With the resurgence of vinyl popularity among music lovers, personal vinyl collections have grown exponentially in the past few years. One learning curve is the care required to keep records in pristine condition. Vinyl is delicate and easily scratched and warped. It’s important to know how to store vinyl records to keep your vinyl collection in the best condition possible. Read on for essential tips on caring for your vinyl records.
Choosing the right boxes
Before you handle any albums or records, it is important to wash and dry your hands thoroughly and make sure they are free of lotion or oil– this could damage your collection.
1. First, get the supplies needed to properly house your vinyl. A small moving box is a great option and the best way to store vinyl records. The correct size and square shape are ideal because the corners of the records can lay flat. If the corners cannot lay flat and are not supported well, the records will begin to reshape themselves under their own weight.
2. Next, you need to reinforce the vinyl record box to make it record ready. First, seal the box with clear moving tape on any seam where dust could enter and ruin your records. Make sure to label which side is up on your box.
3. It’s important that you know how to clean vinyl records. Be sure to do this before placing it in the box for optimal preservation. Remove the vinyl from the jacket and clean any dust off the record with a vinyl brush. For heavier grime, use a cleaning solution specifically made for vinyl records. Spray the solution and use the brush to wipe it over the surface. Dry it using a micro-fiber cloth and patting. Let the vinyl air dry 20-30 minutes longer. You can also purchase a record washer to speed up this process. After cleaning, put your records into a protective plastic sleeve if available.
4. Vinyl records should be stored vertically and organized by size– different sizes should not be placed together. There is a delicate balance when deciding how many records should be placed in a single moving box. The objective is to create an environment where they can sit upright and on their edges without pressure and overcrowding. Your records should be tight enough so they do not lean against each other, but not too tight to where you cannot pull one out. Loosely packed vinyl that lean begin to warp over time and become damaged.
Moving your collection
To ensure your vinyl is not damaged during transport, consider these tips:
- Use Enviro-Bubble® to line and fill the sides of the boxes. This will provide extra protection and absorption against any bumps or shocks.
- Always keep the vinyl collection in climate-controlled conditions, like the cab of your moving truck, and avoid direct sunlight.
Vinyl is mature technology that can cost lots of money to replace– that’s why it is essential to store them right to preserve your collection. Moisture, mildew, mold, and heat are a record’s kryptonite that can cause damage to both its value and ability to play. Climate-controlled storage is the best option for storing because it keeps the temperature and humidity levels constant, ranging from 65 to 85 degrees.
With a little care and preparation, your vinyl collection will maintain its listening quality for years to come.