You've spent several years and more money than you want to admit creating an impressive vinyl record collection. The collection is starting to outgrow your spare bedroom and extra closet space, so you've decided to upgrade and rent a storage unit. If you're planning to keep your vinyl record collection in the unit for several years, or even decades, it's critical to store it correctly. Don't allow your investment to become damaged and instead, here is a step-by-step guide to help you correctly store and protect your vinyl record collection:
Invest in the Right Packing Materials
Before you begin packing up your records, it is important to purchase the ideal materials. Providing your records with a greater layer of protection can help ensure they do not suffer any scratches and other types of damage.
There are several different types of sleeves available at a variety of price points. For example, there are paper sleeves that resemble the type of sleeve originally used to protect the album. Unfortunately, these sleeves won't provide enough protection in the long haul. Instead, invest in thin polypropylene sleeves. These are an inexpensive option that will provide enough protection for your less expensive and mid-level records.
However, if you have records that are rare or expensive, consider audiophile grade archival sleeves. These sleeves are constructed from anti-static polyethylene, which will provide the most effective layer of protection.
After slipping all the records into polypropylene or archival-grade sleeves, store them in heavy duty cardboard boxes. There are boxes that are specially designed to store vinyl records.
Handling and Cleaning Your Vinyl Records
Before you place your vinyl record collection in storage, it's important to clean each album. If there is any moisture, dirt or dust on the album, it could lead to serious damage, or even mold formation. The first step in cleaning an album is to first learn how to handle them properly.
Always handle the records by the outer edges. Never touch the surface of the record because the dirt and oils on your hands and fingers can negatively impact the sound quality. If possible, handle the records with a pair of clean white gloves.
To clean the records, begin by gently wiping the surface of the record with a carbon fiber brush. This will remove the majority of the dirt and dust on the record. If the record is older, or noticeably dirty, you can use a small amount of dish soap and distilled water. Do not use tap water because it contains impurities that can damage the vinyl.
Carefully rinse off the soapy water with distilled water and wipe off any remaining moisture with a microfiber cloth. Never use paper towels or a dish towel, as these abrasive surfaces can scratch the record.
Packing and Moving Your Record Collection
Now that you have all your records in their new sleeves, it's time to actually begin packing the boxes. To begin, always pack the records vertically and never stack them. According to Record Pressing, records are manufactured from polyvinyl chloride, which can easily bend and become distorted under pressure. After you slip as many records as you can in the cardboard box, fill any leftover space with packing peanuts or plastic bubble wrap.
Next, carefully place the boxes in your car or truck and take them to the storage facility. It is critical to rent a climate controlled storage unit. When records are exposed to excess humidity or heat, it will lead to warping that will destroy your investment.
Storing your records for several years or even decades requires the right supplies and a little planning. However, if you pack them correctly and store the records in a climate controlled facility, you will ensure that your collection and investment are secure.Share
19 April 2017
After we moved into a smaller home, we realized that a lot of our stuff would need to be moved into a storage unit. Unfortunately, after we moved things into our storage space, we realized that it was going to be pretty tough to keep clean. To keep our stuff from getting damaged, we decided to go through our unit, organize our things into boxes, and try hard to keep it organized. However, after a series of trials and errors, we were able to figure out a system that worked for us, and our unit is still clean. Check out this blog to learn more about tidying up your storage unit.