How to Optimize Your Vinyl Record Storage System

Posted by Elusive Disc on Aug 30th 2017

Protect and preserve your beloved collection with the best available equipment, supplies, and knowledge. You’ve poured money and energy into your collection – don’t skimp when it comes to protective sleeves and supplies. With the right care, your collection will last for generations – and rise in value as classic vinyl records become increasingly rarer.

Why Is Proper Vinyl Record Storage So Important?

Vinyl record storage matters because you love your music. You revel in the nuances you notice when using the best records, turntables, and amplifiers. You share your passion for high-end audio—and album art—when friends and colleagues come to visit.

Your record collection is the soul of your home. You’ve poured your time, energy, and money into your search for the best available equipment and recordings.

So, how do you protect and preserve your investment?

Vinyl Record Storage & Packaging

Inner Sleeves

Only inner sleeves made from high-density polyethylene, your high-end turntable, and your clean hands (edges only, please!) should touch your vinyl records. Remember, even the paper sleeves that came with your records contain chemicals that degrade vinyl over time.

Avoid dust and prevent scratches with our anti-static plastic 12” Vinyl Inner Sleeves. Each sleeve includes a full paper backing for support and easy handling.

Outer Sleeves

It sounds counterintuitive, but you should only use light, loose-fitting outer sleeves, not the thickest ones you can find. Tight-fitting outer sleeves can stick to album artwork – and pull it right off.

Keep your album artwork in pristine condition with these crystal-clear 3 mil Polyethylene Outer Sleeves, custom-fit for 12” vinyl records.

Shelf/Crate Storage

Of course, you should always shelf your records on edge. Also, consider the weight of your collection. A single linear foot of vinyl records weighs 35 pounds!

Avoid the costly (and heartbreaking) catastrophe a broken shelf can cause by investing in extra-strong shelving. Use sturdy dividers that support the flat faces of your records every 4-6 inches.

If you keep your records in cardboard crates, make sure they don’t contain lignin or acid. To avoid static charges, use wooden crates and shelves instead of metal ones.

Archival/Long Term Storage

Most audiophiles maintain their collections the temperatures/humidity ranges listed in the section below. However, the Library of Congress recommends long-term vinyl storage temperatures of 46 to 50 degrees Fahrenheit – and relative humidity levels as low as 30%.

Vinyl Record Storage Environment

Our modern world holds many dangers for vinyl records – from caustic chemicals to simple heat and humidity.

Worst locations to store your vinyl record collection

  • Leaky, damp, and moldy basements
  • Hot or freezing attics and garages
  • Near heating vents and radiators
  • Inside vehicles and in direct sunlight

Best locations to store your vinyl record collection

  • In a dry, climate-controlled room
  • On the ground floor or second story of your home
  • Away from any source of moisture or heat
  • In a sturdy shelving unit made specifically for vinyl records

Vinyl Record Storage Temperature and Humidity

Vinyl records easily warp in hot conditions. Store your collection at or below room temperature – and in the 35-40% humidity range.

If you live in a humid region, protect your vinyl collection by keeping your AC at a reasonable level – even when you aren’t home. If you must store your records in a basement, keep your crates off the floor – and use a reliable dehumidifier.

Vinyl Record Storage as an Investment

You pour your heart and soul into your record collection. You search through bins—and the Internet—for untouched classics and rare treasures. You happily spend your hard-earned money on these beauties, knowing you’ll give them a proper home.

Just like a work of fine art or a classic car, your vinyl records deserve special treatment. If you maintain your collection well, it will return the favor and maintain its value. In fact, if you care for your collection correctly, it will increase in value over time.

Your treasured showpieces need the best possible protection. At Elusive Disc, we help budding audiophiles like you preserve your cherished investments with the right knowledge, resources, and supplies.

Protect your vinyl record collection today with our complete Vinyl Record Care Kit.