Self-storage owners generally do everything they can to make sure their self-storage units are well taken care of. Not only does their reputation as a business owner depend on it, but their investment does as well. Measures against vandalism and theft as well as protection again natural disasters like flooding or fires are all important concerns for the owners. While the typical owner also takes steps to guard against pest and rodent infestation, like all things in the natural world, this can be difficult to control 100 percent. Here are some steps you can take with the items in your storage unit to protect your belongings.
Mice And Other Rodents
Because self-storage units aren't usually visited on a regular basis, mice, chipmunks, and squirrels that gain entrance are able to set up shop and make themselves right at home with little fear of human interference. A single typical female house mouse is able to give birth to a litter of a dozen or more pups every three to four weeks. Female mice become sexually mature at six weeks while males become sexually mature at two months of age. This means a rodent population can quickly explode out of control in no time.
Rodents can cause substantial damage to your storage unit belongings. They will eat just about anything, including wooden furniture, electrical wiring in electronics and appliances, clothing, and cardboard boxes. They will also rip apart bedding, pillows, upholstered furniture, and clothing to make nests for themselves and their young. They also urinate and defecate everywhere, which will create unsanitary conditions and contaminate your things.
In northern climates, cockroaches aren't much of a concern, but in warmer climates, they can easily infiltrate a storage unit. Like mice, cockroaches reproduce extremely quickly. They also carry and spread germs, parasites, and bacteria. Their droppings are also thought to worsen asthma and cause allergic reactions. Additionally, they aren't easy to kill; people have long been hypothesizing that cockroaches would survive a nuclear holocaust. Whether or not that is true, it is indeed a fact that cockroaches can live a month or more without food. Cockroaches are attracted to cardboard boxes and can easily stowaway or gain entrance to a storage unit via other units.
What Can Be Done To Prevent An Infestation?
- Pack smaller items in plastic containers with tight-fitting lids.
- Wrap upholstered furniture tightly in plastic wrap. Use waterproof, zippered protectors for your mattresses.
- Do not store any food whatsoever. This will also likely be a term of your lease agreement. Even a tiny bit of food will attract the attention of pests.
- Spray the entire unit with bug spray the day before you add anything to it. This will provide a good barrier.
- Set inexpensive wooden mouse traps along the walls in case any find their way in.
- Use peppermint oil on cotton balls throughout the unit and in drawers to deter both rodents and bugs.
For assistance, talk to a professional like Sentry Mini-Storage Inc.