Love Your Tools? Protect Your Investment With Proper Long-Term Storage

Whether you're a contractor taking some time off or you just have too many tools to keep all in one location, storing your tools can be a necessary part of doing business. But storing them properly is key to ensuring the long life and safety of all your expensive tools. Here are 5 handy tips for long-term storage of quality tools.

Control the Temperature. The best way to ensure that your tools don't fall victim to moisture problems or battery issues is to store them in self storage units with climate control. Batteries should always be protected from freezing or being in an environment that rises to more than 100 degrees. If you live in an area with large weather fluctuations, definitely choose a climate-controlled unit. Look at your options at a company like South Town Storage.

Reduce Dust. Simply stacking or storing tools on open shelves or the floor leaves them open to dust getting into sensitive spaces -- especially if you will be doing any work nearby or getting into and out of the storage space often. To avoid this problem, look for storage that can be closed up -- such as toolboxes, shop cabinets, closed bins and filing cabinets.

Oil Them. Look for manufacturer instructions on your tools to determine if parts should be covered in any type of good grease, paste or wax before long-term storage. There are several brands of grease or anti-corrosion spray available commercially to help protect your tools from rust and lack of use. 

Keep Them Off the Ground. It can be tempting to place larger or hard-to-fit tools on the ground for convenience. However, doing so means that there's a greater chance they will be stepped on, have things fall on them or be bothered by pests. They may even be a safety hazard if there are kids around or you're in a hurry. If you need stronger storage for large tools, consider building a free-standing, heavy duty work table or shelf unit. 

Organize Things. Finally, a key to storing any large collection is to organize it so you can find things when you need them. Pegboards, cabinets with many drawers and rolling work centers can all help you stay organized. Label all cases clearly and place the labels facing forward so you can see the tools' descriptions easily from the angle of entry.

By knowing how to store your tools, you can protect your investment and ensure that your favorites are there for you for many years to come.