Packing books and media for self-storage needs careful planning and foresight. Extra care should be taken when preparing these items for storage because they are more vulnerable to environmental damage such as humidity, dust, and yellowing. It would be a worthwhile investment to spend some time and money to properly pack these items so that they are kept in good condition.
Books and Magazines
- The number one rule when packing books is to make sure that the box is not too large. Books are heavy, so it is more convenient to pack them in smaller boxes so that lifting them will not be too difficult while moving them to storage.
- Insert a piece of paper or paper towels inside the front cover and wrap it all the way to the back cover. This will help prevent the books from sticking to each other.
- Alternate placing the spine to the right and left when placing books or magazines in boxes.
- Seal each book or magazine in archival plastic bags.
- Prevent warping by putting a piece of strong cardboard, plastic, or wood between the magazines.
Media and All Printed Materials
- You may want to use filing cabinets, fire safes, or locking storage containers for added protection.
- Raise the storage containers off of the floor using pallets or plastic.
- Label all of the boxes and containers on all sides and keep a list enumerating all of the items that are packed in that box.
- Do not use newspaper for packing. Newspaper print can transfer onto the printed materials.
- Use boxes that are the same size to make it easier to stack them up.
- Pack all the non-essential items first, keeping the more important ones on top so it is more convenient to access them later on.
- Make sure to fill each box up to the top. This prevents shifting during moving or lifting and also keeps the boxes from collapsing when stacking them.
DVD’s, CD’s, Video Tapes and Other Media
- Pack media items in airtight, heavy duty bags or containers.
- Whenever possible, store the media in their original cases for additional protection.
- Pack videotapes individually in airtight bags as these are particularly sensitive to moisture.