heavy and bulkier items such as furniture should be stored first and placed at the back. It would be easier for you to make room for smaller items later anyway. Flat items should be made to rest against the wall. Avoid storing an item vertically if it appears wobbly.

Heavy items should be placed at the bottom and lighter items go up top. As a general rule, you should not stack more than 5 boxes or anything higher than what you can easily reach out for.

Maximizing Space

If you are going to store hollow items such as washer, dressers, and wardrobes, see if you could place smaller items inside to maximize the available space. Chairs can be stacked to save space.

If you want to save more space, you can dismantle furniture such as tables and bed frames. Just keep the nuts and bolts organized; place them in a properly-labeled plastic bag and have the bag taped to the furniture. Wrap the furniture sections to prevent damage and keep them together.

Just remember this when packing the storage unit: Use the shape of the item to your advantage. In fact, packing a storage unit would be a bit like putting a jigsaw puzzle together.

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