The best place to store hardwood furniture is in your home, but there are some cases in which you might need to place your hardwood furniture into storage. If you are storing them for more than a few weeks, there are a few things you should be aware of, so that you don’t come back to find that your furniture has been warped or damaged.
The Importance of Climate Control
Hardwood furniture requires special packaging and handling when being put in storage for periods longer than 2 weeks. Wood can dry, crack, stretch, warp in shape, or grow mould if not stored in the proper climate conditions. High levels of humidity are also known to create the perfect environments for mould and mildew to grow. In order to prevent damage from high temperatures and moisture, ensure that the storage unit you select has a consistent 22 degrees Celsius temperature and 55% humidity.
If you are downsizing your living space and are not able to take certain hardwood furniture pieces to your new home, but don’t want to part with them just yet, a climate-controlled self-storage unit might be the solution for you.
Clean and Prepare for Storage
To prepare your most loved hardwood furniture pieces for storage, start by cleaning it. Get rid of dust and dirt on the surfaces and allow it to completely dry before moving onto the next step. If dust, dirt, or moisture are left on the surfaces on the hardwood, it could develop stains, water damage, or worse; the growth of mould and mildew.
Disassemble for Easy Transport and Storage
Before storing your hardwood furniture, it needs to be disassembled completely. This will reduce the chances of it getting damaged or broken while being stored, especially if it is stacked in with other boxes and furniture pieces. Remove the legs on tables, headboards, and footboards. If you have enough storage space, then remove the dresser drawers and store them separately. If you’re low on space, you can leave them in as long as they are emptied. If you’re stacking furniture, consider using furniture pads. When disassembling furniture, keep the screws and bolts together in a ziplock bag and tape it to the back or inner part of the furniture piece for easy assembly when the time comes.
Use Breathable Materials to Cover and Protect
Normally, it is recommended to wrap fragile pieces of furniture in plastic bubble wrap or shrink wrap. However, when dealing with delicate materials like wood, the general rule of thumb is to avoid plastic materials. Plastic can suffocate materials like wood and cause condensation. Wood needs proper protection and air circulation through a breathable material such as sheets or drop cloths. Wrap and cover your hardwood furniture pieces in breathable sheets and secure the sheets on with packing tape. Be sure not to apply tape to the hardwood itself otherwise it could ruin the finish when peeled off. Wrapping your furniture provides an extra layer of protection against moisture, but particularly to prevent rodents and insects from burrowing into the wood.
Tips for Strategic Storing
It’s a good idea to line the floor of your storage unit with a plastic tarp in case of a water leak. Place your hardwood furniture away from the door to protect it in the event of a flood. Once you’ve moved your hardwood furniture into your climate-controlled storage unit, use a quilted blanket to cover the furniture to add an extra layer of protection against moisture, water stains, mould and mildew.
Ensure you leave space between your stored items. Optimizing space is important, but people often make the mistake of over stacking items and applying too much weight on them. Your hardwood furniture needs space to allow air flow between them. Leaving enough room between them will also reduce the chances of accidental damage for when you need to move things around.
How long can hardwood furniture stay in storage?
This all depends on the current condition of the furniture and how well it was preserved before it was put into storage. Typically, hardwood furniture in good condition that was preserved well can be stored for many years and still be in great condition when taken out of storage.
For more information about climate-controlled self-storage units near you, call Jiffy Self-Storage at (416) 745-4339 or contact us here.