What is a climate-controlled self-storage unit? Do you actually need a climate-controlled storage unit? Is a climate-controlled storage unit worth the extra money? All of these are legitimate questions and we hope to answer them and help you decide if one is right for your needs.
Types of self-storage
First off let’s look at the differences between the types of self-storage units. If you have been reading our blogs then you know that there are basically three different types of storage units.
- Standard self storage
Your very basic storage unit is kind of like most people’s garages- just a place to store your stuff. There is no way to regulate the temperature in it, or control the humidity. And although it is enclosed, it is not sealed so dust and vermin can possibly get in. If you are storing non-valuables or items that can withstand varying temperatures and humidity and you’re not worried about dust or crawly things, then basic storage is fine.
- Temperature-controlled self storage
But some of your items might need a little more care, such as old records or wine. In these cases, you have to be able to control the temperature, hence temperature-controlled storage units. As with a basic unit they are not necessarily a sealed unit. Temperature-controlled storage units will normally just have heating capacity for the winter months. Most will have an air-conditioning unit to regulate the temperature year-round.
Be aware that these temperature-controlled units are NOT climate-controlled. Some companies will advertise “climate-controlled” units but they are in fact just temperature-controlled, and the difference is huge.
- Climate-controlled self storage
If you are looking for a climate-controlled specific, make sure you ask the right question. “Does the unit also control the humidity?” Because that is the difference! It might seem like a small thing, but trust us, it is not.
That brings us to the third type, and the one we want to highlight here climate-controlled self-storage units. Some people will tell you that they are “too expensive” or “you don’t really need them”. But you need to ask yourself a few questions to really determine whether or not you should skip using this type of storage.
How long are you going to need the storage unit and is it indoor or outdoor?
If you only need a storage unit for a short period of time, let’s say to store your household items for three months while renovating your house, a standard indoor unit will work just fine. For an outdoor unit, it should be less than a month. However, if you need self-storage for a longer period, we recommend climate-controlled self-storage.
The reason: Over a longer period dust, vermin, mildew, and mold can become a factor. A climate-controlled self-storage unit is sealed, so the humidity can be regulated to protect against mildew and mold. This also means that dust and vermin have very little chance to get in.
Also if you are storing things for a year or more, they could be experiencing extreme temperature changes that may cause them some damage. So, the ideal solution is a climate-controlled unit.
What type of items or materials are you storing?
There is a whole list of materials that should be stored in climate-controlled units, especially for longer periods of time. Mildew and mold love a humid environment and will attack cloth, paper, leather, electronics, wood, and others. Here is exactly what needs to be stored in a climate-controlled self-storage unit:
- upholstered furniture
- expensive art
- musical instruments
The list is longer than this, but make sure you carefully go through your items before you decide to seal them away. If they contain any of the materials above you have to think about how they will react to a possible hot/cold, dusty and humid environment. If you are not sure about what type of storage your belongings need, we at Redi Storage will help you choose the best option for you.
How often are you going to visit your storage unit?
Not only does a climate-controlled self storage unit keep the temperature and humidity just right, but they also circulate fresh air. This means you do not have to go to the unit and open it up to let fresh air in and keep that musty smell away. This is another convenience to consider.
How much will it cost?
Cost is of course a huge factor with everything in life. It is true that climate-controlled storage will cost you a little more than a basic or temperature-controlled unit. However, you need to ask yourself what is the value of your items if they are lost? Most people will agree, losing an expensive antique or sentimental item is not worth the risk of skipping a climate-controlled unit to save a few dollars.
Remember that the climate-control systems technology is why it costs a little more. It is not just simply an air-conditioning unit, it is designed to precisely maintain the temperature and humidity of an area. It also must have proper regular maintenance, and they use more energy. So using a climate-controlled storage unit should be your only choice if you are serious about protecting your valuables.