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A copy of Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band signed by all four members of The Beatles recently sold for $290,500. As if that price wasn’t crazy enough, someone paid two million dollars to purchase the only vinyl copy of the Wu-Tang Clan’s Once Upon a Time in Shaolin.
Now, obviously most of us don’t have records like these sitting around at home. But, plenty of people do have serious vinyl record collections that would be a huge pain to replace if lost or damaged. So, in this post, we’re going to tell you how to store vinyl records to keep them looking and sounding awesome!
Roll Up Your Sleeves for Vinyl Record Storage
Safely storing vinyl records starts with your sleeves. No, not your shirt sleeves-- the inner paper sleeves that protect your records from scuffs and scratches when you slide them in and out of the LP jacket.
If you mostly buy brand new vinyl records, you shouldn’t have too much to worry about. But, if you also like to collect used, vintage LPs, you know how nasty those inner sleeves can sometimes get. Ripped, bent, covered in mysterious stains – sound like any of the records in your collection?
If so, it’s time to replace them with fresh, clean inner sleeves. On that note, you have several options to choose from. Here’s a quick run-down:
Standard Paper Inner Sleeves: You can find these online or at your local record shop. They’re inexpensive and they come in a variety of shapes and sizes for standard 12” LPs or your 7” singles.
Paper / Poly Inner Sleeves: These guys look like standard paper inner sleeves, but they’re lined with plastic on the inside to reduce surface scuffing. They’re slightly more expensive, but still an affordable option.
Archival Quality Inner Sleeves: These are three-ply, anti-static, premium sleeves (similar to rice paper) and work with both LPs and laser discs. You’ll pay considerably more for them, but they should last longer than standard paper sleeves.
Keep Your LP Jackets Pristine
Vinyl LP jackets take a ton of abuse. And, in a sense, that’s their main job. However, keeping your LP jackets in near-mint condition is important if you want to retain the value of your albums. That’s why we recommend using outer plastic sleeves to protect your record jackets when not in use. Outer sleeves can prevent wear and tear from normal handling and can also help reduce an effect called “ring wear.”
Again, these are super affordable and can be purchased in bulk online or from your neighborhood record store. Outer plastic sleeves are also great for keeping dust and debris away from your vinyl, which can help your records sound better and extend the life of your stylus.
Stand Your Records Up Straight and Tall
Most vinyl record enthusiasts already know that you should never stack your records for a prolonged period of time. Not only can this accelerate the appearance of ring wear, but it can also lead to irreparable record warping. Instead, stand your records up tall on a shelf or bookcase and avoid packing them in too tightly. As a rule of thumb, if you can’t pull out a single record without disturbing the albums on either side, you’re probably packing them too tightly. Check out Ikea for a great record shelf that will fit your albums like a glove.
Heat, Humidity & Moisture… Oh My!
These three weather-related conditions are the mortal enemies of vinyl record collections everywhere. Exposure to extreme heat or even direct sunlight could lead to warping, so be careful where you place your record shelving. Take care to avoid vents, windows or other sources of heat. Humidity and moisture, on the other hand, can cause your LP jackets to swell, bubble and even mildew. In other words, don’t put them in your basement, unless you’ve taken steps to ensure a dry environment.
Running Out of Space for Your Vinyl Collection?
Unlike CDs, MP3s or streaming music services, storing vinyl records takes up lots of physical space. If you find that you’re running out of room for your LPs, you can always “thin the herd” and sell the albums you no longer listen to. Eventually, though, you may get to a point where you simply don’t have any more records you could possibly bear to part with. That’s when it’s time to find a self storage unit near you. But, you don’t want just any self storage unit. You’ll definitely want a climate controlled storage unit that can keep your collection at a constant, vinyl-friendly temperature.
Store Your Vinyl Records with ezStorage!
Hey, we get it. You’re passionate about your record collection, and you want to make sure it’s stored properly. At ezStorage, we’re just as passionate about providing vinyl enthusiasts with convenient, affordable self storage units for their albums and other music memorabilia. For more information, contact a location near you. Otherwise, keeps those records spinning!
You might need temporary or long-term storage for a variety of reasons. When a homeowner is preparing to sell a home, their realtor may advise to de-clutter and downsize. If a marriage ends in divorce, one or both parties could end up in a new home or apartment that’s smaller than their previous one. A loved one might pass away and leave you with furniture or other cherished items that you don’t have room to keep at home.
ezStorage has self-storage units available that can accommodate all these needs and more, but we want to make sure you are only paying for the space you really need. Taking an inventory of your belongings and deciding what is truly worth hanging onto can save you time and money.
Once you’ve determined what stays and what goes, you can help make a difference in your community by donating the items you no longer need instead of storing them. The money savings are easy to see as storing fewer items requires less space—leaving you free to use a smaller self-storage unit. Item donations may also qualify you for additional tax deductions.
The time savings might not be obvious until you realize that many operations that accept these donations offer pick-up services or easy drop-off locations. That’s time you don’t have to worry with selling, haggling or transporting.
So if saving time and money appeals to you, let’s take a look at a few of your options for donating in Maryland, Virginia and Washington D.C.
Where to Donate Furniture, Other Household Items and Clothing
- Habitat for Humanity’s ReStore locations can be found throughout the area. Many of them offer free pick-up service for your furniture, appliances, exercise equipment and more. Proceeds help build affordable housing in your community.
- Goodwill aims to improve the lives of people in your area through employment and education. Many locations accept toys, computers, clothing, furniture and a variety of household items. Check with your area’s branch for more information.
- The Salvation Army’s Family Stores will resell your donated items--from clothing to furniture--in order to help support their Adult Rehabilitation Centers. These programs provide those in the grip of addiction an opportunity to reclaim their lives.
- Donation Town offers free pick up and delivery service to a variety of charities nationwide
Where to Donate Your Old Mattress
Some delivery services will offer to dispose of your old mattress when they deliver your new one. Instead of having them take it to the nearest landfill, consider helping someone in need. Most of the organizations above will not take mattress donations due to sanitary regulations, but Donation Town can help find a new home for your “gently used” mattresses. Once donated, they can help veterans, women’s shelters and more. If your old mattress is in poor shape, Donation Nation can whisk it away while minimizing the impact on the environment.
How Much Self-Storage Space Do You Need?
Once you’ve narrowed down the list of essentials, the professionals at ezStorage can help you find a self-storage unit that’s just right for you. We can give you pointers on how to arrange the storage unit to make the most of your space. Whether you’re in Maryland, Virginia or Washington D.C., there’s an ezStorage location that’s ready to assist you.
The third Monday in February, President’s Day, is almost here. On February 20th, the U.S. federal government observes Washington’s Birthday. Many state governments have different official names including Washington’s and Lincoln’s Birthday (as President Lincoln was born on February 12th) and the more inclusive President’s Day which is used to honor several or all who have served as the leader of our country.
Let’s take a look at some of the holiday festivities you can enjoy around the Washington D.C. area on President’s Day 2017.
President’s Day 2017 in DC
President’s Day is a wonderful time to visit the Smithsonian National Museum of American History in Washington DC. A number of exhibits are dedicated to the leaders who shaped our country’s birth and growth including the White House copy of President Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address, excellent views of the Washington Monument and other landmarks located on the National Mall, activities for your little ones, performances and much more. You can find the museum at 14th Street and Constitution Avenue NW.
The National Portrait Gallery features paintings of our Presidents (and others) who were influential in our country’s development. You can also learn more about our past leaders through the Portrait Gallery’s performances and new media presentations. There is a Family Day event planned for February 18th at 8th and F Streets NW.
You can also see and interact with Presidents of the past and present at Madame Tussauds Washington DC. With likenesses that you can see, hear and touch at 1025 F Street NW, the family will enjoy this up close and personal look at our Commanders in Chief.
Nearby Washington DC President’s Day Activities
In Mount Vernon, Virginia, you can participate in George Washington’s birthday celebration at 3200 Mount Vernon Memorial Highway. All weekend long, there will be wreath laying ceremonies, musical performances, 18th century dancing demonstrations and even birthday cake!
Visit Alexandria for a reenactment of a Revolutionary War skirmish on February 19th. The Fort Ward Museum will feature demonstrations throughout the day at 4401 West Braddock Road.
Alexandria also hosts the George Washington Birthday Parade on Monday, February 20th. Both the largest and oldest parade celebrating our first president, the route runs for one mile through the streets of Old Town (primarily along Royal and Fairfax). You’ll see historical figures and modern day groups featuring bands, community groups, horses and dogs all marching together.
Self-Storage Units in Washington DC and Virginia
Big sales on everything from clothing to cars are also common during this holiday weekend. If you end up buying more than you can store at home, ezStorage has you covered. With self-storage units available in a variety of sizes around the Washington D.C and Virginia areas, we can find a solution that fits your needs.