One of the biggest problems that a prepper faces is finding the space to store the food, water, medical gear, and other supplies that help to mitigate one’s risk against disaster.
For many, the attic may be an appealing source of the extra space necessary for convenient and organized storage of preps.
However, there are some things that need to be taken into consideration before just throwing all of one’s gear up into an attic.
Humidity and extremes of temperature can play havoc with particular items, and thus need to be thought of.
So, let’s take a look at 7 things that should never be stored in the attic.
I hate buying batteries. It always feels like such a waste. They’re inherently expensive (at least, if you want to buy quality), and I always feel like they lose their juice well before they actually should.
The fact of the matter, however, is that you do need them.
Making it through a day without an item in your household that relies upon batteries is already hard enough as it is; now consider what level of difficulty that would take once the power goes out. It’d be incredibly inconvenient.
And so, preppers store batteries. It’s unfortunate that the lifespan on these is already short as it is, but you can most certainly shorten that lifespan by exposing these things to extremes of temperatures (aka, leaving them in your attic.)
Batteries are one thing that I’m an absolute stickler on protecting. They simply cost too much money to throw away. As such, you should do everything you can to keep them good for as long as is possible.
This not only helps to ensure that you have an adequate supply of them for when disaster strikes but will ultimately save you money for other preps in the long run.
Unless you’ve been living under a rock the past two years, you’re familiar with the sky-high cost and scarcity of ammo at the moment.
Nobody wants to have spent years and thousands of dollars establishing a well-stocked stash of ammo only to have it destroyed by corrosion.
Yet if you store all of your ammo up in your attic, this is exactly what’s likely to happen.
Have you ever had to work in your attic during the middle of July? It was dangerously hot, right? Muggy too?
Now imagine having thousands of dollars of ammo up in that environment. When it comes to ammunition, humidity is the enemy. As a result, you need to avoid storing your investment here at all costs.
Rust and guns do not mix.
Aside from ruining a family heirloom or an $800 investment, rust can also just be plain dangerous when it comes to firearms.
Who wants to shoot a gun where the barrel has a weak spot halfway through? Not me, and neither do you.
It’s absolutely vital that we protect our firearms against such then. One of the best ways that we can do this is to store our firearms in a dry environment that’s not subjected to extremes of temperatures: aka, not your attic.
We store food so that it’s there when we need it. It’s the whole concept of prepping a larder.
However, if you’re storing your food investment up in your attic, you’re likely to not have much at all when disaster strikes.
Exposing canned and dried goods to the high temperatures and humidity levels that are constantly present within an attic (throughout most of the year, anyway) is a surefire way to help your food’s shelf life to decrease exponentially.
Post-disaster, getting sick is nothing to sneeze at, and if you’re already going to have a difficult – if not impossible – time accessing appropriate healthcare during this time, shouldn’t you do what you can to ensure that the food you eat is safe?
The reason I don’t store water in my attic isn’t necessarily that the water will go bad, if you will, but instead that it will become dangerous over the long term. Let me explain.
You’re not going to drink water that’s been stored in your attic and then drop down dead.
Instead, what’s going to happen is you’re going to be drinking a lot of stuff that could have unpleasant long-term consequences.
Most of us store our water in plastic of some sort. This could be just grocery store-supplied plastic jugs, small little bottles, plastic drums, or plastic bricks.
Whatever method you store it in, the more heat that the plastic is exposed to, the better your chances that your water is going to be laced with plastic molecules when it comes time to drink it.
I feel like this one is pretty obvious. Attics can get pretty hot.
And while they’re unlikely to ever get hot enough to reach the flashpoint of most types of fuel out there, they are likely to get hot enough to cause the canisters to produce vast quantities of vapor should they be given the opportunity.
Propane can that’s rusted out a completely unnoticed hole can very easily fill your attic up with propane in the hot summertime without your notice.
Should you then go up into that attic to get something – should something fall – there’s the possibility that either static electricity or some other form of spark could be produced that would blow your roof to kingdom come.
So please, don’t store your camping fuel in your attic.
Most of us understand the importance of storing proper medical gear in the event of a disaster. It’s likely that your medical supplies aren’t limited to just bandages and gauze as well.
Various OTC drugs, as well as prescriptions, are going to be within your kit as well, and just like with ammo, you need to ensure that you are taking care of them so that they can last as long as they possibly can.
True, medication already has an expiration date as it is – and taking it past that date can easily prove dangerous – but there’s no need in exposing your medicines to temperatures that will cause them to break down and degrade (potentially into something dangerous) even faster.
Heat is a powerful catalyst in chemical reactions, and the space in your attic will be no exception to this rule. As a result, it’s best to ensure that you are storing your medical kit in a more controlled environment.
What’s Okay to Store in Your Attic
If there were any particular items that I would actually advocate for storing within an attic they would be clothes, books, and camping gear.
Most of us do what we can to ensure that we have the appropriate attire for a number of weather conditions, and clothing is incredibly bulky.
Storing this clothing out of the way in containers within your attic shouldn’t pose any threat to the gear whatsoever.
Likewise, many preppers out there have rather extensive libraries when it comes to disaster preparedness, infectious disease, bushcraft, and emergency medicine.
These book collections can quickly prove to be substantial and threaten to overtake great parts of your house.
Books can easily be stored within the attic with little to no fear of any problems.
Obviously, I wouldn’t store any rare and incredibly valuable books within the attic, but for the rest, there shouldn’t be any problem.
I see no problem whatsoever with storing bulky sleeping bags, ground pads, hammocks, tarps, and tents up within an attic space.
It’s hard to find a prepper that doesn’t have some form of camping gear tucked away somewhere, and the problem is that such is notoriously space intensive.
Given that and that camping gear has little to fear from humidity, it should be fine in such a place.
An attic is a very pleasant addition of space to any house, greatly improving your storage capacity. However, it’s best to know what stores well within it, and what will quickly either degrade or prove dangerous if left in such an environment.
By following the above steps you should be well on your way to ensuring that what you do store in your attic won’t suffer any negative consequences from its location.
Do you have other thoughts on the subject? Was there something that you felt as if we missed? Have you ever lost any supplies due to storage within an attic?
Let us know in the comments below!
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