Can Appliances Go Bad Sitting In Storage?

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Home appliances are the expensive liabilities you own that you cannot live without. It gives you ease in your work and it helps in keeping your food safe to consume. Dishwasher, microwave oven, washing machine, and bulky refrigerator are among the appliances every household must-have. Yet, there are instances you need to put them on the storage. You may need to move to a new location and you need to store the appliances for a while. If that is the case, you may be asking, can appliances go bad sitting in storage?

Appliances may or may not go bad sitting in storage. As long as you clean it before you store it, everything will stay in good condition. The main factor to consider is the storage facility. If your storage facility is not winter-ready, most likely your appliances get damaged.

To learn more about storing appliances, check the tips below and the options available for storage.

How Long Can Appliances Be In Storage?

Depending on the storage facility and how you store your appliances, appliances can be stored for years. There are two types of storage facilities: controlled-climate storage and non-controlled-climate storage. A controlled-climate storage facility keeps the temperature consistent, so you don’t have to worry about humidity fluctuations. On the other hand, non-controlled-climate storage does not control humidity. It does not have an internal heating system, so it freezes in the winter.

For appliances that you plan to keep for months, climate-controlled storage is the better choice. Your appliances are guaranteed to be safe even in extreme weather conditions. It is possible, however, that even if you purchase the right storage facility, your appliances could get damaged if you don’t store them properly. 

How Do You Store Appliances In The Storage Unit?

The process of storing appliances in the storage unit involves two main steps – preparation and storage itself. The preparation stage is essential to ensure that your appliances will not smell stinky even if you store them for a long period. It also ensures the appliances will not get damaged during the move. On the other hand, keeping your appliances safe from pests and problem-causing changes in temperature is crucial during the storage stage.


The preparation stage requires you to check important documents that come with your appliances. It also includes the right way to keep your appliances clean and dry.

Inventory list

Make an inventory list of your appliances before you pack them for storage. You should take a picture of the appliances before you store them to keep a record of their condition. Be sure to check the enclosed warranties and manuals. 

Unplug and disconnect 

Unplug your appliances before cleaning them. Disconnect it if it is connected to a drainage line. Connecting hoses should also be removed. It is possible for water to sit on hoses, triggering mold growth. Electricity-related accidents can also be avoided by unplugging.

Cleaning the appliances

Make sure your appliances are empty. Remove the food or any other items you store in it. Next, you should clean it thoroughly. Avoid damaging your appliances by using a non-abrasive cleaner. To get rid of the foul smell, disinfect it with vinegar. Also, remove your lint filter if your appliances have one. 

If your appliances have coils on the outside, vacuum the coils. You can also dust it with a dry towel. However, you must remove the plugged-in appliances from the wall socket first to avoid electrocuting yourself. 

Keep it dry

You need to ensure that your appliances are dry. You do not want your appliances to grow mold if they had been moist before being put in storage. To ensure that everything inside is dry, you should defrost the refrigerator at least one week before the storage day.

Then clean your appliances. After cleaning your appliances with soapy water, use a lint-free towel to dry them. 

Wrap and secure

When moving appliances to a storage unit, wrap them if possible or use shipping tape to prevent doors from opening. Bubble wrap can also be used to prevent damage during transportation. Additionally, mirrors should be labeled as fragile. It serves as a reminder to everyone who sees it that the appliances must be handled carefully.


Securing a storage facility is necessary if you need to move your appliances away from your house. Renting a storage facility is beneficial because it has climate control that protects your appliances from extreme temperatures. However, it is not necessary for all instances because there are some appliances that can withstand the temperature. Check the manufacturer’s manual of your appliances to know more about the temperature guide.

How Do You Store Old Appliances?

Old appliances may come into three categories in terms of usage. The categories consist of frequently used, rarely used, and never used. For frequently used appliances, you can place them on the counter or your kitchen cabinet. The appliances that you always have must be easy-to-reach so you need to place them in areas where you can see them often.

However, when it comes to a rarely used appliance, you can keep it in the cabinet. It is preferred that you keep it on the topmost shelves or in the top cabinet. For the never-used appliances, it is better to let them go. You can sell it or donate it to a decluttering group. Free up the space in your kitchen by removing never-used items to avoid a cluttered space.

If you have old appliances that you still use and you’re placing it on the counter, always make sure that it is clean all the time. Unplug it when not in use.  

Appliances can work for decades as long as you handle them with care. Cleaning it regularly can lengthen its lifespan. When it comes to storing, choosing the right storage facility is important. If your area does not experience extreme weather conditions, your garage is enough. But if it is the other way around, find a good storage facility.