Storage Tips

How To Correctly Store Your China

Storing China Dishes

If you are planning to store your family’s china for any length of time, it’s best to make sure you are packing it properly to prevent breakage and discoloring.

China can not only be very expensive; it also, usually, has some sentimental value. Protecting it and packing it properly is especially important. Storing it in a climate controlled storage unit will minimize damage due to temperature fluctuations.

Follow the following storage tips to protect and preserve your heirloom china for now and future generations:

  1. Clean & Dry Your China Before Storing
  2. Use The Correct Packing Materials
  3. Do Not Over Pack Your Boxes
  4. Label Boxes With FRAGILE
  5. Arrange Boxes Safely When Storing

Clean & Dry Your China Before Storing

When you are getting ready to pack your china, wash each piece in warm soapy water and dry thoroughly. Washing them will remove any dust particles that may scratch the finish, when packed. Also, this way, they are ready to use, straight from the box, when needed.

Let them air dry for a period of time, after you have dried them with a soft cloth, to make sure no moisture remains. Anything that is being packed away and stored should always be completely dry to prevent any mold or mildew from developing.

Use The Correct Packing Materials

Packing supplies have improved greatly over the years. Now there are special packages of light weight foam sleeves for packing dish sets and glass sets, white packing paper so there is no newsprint residue and, of course, various options in bubble wrap.

There are also, special cardboard inserts available for packing boxes that will separate individual items. Most are made to fit 1.5 cubic feet boxes.

Any flat items, like plates and saucers, should be packed vertically on their edges. This will decrease the possibility of them getting cracked or broken. Each piece should be wrapped in and protected by packing material.

Cushion the bottom of your boxes with bubble wrap or table linens. Fill any empty spaces in the box with extra bubble wrap or packing paper to prevent the items from moving around inside the box.

Use sturdy, new packing boxes for long term storage. You do not want to have the bottom drop out of a reused box when you are carrying a box of your favorite china.

Do Not Overpack Your Boxes

Often, when we are packing to move, we want as few boxes as possible. Do not overpack your china boxes. Also, do not use oversize boxes. It’s amazing how heavy china can be. You want them packed with packing material between each piece and closely enough that there is no opportunity for them to rattle together. However, you don’t want to jam them together so they hit each other if bumped.

Overpacking your boxes can also cause them to bulge and make them harder to stack.

Label Boxes With FRAGILE

Some ideas for identifying what you’ve packed in your boxes and bins follow:

a) Take a picture of one of the pieces in the set that is going into the box or bin. Tape it to the outside of the box or if it’s a clear plastic bin tape it to the inside looking out. This will easily let you know what is inside at a glance.

b) Create a list of the exact contents and put it on the top of the box or bin before sealing it up. When you are looking for a specific item, you will be able to find out right away if it is in the box before you start sifting through it or taking things out.

Having a map at the front of your storage unit that tells you what boxes are where can be extremely helpful. Keep this map at the front of your unit to easily find your items. Your unit map listing should also have a general listing of what’s inside each box.

c) Label the exterior with general contents and design name, if needed, and attach FRAGILE stickers in easy to see locations. Put these labels on the sides of the boxes, not the top, so that when they are stacked, you can still easily see the label. Then if someone else is moving the box, they will know to be careful.

Arrange Boxes Safely When Storing

When placing your boxes and bins of china in your climate-controlled storage unit, make sure these boxes are not on the bottom of a pile. The pressure from above may cause breakage, no matter how well they are packed. They should be placed on open shelving or on the top of piles of heavier boxes.

Wherever you place them, they need to be secure with no opportunity to fall over. Arrange them so the FRAGILE stickers are easily visible along with the content listing.

At Elite Storage, we offer a range for storage solutions.   We have climate controlled storage units in various sizes, unheated storage units, Vehicle Storage and RV Storage.  Rent a storage unit online or give one of our storage rental experts a call to discuss your storage needs.  You can rent a storage unit in South Edmonton AB by calling 780-452-8242 or in St. Albert by calling 780-459-6435.

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