16 April 2020/For The Home, Storage Tips

Time to Put the Winter Toys Away

Winter is coming to an end, and it’s time to start thinking about what to do with all that winter gear and toys that you won’t need so readily available as the weather heats up. U•STORE•IT has some tips for how you can prepare all of your winter items for storage over the spring and summer months, so they are ready to go and in great condition when the snow falls again.

1. Snowmobiles/Ski-Doos

Before you put your snowmobile/ski-doo away in self-storage for the spring and summer there are several things you should consider doing.

  • Choosing the right fuel: If you use fuel that contains ethanol, consider draining it and replacing it with non-ethanol fuel. Ethanol fuel can be harsh on rubber lines and gaskets. Don’t put your sled away with an empty tank though!  Your gaskets (also called O-rings) could begin to dry out and become brittle.
  • Lubricating parts: Greasing zerks in your rear and front suspension, steering, and drive train is an essential part of snowmobile maintenance and will help get rid of buildup from a winter of riding. Check your owner’s manual for recommendations about brands to use.
  • Removing the battery: It’s recommended that you keep your snowmobile battery from drastic temperature changes. If you don’t have a heated unit, it might be worth it to remove it and store it in a warmer, dry place.
  • Removing the belt: You may have heard the advice that you have to remove the belt during the winter, but you shouldn’t have to in our storage units if it is on a stand and you come to start your snowmobile during the summer.
  • Clean your sled: Start with warm soapy water and a microfibre cloth to prevent taking off that shine! Go in with a degreaser or take it to a car wash if there are particularly stubborn spots. After you clean your sled do an inspection for cracks and damage.
  • Put it on a stand: This is optional if you currently have a stand it’s not a bad idea to put your sled on it until winter. Generally, only if your store your snowmobile outside will rusting be an issue, but releasing the stress and pressure on the springs and shocks is a benefit.
  • Cover it: Find a tight-fitting cover to keep moisture and dust off of your snowmobile.

2. Snow Clearing Equipment

You depend on your snow clearing equipment to keep your sidewalks and driveways clear from snow. Make sure they have the longest lifespan possible by storing them properly.

  • Shovels: Clean and wipe down your shovels and make sure they are dry. This will be especially important for metal shovels as they could rust if not taken care of.
  • Snow Blowers: Make sure you inspect your snowblower, clean it from dirt and grime, and wipe down the blades so there is no moisture. On a safety note, make sure the machine is off and not plugged in before doing so.
  • Sand, salt, snow removal chemicals: You should keep any leftovers of these items in a secure location to prevent them from being ruined by moisture or from being spilled, causing a mess.
  • Snow melting mats: If you lay down snow melting mats in your driveway or sidewalk, you can easily clean and roll or fold them to be put away in your storage unit for the warmer months.

3. Winter Tires

Oh, the routine of changing out winter tires! A yearly ordeal. You can free up room in your garage by putting them into storage during the warmer months.

  • Clean them up: Get rid of the dirt and grime from a winter of driving with warm, soapy water, or even pressure wash your tires. Make sure you dry them off too.
  • Bag them: Place them into a plastic bag and tape them closed. It prevents oil evaporation and keeps them out of direct sunlight.

4. Winter Toys

They bring you so much joy when snow is on the ground, but your winter toys need care before you put them away until the next snowy season.

  • Skis: To prepare skis for storage make sure you get the edges sharpened for the next season, clean and wax them, and strap them together. Make sure they are dry before putting them into storage.
  • Skates: Similarly to skis, it’s a good idea to get your skates sharpened so they are ready to go for next winter, clean them up and make sure they are dry before putting them away for the season.
  • Sleds: Clean up sleds with a plastic cleaner, dry it off, and it’s ready to be stored until next winter.

5. Clothing

Winter clothing items can be big, bulky, and take up a lot of space in your home. Here are some tips to store all your winter clothing and outerwear.

  • Any winter sweaters and clothing should be freshly washed before putting it away to prevent musty odors.
  • Take winter coats to the dry cleaners if required.
  • Look through your winter clothing for missing cloves, pieces that need to be mended and ensure they are fixed before putting them away.
  • Consider donating items that haven’t been used that winter.
  • Clean salt, dirt, and mud off of winter boots.

Here are some useful tips for packing up winter clothing.

  • Use vacuum bags to reduce the volume of puffy jackets, snow pants, and wool items.
  • Make use of luggage that isn’t utilized very often to store winter items.
  • Hanger caddies and organizers are abundant these days, make use of them to make more space in your unit or at home.

Do you have a bunch of winter gear that you want to put into storage? U•STORE•IT has many residential self-storage options to choose from that will ensure all of your winter toys and clothing are safe until the snow falls again. We have self-storage facilities located in North Edmonton, West Edmonton, South Edmonton, St. Albert, and Red Deer.