Self Storage Tips for PNW Weather


To live in the Pacific Northwest, you have to be a pro at dealing with wet weather. Rain, sprinkle, drizzle, shower, pour — these are all words to describe the vast variety of condensation in Oregon and Washington. Rain is what keeps our home so lush and beautiful, but that doesn’t mean we always like it. For example, moving in the rain is a pain. Plain and simple. Protecting your valuables from the rain during transportation and storage can be hard, but that’s where we come in. Check out these tips and keep your stuff safe and dry.

Evaluate your stuff

Before moving or storing your belongings, go through your stuff and take inventory. Organizing everything before storing it makes all the difference, and will make the packing steps fast and easy. Take note of items that need special protection from the elements. Paperwork, artwork, electronics, and wooden furniture are all good examples. Sort and mark the items that are most vulnerable so you can protect them while packing. Taking an inventory of your stuff will also help you get the right packing materials, including enough boxes, plastic bins, and large plastic bags.

Pack to protect

Packing your belongings well is the most important step to safe storage from the elements. Here are a few hacks to make that process easy and smooth.

  • Use plastic packing materials. Protect your valuable stuff (even your not-so-valuable stuff) with plastic bins, tarps, bags, and plastic wrap. Don’t neglect the legs of your furniture, nor the corners of your picture frames. Anything wooden can quickly soak up excess moisture and start to swell.
  • If you’re especially nervous, make plans to store your belongings off the ground. Elevating your wooden furniture and artwork off the floor will protect it from any condensation.
  • Eliminate any mildew smells. If you’ve stored fabric, rugs, or clothing in damp conditions before, take precautions to eliminate any mildew before storing them again. If you put items into storage that already have damage from the elements, that mildew smell can spread to other items.
  • Take your time while packing. Packing your belongings to protect against the damp is the best way to keep them safe. Rushing isn’t worth it.

Move quickly

When everything is inventoried and packed, get it into your moving van and storage unit quickly. Whether it’s actively raining or just damp in the air, the less time spent outside the better. Shorten the distance to your moving van by parking as close to the storage unit or your home as possible. Create a staging area to get everything ready before taking it outside. If you move in the rain, be sure to dry things off when you’re done. Don’t leave water in the storage unit or it could affect your belongings.

Control your climate

Last but not least, if you’re going to be storing your stuff during the rainy season, climate controlled storage units are the way to go. Especially good for delicate belongings like artwork, antiques, photos, or electronics, climate controlled units eliminate the humidity in the air and keep the temperature between 50 and 80 degrees. Making sure your storage unit is dry and secure is the final step in keeping your stuff safe and protected.

In the Pacific Northwest, we usually have more than one rainy season. But with these tips, your stuff can be protected while in storage all year round. So whether you’re packing up your summer wardrobe or storing your kayaking gear, find a secure spot in Oregon or a dry place in Washington to protect your stuff.

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