Storage Dilemmas: Plastic or Cardboard?

9:41 PM

A self-storage unit is the perfect solution if you are in the process of moving, need extra space to store holiday decorations or furniture, or if you need to hold onto important documents without having them underfoot. Whenever you begin to pack and store your possessions, you probably wonder whether it’s better to use plastic bins, cardboard boxes, or a combination of both. What works best in your Cabot storage unit? Here are some things to consider.


There is no doubt that plastic storage bins are going to cost you far more than cardboard boxes—especially when it’s possible to get some or all of your cardboard boxes for free from a helpful supermarket produce manager or liquor store manager. So if your budget is slim, go with cardboard. There are other advantages to cardboard as well (see below), but a cardboard box is always the choice of those who don’t want to spend a fortune on filling their storage unit.


You might think plastic always wins the durability contest, but that isn't the case. While plastic doesn't degrade quickly, it does get brittle with time. Rough handling can cause cracks, as can exposure to heat and sunlight. Cardboard boxes, though made of glued layers of paper, can be surprisingly strong, lasting for years if kept dry and with adequate air flow. Choose the highest quality you can afford of either plastic or cardboard. The big advantage that plastic has in terms of durability is that it is also waterproof. Where cardboard will eventually being to grow mold and mildew before turning into a smelly, mushy mess, plastic will simply and stalwartly keep your possessions dry (barring any leaks from cracks or ill-fitting lids, of course).


If you’re going with cardboard boxes, you've got great stackability, even if the boxes are different sizes. Just be sure that heavy boxes are on the bottom of the stack and that you fill any empty space in a box with a filler that will help the box retain its shape and strength. Plastic boxes are often designed specifically to be stacked, and as long as you keep heavier boxes on the bottom, you won’t have to worry about filling up empty space.


The final consideration for your Cabot storage unit plans is for what purpose you are storing something. Documents are best stored in sturdy plastic for its waterproof qualities, but clothing and textiles might be happier in cardboard, where air can circulate around and within the box. For items like dishes, the choice is yours, as long as you wrap each dish in paper or cloth to keep them from breaking. If you are a college student on a limited income, cardboard boxes you glean from stores or friends are perfect for your needs. If you have the money to spend, a well-organized selection of plastic bins is easier to label and stack with ease. Or you can use a combination of both to protect the things that matter to you most.

This is a sponsored post in part by Bucks2Blog

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