Best Way to Pack Books for Storage

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In my family, it is widely known that my husband is a bit of a bibliophile. His book collection is massive and takes up nearly 10 shelves. I’d like to do a reverse “Beauty and the Beast” someday and find a house that is large enough to have a true dedicated library. In the meantime, we have bookshelves galore. Thing is, when we think about moving, I walk around and look at the bookshelves and get cold feet – moving the books is an all-around pain! In fact, since the books are organized and cataloged (did I mention he’s a librarian wannabe?), he insists on packing the boxes, and that is his extent in packing/unpacking since it takes forever to pack and maintain his system. 

If you are planning on storing your books (and if your collection is larger than ours, I’d love to see it) at Security Self Storage in Napa, CA, we have a few tips to help you keep them safe during their time in your storage unit. 

Choose the proper container

This, while seemingly obvious, is one of the biggest mistakes that people make when storing their books. The best container for book storage is a corrugated cardboard box that is small/medium-sized and sturdy. The box should be less than 20” deep and free of dust, grease, etc. 

Prepare the boxes and books

Before packing your books, line the boxes completely with packing or tissue paper. Skip the newspaper on this one. Dust or vacuum the books with the crevice attachment of your vacuum cleaner and dust the cover jacket.

Jump right in and pack ‘em up

Books need air circulation, so don’t pack them too tightly. Books should be packed standing up, with space between each stack. Try to balance the weight evenly in the box. Using packing paper, Styrofoam peanuts, or bubble wrap in between the stacks helps keep them in place. 

Seal, label, stack, and store

Generously seal with packing tape and label the boxes clearly. When you store your books in your Napa self storage unit, raise them off the ground with pallets, etc. and designate a section for your books. 

Storing your books properly takes some extra effort but is well worth the time spent.

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