The right way to store your vinyl records, according to experts

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For some collectors, finding a long-sought record can feel like playing the lottery. And if this disc also happens to be worth a pretty penny? Well, it can make the feeling even better. If you have a solid collection, however, you need a designated place to put those treasures. Here’s how to properly organize your vinyl record collection.

Unlike modern music carriers – you don’t have to worry about storing your virtual music library – vinyl can be special when it comes to storage. Ahead, two experts explain how to keep your discs in the best possible condition, which includes cleaning them and storing them properly.

The right way to store vinyl records

Store records vertically

Image credit: Clem Onojeghuo/Unsplash

If you’re lucky enough to have records that you’re proud to own, or just love to listen to, you’ll want to keep them in playable condition. “Always store your discs vertically,” says Don Inmon, product and brand manager at Victrola. This is the most important on-the-go storage, he says, because it protects your records; stacking them, on the other hand, leads to a build-up of pressure that can damage your collection. It’s equally important, he adds, to erase your records (both sides!) before listening to them. “Also be sure to take the time to gently place the stylus on the record, using the lever on the tone arm,” Inmon notes.

Take your records out of storage and clean them regularly

Whether you want to clean up an old record you just got your hands on or keep your current tunes in pristine condition, vinyl producer, drummer and DJ AJ Hall advises investing in a kit to use when your collection needs a boost. little maintenance. “Almost every record store or store that sells vinyl sells a little vinyl care kit with a brush and cleaning solution,” he explains, noting that while deep cleaning isn’t essential all When you pull out a record, it may extend the life of your collection or you may come across a worn out gem or two that needs some extra help. He suggests applying between two to three drops of the cleaning solution to a brush and working in circular motions on either side of the record.

Turn your collection into an art exhibit

Store vinyl records
Image Credit: Victrola Record Players/Unsplash

Your music can stimulate both your eyes and ears if you play your cards right, which is why Hall recommends turning your favorite musical masterpieces into works of art with thoughtful storage. “If you only have a few discs, maybe 10 to 12, then your basic home design or big box stores will have some fancy options,” he explains, noting that he likes to mount these “ vintage goodies” on the wall. If you have a large collection, however, you may need to double up on storage solutions. He suggests a centerpiece shelf, which can hold around 40 to 80 records; add these pieces to the walls of your living room or listening space, he notes. As for other options? Consider a record cabinet or turntable stands.

Don’t forget to enjoy your collection

A major step toward keeping your vinyl records in good working order, beyond storing them safely, is to listen to them periodically, says Hall. “If you walk into a record store and you smell that smell that almost inhibits all record store, it’s because of one thing: those records haven’t moved in a while,” he explains. “Vinyl in your home is as much a decorative statement as it is an experience. Turn on the turntable and go!

This story first appeared on www.marthastewart.com

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