Will audio gear be ok in unheated house

I have a cottage.   I drain the pipes and the house is left unheated over the winter.  I have been taking my audio gear home (except for the speakers)  when I leave in the fall  for theft worries, but  mostly because I am not sure  the equipment will be OK in an unheated house in an often damp environment until the late spring when I return.

It is a pain taking it back and forth and I would prefer to leave it there.  Maybe in garbage bags with some bags of dessicant in the garbage bags.

Anybody have any experience with this.  I have been unable to find a good answer searching the web.




As a dealer. we received shipments from all over the world, 12 months out of the year. I recall unloading trucks during sleet and snow. These shipments were in transit for days from another part of the country, often spending their nights/evenings stored in unheated trailers. There were also days when the ambient temperatures reached over 100 degrees. A trailer in direct sunlight would have pushed this temperature up considerably -- 130 degrees, plus?

Normally, these items would have plenty of time to adjust to room temperature before put into service. But, I have to admit that when highly anticipated products arrived it was like Christmas morning -- packing material flying everywhere to get to the good stuff inside. Followed moments after by an extreme demo to see what they can do.

Back in college physics we learned about coefficients of expansion, which is to say that different materials expand differently to variations in temperature. So, when our equipment experiences temperature changes, things are tugging and pulling on each other. I can’t say how this would effect things over time. I can say that we operate a part time service business with the goal of keeping good equipment from going into the landfill. I’ve seen gear come in that’s been in non-temperature controlled storage for 40+ years (-15 to 120+ degrees) that seemed to be okay, or just needing minor cleanup, detox, etc.

I’m leaning towards @coralkong ’s impression. Experience and real data are superior to conjecture.

Hello, When you are ready to listen make sure the equipment is acclimated to the living temperature of the house. Like 70 degrees. Once you have done that plug everything in and put in standby to let the capacitors charge up a little. After 24 hours start listening. You are preventing condensation and properly charging the system. I hope this helps. 

Metal oxidation level will be much higher in unheated environment. Plus humidity level will be significantly higher which will negatively affect any contacts and wiring. If you don’t have other options, wrap equipment you intend to leave with several levels of blankets so temperature and humidity level swings will be a little smoother. 

I do appreciate all the feedback.   I have learned a lot here at this forum regarding all aspects of audio.

Especially useful are the responses from people who have done it.

I have left the speakers there for 3 years no problem.

Funny, but it just occurred to me  just before reading the post, lots of gear shipped in container ships.

As my gear has moved up to higher end, it is a significant investment so may start with some of the less expensive stuff.  Problem is you get spoiled.  After hearing N10 through a Yggy it is hard to go back!  But I recently went back to my N100/Gungnir/Senn HD800S setup.  Sounded great!   But when i went back to the N10/Yggy/Focals   sounded much better, if I didn't now know about how upgrades sound I think I might be happy with it..  The N100/ Gungnir can't handle the Utopias, they are too revealing.

I think I will go with shrink wrap and dessicant.  Maybe take my tube amp home one more year.


My cottage is in a little fishing village, so I do have alll year resident neighbors and I hear of little theft in the village, more common in isolated beach houses I think.



Thanks to all and Happy Holidays.

Depends on the location of the house.  There's a difference between Orlando, Florida and Livingston, Montana.