In 2014, vinyl record sales increased 52 percent from the previous year. Whether you just starting collecting or you've been collecting for years, you need to know how to properly store your collection so that they'll play wonderfully for years to come. Here are five things to remember:
1. Keep Your Records in Their Packaging.
Dirt and dust can easily accumulate on vinyl records and work its way into the grooves. This can have a huge impact on the quality of sound. Therefore, you need to keep the original packaging that you bought it in to protect the record from dirt. If you no longer have this or purchased the record without the packaging, you need to purchase some.
2. Upgrade Your Inner Sleeves.
Most inner sleeves are made of paper, which is the most basic type of sleeve. While these do serve the purpose they were designed to serve, it may be better to upgrade to a different type of material for more durability. After all, paper can tear, which can leave your record unprotected and exposed to various elements. DiscoMusic.com suggests using a poly inner sleeve for those who don't have the money to spend on the highest quality of sleeve, which is an audiophile grade archival inner record sleeve.
3. Don't Overlook the Importance of the Outer Sleeve.
While it is crucial to have an inner sleeve to protect the record, you need an outer sleeve to protect the cardboard album jacket. That artwork is just as important as the vinyl record itself, so you want to protect it from tears, scuff marks and scratches. Outer sleeves are made from plastic and vary in size of thickness. DisscoMusic.com recommends 3 mm thick.
4. Keep the Records Away from the Heat.
The heat is the last thing you need for your vinyl record collection, unless you want it to melt. Therefore, when selecting a self storage unit to store your collection, make sure that you pay a little bit more and get a climate-controlled unit.
5. Position Your Albums Vertically.
When storing your records in a container, tub or on a shelf, you want to make sure to store them vertically instead of horizontally. Otherwise, you're increasing the likelihood of the records warping from the additional pressure and stress. In addition, horizontal storage is putting them more at risk of getting crushed by other objects if they are stored near heavier items.
Proper storage is key to long-lasting, high-quality records. Contact self-storage facilities in your area to find out which one has the best prices for climate-controlled units.