Why store photographs in a climate controlled storage unit?

Why store photographs in a climate controlled storage unit?
Why should I store my photographs in a climate-controlled environment?

Photographs are memories.  You want to be completely assured that they are protected during storage.  There are numerous factors to consider when storing your precious reminders of the past.  As you read further, you’ll understand the suitability of climate-controlled storage to prevent mold, mildew, and fading. Keep in mind that we are discussing developed, not digital, photos.

Properly Handle Your Photographs & Negatives

Always handle photos and negatives with clean, dry hands.  Always hold photos by the edge. Never put fingers directly on photos because your hands contain oils and other chemicals that can leave a permanent mark on photos or negatives.

Choose the Proper Containers for Your Photos

Don’t make the mistake of purchasing the cute or cheap albums and boxes for your photos.  They could potentially contain acids or adhesives that can harm, age, and degrade your photos.  Look for items that are archival quality:  photo safe, acid, lignin, and PVC free.

Properly Load Your Photo Containers

Even archival quality storage containers will not protect your photos if not filled properly.

Overfilling an album can cause your pictures to bend or crease. If photos are not affixed properly, they can fall out of your album resulting in loss or damage.  

Overfilling a photo box causes the same problems as an overfilled album. Underfilling allows pictures to move around, causing curled or frayed edges. If your box isn’t full, use archival quality dividers to prevent shifting.  It’s okay to stack photos loosely if you’re not storing in a humid or high temperature environment. This may cause photos to stick.

Some additional recommendations:

  • Do not use tape or glue to affix photos in albums.
  • Mount photos only on archival paper.
  • Never hold photos together using paper clips or rubber bands.
  • It’s not a good idea to store photos in envelopes because they may stick together.
  • If you must write on a photo, use an archival safe writing pen and don’t press very hard.  You don’t want indentations in your photo.

Store Photos in Safe Places Under Proper Conditions

Climate-controlled storage will probably offer the best conditions for storing photos. The area in which photos are stored makes a significant difference as to how well they will age.  When choosing a location, you need to think about humidity, temperature, and light. You will also want to consider the possibility of flooding and the prevalence of insects and rodents.

Neither the attic, the basement, nor the garage are the ideal places to store your treasured photographs.  Insects and rodents frequent these spaces and love to chew on paper. These areas also tend to be subject to temperature and humidity fluctuations.  Remember to keep photos off the floor, especially if you are in a flood prone area.

When storing your photos, look for a reputable, secure storage facility that offers climate-controlled units.  Check that the temperature and humidity levels are suitable for your photos. Light shouldn’t be a problem because these units generally do not have windows.

Your photographs are your link to the past.  With the proper care and preparation, you and your family will be able to enjoy your memories for generations to come.

Stay tuned for our next blog for more tips on what to store in a climate-controlled storage unit.

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In an effort to take better care of our customers, we offer a number of concierge level services to make sure your self storage experience is excellent. Our goal is to make your move problem-free. Here are just some of the services you can expect from our highly-trained team.

Concierge Serivces

  • Make your self storage reservation
  • Cancel or change your reservation
  • Tour the property to see different types and sizes of storage units
  • Explain the differences between different types of storage (indoor/outdoor/climate-controlled/carpeted, drive-up unit, and more)
  • If applicable, explain and tour car, motorcycle, boat or RV storage
  • Explain the move-in process
  • Explain how accessing your unit works (locks, key codes, hours)
  • Explain safety and security features
  • Assist with choosing and reserving moving truck or trailer for client
  • Provides the use of dollies or handcarts for customers
  • Show available packing supplies and work with customers to determine needs
  • Offer packing and storing tips and best practices
  • Clearly explain lease terms and billing
  • Explain any other amenities (coffee, beverages, wi-fi, etc.)
  • MOST IMPORTANTALY, be present on the day of move in to help with any questions, concerns, or related issues.
  • Be present on the day of move-out to offer any necessary assistance

Whatever your needs, Storage Plus has the perfect solution for you. We are committed to giving you a storage experience that’s caring and trustworthy. Our convenient locations are perfect for residents, businesses and students. We look forward to helping you soon!