Home>Discussions>INTERIORS>Molding & Carpentry>Attic Storage - What to Put Up There
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Tommy_Joe
Attic Storage - What to Put Up There

I recently installed a subfloor in the attic with temporary knee-walls to gain storage space and make the house easier to "grow up". The roof is a dark grey 3-tab shingle and there is a ridgevent installed with vents in the sofits. (The knee walls do not block the air flow.)

We are starting to put up some things in the attic for storage, which also clears space for a new room in the basement. We are at a quandry with a plastic box or two of paperback books and Christmas Ornamints that are settled in shredded paper. Can paper items be stored in the attic considering the summer heat? Does anyone here store books in the attic? Any problems?

There are pictures of the attic space here. (http://www.rhodeswoodsmith.com/House%20Project.htm) It's not pretty, but it works!

Thank you in advance.

Tom

ed21
Re: Attic Storage - What to Put Up There

I've never stored books in my attic. I'm not sure the heat would hurt them, but more likely the dampness that can happen in the colder months. Sealed plastic containers might protect them. I do have some cardboard boxes from electronic equipment that are no worse for wear after many years in the attic.

Re: Attic Storage - What to Put Up There

OK... I'm guessing the plastic boxes are going to help that since they're been stored in the basement in these boxes without damage.

So for now, I've moved them up to the attic space. At least until I get the Basement Room completed. After that I'll re-evaluate if they stay up there or come back downstairs.

Thanks!

Tom

Mastercarpentry
Re: Attic Storage - What to Put Up There

Here in upstate SC the biggest concern with attic storage is heat. Even a properly ventilated attic will get extremely warm here, which can dry out woods and melt or distort some cheap or old plastics. Plastic storage boxes will do well for book and paper storage, just be certain the lids are secure in case any varmints decide to take up residence there; they love nothing better than a nice shredded paper bed and they'll even shred the paper themselves to get one! For longer-term storage I would also seal them up with a good duct tape, the cheap stuff won't take the heat. Winter moisture might be a problem where you are and the duct taped lids will help mitigate this too. It pays to inspect the things you store in your attic every 'spring cleaning' just to be sure all is still OK.

MC

BobbyBL
Re: Attic Storage - What to Put Up There

I wouldn't store paper, photos, anything waxy, anything with a plastic coating, anything with tape or adhesive, anything that can get moldy or bug-eaten, anything with paint, varnish or shellac or generally anything I care about. And I wouldn't store Christmas ornaments, including lighting, up there. The heat and cold cycles in an attic can quickly delaminate, melt, dryout, discolor, harden, make brittle and generally ruin anything put in them. If you need a place to store glass bottles, old house fans, Christmas tree stands and other rather non-destructible items, then the attic is a good place.

Sherry
Re: Attic Storage - What to Put Up There

I find my attic storage useful for storing off season items (garden tools, hoses). I’ve stored books in boxes without any problems. (It gets very hot in there in the summer and very cold in the winter but this hasn't been a problem.) I also store my luggage in the attic and it hasn’t caused any problem. It goes without saying to not put anything in there that might freeze in the winter. (This was not so apparent to my 19-year-old daughter.) Beware though. The more storage space you have the more junk you collect because you are not forced by space limitations to get rid of unneeded stuff.

Re: Attic Storage - What to Put Up There

Looks great! With the open celing joists I assume you're way down south, somewhere that snow is never an issue... which also means that summertime heat is probably a BIG issue. A good quality gable mounted attic fan can help considerably in that department, but putting insulation up on the ceiling would help even more & if there isn't already insulation under that attic flooring, lower your cooling bill too!

There's enough room up there that you could also build a seperate insulated storage area/cabinet near the side wall (the one with the small rectangular window off to the side)for important stuff that could potentially be damaged by wide temperature swings. If you go that route, be sure not to build up against the wall, leave about a 2 air-space between the back of the storage cabinet & the brick wall... air is a far worse heat conductor than brick!

Rich73Kelly
Re: Attic Storage - What to Put Up There

Tom, I looked @ your pics, very nice.... will we see finished results ? Big buck$ going in that basement, eh. Anyway the reason I am responding, I want to build a couple rooms in our basement. Did you secure the walls to the floor ? If so, what method did you use ? Are you satisfied with it or, would you or your buddies suggest anotheer method ?
Rich

e_kendall100
Re: Attic Storage - What to Put Up There

This has absolutely nothing to do with an attic, but it does have something to do with storage. I want to put my cd and album collection in my garage, to save on closet space. Is there something I can do,build, or just something to keep them in great condition?

Fencepost
Re: Attic Storage - What to Put Up There

I don't see a problem with storing papers & such in the attic. However, I don't recommend storing CDs, records, or tape recordings; the heat can warp the plastic and change the properties of writable CDs. Also, don't store volatile compounds up there, such as spray paint, adhesives, or those extra propane cans for your campstove. It just gets too hot up there, and freezing isn't good for paint.

It's good that you installed a subfloor; the ceiling attached to the bottom side of the joists isn't suitable for any more weight than the insulation. Stepping on the ceiling between the joists will very likely lead to serious injury!

KrisNichols
Re: Attic Storage - What to Put Up There

the link does not work to see pics of your attic

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