in mothballs

in mothballs

In storage, either literally or figuratively. Mothballs—little balls composed of a pungent chemical used to deter moths—are often kept in closets, attics, and other places where clothes are stored. I'm so glad that I can finally get my summer clothes out and put my winter clothes back in mothballs. That plane is in mothballs while we wait for a new shipment of parts. I did like your idea, Tom, but we have to keep it in mothballs for now while we finish our outstanding projects.
See also: mothball

in mothballs

unused but kept in good condition for future use.
See also: mothball
References in periodicals archive ?
The Ministry of Health has warned that the chemicals in mothballs can be deadly.
According to the ministry, the chemicals in mothballs pose a "significant health risk" to New Zealanders if they are accidentally eaten or swallowed especially by small children.
Naphthalene, the active ingredient in mothballs, is actually a pesticide," Castelo said.
Naphthalene and paradichlorobenzene, common active ingredients in mothballs, are among the most common toxic chemicals detected in indoor air.
But it has less to celebrate than we have--its past is dusty, its present is largely in mothballs, and its future, though brightening, is still shrouded in mist.
There are no studies of the effects of prolonged exposure of humans to these vapors, but wearing a sweater or sleeping under a blanket that has been stored in mothballs, or spending hours in a room where vapors are in the air, is unpleasant and a risk you don't need to run.