Books, like all physical objects, have an ideal environment they like to be in. The place they enjoy being the most is in your hands, being read! But even when you’re not reading, it’s important to treat your books right. The better care you take of your books, the longer they’ll last! With this in mind, here are a few tips on caring for your books.
5 Tips for Caring for Your Books
Don’t Put Them in the Basement
We know that a lot of things inevitably find their way into the basement at some point. If you have lots of books, you might look to the basement for a little extra storage space. And if you have a finished basement, this is fine. However, if your basement is unfinished, it isn’t a great place for books. Unfinished basements are almost always damp, which creates ideal conditions for mold growth. Mold will grow easily on books that are left in an unfinished basement. If you do have to store books in the basement, make sure you put them in a strong cardboard box and keep it off the floor.
Avoid the Attic Too
The attic is another storage space in your home that books don’t like. Attics have the opposite problem of basements: they’re too dry. This will cause books to dry out, which causes cracking in the spine and hinge. Books stored in the attic generally become stiff and brittle. If you do store books in the attic, wrap them in a linen-cloth, and put them in a cardboard box away from vents, windows, pipes, the chimney, and any areas where a leak could get on the box.
Don’t Bend Them
Books, especially hardcovers, don’t like to be bent. You should try to keep the covers at no more than a 90 degree right angle from each other while you’re reading. Bending a book too far for extended periods of time will weaken the spine and eventually cause it to crack. Lay flat books solve this problem because they’re designed to bend all the way to 180 degrees, but don’t push them any further than that.
Dust Books on the Shelf
Inevitably, dust accumulates on books on a bookshelf over time. Use a soft feather duster every few months to remove dust buildup that can dull the exterior of the book. Another good tip for books on the shelf is to stand them upright and keep them a finger’s width apart to prevent damage to the spines.
Use a Bookmark
Need to save your spot? Go for a bookmark over bending the tip of the page back. These corners can break off if left bent for too long, and the print on them can smudge.
Keep up with Advantage Book Binding’s blog for more book care and book binding information!