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Common sense and Massachusetts State fire laws determine what may be stored. You may NOT store perishables, liquids, explosives, flammable liquids and fuels, toxic materials or other items that require a controlled environment. You MUST remember to drain the fuel from gasoline engines before storage.
A refrigerator or freezer should be thoroughly dry and stored with its door slightly ajar. Some goods can be stored inside large appliances and boxes can be stacked on top of stoves, refrigerators and freezers. Make sure that stoves and cooking equipment are thoroughly clean of any food residue before they are put in storage.
BICYCLES AND OTHER METAL ITEMS
To retard rust, wipe all metal surfaces with a rag containing a few drops of machine oil.
BOOKS AND DOCUMENTS
Pack books flat to protect their spines. Do not place cardboard boxes directly on concrete floors. Use pallets or skids to prevent any minimal moisture absorption. Use packing to fill out empty pockets in the boxes. Do not pack fragile items in the same box with books and do not overload boxes.
BEDDING, CLOTHING, CURTAINS, DRAPES AND LINENS
Clothing, curtains, and drapes should be stored on hangers. If hanging cartons are not available, such items should be carefully folded and stored in dresser drawers or cedar chests along with bedding and linens. Food crumbs or stains should be removed before storage and avoid storing anything that may attract pests.
DISHES AND GLASSWARE
Place a layer of packing inside the bottom and at the top of any boxes containing glassware. All glass items should be individually wrapped: nest cups and bowls and stand plates, saucers, and platters on edge. Wrapped glasses should be placed near the top of cartons. Again, fill all pockets with packing. Label all boxes containing glassware and do not place heavy items on boxes containing glassware.
Place a pallet, corrugated cardboard mat, or plastic sheet on the floor and stand sofas and mattresses on end. Disassemble beds and tables and wrap table legs in paper. If a table will not dissemble, place padding on the floor and place the table on its top with the legs pointing up. Use dresser tops for stacking cartons and dresser drawers for linens or small, delicate items. Keep upholstery off the floor. Most lightweight chairs can be stacked “seat to seat” or placed upside down on tables, which cannot be dissembled. Place a light cotton (eg. a bedsheet) dust cover on your furniture. Some facilities sell covers for your convenience.
Save the original cartons that contained delicate ornaments and pad the ornaments with packing paper or newsprint. Wrap strings of lights around a piece of cardboard before placing in a carton lined with paper.
Wrap large lamp bases in padding, wrap smaller lamps and place them in boxes, and pack delicate lamp shades separately. Do not use newsprint to wrap lamp shades or any other goods that may be damaged by ink stains. Do not store heavy items on cartons containing lamps or lamp shades.
MIRRORS, WINDOWS AND SCREENS
These items should be stored on edge, not flat.
RECORDS AND PHONOGRAPHS
Records should be stored on edge to prevent warping. When moving a record player, the tone arm and turntable should be secured to prevent damage.
Metal tools should be cleaned and wiped with a rag containing a few drops of machine oil to retard rust. Long-handled tools such as rakes, shovels and hoes should be clean, lightly oiled and tied in bundles.