Fall Organization Tips

fall organization tipsAutumn marks the beginning of cooler weather, warmer clothes, and pumpkin-flavored everything. While the days may be getting shorter, fall can be one of the busiest seasons due to back to school time and the return of extracurricular activities.

The change of seasons is also a perfect time to implement new organization techniques and get the home cleaned and de-cluttered for the upcoming winter. After all, you’ll want to be able to park your car in your garage during those cold months, so it’s time to think about moving seasonal items like patio furniture, grills, and lawn and garden equipment into your self storage unit. Sentinel Storage offers units of various sizes for all your storage needs!

Easy Fall Organization, Inside and Outside

If you were able to have a garage sale over the summer, then you’ve already had a chance to clear out some items in your home. Now that you have more space, take the time to do a few deep cleaning projects, just like you did in the springtime. Make a list of some projects to tackle before the winter months, like steaming the carpets, dusting light fixtures and hanging wall items, and washing the windows. Ask for help; each family member should be designated an area of the home to deep clean; this will make the process much easier to tackle and go much faster.

Also, organize the inside of the home in simple ways, like setting up a station near the entryway for children’s backpacks, shoes, coats, etc. so they stay in one area and cause less stress in the morning when everyone is rushing to get ready. Along those same lines, have a designated area for homework and studying, whether it’s the bedroom or office or the kitchen table. Create a calendar for daily events, extracurricular activities and chores to keep the entire family on track.

Before the cold weather blows in and the snow starts falling, take some time to prepare the outside of your home for the winter. First and foremost, clean out your gutters. This is important because leaves and dirt can accumulate over the warm months, which leads to clogging and overflowing. This in turn can cause damage to your home, marring the paint and possibly causing the gutters to detach from the house.

If your outside faucets are not freeze-proof, don’t forget to drain them and turn off the water so the pipes don’t freeze. Additionally, you can insulate them to protect them further from cold temperatures.

Other outside tasks include cleaning your chimney if you plan to utilize the fireplace; left uncleaned, the chimney could clog and fill your home with smoke. You should also check for leaks around windows and doors to make sure no precious heat might escape, or allow for cold air to come in. Use caulk or foam sealer to fill in any gaps. Also, change the filter on your furnace and perhaps even get it inspected to ensure it is working properly. The last thing you want is for your heat to not work on a cold winter day!

Prepping Summer Items for Storage

Now that your home is tidy and organized inside and out, prepare those seasonal items you won’t be needing until it warms up again for storage in your self storage unit.

Patio Furniture

Putting your patio furniture into a self storage unit and keeping it out of the elements will help prolong its life. Thoroughly clean all your patio furniture before placing it in your self storage unit. This means washing the cushions and wiping down all surfaces.  When you place it in your unit, store patio furniture with the chairs on top of one another to gain extra storage space. If possible, remove the legs of the patio table and keep all screws and nuts together in a plastic bag attached to the legs.

Lawn & Garden Equipment

Make sure your lawn and garden equipment are clean before placing them in your storage unit, too. Dirt and grime left behind can attract critters and vermin. Also, drain all fluids from lawn mowers, weed cutters and other outdoor machinery before storing. Gasoline and other combustible items cannot be stored in a self-storage unit.  Disconnect the batteries of power equipment to avoid drainage of power, and store them in a cool, dry place within your storage unit.

Rakes, hoes, shovels, etc. can be tied together and stored in a trash can to keep them together until you need them again.

Grills or Barbecues

Since the grilling season is over, you can store your grill or barbecue in your storage unit to keep it in optimal shape for the next year. Like the other outdoor items, make sure it’s thoroughly cleaned and wiped down before placing it in storage. Bits of leftover food or grease will definitely attract bugs or mice.

It’s also very important to disconnect the propane tank on gas grills. Do NOT store the tank in your storage unit with the grill- a small gas leak can cause a huge explosion if the tank is stored in an enclosed space. Instead, disconnect the tank and store it outside of your home in an upright position away from dryer and furnace vents and children’s play areas.

If you have any questions about storing seasonal items in your self storage unit, please feel free to call or stop by any of Sentinel Storage’s 23 locations!

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