We have people ask all of the time, "Do I need a climate-controlled storage unit for my...
By: Elevate Self Storage on Nov 13, 2023 10:07:00 AM
Have you ever accidentally left a tool out after working on the car, only to discover it completely rusted and eroded following a lengthy storm? Don’t worry, we’ve all been there. It’s a learning lesson that is unfortunate but necessary. While a high-quality wrench may cost a maximum of $20, the same principle does not apply to your boat, trailer, or jet ski. Losing $20 to rust and damage is a far cry from the potential loss of thousands of dollars when neglecting to protect your valuable possessions and equipment, which are susceptible to damage if left exposed. If the off-season is approaching or you just need to store your beautiful equipment away, you better hope it stays beautiful and in the same tip-top shape when you take it back out for use.
Keep reading to learn the steps and best practices for waxing, prepping, inspecting, and repairing outdoor equipment like snowsports gear, boats, jet skis, trailers, hiking gear, and more for storage.
While boats, jet skis, and other water sports equipment are made to withstand the open water, they are still prone to damage from their environment when sitting for long periods of time unattended to. The same applies to other types of equipment like trailers, hiking gear, and four-wheelers.
Although covers can help protect paint and prevent UV damage, if you aren’t careful in selecting the proper cover and consistently checking it, your equipment can still be prone to molding and other more serious risks when moisture is left sitting still under the sheet. In fact, covers can sometimes encourage the growth of mold if they aren’t made of materials that allow for breathability. Therefore, if you are looking for an easier method of storing and protecting your equipment that can withstand longer periods of time, storage units are the way to go.
While storage units are better for your equipment than a simple cover, there are still steps that must be taken prior to storing. Even the best storage units will pose small risks to your equipment, such as moisture in the air. Therefore, when it comes to protecting your valuable equipment, a proactive approach is essential. By ensuring that your gear is thoroughly cleaned, dried, and properly coated before storage, you create a barrier that shields it from the detrimental effects of moisture and corrosion. Neglecting these critical steps can lead to irreversible damage, reduced functionality, and costly repairs.
Do your research. Look into what types of materials your equipment is made of and what chemicals can and can not be used on those surfaces. Also, research what kinds of tools and personal protective equipment are needed to deal with specific cleaning materials.
Get all your supplies ready for the cleaning, waxing, and prepping. You do not want to forget something and find out halfway through. An easy way to ensure you aren’t forgetting anything is by making a checklist.
Prior to waxing, it's essential to have a clean surface; otherwise, it will lock in dirt and grime on your equipment. I believe we can all concur that this is not the desired outcome.
For cleaning outdoor equipment, detergents and solvents are great for effectively breaking down and removing stubborn dirt, grease, and grime that can accumulate on gear exposed to the elements.
Cleaning boats, jet skis, trailers, and snowsport gear often involve a variety of techniques tailored to the unique characteristics of each type of equipment. For boats and jet skis, pressure washing, scrubbing with marine-specific detergents, and specialized hull cleaners are common methods. Trailers benefit from pressure washing and rust removal techniques, while snowsport gear necessitates a combination of brushing, vacuuming, and spot cleaning with gentle detergents. Each method is designed to not only enhance the appearance of your equipment but also to prepare the surface for the application of protective coatings, such as wax, ensuring a fresh start for your gear and extending its longevity.
It’s important to make inspections and repairs before storage. By thoroughly examining the gear, you can identify any existing damage or deterioration, such as scratches, dents, or rust spots. If this is not done and you apply wax over the damaged areas, you can seal in those existing problems, potentially exacerbating them over time.
If you notice there is wear and tear or small damages, it’s essential to adhere to best practices. Always begin by consulting the equipment's manual for guidance and specifications. Utilize the correct tools and safety equipment for the task and work in a well-ventilated and well-lit area. If applicable, ensure the equipment is securely supported to prevent accidents. After the repairs, keep detailed records of what you did to establish a comprehensive history of the equipment. This will help you schedule for future upkeep, ensuring the reliable performance and safety of your equipment.
To prevent major issues and damages from happening in the future, it’s important to regularly inspect and maintain crucial components, such as engines, brakes, and electrical systems.
The next step is waxing your outdoor recreational equipment. It’s essential to have the proper wax or coating. Different waxes offer distinct benefits and are designed for specific applications. The right wax selection can enhance protection, durability, and performance. For instance, marine-specific waxes are formulated to withstand water exposure, making them ideal for boats and jet skis. Snowsport gear benefits from cold-temperature waxes that improve glide and control on the slopes.
The techniques for applying wax and protective layers to equipment like boats, jet skis, snowsports gear, trailers, and four-wheelers involve a systematic approach to ensure optimum coverage and effectiveness.
To get the most out of your wax, you must utilize the best waxing techniques for outdoor equipment. Begin with a clean and dry surface. For boats and jet skis, apply marine wax in overlapping, circular motions, then buff to a shine. Snowsports gear typically requires hot wax application, using an iron to melt the wax into the base, followed by scraping and brushing for a smooth finish. Trailers and four-wheelers can benefit from protective sprays or coatings applied evenly and allowed to dry. Make sure to research any special considerations that may need to be utilized for various materials on your equipment. However, regardless of the equipment type, thorough and even coverage is essential to create a protective barrier against the elements, promoting longevity and performance.
During storage, if possible, it’s best practice to maintain your equipment regularly. Regular inspections and lubrication can prevent rust, mold, and other wear and tear. If your equipment is covered, ensure it is wrapped properly and will prevent moisture from solidifying between the sheet and your gear.
Another important factor to consider is inspecting for pests. While the best storage units will have precautions to minimize the pests that get into the units, it’s your responsibility to ensure they aren’t in there. These intruders often seek shelter and nesting spots within the gear, and their presence can result in gnawed wires, scratched surfaces, or fouled mechanical components.
Once you are ready to take the equipment out and get it ready for use after its long stay-away, it’s important to unwrap any covers, add additional lubrications, and make those safety checks and tests.
Bestowing the meticulous care your equipment deserves before storage lays the foundation for safeguarding its integrity and prolonging its lifespan, guaranteeing it stands ready for action when you need it most.
While preparation undoubtedly contributes significantly to the safety of your equipment during storage, the choice of storage unit and its placement is equally crucial. To choose the appropriate storage location, there are a few key considerations to take into account when doing your research. These include:
Elevate Self Storage stands as a beacon of excellence in the realm of storage solutions. We offer much more than just storage units; we provide a seamless and secure experience that truly elevates your storage needs. With top-notch amenities, state-of-the-art security, and a customer-centric approach, Elevate Self Storage is committed to your convenience, flexibility, and customer satisfaction. Contact Us today and Elevate your expectations and experience the greatness of storage solutions with Elevate Self Storage.
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