Safety Tip: Use Safe Stacking Practices When Storing Items

By Laura Gee, Content and Social Media Manager, USstoragesearch.com

Have you noticed how many people these days are leaving their garage doors wide open all day? No clue why so many do, but they do. Sadly a lot are revealing over-packed chaos to the world and I’m slightly tempted to knock on their door and encourage them to us USstoragesearch.com to find a storage unit that will help fix a lot of their clutter problems. Being a door-to-door salesman isn’t quite my calling though and my concern for a lot of the chaos that I see isn’t so much that it is messy, but it is organized in ways that aren’t safe for people to walk through or safe to keep the items protected.

When you’re filing an area with storage items, there are some rules for stacking that should be followed to make sure that everything goes smoothly:

Use safe stacking practices when filling your garage or the storage unit you found on USstoragesearch.com. (Quang Ho/Shutterstock.com)

Use safe stacking practices when filling your garage or the storage unit you found on USstoragesearch.com. (Quang Ho/Shutterstock.com)

Stack Boxes/Containers of like materials together

So often I’ll see people with a stack that’s 5 containers high that is a mixture of cardboard boxes and plastic containers. This isn’t the end of the world as long as they are of relatively similar sizes, but try to stack cardboard with cardboard and plastic with plastic. Many plastic containers have grooves in the lids that fit nicely with the bottom of another plastic container making stacking great.

Containers should be lighter & smaller as stacks get higher

Your biggest and heaviest boxes should go on the bottom of a stack to help give the stack stability. “But I have a GIANT box of fragile ornaments. Where does that go?” My answer: separated into separate boxes. Don’t have a gigantic fragile box and you won’t have a problem. Even if each ornament fits perfectly into your big, divided cardboard box, I say split them up unless you’re going to devote a whole stack space to one box.

Don’t aim to touch the sky

Stacks should only go as high as your natural reach…or as high as the shortest adult in the family can reach. You don’t want to be maneuvering step ladders and boxes and what not. That is a recipe for a broken wrist. Also, IF a stack does shift, if it falls from a shorter height then the damage is likely to be less.

Give it the wiggle test

When you have a stack put together, wiggle it a little. If it is about to fall, rearrange the stack. If it is good and sturdy, then you’re good to go. Stacking in storage isn’t like stacking in Jenga. In Jenga, you make sure your stuff fits and hope the next fool is the one that messes it up. You want anybody to be able to walk through without your stacks getting messed up.

If you follow some basic rules for stacking, not only will your stacks be safer, but they’re probably also going to look more organized and be more user friendly. Go home today and see if your stacking system is organized and safe.

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