The further you get in your beekeeping career, the more gear and tools you’ll gather over time. As with any equipment, it’s important to keep these belongings safe and secure when you’re not using them. Properly storing your beekeeping equipment helps you save money on repairs or replacements. This will also keep your apiary safe and productive as you sanitize your gear and prevent the spread of diseases. Learn all the best tips for how to store your beekeeping equipment with this guide.
Dedicate an Area
You’ll be surprised by how much your equipment spills out over your house or yard. This is especially true at the end of your first summer, when all the gear you used on a weekly basis suddenly sits in one place for weeks on end. Try to find a space in or around your home that you can dedicate entirely to your beekeeping equipment. A large closet, a portion of the garage, or a shed near your apiary are all great places to secure your gear. The closer the space is to your hives, the easier your life will be. The most important part, however, is making sure you have a secure space that protects your equipment from the elements, moisture, pests, and other threats.
Store Clean Equipment
It’s important to clean and sanitize your equipment before storing it for the season. If you’re putting away honey supers or other hive components, be sure to scrape them clean first with your hive tool. It’s also important to wash your beekeeping suit before storing it for the winter. Hand washing is the best way to clean your suit, hat, veil, and other pieces without damaging anything. Make sure you hang your suit to airdry—especially the veil—to avoid any damage. Finally, sanitize all your equipment before putting it away. This cleaning process will help you avoid pest problems in your storage area. It also prevents you from accidentally allowing diseases or parasites to transfer from one hive to another via your equipment.
Keep Your Space Organized
Of course, a storage space is pointless if you can’t find anything in it. One of the most important parts of how to store your beekeeping equipment is creating and maintaining an organization system. You should keep your beekeeping suit and clothing together in one place. Set aside a place for all the little tools such as your hive tool and bee brush. When you store hive components, stack them just as you would outside in your apiary. These storage techniques will keep your equipment out of the way but easy to find, minimizing damage and keeping your storage space clean, efficient, and clutter-free.