So you’re finally ready to put your car into storage. Maybe you’re moving across the country, deploying overseas, or just need to clear some space in your garage.
Whatever the reason, you’re probably wondering: what size storage unit do I need for my car?
It’s a great question. Vehicles come in all shapes and sizes these days. From tiny smart cars to massive SUVs, finding the right storage unit can get confusing fast.
Not to worry! This handy guide will walk you through everything you need to know about picking the perfect storage unit for your car. Time to start your engines and learn how to store your vehicle.
Factors That Determine Car Storage Unit Size
When it comes to [what size storage unit for car] you need, there are a few key factors to consider:
The Dimensions of Your Specific Car Model
This one seems obvious, but you’d be surprised how often people forget to actually measure their vehicle!
Every make and model has different dimensions. A 2020 Toyota Camry is over 15 feet long while a 2022 Fiat 500 is under 12 feet long. That 3 foot difference completely changes the minimum size unit you need.
Before you do anything else, grab a tape measure and jot down the length and width of your car. This will give you a baseline to work from. Don’t have the exact measurements? No problem! Here’s a size chart of some popular models:
![car size comparison chart]
As you can see, lengths range anywhere from 12 feet for smaller coupes to over 18 feet for extended cab pickups. Make sure you know where your car fits along that spectrum.
The Type of Car You Have
In addition to the exact measurements, the type of car makes a big difference for storage needs. A mini hatchback generally needs less space than a full-size SUV.
Here are some average dimensions for popular vehicle types:
- Compact sedans: 12-14 feet long
- Mid-size sedans: 15-17 feet long
- Full-size sedans: 16-18 feet long
- Compact SUVs: 14-16 feet long
- Mid-size SUVs: 16-18 feet long
- Full-size SUVs: 17-20 feet long
- Pickup trucks: 17-21 feet long
As you can see, larger vehicle classes need bigger unit sizes to fit comfortably. Keep your car type in mind as you search for storage.
Outdoor vs. Indoor Storage Units
Another factor is whether you choose an outdoor or indoor storage unit. Outdoor units typically offer more flexibility for large and oddly-shaped vehicles. That’s because outdoor spaces aren’t limited by walls and ceiling height like indoor units.
However, indoor units provide more protection from weather and other elements. If security is a priority, indoor storage may be worth the slightly tighter fit.
Covered vs. Uncovered Outdoor Spaces
For outdoor spaces specifically, you’ll also need to decide between covered and uncovered parking. Uncovered is more affordable, while covered gives your vehicle some protection from sun, snow, and rain. Just make sure the roof height can accommodate your car, especially if you drive an SUV or truck.
Climate Controlled vs. Non Climate Controlled Units
If you opt for indoor storage, another choice is between climate controlled and non climate controlled units. Climate controlled spaces protect your car from temperature/humidity extremes. But they usually come with a higher price tag.
For most regions, a standard indoor unit offers plenty of protection. But if you live somewhere with extreme weather, climate controlled can help safeguard your investment.
Recommended Sizes By Car Type
Now that you know the main factors for determining [what size storage unit for car] you need, let’s get specific. Here are the recommended storage unit sizes for different vehicle types and models:
For small two-door cars and hatchbacks, a 10×15 unit is usually sufficient. This includes models like:
- Fiat 500
- Mini Cooper
- Honda Civic Coupe
- Toyota Prius C
With smart maneuvering you may be able to fit smaller cars in a 10×10. But it will be a very tight squeeze, so 10×15 gives you extra room.
Most modern sedans can easily fit inside a 10×20 unit. This covers compact, mid-size, and full-size sedans such as:
- Honda Accord
- Toyota Camry
- Nissan Altima
- Ford Fusion
- Chevrolet Impala
Watch out for especially long full-size sedans, which may require a 10×30 unit. When in doubt, always go bigger rather than smaller.
The majority of today’s SUVs, from compact models up to full-size, will fit in a 10×20 with a little room to spare. This includes favorites like:
- Ford Escape
- Honda CR-V
- Toyota RAV4
- Jeep Grand Cherokee
- Ford Explorer
If you drive an especially large SUV like the Chevy Suburban or Cadillac Escalade, you may need a 10×25 or 10×30 unit. But that size accommodates most SUVs and crossovers on the road today.
What size unit you need for a pickup depends on the cab size and bed length:
- Smaller trucks like the Ford Ranger or Chevy Colorado with a 6-7 foot bed will work with a 10×20.
- Full-size pickups with a crew cab and 8 foot bed are better suited for a 10×30.
- Go even bigger if you have an extended cab/bed combo.
Measure the whole length to be 100% sure, since truck configurations vary.
For full-size vans like the Ford Transit or Mercedes Sprinter, only a 10×30 will do. The same goes for extra large work vans. Their long, wide bodies need all the space you can get.
If you drive a smaller passenger van like the Toyota Sienna or Honda Odyssey, a 10×20 may work. But consider a 10×30 to give yourself wiggle room.
Preparing Your Vehicle For Storage
You’ve picked the perfect storage unit size. Now it’s time to get your car ready for its big sleep. Follow these tips before locking up your vehicle:
- Clean it thoroughly, inside and out. Vacuum, wipe down surfaces, and remove trash or clutter.
- Change fluids like oil, brake fluid, and coolant. Fresh fluids help prevent corrosion.
- Fill up the tank and add fuel stabilizer to avoid condensation issues.
- Disconnect the battery to prevent drainage.
- Cover air intakes and the exhaust pipe to keep out pests.
- Use a car cover for outdoor parking, and avoid parking brakes indoors.
- Check tire pressure and inflate to recommended PSI before storage.
Taking time to properly detail and maintain your car before storage will keep it in top shape until you’re ready to drive again!
Storing Motorcycles, ATVs, and Other Vehicles
Wondering about [what size storage unit for car] you need for vehicles besides traditional cars and trucks? Here are quick recommendations:
- Motorcycles: Only need a small 5×10 unit.
- ATVs: Require about the same space as a compact car – 10×15.
- Jet skis: Can fit in 10×15 with room for accessories.
- Small trailers: 10×15 works for most single-axle trailers.
- Large trailers/RVs: Need at least 10×25, or 10×30 for the biggest rigs.
The same principles apply – measure your vehicle’s dimensions and allow some extra wiggle room in your unit size.
Finding the Right Fit
As you search for storage for your beloved vehicle, keep these key points in mind:
- Carefully measure your car’s length and width.
- Factor in your car type – larger vehicles need more space.
- Consider outdoor vs. indoor and covered vs. uncovered.
- Allow extra margin if you’re between standard unit sizes.
Finding the ideal storage unit is all about giving your car some breathing room. A properly sized space will keep your vehicle safe as a bug in a rug until you’re ready to cruise again!