Renting a storage unit is one way you can increase storage space while protecting your belongings from damage. One common cause of damage to items in storage is moisture, and a storage unit may not be immune from this concern. The following tips can help you avoid this type of damage.

Tip #1: Inspect the unit

Before signing the rental agreement, ask to see the specific unit you will be renting. Once there, look for obvious signs of moisture concerns. This includes water stains on the walls and ceiling. These can appear as dark or moist spots, or you may even see visible mold growth. Shut the door to the unit and check for chinks of light coming through the ceiling or walls, since this can also indicate a leak. Ask for a different unit if you see possible leaks.

Tip #2: Line the ground

Keep in mind, even if you see no signs of a leak, moisture can still seep in through the concrete ground. This is simply the nature of concrete. There are two tricks to avoiding damage from this seeping moisture. First, line the floor with a large tarp. Second, place your items on elevated shelves or even on top of flat wooden pallets. The tarp protects against moisture seepage while the shelves and pallets provide protection in the event of a flood.

Tip #3: Store in plastic

Cardboard boxes are cheap, but they don't provide much moisture protection. If you are on a budget, line the boxes with contractor's grade garbage bags. After placing your items inside, simply tie off the bag and tape up the box. If you have a bit more cash, it is well worth it to use plastic storage tubs. Not only are these both moisture and pest resistant, they also stack well so you can better organize your unit.

Tip #4: Soak up moisture

Even in a moisture-tight box, mildew can occur if there is absolutely any moisture trapped in the box when you seal it. This can happen if a fabric item is slightly damp or if you are packing the box during humid weather. Fabric and paper items are most at risk of developing mildew from even tiny amounts of moisture. To counteract this, consider placing small packets of silica gel crystals in the boxes to absorb any residual moisture. You can save the crystal packs from clothing purchases, or you can purchase silica in bulk from craft stores and place it in mesh bags.

For more information, consider contacting companies like The Storage Place of Hemet.