Preserve your favorite book by treating it with care and storing it responsibly. Don't touch your book with dirty hands or read it when you eat or drink. Store it in a cool and dry environment, away from heat sources. Clean it regularly and put a protective cover on it to be more careful.
Method 1 of 3: manipulate your book
Step 1. Touch your book with clean hands
Always wash your hands before handling your book. Oil, dirt, and debris on your hands can do a lot of damage to the cover and pages. These types of stains will accumulate and you will not be able to remove them.
Step 2. Avoid eating or drinking while reading your book
Regardless of how careful you are, spills are a possibility when you eat or drink. Keep your book away from food and drink to avoid staining. A spill large enough could damage the pages to make them unreadable.
Step 3. Take your book off the shelf by grasping it from the middle of the spine
Never take your book off a shelf by grasping it from the top of the spine, as it can crack or break over time. Instead, choose to gently pull back the two surrounding books and grab it from the middle of the spine to remove it. If the book is jammed tightly between others, gently pull it from behind to help remove it.
Step 4. Use a flat marker to mark where you are going
Never bend the corners of the pages to mark them, as this will cause permanent damage. Marking the page by leaving the book open or by putting a large object between the pages (such as a large pen) will also damage the pages and the spine. As you read your book, use a flat marker to keep track of where you are going.
Method 2 of 3: Save your book
Step 1. Place your book upright with books of similar size
Stand your paperback and a small hardcover book upright. Put it next to others that are almost the same size to prevent it from deforming. Make sure your books don't lean and use bookends if necessary to keep them straight.
If your book is too large to store upright, lay it flat with no more than two other books on top of it
Step 2. Keep your book out of direct sunlight
The sun's ultraviolet rays can cause dust jackets and book covers to fade over time. This damage will be permanent and will devalue expensive or rare books. Put shelves in a shady corner of a room whenever possible.
If you can't store your book out of the sun and want to protect it from fading, buy an UV-resistant cover online or at a bookstore
Step 3. Store your book at room temperature and keep it dry
As a general rule of thumb, try to keep your book in a room that is 70 ° F (21 ° C) or lower. Make sure the room is not damp or wet, as that can lead to mold growth. Keep your book away from heaters or heating ducts, as excessive heat can cause it to deteriorate more quickly.
Method 3 of 3: Maintain Your Book
Step 1. Clean your book every 1-2 months
Over time, the dust will accumulate on the books on your shelf. Prevent that from happening by dusting them at least once every two months. Use a clean cloth, duster, or vacuum with a device that has a soft brush to remove dust build-up and keep your books organized.
Always dust your book from the spine out to prevent dust from accumulating there
Step 2. Avoid fixing torn pages with tape
You should not use the regular tape that is available in most stores to fix damage to your book. This type of tape is pressure sensitive and can cause further damage to your books over time. Sticky notes and stickers should also be kept away from your book.
Step 3. Put a protective cover on your book
Purchase a clear bookcase online or at a bookstore to wrap around the cover of your book. The cover must be made of filing material and must fit the book without the need for any accessories. This option is very important if you want to bring your book and are concerned about damaging it in the process.
Step 4. Hire a curator to fix an older, more valuable book
If you want to fix a rare and valuable book, ask your local library for information. A librarian could give you the name of a local curator who can restore it. Contact the curator and discuss their rates (which will vary) before hiring them to fix your book.
- Avoid writing or drawing in your book.
- Do not lend your book to anyone you distrust.
- Keep your books away from babies, pets, or young children who can tear the pages.