Storing books and paper goods can be a challenge. These items are easily damaged by water, dust, and even moisture in the air, so it's important to make sure you are careful when placing these items into long-term storage. Here are some helpful tips that may extend the life of your library and keep your collection of books ready to pass down from one generation to the next.
Consider Climate Control
Choosing the right storage unit for your books and paper goods is critical. You'll want to ensure that the items you are storing will be protected from the elements, including extreme temperature changes. A climate-controlled storage unit offers an ideal choice to protect against potential damage. Before you sign a contract, be sure to ask what the average daily temperature is for the storage units at the facility. You might also want to select a unit on the second story of the facility, as this can help prevent potential flooding problems. Once you have secured a unit, consider adding a wireless temperature monitor to the space. These Wi-Fi-enabled devices can detect the humidity and temperature in the room, sending alerts to your mobile device if conditions become unfavorable. If you do decide to set up a temperature monitor, be sure you can connect it to the facility's Wi-Fi for dependable operation.
Use Plastic Sleeves
Climate control won't provide all the protection your book collection needs. Invest in plastic sleeves for each book to keep moisture, dust, and insects at bay. These sleeves create a barrier for each book, which can also help prevent scratches and other damage to covers. You can purchase sleeves online, but you may also find them at a local comic book shop. If you are unable to find sleeves, you can use plastic wrap in a pinch.
Invest In Durable Storage Containers
Because your books will be in storage, there's no need to line them up on a shelf. Instead of using bookcases in your storage unit, consider durable storage containers instead. Plastic containers with tight-fitting lids keep air, moisture, dirt, and pests away from your items. Make sure to invest in wide, shallow containers instead of deep ones. You'll want to avoid stacking books on top of each other, as this can cause damage to the spines and covers over time. You can also use the containers to organize your books by subject, author, or age to keep your storage unit neat and tidy.
Insects, such as silverfish, can infest book collections and cause damage. Fortunately, there are some ways to prevent insects from overtaking your books and paper goods while they are in storage. Silica gel placed inside your storage containers can help keep silverfish away, and it can also absorb moisture to help prevent mold growth and water damage. You can also sprinkle boric acid or borax near the doorway of your storage unit to eliminate a host of different types of pests, including mites, spiders, and roaches.
For more storage suggestions, contact a self-storage facility.