Save Your Memories: Tips for Properly Preserving Video Tapes
August 16, 2018
Your home movies of family get-togethers, a first dance recital, and memorable vacations won’t last forever. They degrade over time. The delicate material requires proper storage techniques and some tender loving care. To keep these invaluable family heirlooms in good condition, find the right environment for your movies and memories. Follow these tips for properly preserving video tapes.
Where you store your tapes makes all the difference. Choose a clean, dry place that has temperatures in the mid 50s to low 70s. Also, the environment should have no moisture or humidity. This encourages mold growth. Basements and attics are out of the question for this reason. You’ll also want a location that is away from direct light, vents, or heat sources.
Rewind all videos when you are through using them. Tapes paused in the middle may get distorted over time. And handle them with care. Never stick your fingers inside the case. If your fingers come in contact with the tape inside, oil or dirt from your hands is easily transferred to the delicate material and contributes to its decomposing.
To properly preserve video tapes, always store them upright on shelves, just like you would books. Be sure to keep them in their protective cases. These cases keep dirt away from the fragile tape material inside. If a case goes missing or is damaged, find some more at garage sales, thrift stores, or online. Don’t forget to label each tape. Unmarked tapes tend to get lost easier, or worse, taped over.
Play Them with Care
The video players themselves are old and often dusty. Make sure the player you put your tape in is clean and in good working condition. No one likes to put their favorite movie in only to have the player chew up the tape.
Besides time itself, your video tape collection has a lot of enemies. Extreme temperatures, light, dust, dirt, and the oils on your fingers contribute to degradation. Properly preserving video tapes takes a lot of care, but even if you are ultra cautious, these delicate materials won’t stay in good condition forever. Keep these memories alive by making the switch to digital formats. We’ll modernize your movies for you. Call Disc Hounds at 610-696-8668. Let us transfer your video tapes digitally so you can easily access them for years to come.