Say Goodbye this Cold Cleveland Winter with Seasonal Storage Swap

1 Comment(s) | Posted | by Norm Kotoch, Jr. |

spring flowers springing forward past Cleveland's harsh winterSnow, ice and bitterly cold temperatures—Clevelanders have had enough of winter this season! With promises of Indians baseball, Lake Erie boating and Sweet Moses’ ice cream coming soon, it’s time to assess your household items for opportunities to conduct a seasonal swap for spring.

Not sure where to begin? Below, we explore a few categories for consideration. Identify winter items you could move into storage to make room for spring essentials.

Heavy Clothing: Sweaters and Winter Coats

Spare closet space can quickly diminish when filled with heavy clothes needed to layer up against the cold. As temperatures rise, however, these items take up valuable real estate in your home, while providing little-to-no value.

Keep the items you will use in spring and summer, and pull fall and winter garments (like your Cleveland Browns tailgating gear) off the racks. Place them in boxes or bins to free up space and reduce clutter.

Storage Tip: Wash clothing prior to storing, and select a climate-controlled unit to prevent long-term storage issues related to mold, mildew and insects. 

Winter Car Accessories: Snow Tires and Chains

Rough road conditions during Cleveland’s winter weather can make snow tires a must for long commutes. According to Ohio state law, however, studded snow and ice tires are only allowed to be on your vehicle November 1 through April 15.

What do you do with these big and bulky tires the rest of the year? Move them to self-storage during spring, summer and early fall to free up space in your garage.

Storage Tip: Clean tires thoroughly prior to storage. To avoid drying out the rubber because of exposure to excess heat, select a climate-controlled unit and keep conditions consistently dark and cool.

Sidewalk Clearers: Snow Shovels, Snow Blowers and Rock Salt 

Shovels, snow blowers and rock salt are essential in clearing away snow and ice, but as with many winter weather items, they lose purpose as the year springs ahead.

While shovels and leftover rock salt may be an easy store, powerful snow blowers can be a bit more challenging:

  • Run the engine to remove any gasoline that remains in the machine. Fuel fumes paired with a poorly ventilated or enclosed space could lead to sparks and flames if stored with the wrong combination of items, such as those that require gas.
  • Change the oil prior to storing to ensure the machine will be in its best working condition next winter.
  • Thoroughly clean the snow blower and check for loose bolts or noticeable areas of wear. If wear is present, repair prior to storage.
  • Consider covering the snow blower in storage with a tarp or blanket to prevent dust from collecting.
  • Refer to the owner’s manual to ensure maintenance best practices are fully upheld. Contact the manufacturer of your individual snow blower with any questions regarding specific steps required for appropriate long-term storage.

Winter Fun: Snowmobiles, Skis, Snowboards and Sleds

If you’re a regular at Boston Mills and Brandy Wine, or just love to visit Cleveland’s top sled riding hills, don’t worry. Skis, snowboards and sleds can all be stored in a conventional storage unit the same as you would in your garage.

If you own a snowmobile, however, consider a storage unit specially made for recreational vehicles. Purchase one unit to keep year-round, and swap in snowmobiles for your antique car, boat or RV as the weather warms and your hobbies change with the seasons.

Which items will you store away as the weather warms up? Let us know in the comment section below.

Image Source: Matthijs Quaijtaal under Creative Commons 2.0 Generic


  1. Alan Scott's avatar
    Alan Scott
    | Permalink
    Heavy winter clothing and other ski togs are particularly hard to stow away. I just want to add in that you should not be exposed to direct sunlight; if they are, for extended periods of time, it can lead to fading and/or weakening of the fabric. I made that mistake not so long time ago. Teehee.

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