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how to clean a storage unit
Self storage Article

How To Clean a Storage Unit

Published On: 18 December, 2023|7 min read|

Table of Contents

When moving into and owning self storage units, it’s important to keep your units clean. In this guide, we will guide you through why it’s important to keep your units clean and how to do so.

Key Takeaway Table

Key Points Details
Importance of Cleanliness Prevents lost items, boosts access, minimizes damage from dust/moisture, reduces pest infestation risk, and provides peace of mind.
Professional Help Storage unit managers offer CCTV, alarms, and humidity control, but cleanliness is the renter’s responsibility.
Initial Evaluation Assess what needs cleaning and organizing; consider if specialized help is needed for large/heavy items.
Sorting Items Categorize into trash, donations, and keepers; recycle appropriately and store keepers efficiently.
Deep Cleaning Techniques Create a clear layout, clean and cover items individually, avoid floor storage, and use plastic containers where possible.
Regular Maintenance Regular visits for spot cleaning and air circulation; deep clean at least once a year.
Selecting Cleaning Products Prefer natural over harsh chemicals; use specialized products for different surfaces.
Safety During Cleaning Use personal protective equipment and secure heavy items to prevent injuries.
Professional Cleaning Services Consider hiring experts if struggling with time, knowledge, or moving large items.

how to clean a storage unit

Let’s Cover the Basics: The Value of a Clean Storage Unit

Before looking at the essential steps to take to clean your storage unit, let’s understand why it is so important to keep your rented space clean, spotless, sanitised, and uncluttered. Some of the key reasons why it is worth looking after your storage unit include:

  • Preventing lost items. A clean and uncluttered storage unit allows you to find your items quickly and efficiently.
  • Boosting ease of access. A well-organised storage unit ensures that items are easily accessible, thus saving you from having to make multiple trips to your storage unit – something that may be burdensome and time-consuming. 
  • Preventing dust and moisture damage. Storing your items accurately, away from the floor, and in a well-thought-out way can help you prevent damage and the accumulation of dust. This can help your items stay safer and functioning for longer. 
  • Minimising the risk of pest infestation. Clutter tends to pave the way for nesting sites, rodents, and insects. These unwanted visitors can, in the long term, damage your belongings. 

Lats but not least, a clean storage unit can offer you the peace of mind that your dearest belongings are safe, well-preserved, and easy to access, thus eliminating unnecessary stress and worry. 

Cleaning a Storage Unit: The Essential Steps to Get Started

Now, let’s focus on the essential steps to take to deep clean your storage unit and keep it clean over time. Get started with these first, easy tasks to make the entire project easier and more enjoyable – and, don’t forget to get your family or partner involved to make it a social activity!

Carry Out a Full Evaluation

Before grabbing your gloves and cleaning products, take a step back: you’ll first need to carry out a full evaluation of what’s in front of you. If you have been renting a storage unit for months or years, the chances are that items – as well as dust and insect nests – have been accumulating. To ensure a safe and efficient cleaning process, start by assessing what needs to be cleaned and organised. 

For example, if you simply need to sort out clothes and old house decorations, you can do so without special equipment. On the other hand, you may need specialised help to move around pieces of furniture safely or find the best way to keep memorabilia and valuable collections in the best shape. 

cleaning a storage unit

Sort Our Trash, Donations, and The Items You Wish To Keep

Next up, let’s start sorting out your belongings. If you are looking to reorganise and declutter your storage unit, it may help you to create three, distinct categories of items:

  • Trash. These are items that are ruined beyond repair and can’t be donated or upcycled. When disposing of these items, be sure to recycle them appropriately to reduce environmental waste. 
  • Donations. If you are looking to donate the items you no longer use or want, you need to consider the needs of the charity or organisation you are donating to. Start by calling them or checking theri website to know how to best organise your items for an easy, straightforward donation process. 
  • Keepers. The items you wish to keep will stay within your storage unit. You’ll need to subdivide them by the best storage method for each. For example, you could use wall mounts for your bike or workshop tools, while clothes and other delicate items should be stored away from the floor and ceiling, where they are at greater risk of water damage. 

An Overview of Deep Cleaning Techniques 

Keeping your storage unit clean is no easy feat. However, some deep cleaning techniques can help. Once you’ve chosen what to keep in your storage unit, get started with the tips below:

  • Craft a clear layout, which takes into consideration the storage needs of each item and allows for optimal traffic flow. After all, you’ll want your items to always be easily accessible. 
  • Clean your items individually, cover large objects (i.e.: furniture, gardening equipment, and home electronics), and store them in plastic containers when possible.
  • Keep items away from the floor and avoid keeping perishable items in your storage unit. 
  • Visit your storage unit regularly and, each item, bring cleaning supplies from home to spot clean items as needed. Make sure to promote regular fresh air circulation in your storage unit.

deep cleaning storage unit

Important Aspects in Cleaning a Storage Unit: What To Keep In Mind

Although we’ve looked at an overview of the best cleaning techniques for your storage unit, it is important to keep in mind that each person’s storage space is unique, filled with one-of-a-kind items, and of a specific size and shape. Because of this, there isn’t a “one-size-fits-all” formula that can be easily applied! Nonetheless, some universal good practices can guide you in the right direction. Let’s look at them below. 

Choosing the Right Cleaning Products

Ideally, you’ll want to avoid harsh chemicals and opt for all-natural cleaning products. These can help you keep your items clean without increasing the risk of damaging surfaces or creating dangerous fumes in the storage space. Additionally, consider investing in a specialised product to clean certain surfaces. For example, you may be able to find products created to clean wood, metal, or jewellery. 

storage cleaning products

Safety Precautions During the Cleaning Process

Although cleaning your own storage unit is generally safe, taking the necessary precautions to avoid injuries is necessary. Think, for example, that a study conducted in Iran shows that nearly 40,000 people get injured in Tehran alone during their spring cleaning projects each year! Some of the most common causes of incidents during cleaning tasks include exposure to harsh chemicals, as well as trips, slips, falls, and falling items. 

To lower the risk, be sure to use the necessary personal protective equipment and adequately secure heavier items. 

Pro Tip: How Often Should You Clean Your Storage Unit?

The answer to this question isn’t always straightforward. How frequently you should clean your unit depends on how big your storage unit is, what types of items you are storing, and how cluttered the area is. However, generally, you should deep-clean your unit at least once a year, and spot-clean it regularly, every time you visit the unit. 

Struggling To Keep Your Unit Clean? Considering a Professional Cleaning Service

Cleaning your storage unit is essential – but it does not come as easy to everyone. If you are struggling to find the time, are in doubt about what products to use, or you are looking for help to move larger items, don’t hesitate to get in touch with a professional storage unit cleaning service. This is a simple step that can truly level up your game and help you keep your items safe and in perfect shape – effortlessly! If you have any broader questions regarding self storage units, don’t hesitate to contact our friendly team at KeepSafe Storage

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