Is The El Dorado Hills Weather Ruining Your Stored Possessions?
Updated: May 19, 2022
Many people have a fantasy at some point in their lives that involves discovering some long-forgotten treasure hidden away in an old shed, attic, basement, or dusty storage locker.
When someone discovers a long-lost item of personal worth, their dreams are often met with the reality of worn-out, corroded, weather-beaten heirlooms that may cost more to restore than they’d be worth.
Every year, countless items of personal value succumb to the effects of weather and bad storage conditions. Here in El Dorado Hills, it’s all too easy for the weather to turn your personal treasures into trash.
How Weather Affects Your Possessions
The El Dorado Hills weather is rough on possessions that aren’t stored properly. Storing most items in high temperatures is not a good idea. If a storage environment is either too dry or too damp, that can cause problems as well.
Some materials react especially badly to extreme storage conditions. Common items that can be degraded or ruined by poor storage conditions include:
Wooden Furniture: When exposed to too much moisture over time, wood can crack, warp, or rot. Items such as bed frames, tables, chairs, end tables, nightstands, dressers and entertainment centers need climate-controlled storage to keep them in good shape.
Leather: Whether you’re storing leather furniture or leather clothing, this is a material that is sensitive to swings in temperature and humidity. Too much moisture can cause discoloration and mildew. When it’s too dry, leather will become brittle and will crack.
Appliances: Household appliances both large and small are susceptible to mold, mildew, corrosion, and rust. Temperature fluctuations can cause plastic parts to crack and electronic components to deteriorate. Rubber feet, gaskets, and seals will dry out in hot dry weather and need to be replaced.
Artwork & Art Supplies: Any artwork you have — paintings in particular — should ideally be stored between 70-75 degrees with around 50% humidity.
Musical Instruments: Musical instruments of all types and sizes are sensitive to extreme temperatures. Guitars, for example, can warp or crack. They can suffer an adhesive breakdown if stored in an area of high heat.
Wine: We have an entire article devoted to how to store wine in El Dorado Hills. The short version is that your wine collection needs to be stored in a cool, moderately humid environment. The best way to protect your wine is with a climate-controlled solution of some kind.
How To Protect Your Things
There are several ways to help protect your things, whether you store them at home or in a climate-controlled storage facility.
If you’re storing items at home, make sure the room or area you’re using remains between 55 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit. That’s the “Goldilocks” zone – not too hot, and not too cold. Make sure your storage area isn’t too humid or damp. Heat plus moisture equals mold and mildew, which you want to avoid.
While some variation in temperature is fine (ten degrees, either way, is a good target), you want the temperature in your storage area to remain as consistent as possible.
If you’re considering getting a storage unit, look for indoor storage facilities that are climate-controlled. Make sure that before you put things in a unit that everything is as dry and moisture-free as possible.
Leave small amounts of space between your items and around the inside perimeter of your storage unit to allow for air ventilation within the unit. There may not be significant exposure to a breeze, but the unit will still allow for some airflow, so allowing it between your items can marginally help keep your items cool.