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20 Items That Need Climate-Controlled Storage

Adele MacGregor

Written by Reviewed by Dave Sayce

10th Jan 2022 (Last updated on 16th May 2022) 7 minute read

When it comes to self-storage, there is more to think about than what size unit you will need and for how long you‘ll need to rent it. Certain items may need extra protection from the elements and would benefit from being stored in a temperature-controlled unit.

Items such as vinyl records, antiques, artwork and paintings are among the possessions you should store in a specialised unit. However, it is not just valuables and vintage items which benefit from temperature regulated storage. Everyday items such as clothing, furniture and paperwork will also fare better when stored in these units.

In this article, we look at 20 items that need temperature-controlled storage to ensure they are kept in good condition and free from damage whilst in a storage unit.

This article will cover the following:
  1. What is Climate-Controlled Self-Storage?
  2. Why Climate-Controlled Units Are Necessary
  3. What Items Require This Type of Storage?
  4. How Much is This Type of Storage?
  5. How to Find Climate-Controlled Self-Storage Near Me

What is Climate-Controlled Self-Storage?

Climate-controlled storage, or Temperature-controlled storage, are self-storage units designed to maintain an optimum climate to ensure your belongings are not damaged by extreme and fluctuating temperatures.

Depending on your requirements, these units will have temperature control to offset the changing climate outside and keep particular items consistently at a certain temperature. Put simply, they will be warmer in colder months and kept cool during hotter months. This helps prevent damage such as warping, discolouration, dampness, mould and mildew on the items within the unit.

Why Climate-Controlled Units Are Necessary

Basic units can be ideal for short term storage or for items of lower value and hardy materials. However, for long-term storage or storage of valuables, climate-controlled storage is highly recommended if you want to ensure your items are safe from damage.

Climate-Controlled units are beneficial for many items, but for some they are necessary. Items that can be impacted or are sensitive to light and heat should be kept in these units. Items such as antiques, musical instruments, fine art, wine, vinyl records and vintage clothing are just some of the items that would be far better suited to a temperature-controlled unit.

One of the main reasons to utilise a storage unit with temperature control is to protect items from cold, damp conditions that can lead to mould and mildew. These units also remove dust and foreign matter from the air, keeping your items fresher.

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What Items Require This Type of Storage?

Most items will benefit from climate-controlled storage, but there are some core items that will require this type of unit to ensure they are protected. Many items made out of metal, wood, leather, wicker or upholstery are suitable for a specialised storage unit as these materials are likely to be damaged by extreme fluctuations in temperature.

Whether these are your personal items or stock and supplies for a commercial storage unit, make sure they are protected whilst in storage. Below we’ve listed 20 of the items that should be kept in this type of storage unit:


During high temperatures in the summer, electronics can suffer in a regular storage unit, especially in high humidity. This can lead to corrosion and damaged parts, among other issues.

Clothing and Fabrics

Especially in very cold and damp conditions, clothing and fabrics can suffer from mould and mildew. Regardless of your type of storage unit, these items are best stored in plastic containers rather than cardboard or fabric boxes.

Paper, Documents and Archives

These are also items which can be susceptible to mould and mildew, in addition to fading and warping. Important documents will especially need to be protected from the elements if stored long-term.


Wine can be ruined if left exposed to fluctuating temperatures and humidity. Without a wine cellar, storing in a climate-controlled unit is your best option to maintain the flavour and quality.


Although leather is a hardy material, it can be compromised if it is left exposed to the elements. Heat can dry out the leather and potentially cause it to crack, whereas damp and cold conditions can cause warping and even mildew

Items Made Out of Metal, Wood, Wicker or Upholstery

Metal can rust if left in cold and damp areas, with wood warping, cracking and splitting during periods of extreme heat or fluctuating temperatures. Wicker and upholstery items are also vulnerable to the elements.

Mattresses and Bedding

Bedding and mattresses are especially vulnerable to damage from damp which can lead to mould, making the items unusable. Storing them in a specialised unit will ensure they are kept in good condition.

Media (CDs, videos, cassette tapes, DVD’s, vinyl records)

Vinyl records are especially vulnerable to warping and these older items, in addition to VHS and cassette tapes, are often difficult to replace. Ensuring your media is protected will ensure their longevity as when these items are damaged, they are unlikely to work as intended.

Artwork and Paintings

Galleries and museums will store art at a particular temperature, to maintain their condition. Often valuable and irreplaceable, it is highly recommended that artwork and paintings are kept in a climate-controlled storage unit regardless of how long the unit is rented for.


This could be anything from soft toys and figurines to music, war or sport memorabilia. Depending on the item, a temperature-controlled unit would be the best place to keep your collection in good condition.


Antiques are likely to need temperature-controlled storage more than any other items. These are often valuable, vulnerable to the elements and difficult, if not impossible, to replace.


Short-term, a basic storage unit may suffice, but to avoid damage (including corrosion and rust), storing these in a specialised unit long-term is recommended.

Sports Equipment

As with bicycles, if you are storing these items long term, to protect them and keep them in good working order, a specialised unit is advised.

Medical Supplies and Medication

Certain medication and supplies will need to be kept at a particular temperature to maintain their effectiveness and ensure they are safe to use.


Whether it is for personal use, or a large amount for business stock, keeping make-up items at an optimum temperature is key ensuring it is safe and in good condition.


Similar to medicines and make-up, certain toiletries will need to be kept at a particular temperature to keep them fresh and usable.


If stored incorrectly, photos can fade and become warped in fluctuating temperatures. It is recommended that they are kept at a consistent moderate temperature whilst in storage.


Both cold and heat can damage furniture, with high temperatures causing upholstery to expand and contract, leading to misshapen or broken items.

Household Appliances

The mechanical and electric parts in these devices can be sensitive to extreme temperatures which could result in damage, corrosion and inefficiency of the product.

Musical Instruments

Musical instruments are often a big investment and experts recommended these should always be stored in climate-controlled units, regardless of the duration. Wooden parts can be damaged and strings can snap in fluctuating temperatures. Excessive moisture can even cause mould growth inside instruments, making those played by mouth potentially hazardous.

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How Much is This Type of Storage?

Perhaps unsurprisingly, a specialised unit such as climate-controlled storage will cost more than a conventional storage unit. In general, self-storage costs will vary across the country, with London costing more than in areas in the North of England or in Wales, for example. Other factors include the size of the storage unit, the length of time you rent it for and the amount of security provided.

As we have mentioned in our article on choosing long-term self-storage, storing the contents of a two-bedroom home for 6 months could cost around £500-£800. The cost of a climate-controlled unit will be higher than this, with the cost rising if you are renting a unit in a premium area like central London.

Costs will also vary from company to company, so ensure you obtain and compare costs before committing to a unit.

How to Find Climate-Controlled Self-Storage Near Me

At Compare My Move, we have a range of reputable removal and storage companies across the UK who can discuss storage options for items that require a specialised unit.

We can match you with up to 6 local and verified removal firms, many of which have storage options or connections with reputable storage companies. These firms will get your items to your storage unit safely, with every one of our partners fully insured with both Goods in Transit and Public Liability Insurances.

Adele MacGregor

Having written for PerformanceIN, WalesOnline, Grazia Magazine and The Olive Press, Adele now writes advice articles for home movers, first-time buyers and house sellers alike.

Dave Sayce

Reviewed by Dave Sayce

Owner & Managing Director, Compare My Move

Dave Sayce is the owner and managing director of Compare My Move and has over 10 years of experience in the house removals industry.