10 Tips for Moving and Storing a Washer and Dryer

Tips for Moving and Storing a Washer and Dryer

Household appliances are very expensive. If you are moving appliances to a new home or placing them in storage for future use, you want to make sure that you keep the appliances in good shape and working order so you can continue to use the appliances for many years. Every appliance will require different steps to get them ready for moving. Preparing a washer and dryer for moving and storage is going to be different than preparing a stove or refrigerator. If the washer and dryer are in the basement moving the appliances up and down stairs can be difficult if you have not planned ahead.  It is very important to properly prepare washers and dryers for storage in order to keep them protected from damage during moving and while in storage. With any appliance, consult the owner’s manual for specific manufacturer instructions on transporting a washer or dryer. Below are tips on how to move or store a washer and dryer.

Moving Washer and Dryer Tips

  1. A week before you need to move the appliance, run a clean rinse in the washer to remove any detergent in the washer. If there is harder-to-remove detergent, run a vinegar solution through with the rinse cycle. For the dryer, remove any debris and lint left over from the last load of laundry.
  2. After you run the last rinse cycle, shut off the cold and hot water valves from the wall. If the appliances are hooked up to gas power, turn off the gas and remove the hose very carefully from the wall. You should always consult a professional if you are not certain about disconnecting from gas. Don’t forget to switch off the washer and dryer’s circuit breakers.
  3. Remove the lint traps and other removable parts from the dryer. Wash them using a mild mixture of soap and water. Make sure that all washer and dryer parts that you removed are also dry to prevent the accumulation of mold and rust.
  4. Allow the washer and dryer to thoroughly dry after you clean them. Leave the washing machine door open for a few days to ensure it is completely dry.
  5. Remove the hoses from the wall and place them within the appliances. Also, place electrical wiring inside the appliance, so you will not lose them in transit.
  6. Place the appliance on a moving dolly. Secure the appliance to the dolly with bungee cords or rope.
  7. Transporting the washing machine and dryer should be done very carefully in order to prevent scratches, broken doors and hinges. Use strong tape to hold the doors and latches shut during travel. Wrap blankets around the appliance to help prevent scratches.
  8. Load the washer and dryer last into the moving truck. They will be the first items removed when you are at your new home or storage unit.
  9. If you are putting the washer and dryer in storage, keep the doors slightly ajar to assure air flow. You can use the dryer for additional storage of linens, pillows and blankets while in the storage unit.
  10. While in storage, place a blanket or cotton sheet over the washer and dryer. Do not use a plastic tarp or cover as that can block air flow.

Following these general guidelines on how to move a washer and dryer, can help preserve your washer and dryer longer. ezStorage offers many household storage solutions for all of your storage needs from holiday decorations to furniture to household appliances.

 

Micro Apartment Living in Big Cities

Micro Apartment set up

Micro Apartment example

 

Based on the increased need for urban housing, many large cities across the globe have housing in short supply.  The rent in the big cities, such as Los Angeles, New York City or San Francisco is extremely high. There has been a trend for these cities to design and build apartments consisting mostly of micro apartments which range in size from 220 square feet to 300 square feet. The smaller or micro units are rented at a lower amount, making it more affordable for recent college graduates or young professionals to live in apartments in the city. Washington D.C. has recently joined the micro apartment trend with the opening of The Harper Building, this past summer, and there are more projects in the works. These apartments are close to major business areas, restaurants and transportation in the city. The new micro apartment buildings offer common areas, such as workout rooms and pools where the young professionals can meet and “hang-out”.  This is a perfect choice for millennials who would rather not have the extra space or a roommate.

A micro apartment by definition is any apartment less than 500 square feet that is designed for efficiency. The micro apartments average 350 square feet with some spaces actually being even smaller.  Having the correct layout for the apartment and the renter’s needs is very important. This will help create no wasted space in the living space. The micro apartments usually have a kitchen, living space and a bathroom in different configurations. With micro apartments or even studio apartments, you will need to be very creative with your furniture, storage and belongings. Furniture will need to serve multiple purposes in the room. A micro apartment dweller will need to be very organized and use every nook and cranny in the allotted space. You will not be able to clutter the spaces in these apartments with a lot of “stuff”.

Tips for Living in Micro Apartments

Each piece of furniture or storage cupboard in the space will have to be functional as well as decorative in small apartments. Create zones in your room for sleeping, eating and entertaining. Use as much vertical storage that you can. This is especially important in the bathroom where you can use vertical storage units above the toilet. In the closet, use ultra-thin hangers to hang clothing as they take up less space and add shelves in the top of the closet. In the kitchen, only buy essential utensils and accessories. You will not have room to store your larger kitchen accessories in such a small space. Do not clutter your counters and kitchen sink with dirty dishes. Wash the dishes and pans soon after use and return them to their proper storage area. Organization and tidiness will go a long way to making your micro living space appear much bigger than it actually is!

 Storage Solutions for Micro Apartment Dwellers

So, what do you do with the belongings that won’t fit into a micro apartment? Renting a storage unit in D.C. is a great option for the small apartment residents.  It is important to find a storage facility that is near your apartment so you can easily access your items. Storage units are perfect to store clothes, suitcases, larger kitchen accessories that you don’t have room for, and boxes of personal belongings that you cannot throw away.  ezStorage has locations in the Washington D.C. area that are great storage options for these new urban apartment dwellers.

Baltimore Book Festival 2014

Baltimore Book Festival 2014This weekend, Baltimore will be hosting The 19th Annual Baltimore Book Festival. The free event takes place September 26th through 28th at The Inner Harbor in Baltimore. The location was moved from its original downtown location due to the restoration of the historic Washington Monument.  There will be hundreds of authors on multiple stages representing every genre of books from cooking to romance to science fiction to children’s literature. The Baltimore Book Festival allows you to see favorite authors and get books signed, attend seminars and demonstrations and much more. Some of the authors attending the book festival in Baltimore include: Catherine Asaro, Terry Irving, Catherine Jones, Chuck Klosterman, Marissa Meyer, Jessica Merchant, Alice McDermott and Tavis Smiley. These are only a few of the well-known authors that will be taking part in the 3 day festival. You can see a list of all the participating authors on the book festival website.  

Plan Your Day at the Baltimore Book Festival

There will be many tents, booths and stages for every type of book genre and reading fan at this year’s book festival in Baltimore. You can go visit the many stages that will be set up at the Inner Harbor of Baltimore. The stages at the festival include: Author’s Tent at Bicentennial Plaza, Author’s Tent at McKeldin Square, CityLit Stage, Enoch Pratt Free Library Tent, Food for Thought Stage, #EpicBookFest, Literary Salon, Maryland Romance Writers Stage, Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America, Radical Book Fair Pavilion and the Charm City Comic Book Pavilion. There are activities for the entire family throughout the festival. This year, there will be a new event for children and young adults called the #EpicBookFest. This includes special author presentations, discussions and programming at the Enoch Pratt Free Library’s Children’s Stage. The Charm City Comic Book Pavilion is bigger and better with thousands of books and collectibles for sale and discussions with comic book designers and game creators. Since the Baltimore Book Festival is in the Inner Harbor this year, it is only fitting to include the National Aquarium into the festival’s activities. There will be a special stage dedicated to free programming for ocean and conservation enthusiasts including author appearances, special animal encounters, live music and interactive eco-programming.  For more information and to see the schedules of the author presentations, demonstrations and events check out the online schedule of events.

The Baltimore Book Festival has a great phone app you can download that provides author biographies, maps of the stages, schedules, performances and more. This app is available for Apple and Android systems. You can also keep up to date with the festival via Facebook page and Twitter page

This weekend’s Baltimore Book Festival is the perfect place to lose yourself in a good book, see cooking demonstrations from well-known cookbook authors, learn about the author’s writing process and experiences and even get help in writing your own book! Book lovers of all ages will enjoy the free show and share in the wonderful world of reading! ezStorage is very proud to be part of a community that is so culturally diverse from ethnic festivals to book festivals to historical events. We have 15 convenient Baltimore storage locations to help you with all of your storage needs.

Baltimore Seafood Festival

Baltimore Seafood Festival

 

Baltimore is a working class, multi-cultural city with many traditions that date back hundreds of years.  The diverse cultures are celebrated every year with ethnic festivals in Baltimore that run throughout the year.  Baltimore is also known for its great seafood. Located near the Chesapeake Bay, Baltimore is rich in seafood resources which are a staple of the area’s dinner tables and restaurants. The city can boast the finest seafood in the Mid-Atlantic region. There are hundreds of restaurants in the city with different types of specialties. Travel sites from around the globe offer their favorite restaurants in the city. Travel Channel  limited their choice to just 5 restaurants not to miss restaurants in Baltimore. There are many districts in the city that have great restaurants and dining experiences including Fell’s Point, Little Italy, Downtown, Inner Harbor and more reaching out to the suburbs.

Baltimore Seafood Traditions

The Baltimore area is known for its seafood dishes, especially the steamed blue crab and crab cakes. However, there are other dishes and treats that are very popular including soft crab sandwiches, pit beef, bull & oyster roasts, Berger cookies, Polock Johnny Sausages and Rheb’s Homemade Cookies to just name a few.  There are many Maryland food festivals throughout the year celebrating the different types of food native to the area, especially the blue crab. Maryland is also a great wine-producing state with many local wineries that you can visit throughout the year.

Baltimore Seafood Festival

Adding to the list of seafood festivals, the first annual Baltimore Seafood Festival will take place at Canton Waterfront Park on Saturday, September 20th from noon to 6pm. The seafood festival will feature local restaurants showcasing their signature seafood dishes. Participating restaurants will serve a variety of seafood delights from octopus to crab cakes to squid, crab soup, and much more. The Baltimore Seafood Festival is fun for the entire family with cooking demonstrations, music, wine tastings, yoga demonstrations, a family area with toys, games, face painting and much more. The seafood festival is sponsored by B Scene Events and Promotions and Smirnoff.   A portion of the proceeds for the event will benefit the Downtown Baltimore Family Alliance. There are many ticket options for the event depending on what type of culinary experience you wish to have. Be sure to buy tickets  in advance as they will be selling out quickly since there is only a limited amount of tickets that can be sold.

ezStorage is very proud to be a part of Baltimore’s diverse, culturally rich and fantastic food communities! Stop in to one of our 15 Baltimore storage facilities to see how we can help with any of your storage needs.

Moving Out of Your Storage Unit

Storage Unit Size GuideRenting a self storage unit is a great storage solution for many of life’s transitional events. There are many reasons to store belongings or business items at a self storage facility from moving to needing more storage space to storing business equipment. Self storage is a perfect option to store furniture and belongings if you are renovating or remodeling a home or storing excess business items. Storing in self storage is a flexible solution as you can store for just one months or stay for as long as you need the unit.  At some point, you may need to move your belongings out of your storage unit.

Cleaning Out your Storage Unit

Every storage facility will have different move-out procedures, so make sure that you know about them before you begin vacating your storage unit.  Some facilities can ask for up to a month’s written notice before you move your items, while other facilities, such as ezStorage, do not require  any notice. Before vacating your storage unit, check your rental agreement for any vacate instructions.  Here are some things you should consider before you vacate the storage unit.

  1. Make sure to remove all items from the storage unit when you are vacating. Do not leave any items behind.
  2. Sweep out the storage unit and remove any stains or spills to the best of your ability.
  3. The storage unit should be in the same condition as when you moved in.
  4. Remove the lock from the storage unit and take it with you.
  5. Stop by the storage facility office and inform the management that you are vacating your storage unit. Confirming your vacate is the easiest way to help avoid any misunderstanding that you are vacating.
  6. When you are vacating at the end of the month, you should move out no later than the close of business of the last day of the month.

If you have any questions about the self storage process, consider reading ezStorage’s answers to frequently asked questions or contact us at 1-877-GO-STORE. We hope to be able to help you with any future storage needs.

Empty Nesters and Self Storage

Empty Nesters and Self Storage

Photo by everythingzoomer.com

 

There are many transitional events throughout our lives when we might have to re-assess our belongings from marriage, to a child being born, to a child leaving home for college or a career, to later in life when it is time to downsize your home. As the children grow up and go to college leaving the home very quiet and empty, parents may start to go through a period of grief and loneliness that is commonly called “empty nest syndrome”. This time can be a challenge for some parents, but it can also be a great time to learn new things, create new spaces and explore new places. Doing all of these things will help parents start a new chapter in their lives.

Empty Nesters House Plans

One of the very first things that empty nesters need to do is decide what they want to do with their homes. Do they want to stay in the larger home or should they downsize to a smaller home, condominium or apartment? The next step is to assess the items in a child’s bedroom. This is a rite-of-passage for both the parent and the child. In fact, it is a good idea for the parent and the child heading off to college to work together to decide what to do with items in the room before the child leaves. Once the house is quiet, the parent can then delve into the de-cluttering project. Another good reason to have the child help with this process is because there are certain items that a parent might hold an emotional attachment to, but the child might not care.

Once you have organized the child’s “stuff”, it is time to decide what to do with the empty bedroom space. The room can be turned into an office, craft room, exercise room, TV room, or it can serve many other purposes. It’s best to not turn the room into a “dumping ground” for stuff from the rest of the house. After the discussion with the child, move all of the items out of the room and sort them into boxes like you would for any other re-organization project: keep in room, place in storage, throw away, donate or sell. Renting a self storage unit is a great solution to store the items from your child’s bedroom. There might not be enough room in the home to store extra furniture and all of the smaller boxes of projects, trophies, stuffed animals and toys that the child has accumulated over the years.  You might want to keep the larger items in the room, such as furniture, in storage for use after the child graduates from college and moves back home before starting their new life. If the child didn’t get a chance to go through their items before the re-organization project, then the empty nester can box them up and place them in storage and leave it to the child to decide what to do with the items. Storing the items in a self storage unit is especially important if the empty nesters decide to sell the larger family home for a condo or apartment!

The reorganizing project can be a daunting one for empty nesters, so you don’t need to rush the process. Give the project a few hours a day until it is complete and you are satisfied with your new room. It could actually be fun to pick out new accessories and items for the room! ezStorage has 46 Baltimore, Northern Virginia, and Washington D.C. storage locations that have storage unit sizes perfect for any type of household storage needs. Stop in to one of our locations and see how we can help with storage options for empty nesters that are going through this transitional time in their lives.

 

 

Star Spangled Spectacular

Star Spangled Spectacular

 

Celebrate the 200th Anniversary of the National Anthem starting September 10th to September 16th in Baltimore at the Star Spangled Spectacular!  The free celebration is being held in Baltimore’s Inner Harbor, Fort McHenry and Martin State Airport with great events to celebrate the writing of the “Star Spangled Banner” by Francis Scott Key after the Battle of Baltimore. There will be many events and activities over the 6 day festival from the arrival of tall ships to patriotic concerts to performances by the U.S. Navy’s Blue Angels. Plus, there are Festival Villages at the Inner Harbor, Fort McHenry and Martin State Airport with special events and family activities, food, historical reenactments and demonstrations and much more.

Star Spangled Banner History

200 years ago, the young United States was in the midst of the War of 1812 with Britain. British forces had just burnt down major government buildings in Washington D.C., including the White House and they were on their way to Baltimore. Maryland and Baltimore citizens with the Maryland militia and U.S. Army banded together to protect the city and harbor. After 25 hours of bombardment by the British Army and Navy, Fort McHenry and Baltimore still stood and the British were defeated.  Francis Scott Key, a lawyer who was on a diplomatic mission to release British prisoners of war in the Baltimore Harbor was held on a British prisoner ship during the bombardment. After the bombardment ended, he saw the U.S. still flying over the fort and was inspired to write a poem, which he called “Defense of Fort McHenry”.  The lyrics were soon set to a popular British tune written by John Statford Smith called the “Anacreontic Society”, which was named for a London’s men social club. The song was later renamed “The Star Spangled Banner” and began being played public events. The song officially became the National Anthem of the United States by an act of Congress in 1931.

There were actually two flags that were commissioned by Major George Armistead to fly over Fort McHenry. He asked local seamstress Mary Pickersgill to sew the flag. Mary and family and friends made two flags. The first one was the 30×42 garrison flag and the second was a smaller 17×25 storm flag that was flown during bad weather. The flag had 15 stripes and 15 stars for the 15 states of the United States, including the two newest states of Kentucky and Vermont.  The larger garrison flag is on display at the National Museum of American History. 

Star Spangled Spectacular Celebrations

There are many events that will be taking place from September 10th to 16th in and around Baltimore Harbor. Every day of the Star Spangled Celebration, Fort McHenry, the fort that inspired Francis Scott Key to write the words to the “Star Spangled Banner”, will be hosting special events commemorating the anniversary. Each day there will be ranger talks, cannon firings and living history events.  The actual handwritten manuscript of the “Star Spangled Banner” will be on display at the Fort as well as pieces from the original flag. The Star Spangled Banner fort, as some people call it, will fire off salutes as the tall ships and naval ships enter Baltimore Harbor on September 10th.  On September 11th, the American flag found in the ruins of the World Trade Center will be on a special display honoring those that gave their lives on 9/11/2001. Fort McHenry is also a great place to watch the air show performed by the United States Navy’s Blue Angels on both Saturday and Sunday. Fort McHenry will host a concert by the U.S. Marine Band, “President’s Own” on Saturday evening and lead off the flag raising ceremony and huge fireworks display.

To celebrate the 200th Anniversary of the Battle of Baltimore, 35 tall and naval ships will be on display in Baltimore’s Inner Harbor. The ships will be from countries all over the world including the United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Norway, Germany, Spain and Turkey. The ships arrive in the harbor on 9/10 and will be available for touring from 9/11 to 9/15 from noon to 5pm. The ships will depart on 9/16. Seeing the ships coming in or leaving the harbor is definitely a site to see.

There will also be an air show put on by precision flight team, The Blue Angels on Saturday and Sunday. You will able to see the show from the Inner Harbor and Fort McHenry. Martin State Airport is one of the Star Spangled Spectacular Festival Village sites. The airport festival will have food, family entertainment and interactive activities, a chance to get autographs from the Blue Angels pilots and a display on U. S. Navy aviation history.

Star Spangled Spectacular Concerts

There will be two concerts held Saturday, September 13th to commemorate the bicentennial of the “Star Spangled Banner”. The first one starts at 6pm at Fort McHenry and features the U.S. Marine Band (mentioned earlier). The second concert takes place at Pier Six Pavilion and will be broadcast live for PBS’s Great Performances. The concert will be hosted by John Lithgow and feature performances from the pop, rock, country, R&B and Broadway worlds paying tribute to America’s ideals through song. Performers include: Kristen Chenoweth, Melissa Etheridge, Little Big Town, Smokey Robinson, Train, and the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra. The show will be capped off with a spectacular fireworks display, choreographed to music, over Baltimore Harbor.

There are so many great activities celebrating the 200th Anniversary of the Star Spangled Banner. It is one of our nation’s treasures and has been an important symbol to our country since its very early years. Maryland and Baltimore citizens fought very hard to protect their city and fort from the British army and we celebrate this hard-fought victory with the Star Spangled Spectacular! ezStorage is very proud to be part of the resilient Maryland community! Stop in to see how our 46 Maryland, Northern Virginia and Washington D.C. area locations can help you with your storage needs. We offer a variety of self storage units to help with any storage need from business to personal, vehicle to RV, medical supply to holiday decoration storage.