As I have been very busy with helping people pack their homes this summer, I thought I would share some things I've learned about cardboard boxes.
1. Cardboard boxes are a convenient, and affordable way to move your items. They tend to be light, come in many shapes, and are easy to label.
2. Cardboard boxes can be easily disposed of when your done using them. Recycling them makes them an eco friendly option.
3. Cardboard boxes are not always the most durable option.
4. Cardboard attracts moisture. Although most of us have done this at one time or another, using boxes for long term storage is not a great idea. Not only can the box go moldy (and smelly) but your contents that are stored inside can too. This is particularily true when boxes are stored in basements and attics. You're better off to use plastic bins and make sure you store them off the ground.
5. Cardboard boxes can be chewed. Gross right?! If you have ever had a rodent problem you know how much of a mess they can make. When storing items in your attic, basement, and/or garage (aka rodent's favourite places to hang out!) make sure you consider a durable material and a tight closing lid. Do not over fill the bin, making sure the lid is flat and sealed properly. I have seen mice distroy things! They need the space of a dime to get through.
6. Cardboard boxes are not weather resistant. We often store important paperwork and collectibles in our basements and attics (which is a whole other topic!). If you have a leak in the roof or a flood in your basement your items can be severly damaged or even ruined.
If you're a person who saves boxes (several people do) you may want to consider locating them to a dry, cool area of the home, or just getting rid of them ;)
My overall feelings on cardboard? I think for short very term use it can work well. For a long term solution- no way!