The garage is the perfect place to store the things you may not use anymore or may only use at certain times of the year. But, there are just some things that shouldn’t go in there. Here are ten things you should never keep in your garage.
10. Major Appliances
Refrigerators, freezers, washing machines, tumble dryers and anything else that generally fits into this category should NOT be kept in a garage. That’s because most of these items work best at certain temperatures. Sweltering temperatures in the summer can cause your fridge to overwork to keep food cool, running up your energy bill at the same time. Refrigerators operate less efficiently at temperatures below 50 degrees and will stop running altogether at temperatures below 30 degrees. Cold temperatures affect the efficiency of tumble dryers as well.
As for washing machines and freezers, Good Housekeeping magazine says it’s okay to keep them in a garage… if you “proceed with caution.” “Be aware there could be problems with condensation resulting from the heat and steam created during use,” the magazine wrote on its website. And, when it comes to freezers, they all have “climate class ratings that tell you the best external operating temperature for them. Check the instructions or the rating plate.”
9. Propane Tanks
If propane leaks in an enclosed, unventilated area, the smallest little thing can ignite a fire–starting your car, using your cellphone, even flipping on the light switch could do it! A leak can also put you at risk for asphyxiation. With that said, propane tanks should always be kept outdoors, preferably away from your home. And, they should be screwed tightly shut. If it’s winter, cover the tanks. If, however, you absolutely must store fuel in your garage, make sure you put it in dedicated, leak-proof containers and place those containers on a flat surface away from water heaters, power tools, or anything else that could possibly cause an ignition. Also, make sure you keep stored fuel out of the reach of children and pets.
8. Important Documents
If you don’t want your important documents to get damaged, you’d better not store them in your garage. The unpredictable climate in garages is a surefire way to destroy your birth certificates, family photographs, and other paper goods. But, it’s not just the temperatures or humidity you have to worry about. Paper products attract roaches and other bugs, which can destroy your important documents. Pollutants can destroy them, too. Instead, keep all your important documents inside your home in a dry, safe place.