Vinyl records are a great way to listen to music, but they have one major drawback: They don’t last forever.
The record is made of plastic and has an adhesive on the back that holds it onto the turntable. The vinyl itself will eventually wear out and become brittle. This can cause the record to crack or even break apart. If you want your vinyl records to last longer, here’s what you need to know.
How long does vinyl last?
Vinyl records aren’t meant to be played for decades like CDs, but they do last much longer than other types of media. According to the National Association of Record Merchandisers (NARM), most vinyl records should last at least 30 years if stored properly. However, some experts say that vinyl records can last up to 50 years if they’re stored in a cool, dry place with minimal light exposure.
What causes vinyl records to break down?
Vinyl records are made from polyvinyl chloride (PVC) plastic. PVC breaks down when exposed to heat, moisture, sunlight, and chemicals. All these things happen naturally as vinyl records age, so there’s nothing you can do about them. But you can prevent them by storing your vinyl records in a cool, dark space away from direct sunlight.
How do I store my vinyl records?
If you want your vinyl records not only to last longer, but also look good, then you’ll need to take care of them. Here are some tips for how to store your records:
- Store your vinyl records vertically, rather than horizontally. When you store your vinyl records horizontally, the glue holding the record together gets wet, which makes it more likely to come off.
- Keep your vinyl records in a clean environment. Dust particles can get stuck between the grooves of the record, causing scratches. Also, dust particles can damage the surface of the record, making it harder to play.
- Use clear protective sleeves. These protect the record from getting scratched and help keep dirt out of the groove. You can find these at any electronics store.
- Clean your vinyl records regularly. A little bit of cleaning goes a long way. Just use a soft cloth dampened with rubbing alcohol.
- Don’t leave your vinyl records near heat sources. Heat can warp the record, making it difficult to read.
- Avoid using harsh cleaners. Some cleaners contain solvents that could harm the record. Instead, use mild soap and water to clean your vinyl records.
- Never put your vinyl records in the microwave. Microwaves can distort the sound quality of your vinyl records.
- Keep your vinyl records away from strong odors. Strong smells can make the vinyl smell bad, which may affect its ability to play.
- Make sure your vinyl records are protected from humidity. Moisture can cause the vinyl to expand, which can lead to warping.
- Don’t expose your vinyl records to extreme temperatures. Extreme cold can freeze the vinyl, while extreme heat can melt the vinyl.
- Don’t let your vinyl records touch each other. Vinyl records have a tendency to stick together, which can make them hard to separate.
- Don’t throw your vinyl records in the trash. They can still be recycled and used again.
The Quality Of The Record
Another thing to consider is the quality of the record itself. If you buy a cheap copy of an old song, or one recorded on a poor-quality recording device, it will probably sound worse than a high-quality version of the same song. This is because the quality of the music depends on many factors, including the equipment used to record it, the skill of the artist, and the quality of the studio where the recording was done.
So if you’re looking for the best vinyl records, you should focus on buying the highest-quality versions of songs you like. That way, you’ll enjoy listening to them for years to come!