How to prevent mice in storage units

How to Keep Mice Out of Your Storage Unit & Tips to Pick The Best Facility

Avatar of author Ismael Girard
Ismael Girard
min read

We've all experienced it; you're excitedly unpacking your storage unit only to find that your treasured belongings have been chewed up by mice.

Rodents, such as mice and rats, are incredibly adaptable; they'll make a home just about anywhere if the conditions are right.

Storage units often provide perfect conditions with plenty of shelter, warmth, and potential food sources. Unfortunately, our stored items can also suffer considerable damage over time because these pests are known to gnaw on cardboard boxes and furniture.

In this text, we'll answer the following questions for you:

✔️ What are the signs of mice infestation in a storage unit?

✔️ How to make sure to pick a mouse-free storage facility?

✔️ How to prevent mice and protect your stuff?

✔️ What are proactive measures for a mice-free space?

What Are the Signs of Mouse Infestation in Storage Units?

cluttered storage unit

The first step in managing a mouse situation is to identify the signs of their presence.

Look for:

  • Mouse droppings: These small, pellet-like droppings are a sure indicator of a mouse on the premises.
  • Gnawed boxes and items: Mice have sharp teeth used for chewing; destructed cardboard boxes and other items are clear signs of their presence.
  • Odd sounds: Mice are nocturnal creatures. If there’s a rustling sound coming from the storage unit, particularly at night, it could be an indication of a mouse problem.
  • Mice nests: Mice tend to build nests with shredded paper, fabric or dried plant matter. If you find any such structure in your storage unit, it's likely you have a mice problem.

Proactively checking for these signs can help to quickly identify a possible infestation and prevent extensive damage to your belongings.

How to Make Sure to Pick a Mouse-Free Storage Facility?

Given the potential damage to our belongings, it's vital to find a storage facility that can help keep rodents at bay. We're going to look at some factors you need to consider while choosing a storage unit, like assessing extermination policies and the advantages of climate-controlled units.

Evaluating Pest Control Policies

The first step in avoiding rodent problems is by assessing the extermination policies of your potential storage facilities. Here's what you should do.

  • Ask: Don’t shy away from asking about the level of rodent control measures the facility employs.
  • Check: Make sure the facility gets regular pest control visits.
  • Policies: Their pest control strategies should be robust, covering both proactive and preventative measures.

Make Sure Units Have Climate-Control

A good defense against mice infestation in storage units is climate control. Here's why it's often the better option:

  • Less Attractive to Mice: Mice are attracted to environments with certain temperatures and humidity levels. Climate-controlled units maintain constant conditions which deter rodents.
  • Protects Belongings: Items like furniture, items made of plastic, and stored food are preserved better under regulated temperature and humidity.

Portable Storage Containers vs. Traditional Units

Finally, we're addressing a closely-related topic - the comparison between portable storage containers and traditional storage units. Both have pros and cons regarding pest control.

  • Portability: Portable containers can be positioned away from areas prone to infestation, like dense vegetation or trash dumpsters. But remember, moving them is no guarantee of getting rid of mice.
  • Accessibility: Traditional units often have better seals and offer secure, mouse-proof latches and doors.

Select your storage options with care and consciousness. The right choice can make a vast difference in ensuring the protection of your belongings and prevention of mice.

How to Prevent mice and Protect Your Belongings?

Ensuring your stuff is safe in a storage facility goes beyond picking the right spot. Likewise important is preparatory steps you take before storing items to help keep rodents away. Hence, it's crucial to make sure our belongings are rodent-free and safe.

Cleaning and Preparing Items for Storage

The same way we explained in our mice prevention in shed guide, cleanliness is the best deterrent against mice.

  • When preparing our belongings for storage, we need to ensure all your things are clean and dry. This is especially crucial for second-hand or old furniture.
  • Small crumbs of food residue may attract mice that can cause irrepairable damage to not only the food but other stored items as well.
  • It's a good practice to thoroughly clean and dry items before storing them in a unit. Be meticulous in checking items for signs of existing infestations, such as small chew holes or rodent droppings.
  • If you find such signs, make sure to address the mice problem before these items find their way into the storage unit.

Choosing the Right Storage Containers

The type and condition of the containers you use to store items play a significant role in preventing rodents. Remember, mice can chew through cardboard, so it may not be the best option for long-term storage.

Choosing Plastic Over Cardboard

Plastic containers come highly recommended over cardboard boxes. This is simply because they provide a more secure storage option against rodents. Plastic containers are hard to chew through and provide a sealed environment that prevents easy access.

On the downside, plastic is not breathable and hence might promote condensation inside the container if items are not thoroughly dry before stored.

Using Specialized Storage Bags and Wraps

For those among us having treasured clothing or delicate fabrics, specialized storage bags and wraps offer an extra layer of protection against mice. These materials are designed to keep them out while ensuring the good condition of your stuff. Fabrics should be stored only after thorough cleaning and drying to avoid attracting mice.

In the end, choosing the right storage containers and taking the time to prepare your items properly can significantly reduce the chances of a mouse infestation. With regular checks and good cleaning habits, we can ensure our stored belongings stay in top shape, free from damage.

Proactive Measures for a Mice-Free Space

Let's move ahead and explore some preventive measures for maintaining a mice-free storage unit. By combining precautionary efforts with sensible storage practices, we can significantly cut down the likelihood of any mice infestations.

Regular Inspections and Maintenance

Spotting and Sealing Entry Points

Frequent inspections are our front line defense against mice. Keep an eye out for signs of mice activity, such as chewed cardboard or clear mouse droppings. No matter how small, you need to garnish any crevices or holes you find. You see, mice can squeeze through gaps as small as a dime!

Check around doors, windows, and in the corners of the storage unit. Patch it up using materials such as caulk or steel wool. Remember, consistent inspections and quick reaction to potential entry points are paramount in pest prevention.

Keeping the Unit Clean and Organized

An organized storage facility doesn't just offer easy access to stored items. It also eliminates hiding places for pests and makes it easier to spot signs of an infestation. Keep stored items off the floor whenever possible. Especially, store food and other attractants in sealed plastic containers instead of cardboard.

Opt for shelving units to keep pests away from your storage. Sweep the floor on a regular basis to remove food crumbs or other residues. A clean, dry, and clutter-free environment is not good hospitality for pests.

Natural and Commercial Deterrents

Essential Oils and Mothballs

Did you know pests, especially mice and rats, detest the smell of certain essential oils? Peppermint oil, for example, is a natural mice deterrent. Dab a bit of this onto cotton balls and place them around the storage unit - a safer and more pleasant option compared to commercial deterrents.

Mothballs can also deter mice. However, make sure to use them with caution as they're hazardous to children and pets. Remember, even as we choose effective mouse repellents, we must bear in mind safety.

Mice Baits and Traps

Commercial pest deterrents like mice baits and traps offer a proactive approach to controlling infestations. Mouse traps, in particular, are a common and effective way to catch mice. From classic snap traps to more contemporary options like electric mouse traps, you'll find an array of solutions to fit your needs.

Mice baits are another way for tackling a mouse or rat problem. However, if you decide to use them, check the policies of your storage facility. Some places do not allow their use due to potential hazards.

By incorporating these strategies into your approach, you can maximize the chances of maintaining a mice-free storage space. Prevention truly is the best pest control. As we continue, we'll explore more ways to safeguard your belonging against these unwelcome visitors.


So, we've explored the ins and outs of preventing mice in storage units. It's clear that swift action and professional help are crucial when these pesky mice make an appearance.

But remember, it's not just about dealing with an existing problem.

It's about adopting strategies that keep mice at bay long term. Regular inspections, smart storage practices, and the use of commercial deterrents are key to a mouse-free unit. Lastly, let's not forget the importance of a tidy, well-maintained storage space.

After all, prevention is the best form of pest control. Now, it's over to you to put these tips into practice and secure your storage units against mice.

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Frequently asked questions

What materials are effective for patching mice entry points in storage units?

Steel wool and caulk are effective materials for sealing crevices and holes through which mice might enter a storage unit. These materials are difficult for mice to chew through, making them excellent choices for blocking entry points.

Can the location of a storage unit influence its susceptibility to mice infestations?

Yes, the location of a storage unit can significantly influence its susceptibility to mice infestations. Units located near dense vegetation, trash dumpsters, or in areas with high mice populations are more at risk. Choosing a unit in a less vulnerable location can help reduce the chances of an infestation.

How often should a storage unit be inspected for signs of mice?

It's advisable to inspect a storage unit for signs of mice at least every month. Regular inspections help in early detection of potential infestations, allowing for swift action to prevent widespread damage to stored items.