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Comic Book Storage Solutions: What to Do and What to Avoid
Whether you’re collecting vintage first books for resale or simply saving childhood memories for the next generation, comic book storage is important to preserve your printed treasures. Luckily, it doesn’t have to be time-consuming or expensive to care for your comic book collection; how you manage storage can be personalized to you.
The following comic book storage tips were developed by the experts at Self Storage Plus to help you preserve your collection with confidence.
Tips for Protecting Your Comic Book Collection
The two key goals of comic book storage solutions are protecting your comics from damage and enabling you to enjoy your collection as easily as possible. The best way to store comics can differ from one collector to another, so try a few different options to find your perfect fit. Consider the following tips to achieve your goals:
- Board and Bag: Always use an acid-free backing board to keep your comic flat, stiff, and damage-free before placing it in a plastic bag. This protects your comic from moisture and damage from insects. Depending on the size (determined by the age), you can buy comic book bags online or at the comic book store.
- Keep Upright: Stacking paper comic books paperbacks on top of one another can cause the pages to stick together over time, especially if exposed to humidity or extreme temperatures. Organizing your comics upright is easy once bagged and boarded. You can categorize them easily by story, alphabetically, or any other way that makes sense to you!
- Box or File: Depending on the size of your collection, comic storage boxes will keep your comics protected and organized, with short (holding approximately 150-200 individual issues, depending on age) and long (holding approximately 200-250) boxes available. You can also find decorative boxes online to personalize your storage solutions. For smaller comic book collections, consider magazine file holders or accordion files. Plastic comic book boxes are also a good option for long-term comic book storage.
- Display: There are also plenty of comic book storage ideas to help you display your items, from binding issues within a story (remember, this devalues the individual issues) to placing select editions within a slab, or plastic case, that both protects the comic and allows for upright placement.
What to Avoid in Your Comic Book Storage Space
Paper is no friend to elements like moisture, light and heat — not to mention insects and other critters that may snack on your collectibles, if left unprotected. Keep the following in mind when deciding on the best storage space for your collection:
- Elevate It: Always place your collection off the floor, in case of flooding and to generally avoid the risk of moisture damage. If that’s not possible, mousetraps and insect bait are worth the investment to shield items being stored for long periods of time.
- Keep It Dry: Areas like basements, garages, attics and near windows are more at risk for increased moisture. The best areas for comic book storage are dark, dry locations that are closed off, such as a closet or storage facility. A tarp or plastic sheeting can also protect water from coming from above, such as from a sprinkler system. If utilizing a storage unit, we recommend a climate-controlled storage space.
- Consider Access: Stacking storage boxes may save space, but this can be problematic if you need to find a specific issue quickly. Also avoid stacking more than 3-4 boxes to ensure lower boxes won’t be potentially crushed over time.
Consider a Storage Facility For the Best Comic Book Storage
Storage solutions for large or especially valuable collections can be tricky in areas like Baltimore or Washington, D.C., that have generally humid summers and wet winters. When searching for a storage solution, you’ll want to make sure the facility is equipped with a few specific features, including:
- A storage facility with climate control: The older or rarer a comic is, the worse it will handle moisture. A climate controlled storage unit maintains a steady range of temperatures year round to help protect against warping, yellowing, and the accumulation of mold or mildew.
- The right size for you: With enough space, you may want to consider comic book storage cabinets for convenient access to your items, or even bookshelves. Consider how much room you’ll need, and how often you’ll want to reference your comics. If you have a smaller amount of items, plastic comic book boxes could be a great solution. Storage units range in size from small 5×5 units to units that are the size of warehouse for the biggest collections. The right storage facility will work with you to recommend the right fit.
- A unit with an interior hall entrance: This keeps heat from the sunlight off your unit door. Some facilities offer units with drive-up access, making it easy to unload your vehicle directly into your unit. However, these units are outdoors and typically do not offer climate-controlled capabilities. Speak to the management at your nearest storage facility to learn about available features.
- Security for your storage space: Depending on the value of your comic book collection, you’ll want to ensure your items are protected from theft. Look for a storage facility with gated PIN access and a security system such as unit alarms or video recording.
Protect Your Comic Book Collection with Self Storage Plus
At Self Storage Plus, you can choose from a variety of storage unit sizes to fit your comic book collection needs, and work with professionals to determine a plan for your needs, including climate controlled storage to keep every issue in prime condition. Learn more about available storage facility features and explore our storage guide before you move in.
To get started organizing comic books for your storage plan, find a self storage facility near you. Self Storage Plus is proud to offer storage solutions in Maryland, Washington, D.C., Virginia, and beyond. Rent or reserve a storage unit online and get the best comic book storage to fit your needs today!