A common problem for many is where to store items that are not in use at this point. A basement can be a wonderful place to put items that you need to store away. Unfortunately, basements have a tendency to be damp, musty areas so consideration should be taken on what items are best stored in the basement and how to store them.
What to Store and What Not to Store
Dishes, glass wear, tools, lawn furniture, holiday decorations and seasonal items are all things that can be stored in a basement. Many basements are prone to musty odors, mold and mildew. Store items that do not absorb odors or grow mold in your basement. Sporting equipment such as baseball bats, balls and soccer gear can also be stored in basements.
Fishing, camping and hunting gear can all be stored inside a basement. Those items are meant to withstand a certain level of moisture and dampness. Camping tents stored in a basement can be rinsed off to remove any dirt that may have collected during storage. Bicycles are another item that can be stored in the basement when not in use.
Many people opt to store seasonal clothing in basements. When storing seasonal clothing, care must be taken to protect the items from any moisture that may be present. See the How To Store Section on storing these items.
Do not keep items such as baseball cards, postcards, pillows, comforters, musical instruments, wood items, photos, CDs, DVDs, and things of that nature in a basement. These items can become warped because of dampness as well as grow mildew and mold. Also, mice love to use cloth and paper items for their nests. Any item made of paper and cloth should not be kept in the basement. Storing those types of items in a basement may cause them to become ruined. Instead, pack them away and place them in the corner of a closet.
How to Store the Items
Since many basements are prone to flooding, it is best to keep items in plastic water resistant bins. Keeping items in a plastic container will not only keep water from damaging your items, but it will also keep pests such as silverfish and crickets from getting to your items. Adding a few desiccant packets inside the containers will help absorb moisture. Desiccant packets are available at department stores nationwide. Never store items in plastic bags or cardboard boxes. They provide no protection against moisture, pets or water. Also, keep the items up off the floor by installing metal shelves in your basement.
If storing seasonal clothing in a basement, invest in bags to place your clothing in. When used in conjunction with a vacuum, these vacuum bags remove all air from the bag to create an air tight seal to protect clothing.