How to Store Toys Long-Term

Putting stuffed toys, vintage toys, and collectible toys in long-term storageWhether you’re storing seasonal toys like pool noodles and beach balls, special and delicate toys like childhood stuffed animals and vintage figurines, or potentially valuable collectibles like dolls and action figures, storing toys long-term sometimes takes some extra planning and care. These toy storage tips will ensure that they last for generations.

Storing Pool Inflatables and Toys

Prevent the growth of mold and mildew by cleaning pool toys and gear with a solution of one cup of baking soda to a gallon of water. Use a hose to rinse off the solution and leave the toys and gear outside in the shade to air dry. Do not deflate inflatables until they’re completely dry.

Coat the surface of inflatables with cornstarch to prevent sides from sticking together in storage, then gently fold or roll them. Inflatables should be either stored in their original boxes or in individual boxes or plastic bags.

Pool toys can be safely stored in a garage or shed, or in a storage unit.

Storing Stuffed Toys

Stuffed animals and toys must be completely clean and dry before going into storage long-term. Most stuffed toys can be machine washed on a delicate setting, but if you don’t want to take the risk, hand wash them in a sink or bathtub with mild laundry detergent. Instead of machine washing, hang them to dry on a clothesline in the shade to prevent color fading.

You can dry clean especially delicate stuffed toys by using an absorbent powder based on the color of the toy. Put the toy in a large bag, sprinkle with powder, shake, and leave the toy in a bag for an hour before removing and shaking off the powder.

  • For dark-colored stuffed toys, use wheat germ.
  • For yellow or beige stuffed toys, use corn starch.
  • For white or bright-colored stuffed toys, use baking soda.

Stuffed toys can be stored in a plastic container (don’t squish or crowd them if you’re concerned about them retaining their shape) or can be vacuum-sealed in plastic storage bags with a vacuum cleaner hose.

Storing Vintage or Collectible Toys

Vintage and collectible toys should be kept out of sunlight, humidity, or extreme heat or cold. They’ll be safest in a climate-controlled storage unit. Ideally, they should be stored in their original packaging and then plastic-wrapped. Otherwise, they should be stored in closed plastic containers that will keep out any outside dust, dirt, or oils.

Do you have questions about how to store a specific or unusual toy? Just contact us!

Benefits of Climate-Controlled Storage

Effects of extreme temperatures on wood furniture without climate-controlled storageWhen it comes to storing your valued belongings, basic self-storage sometimes isn’t enough to guarantee that your more sensitive items will be protected from the elements. Read about the benefits of climate-controlled storage below before you make your decision about whether to upgrade or keep it simple.

Storage in Pittsburgh

With average temperatures as low as 21 degrees in January, winter in Pittsburgh can be especially rough on wood furniture, whether it’s brand new or a delicate antique. Even after drying, shaping, sanding, and varnishing, there’s always a small amount of water left in wood. Cold temperatures can cause that water to freeze and permanently warp the shape of your furniture in the course of a few weeks.

With average temperatures as high as 84 degrees in July and morning humidity reaching 78%, summer is no better. Excessive heat and humidity have the power to damage wood furniture, electronics, photographs, plastics, and even fabrics in a matter of weeks. Ceramics, metals, and glass are about the only materials that can endure an entire summer damage-free without climate control.

Storage in Cleveland

The elements are just as hard on your furniture in Cleveland during the winter and summer. The average January low temperature reaches a frigid 20 degrees, and the July high typically climbs to at least 81 degrees. Average humidity can reach 80% in the morning. Humidity that high is rough on books, electronics, artwork, vinyl records, wood furniture, and even metals.

Why Use Climate-Controlled Storage?

Standard self-storage is perfectly safe for belongings you would normally keep in your shed or garage, and for items like dishes and glassware. With anything more delicate, you’re risking some damage from extreme temperatures and humidity. With climate-controlled storage, you can keep your belongings in your storage unit year-round without worrying about damage from heat, cold, or humidity.

Contact Weleski Transfer about your storage options today. If you have any remaining questions about climate-controlled storage or basic self-storage, we can answer them!