kutztown storage boxesDespite the technological trends of iPads, Kindles, and eReaders, physical books are still very common. Maybe you like not worrying about charging the battery. Or you are prone to the endless app distractions eReaders provide. Or you want to read outside in the sun, which is difficult to do with a screen. Perhaps you just like the smell and texture of holding a physical book. Or maybe you have upgraded to an eReader, but still own and read physical books from years past.

Whatever the reason, one thing’s for certain: packing and storing many physical books is much more difficult than storing one eReader.

The main problem is that books can be very heavy, so a little planning and strategic packing is needed. Don’t ever try to load all your books into one big box–your back will thank you! Here are a few tips for packing, moving, and storing books:

Preparing to Move

Sort through your books before you move them to your new home or self storage. Are there any you could do without? If you find some you’ve outgrown or don’t think you’ll read again, someone else could possibly make use of them. Look for a local charity or library to donate them too. If the books are fairly recent, you could try selling them at a yard sale or to a secondhand book store. Or you could give some away to friends who might appreciate them. Anything you can do to lessen the load will be helpful.

Choosing a Container

Books are surprisingly heavy. So heavy, that when too many are packed together they can cause injuries to the mover and damages to the box. Ideally, choose small plastic bins over cardboard boxes for your books. These are not likely to rip or tear in transport and will keep your books better protected. If you cannot use plastic bins, find small and sturdy cardboard boxes in good condition.

Packing Books

Book can be fragile and you’ll want to keep your books safe from bending, tearing, and moisture during transport and storage. Pack books either stacked and flat or standing upright. Never pack books spine up and pages down, as this can damage them. If you’re looking for extra protection, use acid-free paper or cardboard as a barrier between books. You can also use bubble wrap and foam peanuts to fill up empty spaces in the box. You want to pack your books securely, but not too tight as this can lead to damages.

Moving Books

If you chose cardboard boxes to pack your books, make sure to securely tape the top and bottom to prevent breakage. Always tightly secure boxes packed with books during transport. These can shift easily and cause damages because of the heavy weight. Label your boxes before transport so you can easily access your books when you need them.

Storing Books

Books can be fragile and should be protected from bending, tearing, and moisture. Store books in a cool, dry place for optimal preservation. Store them in the boxes or plastic bins as long as you packed them appropriately.  If the books are valuable or being stored for a long period of time, it is better  to keep them in climate-controlled storage unit.