By Vince Mancuso,

When you live in the South Atlantic (Delaware to Florida), East South Central (Kentucky, Tennessee, Alabama, Mississippi), or West South Central (Arkansas, Louisiana, Oklahoma, Texas) states, you’re in for hot, humid weather throughout the year. Although winters are usually mild and wet, summers in this region can easily reach temperatures above 90°F with near tropical levels of humidity.

While this climate is nice for residents, it can do a number on sensitive items stored in a storage unit. That’s why storage seekers looking for storage facilities in any of these states should consider climate-controlled storage.

How Heat Causes Damage

Southern heat can cause irreparable damage to many items commonly stored in self storage. Important documents, such as tax files, receipts, birth certificates, and family photos, can yellow and become brittle in high temperatures. Electronics also suffer in extreme heat. Though batteries, electrical components, and wiring are designed to function in high temperatures, that doesn’t mean they’re designed to be stored long-term in extreme heat. Without any airflow to sensitive items in a storage unit, heat can cause metal to expand or rust and wiring to crack and warp.

How Humidity Causes Damage

The subtropical climate of the South keeps plenty of moisture in the air. This humidity can ruin artwork in particular. Wooden or plastic frames will bend, canvas or paper will wrinkle or tear, and paints will wear away. Similarly, humidity can damage musical instruments by causing premature rust and locking up keys, valves, and other parts. Not to mention, when humidity combines with extreme heat, it can cause mold and mildew growth, which can spread to paper, glue, and leather found in stored books while mildew can spread throughout fabrics left in storage.

How Climate Control Can Help

Climate-controlled storage protects items by maintaining a constant temperature and humidity level inside the unit, essentially acting like an air-conditioner and dehumidifier in the tropical Southern summers to keep sensitive items safe.