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What Items Should You Avoid Putting in a Storage Unit

Storage units have become a convenient solution for individuals and businesses looking to declutter their living or working spaces. These units provide a secure and organised environment to store belongings temporarily or long-term. However, not all items are suitable for storage, as some can pose risks to the safety of the stored items, the storage facility, and even the environment. In this article, we’ll delve into the items that you should avoid putting in a storage unit, ensuring your stored possessions remain safe and in good condition.

Perishable and Food Items:

One of the golden rules of storage unit usage is to never store perishable and food items. Whether it’s fresh produce, tinned goods, or frozen items, these belongings are prone to spoiling, attracting pests, and causing unpleasant odours. Rotting food can also promote mould growth, which can spread to other items and compromise the overall cleanliness and hygiene of the storage unit. To avoid these issues, it’s best to consume or properly dispose of perishable items before placing them in storage.

Hazardous Materials:

Safety should be a top priority when using storage units. Items categorised as hazardous materials, such as flammable, toxic, or corrosive substances, should never be stored in a storage unit. These materials can pose serious health and environmental risks, and storing them alongside other belongings increases the likelihood of accidents, leaks, or even fires. Always follow guidelines and regulations set by the storage facility and local authorities to ensure the safety of everyone involved.

Valuables and Irreplaceable Items:

While storage units offer security, it’s wise to exercise caution when storing valuables and irreplaceable items. Valuable possessions, such as jewellery, valuable antiques, and family heirlooms, should ideally be kept in a more secure location, like a safe deposit box. Irreplaceable items like sentimental keepsakes and important documents also warrant special attention, as their loss or damage can be devastating. Consider using a personal safe or keeping them in a fire-resistant home storage area.

Living Creatures:

It might seem obvious, but it’s important to emphasise that living creatures should never be placed in storage units. This includes pets, animals, and plants. Storing living beings in confined spaces without proper ventilation, nourishment, and care is inhumane and can lead to serious legal consequences. Always prioritise the well-being of living creatures and seek appropriate alternatives for their care if you need to move or store them temporarily.

Items Prohibited by Storage Facility:

Storage facilities typically have rules and guidelines about items that are prohibited due to safety, legality, or facility regulations. These items may include firearms, illegal substances, and other dangerous materials. Adhering to the storage facility’s guidelines not only prevents potential harm but also ensures a respectful and harmonious coexistence with fellow users of the storage facility.

Flammable Materials:

Items that are highly flammable or combustible, such as petrol, propane tanks, and fireworks, should be kept far away from storage units. The risk of fire-related accidents is high when storing these materials, as even a small spark can lead to a catastrophic event. Keep flammable materials in designated storage areas designed to handle such items safely.

Electronics and Temperature-Sensitive Items:

Electronic devices, along with temperature-sensitive items like photographs and artworks, are susceptible to damage when exposed to extreme temperatures. Unregulated storage units can experience temperature fluctuations, causing irreversible damage to these items. Opt for climate-controlled storage units to ensure that your electronics and delicate items are preserved in optimal conditions.

Personal Documents and IDs:

Identity theft and privacy breaches are serious concerns, which is why personal documents like passports, social security cards, and financial records should never be stored in an easily accessible storage unit. Instead, keep these sensitive documents in a secure place within your home, or consider a safe deposit box for an extra layer of protection.

Vehicles with Fuel:

Storing vehicles with fuel, such as motorcycles, cars, or lawnmowers, can be hazardous due to the potential for fuel leakage and fumes. Even a small fuel leak can lead to a flammable environment, putting both your belongings and the storage facility at risk. If you need to store vehicles, ensure they are drained of fuel or stored in a facility specifically designed for vehicles.


Properly utilising a storage unit requires careful consideration of what items are suitable for storage. By avoiding perishable and food items, hazardous materials, valuables, living creatures, prohibited items, flammable materials, and more, you’ll ensure the safety of your belongings, the storage facility, and the environment. Always prioritise safety and responsibility when using storage units, and take the time to assess the suitability of each item before placing it in storage.