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What Not To Store in Your Garage

Checklist of What NOT to Store in Your Garage

Firewood: It's super convenient to keep a stockpile of wood inside the garage (so you don't have to go out into the freezing cold this winter!). However, it can be a real target for pests that would love to invade your home. We recommend keeping firewood at least 20 feet away from the house, and the garage.

Extra fuel: Many people find it convenient to store fuel for appliances like a generator in the garage.  However, this is best stored in a shed or separate building away from your home, because propane or gasoline stored in a garage is a huge fire risk. If you do need to keep any of these items in the garage, be sure to follow common-sense fire safety tips.

Oily rags: If an oil-soaked rag is stored in an extremely hot garage, this has the potential risk of spontaneous combustion. If left lying near an ignition source that sparks – the rag could ignite and cause a garage fire. Even disposing of the oily rags in a trash can still be combustible. Always leave rags out to dry in the open air and store them in a sealed metal container.

Temperature-sensitive chemicals: Most garages suffer from extreme temperatures—overly hot in the summer and lockstep with the cold outdoor temperatures in the winter—and some liquids like latex freeze at the same temperature as water. Always check labels before storing any fluid in the garage to ensure it doesn't require a temperature-controlled environment.

Furniture or off-season clothing: The temperature extremes of a garage can lead to wood furniture becoming warped and pests invading upholstery or clothing, etc. If you do need to store furniture in a garage, look for a clean, dry area off the floor. Clothing is better stored in an attic or a basement if possible. Outside fluctuations in humidity can also easily damage both furniture and clothing by causing wood products to warp and upholstery and fabrics to mold.Not to mention, folded boxes of clothing or upholstery make great homes for mice, snakes and other critters!

Food: Bird food, pet food or food for your family should be kept out of the garage to avoid becoming a magnet for rodents, insects, etc. The temperatures in the garage may also not be conducive to the storage of many foods.

If possible, we suggest using your garage for its intended purposes – storing cars, bikes, outdoor tools, sports equipment and other durable items – and be sure to clean it regularly.

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