Vinyl records are making a comeback, so whether you have your “Born to Run” album from 1975 or you just purchased a new vinyl LP there are tips to follow when storing your vinyl records albums.
The biggest thing to remember when storing your albums is to keep the temperature consistent, between 50°F and 75°F works well. If there are extremes in temperature, it can cause the records to warp, ruining them. Moisture and high relative humidity (RH) can also affect albums, (especially the cardboard covers) causing them to stain, warp or even mold. So remember consistent temperatures and low rh (below 70%) are best when storing your vinyl albums.
The other major area of concern when storing your vinyl records is protection from scratches. It’s very important to have both a vinyl jacket and paper sleeve for each album. The jacket provides stability but the often discarded paper sleeve protects the album from dust and dirt (and the potential for scratches). It’s tough sometimes to keep the sleeve intact, but you can find paper album sleeves on the internet for just pennies a piece.
Another point when storing your albums is making sure they are standing up vertically (just like when you pack dishes). If they are stored flat (or horizontally) the bottom albums can be damaged by the weight of the stack. Make sure that the albums aren’t leaning at an angle as this can cause the albums to bend and warp. Also keep the albums out of direct sunlight as this can potentially heat them up causing warping and fading of the artwork on the jackets.
One common misconception is that records can be “restored”. Actually, vinyl record restoration (which is popular nowadays) is the process of transferring the music from a vinyl album to a CD or MP3. It’s not “regrooving” the record.
These tips should help. Following them can keep your vinyl albums in tip-top shape. Rock on!