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Protect What is Worth Storing

Winter is still hanging on in several areas of the U.S., but for most of us, it’s time to store our winter sports gear. If you want your equipment to be in top shape for next year, don’t leave it in your garage or basement. The attic is another area to avoid. Your things may be subjected to temperature changes that can cause mold, mildew, or general deterioration.

To avoid potential damage to your expensive gear, the best place to keep it is in a climate-controlled self storage unit. You shouldn’t have difficulty locating a self storage facility offering climate-controlled storage, high-level security, and exceptional customer service.

To mitigate the risk of loss, look for a facility that offers a Storage Shield tenant protection plan.

Storage Shield Tenant Protection

Why Storage Shield

By enrolling in a tenant protection plan, you can have the peace of mind of knowing that your belongings enjoy extra protection. In the event of damage or theft, you will be reimbursed at the full replacement cost for your items. Clothing and household linens may be subject to depreciation.

The fees for the protection plan are conveniently included in your monthly rent, and there are no deductibles to worry about.

A tenant protection plan covers the following:

  • Theft due to forcible entry
  • Vandalism
  • Fire, smoke, lightning, or explosion
  • Windstorms
  • Water damage from a leaking roof or broken pipe (up to protection plan limits)
  • Furs, antiques, artwork, and consumer electronics

Many protection plans also cover

  • Cars, boats, jet skis, RVs, motorcycles, and quads stored inside units
  • Document re-creation costs (up to protection plan limits)
  • Moth, insect, rodent, or vermin damage up to $500
  • Jewelry up to $500

Now that you know what’s covered, it’s time to get your winter gear ready for self storage.

Prepare Your Winter Gear for Off-Season Storage

To avoid potential damage to your expensive equipment, there are factors that you need to consider before placing your items in self storage. We’ve gathered a few suggestions to help you prepare your winter gear for self storage.

Skis and Snowboards

Remove the dirt. Spray them with a garden hose, but don’t force water into the bindings. Avoid degreasers or detergents as they can affect the binding lubricant. If there is a build-up of grease or pollen on the bases, use a soft cloth dipped in a little citrus solvent.

Sharpen the edges. Sharpen the edges of your skis and snowboards to remove the most obvious burrs and reduce the chance of rust. Warmer weather is a good time to have a base grind to repair edge damage incurred during the winter.

Wax the bases. Hot wax the bases with all-temperature or softer warm-weather wax to protect them from oxidation. Additionally, cover the edges with wax to reduce the chances of rust.

Loosen the binding springs and/or remove the bindings. Skiers should loosen the DIN settings on both toe pieces and move the heel pieces into the ski position. This decreases tension in the springs to keep them in better condition. Snowboarders can remove their bindings or loosen the screws to reduce stress on inserts and prevent dimpling of the base.

Protect everything in self storage. A climate-controlled self storage unit with no sunlight is ideal for skis and snowboards. To ensure that skis don’t fall over, strap them together at their natural meeting point and pad them.

Don’t forget your boots. Pull the liners out of your boots, and check that they are completely dry. Your next step is to buckle the boots loosely so that they maintain their shape. Check heels and toes for wear and replace if necessary. If your snowboard boot laces are worn, replace them.


Clean and wax the exterior. Clean the exterior with warm, soapy water and a sponge; be sure not to forget to clean under the hood. Use a high-pressure washer to clean the track, runners, and suspension. Once you’ve finished cleaning your vehicle, apply a coat of wax for protection. This will make it easier to clean in the future.

Maintain the fuel system. Before you decide whether to store your vehicle with a full tank of gas, know which type of fuel system you are dealing with. For older models that use a carburetor system, drain the tank. For fuel-injected systems, store your snowmobile with a full tank of gas to reduce the risk of condensation. Add a fuel stabilizer to prevent corrosion.

Drain the carburetor. Keep the fuel from evaporating and creating a damaging residue by removing the carburetor and draining excess fuel.

Grease lube points and chassis. Add grease to any point with a grease fitting. Use WD-40 or similar lightweight oil for suspension rails, exhaust, and nuts, and avoid getting it on the clutch or belts.

Remove the battery and belt. As long as you’re storing your snowmobile in a climate-controlled storage unit, you can remove your battery. You can keep it in the unit away from direct sunlight. You can either use a battery tender or trickle-charge the battery. Remove the drive belt so that condensation won’t build between the belt and the clutch. Store the belt unrolled.

Raise and cover your snowmobile. Ideally, you should keep your snowmobile above the floor on a set of snowmobile dollies. To prevent rodents and other pests from making your vehicle a summer home, scatter dryer sheets around. Stuff the muffler outlet, carburetor intake, cooling system intake, and outlet holes with steel wool. Finally, use a soft lightweight well-fitting cover to prevent scratches or moisture build-up.


Don’t leave the condition of your valuable winter sports gear up to chance. Now that you’ve read these guidelines, you have no more excuses.

Before summer rolls around, prepare those winter toys for storage in a safe, climate-controlled facility. When you’re ready to use them again, they’ll be waiting for you in the same perfect condition as they were when you stored them.