Category Archives: Tips


Spring Cleaning in the Fall: Using an Orchards Storage Unit

With the fall rushing quickly toward us, we are all starting to – reluctantly – think about back-to-school preparation. Most of us are trying to get back into a normal routine after the lazy, yet often fun-in-the-sun filled, days of summer. Of course, many of us typically think of spring as the right time to get everything clean, and we may even get the storage spaces organized. However, if you do your spring cleaning in the fall, as you are preparing for the back-to-school hustle, you will find that it makes everything so much smoother and easier.

Good Intentions & Hoarding Problems

Most good intentions regarding getting organized before school starts end up being just temporary fixes to the real problem. We tend to organize our living spaces by shifting our unnecessary belongings to areas of the house that are not being used. Areas like basements and garages are the typical dumping grounds for everything that we use only seasonally – or may never use at all.  Unless we organize completely and properly, our good intentions will eventually be undermined.

Organizing Correctly

Rather than continuing these bad habits that eventually lead to being back in the same spot you started at, you can declutter and make your house more spacious and organized. This is especially true if you have children. Items that you thought you stored away in the garage will soon enough pop back up and be in your living room, haunting you.

Ultimately, you should focus on keeping only the things that you use in your house. Everything else – summertime seasonal items, summer clothes, that sewing machine that you promised yourself you would use one day – should be packed in your storage unit. As you go through your items, ask yourself if you are going to use the item within the next three months. If not, pack it into your storage unit. Remember to label all of your boxes so you can find stuff when you need it and feel free to check out our size guide if you are not sure what size storage unit you will need.

How Your Storage Unit Will Change Your Life

Once you have accomplished your fall “spring cleaning,” and all of your excess belongings have been hauled off to your storage unit, you will start to notice your life change. With the clutter gone and items organized and in their places, getting up in the morning and getting the kids ready for school should be a breeze. Their closets and drawers will not be stuffed with excess clothes that are out of season and there will be no way for them to pull out their summer clothes just to play with them if they are packed away in a storage unit.   

Tips for Back-to-School Success

Here are a few more tips for back-to-school success:

  • Create a School Gear Area – Every day, you and the kids need to grab certain specific things, like backpacks, shoes, books, your purse, and your keys. Make a space in your house using decorative hooks and cubbies where this stuff is kept to reduce the morning hustle even more.
  • Post a Calendar The best place for this is usually on the refrigerator, but if you have a kitchen wall that can be used, post a calendar and a daily list of to-dos or tasks that need to be accomplished, both for you and your kids. This will help establish more organized routines each day.
  • Clean up Behind Yourself – It is even better to teach your children to clean up after themselves. But, we all know that children mimic our behaviors. If you are cooking in the kitchen, clean up spills and messes as they occur.
  • Prepare/plan meals in advance – One way to make your weeks much easier is to plan your meals in advance. By doing this, you can create your grocery shopping list according to the meals you plan to make. Then, pre-cook your meals over the weekend and freeze them. Another way to make a quick and easy meal is to pop some meat and veggies in a crock pot in the morning and let it simmer while you are at work and the kids are at school. It will be ready to eat and smelling amazing when you come home.  

Getting an Orchards Storage Unit

At Iron Gate Storage, we want you to have a great start for back-to-school this fall. Let us know how we can help you with your storage needs.  

Iron Gate Storage
7920 NE 117th Ave.
Vancouver, WA 98662
(360) 799-5082

Tips For Storing Retail Inventory in Cascade Park

Small and mid-sized retail companies can benefit greatly from self-storage. A self-storage unit can be an excellent way to manage the excess inventory that has been piling up. Further, self-storage is convenient, cost-effective, and, when used correctly, a good method of keeping a retail business organized. If you are considering keeping retail inventory in a storage unit at Cascade Park in Vancouver, please consider the four following tips.

Select a Location Near Your Business

One of the primary benefits of using a self-storage unit for your extra retail inventory is the convenience that it provides. Self-storage can allow you to maintain full control over your inventory while allowing for quick access to your items. In order to best utilize this benefit, you should select a storage unit that is located in close proximity to your retail business. For example, the Cascade Park location of Iron Gate Storage is located just off of Interstate 205. A location like this always allows for quick and easy access to needed inventory.

Leave Enough Space to Walk Through Your Unit

This is an important tip for storing retail inventory. You must avoid the temptation to over-pack your storage unit. If you find that you need additional space, it is well worth your money to rent a second or third unit. Leaving room for you to walk around will save you a substantial amount of time. Ultimately, your storage unit is for business purposes. When it comes to business, your time is your money. Further, you will likely want to rotate your retail inventory, especially if you are accessing your inventory regularly. By not over-packing your storage unit, you will make the process of inventory rotation much more efficient.

Create and Maintain a Comprehensive Inventory List

Everyone benefits from a well organized storage unit, but proper organization is particularly important for business owners. If you are storing a large amount of retail inventory in your unit, things can quickly become hard to manage. However, you can easily rectify that potential problem if you know exactly what is in your unit. The last thing any business owner wants is to lose any inventory. You need to know when to order more of an item and when you already have enough. It is important to create and maintain a detailed inventory list so you always know exactly what you have and exactly where you can find it. By taking some simple organization steps upfront, you can save yourself significant time, energy and headaches in the future.  

Pack Your Items Carefully

Finally, you should take great care when packing and storing your inventory. After all, damaged or misplaced inventory will hit your bottom line. When things are packed carefully, it will dramatically cut down on the risk that your goods will becomes lost or broken.

Contact Iron Gate Storage at Cascade Park in Vancouver

A self-storage unit can be the ideal spot to keep excess retail inventory. If you need storage space in the Vancouver, Washington region, please do not hesitate to contact the dedicated professionals at Iron Gate Storage today. Our team is committed to helping you find the storage solution that best suits your needs.

Iron Gate Storage
802 NE 112th Ave.
Vancouver, WA 98684
(360) 799-5090

How to Pack Fragile Items for Vancouver Storage Units

Moving your personal items into a storage facility can be a stressful process. This is especially true if you are handling fragile items. Certainly, the absolute last thing you want is to have something break while moving it. If you are thinking about putting your belongings in storage in Vancouver, Washington, please consider the following advice for packing your fragile items.

You Need the Right Supplies

It is always best to acquire the right supplies before packing any items for storage. It is particularly critical that you have the appropriate packing supplies if you are storing something breakable. Specifically, you will likely need:

  • High quality boxes in several different sizes;
  • Strong packaging tape;
  • Protective packing paper;
  • Bubble wrap;
  • Scissors;
  • Cardboard; and
  • Supplies for labelling your boxes.

Avoid Using ‘Makeshift’ Supplies

In order to ensure the protection of your fragile goods, you should avoid using supplies that are not truly meant for packing. For example, this means that you should acquire bubble wrap and packing paper to protect items. You should avoid wrapping anything in a towel, a blanket, paper towels, or even newspaper. While it can be tempting to pack your items using things that you already have around the house, ultimately, it is best to avoid using anything that is not designed to protect fragile items.

Plan Ahead and Take Your Time

One of the biggest mistakes people make is that they leave their storage projects until the very last minute. Doing this type of work the right way will take some upfront time, but it was also save you time in the long run. When you are rushing, that is the time that something fragile is most likely to break or become misplaced. Furthermore, when packing fragile items, labelling should be an important part of your planning process. You must always be sure to clearly label everything. This is true if you are working with a team of movers, or even if you are moving everything by yourself. After all, time will pass and you may eventually forget which boxes contain fragile goods.

Quick Tips For Some Common Fragile Items


  • Plates: It is best to wrap each individual plate with bubble wrap or strong packaging paper. Further, plates should always be stacked vertically within a durable box.
  • Glassware: Much like plates, glasses should also be wrapped individually before being placed into a box. Also, you should remember that glasses are heavy. When putting multiple glasses into a box, you need to ensure that the box is strong enough to handle the weight of the glasses and that the heaviest glassware is at the bottom of the box.
  • Lamps: Whenever possible, a lamp should be stored by itself inside its own box. You should also ensure that the flat side of the lamp is at the bottom of the box.


Do You Need Self Storage Assistance?

At Iron Gate Storage, our experienced professionals are ready to help you. If you are looking for storage space for fragile items in the Vancouver area, our conveniently located Cascade Park storage location, might be the perfect spot for you. Please do not hesitate to contact our team today to learn more about what we can do for you.

Iron Gate Storage
802 NE 112th Ave.
Vancouver, WA 98684
(360) 799-5090

Getting the Most from Your Vancouver Storage Unit

If you have an overflowing garage, and your closets are all jam-packed, you are probably in need of a storage unit. A Vancouver storage facility is the ideal place to keep your extra items so you can maintain a clean and well-organized home. You can get the most from your storage unit by making sure that you properly pack, stack, mark, and store your items.


Proper packing is essential to keeping a storage unit efficient and accessible. The best way to pack is to keep like things together. Pack up boxes of items that make sense together. If you have family members who all have items to store, create boxes for each person and allow them to pack their items. When packing, put heavy items on the bottom of the box and spread out weighty things between different storage cartons. Use newspaper, tissue paper, or bubble wrap to keep delicate pieces safe from harm.


Stacking boxes will allow you to get more items into your storage unit with better organization. First, it is essential that you put as many things as you can into stackable boxes. Choose boxes that are approximately the same sizes so that they can be more easily stacked. As you stack boxes, put larger boxes on the bottom. Also, any boxes with heavy items in them should be placed on the bottom. Remember not to use odd-sized cartons that you have lying around. Put some effort into getting boxes that are the right size for stacking. You can purchase boxes from your storage facility.


Marking the storage boxes is an important step, but one that is often forgotten. Use a thick marker so that you can see the words from a distance. Mark all four sides of the cartons. That way, if they get turned around you’ll still be able to know what is inside. If using plastic storage bins, mark directly on the boxes with permanent marker or use stickers that cannot be easily removed. Put as much information on the boxes as you need. For example, instead of marking a box “kitchen,” add “everyday dishes” so you will know exactly what is within.


Once you have packed your items into their appropriate boxes, it’s time to ensure that you can find things again later on. Indeed, you should take some time to plan how you will organize your boxes. Decide the best way to place your items in a manner that makes sense to you and your family. Then, take the time to place items into their proper areas within your storage unit so you will be able to locate them. Try to create some walkways so you can enter your unit to find things when necessary.
When you are ready to get organized and need a storage unit, choose a convenient, safe, and affordable unit at Iron Gate Storage in Vancouver. We have a large selection of units to fit your needs.

Iron Gate Storage
2410 E 5th St
Vancouver, OR 98661
(360) 362-8080

Packing Tips for Your Beaverton Storage Facility

A storage unit can make your life easier, less stressful, and more organized. Indeed, many people can benefit from the use of a Beaverton storage facility. Once you’ve decided to rent a unit, you’re ready to start filling it up. Don’t just toss things into your storage unit without regard, or you’ll never find anything. You’ll also lose a lot of space if your things are disorganized. To help with the process, we have provided some packing tips to help you use your storage unit to its full potential.

Household Items

When packing household items, such as kitchen goods, you will find that there are many small objects. Make a box for all the utensils, gadgets, and other items. Dishes and glassware need to be protected. You can use bubble wrap or tissue paper to safeguard breakables. Special packing boxes are available that provide separation for glasses. Do not over-pack boxes because they will become too heavy.


It is usually best to place large furniture into your storage unit first, unless you plan to use it soon. Wrap wooden furniture with shrink wrap to protect it and to keep the drawers or doors intact. Glass shelves or tabletops need to be removed from the furniture and stored separately along the edge of your storage unit. Use bubble wrap to protect glass items. Large items, such as tables, may have removable legs. If so, remove the legs so it will take up less storage space. Use labels to remind you of which furniture parts go together.

Antiques and Collectibles

Antiques and collectibles are easy to keep in your storage unit. Pack them into boxes of like objects. Use newspaper or packing peanuts to ensure that each one is properly protected. Mark the boxes “fragile” and don’t pack too many items into each box. When you stack boxes, keep the heaviest ones at the bottom of the stack to avoid the possibility of tipping. Some antiques or artwork should be stored in a climate-controlled unit.

Files and Paperwork

You need to keep important files and paperwork, bank statements, receipts, and tax documents in a secure location. Box up paperwork into boxes by year and clearly mark the outside of each carton. If you have your own business, you will also need to properly store all the associated records. Be sure to keep work records separated from personal records.

Toys and Baby Items

If you have a baby who’s getting older but you aren’t yet ready to part with their old cribs, changing tables, clothes and other items, a storage facility can be a welcome addition to your life. Disassemble the crib, making sure to keep all the hardware in a plastic bag. Attach the bag to the headboard so you are sure that everything is ready when it’s needed. Before storing children’s clothing, launder it and place it into boxes by age or size.

Sports Equipment

Sports equipment can be large and bulky and take up a lot of space. You can store it much easier at your storage unit than in your garage. When storing sporting goods keep like items together. For example, designate a section of your storage unit for camping equipment. Make sure that you store everything necessary for each particular sport in the same place. If you use the items frequently, keep them in an area close to the door.

Packing is the first step after choosing your storage unit. When you are looking for a storage unit in Beaverton, count on Iron Gate Storage for a selection of sizes and options to meet your needs.

Iron Gate Storage
4050 SW 160th Ave
Beaverton, OR 97007
(503) 649-7531

Organize Your Move with a Vancouver Storage Unit

When you are preparing to move, one of the best ways to get organized is with a Vancouver storage unit. Using a storage unit in conjunction with your move will keep you organized and make your move go much more smoothly. Start by choosing a storage unit that is sized to fit your needs. There are various sized units available to chose from. Selecting a unit that is slightly larger than you think you need, for example, can keep everything separated and leave space to walk between boxes.

Rent Your Storage Space

The first step in the moving process is to rent a storage unit. Decide on the size and type of unit that best suits your requirements. Some units are climate-controlled. Climate-controlled units are ideal for items that should not be exposed to temperature extremes. For example, musical instruments are best stored in a climate-controlled storage unit. Climate controlled spaces are also good when you need to spend time organizing the boxes and items in your unit.

Start Packing

It is a good idea to begin packing a couple of months before your move. When possible, try to use similarly sized boxes since these are easiest to move and stack. You can purchase boxes and packing materials directly from the storage facility. Start by packing small items that you won’t need for a few months. Instances include photos, out-of-season clothing, decorations, kitchen items, and plenty of other things that can be easily packed and stored. Getting some of the clutter out of the way will help you prepare for a more organized move.

Take Boxes to Storage

Whenever you have a couple of boxes packed you can take them over to your storage unit. Be sure to mark each box with the contents and the room of the home where the items belong. This will help you sort things out later. Continue taking things over to your storage unit whenever you can.

Small Furniture

As your moving date approaches, you may want to start bringing some other items to your storage facility. Take small tables, chairs, lamps, and other items that fit in your vehicle. You can also start bringing outdoor furniture, seasonal items, and sports equipment to the unit. Remember that if you need something before the move you can easily get it out of storage. If you utilize your storage unit properly, you will be left with a much more manageable move.

After the Move

Once your move is complete you can take your time bringing boxes to your new home from the storage unit. You will be able to grab just a couple of boxes at a time if you like, so you will be able to get them unpacked in your spare time. You’ll be able to keep your new home clutter-free while you organize all of your belongings.
Are you searching for a storage unit in Vancouver? Contact Iron Gate Storage in Vancouver to take care of all your storage needs.

Iron Gate Storage
2410 E 5th St
Vancouver, OR 98661
(360) 362-8080

Four Tips to Help Keep Your Vancouver Storage Unit Organized

Self-storage rental units are extremely useful. They can help you keep your home or business decluttered, thereby removing a lot of stress from your life. However, a disorganized storage unit can itself turn into a real headache. Poor organization could even result in damage to, or the loss of, your items. The following is a list of four important tips that will help you keep your Vancouver self storage unit well organized.

Make a Plan

Proper organization begins with careful planning. The first thing you need to do is to acquire the correct space for your storage needs. Following this, you should sketch the dimensions of your unit on a sheet of paper. This will allow you to make a detailed plan of where each of your items should go. This type of planning process is useful for several different reasons:

  • It allows you to use all of your space in an efficient manner;
  • It will help you determine which things need to go towards the back of the unit and which things need to be more accessible; and
  • It will give you a master reference sheet, so that you will know exactly where in the unit each of your items is located.

Use Zones

When you start planning your storage space layout, you should use a simple zoning system to help you stay organized. Essentially, zoning means that you will keep items with similar purposes in the same section of your storage unit. For example, if you are storing several boxes of clothing in your unit, it is a good practice to keep all of those boxes together. Likewise, if you have a substantial amount of kitchenware, those items should be kept in the same spot. Eventually, you will need to take these items out of storage, and when that time comes, zoning will help you find your items with little trouble.

Label Everything

You should never underestimate the importance of labelling your boxes. Many people overlook labeling because they believe that they will be able to remember the items in each box. This quickly becomes very difficult as time passes and more items are added to a storage unit. Basic labelling is an easy way to help ensure that you will be able to find your items.

Stack Items, But Do It Carefully  

Stacking your items will not only help you keep your unit organized, but it will also help you use  your space more effectively. However, when stacking is not done with due care, it can quickly turn into a nightmare. When stacking, you should try to use boxes that are similar in both size and shape. Further, you should always keep future accessibility in mind. If something is on the bottom of a pile of boxes, you need to ensure that you will be able to get to it without too much trouble.

Contact Iron Gate Storage Today

If you are looking for storage unit space in Vancouver, our team can help. Our Mill Plain location, conveniently located just off of East Mill Plain Boulevard, offers a variety of different types of units. We can help you find the space that is right for you. For additional information, please do not hesitate to contact our storage professionals today.

Iron Gate Storage
12406 SE 5th Street
Vancouver, WA 98683
(360) 799-5100

Vancouver Storage Units: Keeping Appliances in Good Condition

Appliances can take up a lot of space in a home that you simply do not have. Many homeowners and business owners in the Vancouver area find that they need storage space for spare appliances, which is an especially common issue during moves or renovations. A storage rental unit provides a great solution for both temporary and longer-term appliance storage needs. It is also important to recognize that appliances are valuable, and thus they need to be handled with care during the entire storage process.

Eight Tips to Protect Your Large Appliances

  1. Appliances should be extensively cleaned before being being placed into a storage unit. A dirty appliance risks damage. This is especially an issue with kitchen appliances, as an untreated and used kitchen appliance can attract pests.
  2. You should ensure that your appliances are free from any water. Sitting water can cause major damage to large electronic appliances. Further, moisture will facilitate the growth of mildew and mold. The last thing you want is to take an appliance out of storage only to discover that it is covered in mold. To further reduce the risk of mold, the doors of appliances should be carefully removed before long-term storage.
  3. All appliances should be covered with a very light cloth. This serves a dual purpose: it will allow the appliance to remain free from dust and it will also ensure that it is adequately ventilated.
  4. When packing appliances, it is critical that fragile appliances and appliance parts are carefully stored in plastic or bubble wrap. Additionally, moisture resistant padding should be placed on the floor of the unit to reduce the risk of damage.
  5. You will want to be sure you select the correct unit for your appliance. For example, large appliances with electronics may need to be stored in a climate controlled unit.
  6. Once you are prepared to move your appliances, you should know where you are going to put them. It is generally best to keep large appliances near the back of your unit, though this will depend on when you expect to need them.
  7. You should not store anything else on top of an appliance. It can sometimes be tempting to use an appliance within your storage unit as a shelf, but this is not a good idea. If you are putting weight on the top of an appliance, there is a risk of damage. If you need additional storage space, there may be ways to rearrange your unit to create it, or it may be best to rent an additional small storage unit.
  8. Finally, as a general reminder, you should only move large appliances when you have the proper equipment and manpower. Moving a large appliance is inherently risky. Without proper care your appliance could sustain major damage. Even worse, you or someone else has the potential to be seriously injured.

Contact Irongate Storage Today

Our team of dedicated professionals can help you find the right solution to your storage problem. Whether you are moving, renovating or simply need a space for a large appliance for the time being, we are ready to help. Irongate Storage has many great locations throughout the area, including Cascade Park, which is located just off of Interstate 205.

Iron Gate Storage
802 NE 112th Ave.
Vancouver, WA 98684
(360) 799-5090

Choosing the Right-Sized Vancouver Storage Unit

You’ve made the decision to rent a storage unit, but how do you know which size is best for your needs? There are guidelines available that provide you with general information, including a space calculator, but it can still be difficult to make those decisions. Here are some helpful tips for correctly sizing your unit.

Make a List

Start by making a list of all the items that you intend to store in your unit. It is helpful to walk through your home or garage so you include everything possible. Review the list with your family to make sure that it is complete. Once you have a comprehensive list of items for storage, you are ready to begin thinking about sizing your unit.

Lay it Out at Home

It can be difficult to picture the actual size of the storage units you are considering. You can create a simple outline in your home so you can look at it more effectively. Use painter’s tape on your floor in your home or garage to see what the size of the space looks like. You will be able to get a fairly comprehensive idea of what will and what won’t fit into the area once you have it laid out in front of you.

Consider Large Items

Large items, or those that are oddly shaped, are often the most difficult to store. They may take up more room than you think. When considering a unit, think about the entire size of the space, including the ceiling height. Sometimes you can turn an item on its side to make it more manageable in a storage unit. Don’t try to jam bulky items into the unit or you will end up having to remove them every time you need to get something out of storage.

Look at the Space

Once you’ve narrowed down your options, it is helpful to view the units in-person before making a final choice. Seeing the space will give you a much better idea of how you can arrange your items and which will best fit your belongings. A storage specialist will show you the available units and answer any questions you may have.

Size Up

Most people end up finding more items to take to their storage unit than they first anticipated. If you have a unit that is too small, you won’t be able to store everything you need. When considering storage options, think about renting a unit that is slightly larger than what you need. The price is typically not that much more, and it will be much easier to organize and manage.

Review Storage Guidelines

Our website has important information that will help you properly size your unit. When viewing the options, keep in mind that some of the examples show packing the unit very full and stacking boxes and furniture. If you want more space to move around, always choose a unit that is slightly larger. Use the convenient size guide to assist you in choosing a storage solution to best fit your needs.

Visit Iron Gate Storage Today

Iron Gate Storage is your comprehensive storage solution for today’s busy lifestyle. Our facilities offer safe, secure, and easily accessible options for your every storage need. Call Iron Gate Storage in Vancouver today or stop by to see our excellent selection of storage options.  

Iron Gate Storage
1200 West Fourth Plain
Vancouver, WA 98660
(360) 419-4200

3 Things You Need to Know About Storing Clothes In Vancouver

People put their clothing in storage for a number of different reasons. Some people store clothing based on the changing seasons. Others consider storage units to put clothing away for possible future needs, while others still just have a large amount of clothing that they need a spot for until they have the time to sort through everything. Whatever your needs may be, a Vancouver rental unit will be the ideal place to store your clothing so that you can open up space in your home. If you are looking for a storage unit in Vancouver, Washington, whether for storing clothing or any other items, consider these three tips that will make storing your valuables much easier.

Clean Clothes Store Best

You should always wash your clothes thoroughly before putting them into a storage unit. For most items, a simple run through the washing machine and the dryer will work fine, though dry cleaning is always the best choice for more expensive and fragile items. Ultimately, if an item goes into storage dirty, that item’s condition is only likely to get worse in the unit. Clean clothes that are in close proximity to the soiled items may even become contaminated.

Wardrobe Boxes and Other Packing Techniques

When it comes to storing clothing, nothing is more effective than a wardrobe box. These boxes contain a bar just below the lid that you can put hangers on. This is beneficial for a number of different reasons. First, it is an incredibly efficient way to store clothing. You can fit a significant number of items into a small amount of space using a wardrobe box. Because the boxes are uniform in size, you will be able to fit many boxes within a single storage unit leaving little to no wasted space. These types of storage boxes are effective for keeping stored clothes clean and free from any damage. Beyond wardrobe boxes, covered plastic containers also work well for storing clothing and offer many of the same benefits. Both methods offer tremendous advantages over loose bags. It is best to avoid storing clothing in garbage bags or any similar types of bags. This method of storage offers much less protection, along with being less efficient when it comes to using space.

You Need the Right Environment

Clothing does best in a climate-controlled environment, although the importance of this depends on the value of your clothing and the type of material involved. Furs and leather should always be stored in a climate-controlled unit. This will protect these sensitive and high-value items from damage. When possible, it is best to store your other clothing items in a climate controlled unit as well. Heat and moisture are bad for clothing. Climate control offers important protection.

Contact Irongate Storage Today

At Iron Gate Storage, our storage professionals can help you find a storage solution that best suits your needs. If you are looking to store clothing or anything else in the Vancouver area, our Mill Plain storage location could be the perfect spot for you. Please contact our dedicated team today to learn more about your options.

Iron Gate Storage
12406 SE 5th Street
Vancouver, WA 98683
(360) 799-5100