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A self-storage unit offers practical, convenient, cost-effective, and versatile storage options for a huge range of scenarios. Clean, dry, and secure, they are perfect for both long and short-term storage solutions.

However, to make the most of your storage unit and to keep your belongings in the best condition, there are important factors to be considered when storing them.

Perhaps the most important tip of all is the quality of the boxes and packing materials used to transport, store, and protect your belongings. In this guide, we focus on the importance of using quality boxes in your self-storage unit.

Choosing the right packing boxes for your belongings

The versatility of self-storage units means that they are used for a vast array of purposes. But regardless of the reason you use a storage unit, in most cases, a large percentage of your belongings will be stored in cardboard boxes.

It is tempting to consider that “a box is just a box” and head off to the local shop to ask for whatever boxes they have lying around. Unfortunately, this often results in an unpleasant surprise or two when the time comes to retrieve your belongings. The fact of the matter is that this type of box is often found wanting when it comes to storage.

Proper storage boxes that are designed and built to withstand the rigours of moving and stacking are crucial in self-storage. Self-storage units are a cost-effective storage option, but using inferior boxes isn’t. The safety of your belongings while in storage should always be a top priority and good-quality boxes go a long way to ensuring this.

Below are three guidelines to help you choose the correct boxes for your storage.

1.    Choose boxes that are built to last

Storage boxes inevitably get dragged about and are subjected to the occasional accidental knock when in transit. Quality packing boxes that are robust enough to withstand this and keep your belongings secure are essential. It is also worth remembering that in most storage scenarios, boxes are stacked to maximise space usage.

Ideally, the boxes you select should be manufactured to industry standards. A good benchmark to look for is to ensure they are rated to meet UPS and/or FedEx shipping standards. These will also come with a maximum weight rating which helps to avoid overfilling the box.

Another handy tip is to select a wardrobe box for storing clothes that are normally hung up at home. This keeps dresses, shirts, and any longer clothing in prime condition.

2.    Choose the correct size of box

The temptation can be to opt for the largest box possible, but this isn’t always the best option. Cramming too much stuff into a large box makes them difficult to handle, awkward to stack and too heavy to lift comfortably.

Similarly, opting for boxes that are too small will inevitably result in people trying to cram too much into them. Ideally, you want as many of your boxes as possible to be the same size. This allows for easy stacking and organising of the storage unit.

When calculating the best size box for your needs, remember to factor in space for packing materials such as bubble wrap. Aim for leaving at least a 7 – 8 cm margin for standard items and add more padding for fragile or more valuable belongings.

3.    Select quality packing materials

Cheap packing tape and substandard packing material might seem like a good way to cut costs but could end up costing you money in the long run. Good quality tape is essential as a box is only as reliable as the tape that secures it.

Cheap tape often uses adhesive that fails to stick properly or will quickly lose adhesion and leave your belongings exposed and vulnerable. It also often leads to the floor of the box failing the moment you try to move it.

Similarly, cheap bubble wrap or other packing material is often not strong enough to protect stored belongings from anything but the gentlest tap.

Summing Up

At U Store It, we want all our customers to have the best storage experience possible. If you need any help choosing the right storage box, we can help. Our range of quality boxes and packing materials are robust enough to ensure your precious items are transported and stored safely.

And if that’s not enough, right now we are offering a 20% discount on our large and wardrobe boxes, so why not check out our range of packing supplies or call us if you need any advice or help with any storage issue.