Record Collecting

Seven Tips on Storing Your Vinyl Record Collection

I have a large vinyl collection. A VERY large, wife-annoying one. And with the resurgence of vinyl, my wife gets more annoyed every week. Sorry, dear. Those records are very, very important to me.

There’s just more to this obsession than just acquiring vinyl; you also have to store it properly.  Here are my personal tips.

  1. Records should be stored in a cool, dry place, away from humidity and anywhere prone to flooding. Basement floors are very, very bad.
  2. Store records vertically. Don’t pack them together too tightly. If humidity does get caught between the jackets, you could be asking for trouble.
  3. Be careful of some of the old inner plastic sleeves. Some of them actually degrade and leave immovable residue in the grooves. That ruins the record. Paper inner sleeves can be bad, too. They can rot–and if you slide your records in and out of them often enough, you’re actually causing your vinyl to wear every so slightly every time.
  4. Remove the shrinkwrap. This is very important and bloody essential in my view. Shrinkwrap can shrink even more, causing the record to warp. Besides, if you ever want to sell your records to a collector, they’ll want to see if the record inside is authentic.
  5. It’s worth investing in outer plastic sleeves. This keeps the artwork from sticking to the record next to it. (Yes, that can be a problem.) And it’s also very important for storing 45s since most of them come in paper sleeves. (If you’re worried about what the paper sleeves might do to the vinyl, then think about inner plastic sleeves, too.)
  6. Make sure your shelving is strong enough to hold all that weight. Records are heavy.
  7. I buy all my record preservation stuff at Bags Unlimited. They offer great service.

For more hints, go to The Vinyl Factory. Anyone else have anything to offer?


Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 40+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

Alan Cross has 38019 posts and counting. See all posts by Alan Cross

5 thoughts on “Seven Tips on Storing Your Vinyl Record Collection

  • I remember my father ironing the protective plastic sleeves together for his LP collection. That’s right kids, you had to assemble the plastic sleeves yourself with your home iron & ironing board.

  • I actually wrote an article on this topic myself recently, but I did not include the 4th tip. Didn’t even think about it, but it’s great advice!

  • Great tips. I have a huge collection of records, but from your article I understood I pack them together too tightly, it’s better to use sleeves to preserve all my priceless records to make them please me forever.

  • Great tips for record storage! I recently bought 50 inner sleeves from Amazon and need to find the time to wash all of my records and store them properly. This advice will help me a lot!



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