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How to Store Video Tapes Properly

by | Oct 12, 2017

How to Store Video Tapes Properly

Although video tapes are no longer the go-to storage solutions they were years ago, tapes still in your possession contain valuable memories (like holiday get-togethers and your first birthday party) that you’ll want to preserve. Find out how to properly store video tapes and keep them in good condition.

Why Store Video Tapes with Care?

The video tape material itself has a lot of enemies. Temperatures, dust, light, humidity, dirt, and time all play a part in tape degradation. Even just handling them can cause damage, especially if the oils on your fingers come in contact with the tape inside. And using old players to view them causes wear and tear if the device is not working right, dusty or dirty, or just past its prime.

Handle with Care: Tips to Store Video Tapes

Don’t store video tapes in attics, basements, garages, or sheds. These environments are susceptible to fluctuating temperatures, moisture, dust, and pests, all of which lead to degradation or ruin. Here are some more helpful tips to store video tapes properly.

  • Keep tapes out of direct sunlight or harsh light.
  • Always keep video tapes in their cases. If you have uncovered tapes laying around, pick some cases up at thrift stores, yard sales, or online.
  • Find a cool, dry place for storage. Moisture promotes mold growth, so damp basements are out of the question.
  • Whatever location you choose should have a temperature range between 55F and 70F degrees.
  • Store cased video tapes upright like books on shelves.
  • Please be kind and rewind. The old video store adage still remains true and helps prevent tapes from unraveling or getting distorted.
  • Label all tapes. An unlabeled tape eventually gets lost or recorded over.
  • Never open the plastic encasement around the tape or poke your fingers inside. You risk exposing it to more dirt, dust, and oil from your fingertips.
  • Last but not least, be careful when you play them. Video tape players are hard to come by now that they’ve been replaced by more current devices. So if you take your old player out of storage, make sure it’s clean and still functional before you stick an irreplaceable tape inside.

Bring Your Valuable Memories to an Expert

No matter how carefully you tend to your old video tape collection, time and the elements take a toll, eventually making them unplayable. The best way to store video tapes is to transfer them to digital formats. This keeps them easily accessible and safe from the environment. Instead of letting these valuable memories degrade over time, call Disc Hounds at 610-696-8668. We’ll transfer them to a digital format so you can enjoy them for years to come.