Vinyl Record Storage Tips for Protecting Your LPs

Protect Your LPs from Damage with Vinyl Record Storage Tips

Physical album sales are down. Way down. All except for one format: Vinyl. According to BuzzAngle Music, a music analytics service, vinyl record sales grew by a staggering 25.9 percent in 2016.

A stack of vinyl records

If you’re reading this, there’s a good chance you’ve been swept up in the record resurgence. If so, then you might be wondering how to store vinyl records safely. Stay with us, and we’ll show you everything you need to know to keep those albums sounding awesome for years to come.

How Should I Store My Vinyl Records?

Vinyl records should be stored upright. Never horizontal, or stacked one on top of another. Here’s why: Stacking albums horizontally accelerates the appearance of “ring wear” and, given enough time, leads to warping. Warping is when the surface of the LP bends and becomes wobbly as it spins on your turntable. This makes it harder for your needle to track the grooves, causes skipping and shortening the life of your expensive cartridge. So, always make sure to store your records vertically on a shelf, and keep them as straight as possible.

Where Should I Store My Vinyl Records?

Store your vinyl records in a cool, dry environment away from heat sources and direct sunlight. Heat from air vents, radiators and even sunlight can literally melt your precious collection. And, you’d be surprised at just how quickly it can happen. On the other hand, exposure to moisture and humidity creates the perfect environment for mold and mildew to ruin your album artwork.

What Temperature is Best for Vinyl Record Storage?

For albums you’re currently listening to on a regular basis, it’s ok to store them at room temperature. For storing records long-term, though, you want to keep the temperature much lower, around 60 degrees. If you have a basement, this could be one option to consider. But, keep in mind that moisture and humidity are your enemies! If your basement is damp, your next best bet could be a temperature controlled self storage unit.

How Can I Protect My Record Jackets and Album Artwork?

When you buy a new record at your local record store, it comes wrapped in a thin layer of shrink wrap. This helps protect the LP jacket from damage during production and shipping. When you tear it off at home, however, your album jacket is now more exposed to damage. Not to mention, dust and debris can easily find their way inside, contaminating your new jams. Luckily, there’s an easy, affordable solution. Plastic album sleeves. Buy them online or pick some up at your record store, but definitely take this extra step to protect your collection.

Got More Albums than You Can Handle?

The biggest drawback to storing vinyl records at home is that they take up a ton of space. So, here’s one final vinyl record storage suggestion for you. Comb through your records and pull out all of the albums you think you’re going to listen to in the next few months. Then, pack up the rest and take them to a self storage facility close to home. You can still get to your records if your tastes change, but you won’t have to deal with all the clutter. Just make sure you follow these vinyl record storage tips when you move into your unit!

Spring Cleaning Tips for the Bedroom

Spring Cleaning Tips for the Bedroom

If you’re more scared of what’s hiding under your bed or in your closet now than you were when you were a child, it’s time to spring into action. Every year, millions of Americans practice the grand tradition of cleaning their homes from top to bottom. Before you bring the annual cleaning crusade to the bedroom, take a look at these bedroom spring cleaning tips.

A man vacuums the bedroom floor.

Bedroom Organization

We’ll get to the actual cleaning in just a second, but first, let’s talk about organizing your bedroom. As you move from area to area, consider the most effective use of your space. There might be room for storage under the bed, in the closets and elsewhere that could be put to better use. You always want regularly needed items in the most convenient places. Things that you need rarely can go to the back of the closet or in the bottom drawers. When emptying areas for cleaning, take the time to sort the objects into keep, sell (or donate) and storage piles.

Bedroom Cleaning Advice

We realize every bedroom is different, so feel free to customize these suggestions to fit your needs.

  1. Closet: Using our sorting suggestion above, empty this space completely. That way, you’ll be able to reach into all the corners and thoroughly clean it from top to bottom. Dust and wipe off any shelving, and then finish up with the vacuum. When you return the items you’ll be keeping, remember to organize as you go!
  2. Furniture: Move onto any dressers, nightstands or drawers you may have. Dust the outer areas. Empty and clean the drawers, and then, return items in an organized fashion as you did in the closet. With the bed, dust and wipe from the top down so you catch any falling dust and debris as you move from area to area. Don’t forget to check under the bed. No boogeymen to worry about, but if you haven’t cleaned in a while, it could still be a little scary.
  3. Windows: Wipe down the windows and windowsill. Drapes and curtains should be washed or otherwise cleaned according to instructions on the labels. A professional cleaning company can help with this if needed.
  4. Floor: After everything else is finished, give the floor some love.
  • For carpet, break out the vacuum. Consider having it shampooed. You might be able to rent equipment and buy supplies at the local home improvement store or have the pros take care of it for you.
  • For hardwood floors, you’ll need to vary your approach depending on what kind you have. Newer surface-sealed flooring has a protective coat that makes cleaning a snap. Grab the broom and mop and go to town! Most other types of wood floors are a little different. Liquid or paste wax is recommended. If you don’t know which kind you have, try to smudge it with your finger. If you can’t do it, you have a surface-sealed floor!

Storing Household Items

For any items that you want to keep—just not in the house—we can help. StorPlace Self-Storage offers climate-controlled storage units that are the perfect home away from home your belongings. If you’re not sure how much space you might need, check out our Storage Size Finder. If you still have questions, our self-storage professionals would love to talk with you. Stop by any of our facilities today!

Spring Cleaning Advice for Your Kitchen

Spring Cleaning Advice for Your Kitchen

It’s time to roll up those sleeves and start cleaning. A tradition that dates back hundreds or thousands of years, many cultures have taken the arrival of spring as a sign that it’s time for a fresh start. Let’s kick things off with one of the hardest places in the house to keep clean: the kitchen.

Check out these tips to make your kitchen spring cleaning a success.

This woman is prepared to tackle the task of cleaning her kitchen!

With daily meal prep, morning coffee and midnight snack runs, it can be hard to keep all the crumbs and messes from accumulating in the dark corners. Let’s cover a few guidelines you should keep in mind before your kitchen cleaning crusade commences.

Guidelines for Spring Cleaning Your Kitchen

Creating a detailed checklist is a good place to start. You’ll save yourself time in the long run with a few extra minutes of preparation up front.

  • Divide and conquer. Breaking your kitchen down into categories or areas will prevent you from cleaning in circles. You could start with big appliances like your refrigerator and stove first before moving onto smaller ones. Then, take care of the cabinets and drawers. Save the floor for last because there’s a good chance your other cleaning efforts will end up spilling some collateral damage down there.
  • Empty before cleaning. Don’t just scrub around plates in cabinets or food in the fridge. Remove everything from whatever area you’re currently cleaning. While you’re doing this, be on the lookout for any expired food so you can throw it out. Take drawers and shelves out of the refrigerator, and give them a thorough cleaning in the sink.
  • Soak away caked-on crud. If shelves or drawers have sticky stains or other debris that’s rough to remove, try soaking them in soapy water. If your oven knobs are looking a little crummy, you can place them in a vinegar solution for a little while to loosen the grime.
  • Make this easier on yourself next year. Stay on top of your kitchen cleaning duties daily to keep messes from mounting. Your future self will thank you.

Organizing the Kitchen

Take the opportunity to put things in order while you clean. Putting pots and pans together and nesting smaller items in larger ones will help free up space in your cabinets and drawers. If you’re not already doing this, you may find you have more storage space in the kitchen than you thought! And if everything has a permanent home, you won’t find yourself flinging open all the drawers to find that measuring cup—not that that’s happened to us or anything.

Find a convenient space to store all your cleaning supplies. You’ll want to keep them away from anything edible or anything that will touch food, really. If children are around, you should also make sure to childproof whatever storage area you choose. Underneath the sink is usually a handy spot.

Storage for Household Items

While you’re cleaning out the clutter in your kitchen, keep in mind that you don’t have to keep everything in your home. When space is at a premium, let us help. At StorPlace Self Storage, we offer storage units in a variety of sizes. Our friendly managers can help you find the solution that’s just right for your needs from a few small household items to an entire home’s worth of belongings.

Frequently Asked Storage Questions

Welcome to StorPlace Self StorageBelow are four of the more common questions we’ve heard from our customers. If you have additional storage questions our friendly staff is here to help. Stop by one of our 17 locations or give us a call today.

1. Is the storage location convenient?

A lot of what goes into choosing where to store your belongings is where the actual facility is located. StorPlace has 17 locations spread all throughout middle Tennessee and even in Bowling Green, Kentucky. So, there are plenty of convenient locations to choose from.

2. Are the storage units safe and secure?

Here at StorPlace, our locations are safe and secure. We have 24-hour surveillance and fenced in properties. Feel free to stop by and check out any of our locations, Monday-Saturday from 9am-5:30pm. Also, checking online reviews for companies will help give you an idea of the great experience our customers have had with the company.

3. What are the access hours?

Every company will probably be different with their access times. Here at StorPlace the access hours are 6am-10pm, because we know that not everyone can make between 9am-5pm. We try to make it as convenient as possible for everyone while keeping it safe and secure at night.

4. How do I choose the right size?

The easiest way to figure out the size you are going to need is to pack everything up and give us a call here at StorPlace. If you can give us an accurate description of what you are going to be storing we can help you determine what size you will need. Then, you can come by one of our 17 convenient locations and check it out for yourself.

7 Steps to Stop Procrastinating

StorPlace Self StorageEveryone battles varying degrees of procrastination. Some people will even avoid difficult tasks by deliberately looking for increasingly available distractions. Procrastination, in large part, reflects our perennial struggle with self-control as well as our inability to accurately predict how we’ll feel in the future. We sometimes rationalize our procrastination by convincing ourselves that we perform better under pressure, but that’s not always true in reality. The bright side is, however, that by taking the proper steps we can remove procrastination from our lives once and for all.

For me, technology offers constant distractions. Text messages, emails, and advertisements constantly seem to bid for my attention. If you’re like me, you fall prey to these distractions, as well. The steps I took to help me overcome my issues with procrastination are listed below in hopes they can start helping you too!

1. Exercise Every Day

Exercise always seems to help my physical and mental health—it can also seem to fuel my attention span. A walk during a lunch break could help you concentrate when you return to work. Regular exercise also provides long-term benefits to your attention span.

2. Set a Break Time Reminder

Trying to focus on a task for hours on end will wreak havoc on your attention span. The more you sit and try to make yourself pay attention, the less attentive you may become. In an effort to meet a deadline, many people avoid taking breaks. But taking short breaks may be the secret to getting your work done in less time. Setting a reminder to take a break every 50 minutes can help you return to your task with improved attention.

3. Turn Off the Obvious Distractions

Every interruption, whether it’s a phone call, a question from a co-worker, or an email, disrupts your concentration and impairs your performance. Even a disruption as short as 2.8 seconds doubles your chances of making an error, according to a 2015 study published in the Journal of Experimental Psychology. Interruptions lead to poor quality and can cause you to take longer to finish the task. If you really want to improve your attention, limit as many distractions as possible. Turn off your smartphone and email, then watch your productivity improve!

4. Drink Black Tea

Although most people reach for another cup of coffee to get through an afternoon slump, black tea may be a better choice. I read in a report that theanine—an amino acid exclusive to tea— can help provide laser-light focus. Theanine, which increases calmness and relaxation, interacts with caffeine to synchronize the brain activity related to attention processing. Additionally, tea provides more consistent alertness throughout the day compared to coffee, even when matched for caffeine content.

5. Meditate

I have just recently started to set aside a certain part of the day for simple meditation. Among the many benefits of meditation is an improved attention span. Research conducted on Buddhist monks who have spent years training in meditation show they enjoy a much longer attention span than most people. But the good news is, you don’t have to study meditation for years to reap the benefits.

6. Enjoy the Outdoors

Spending time in nature could greatly reduce your mental fatigue and restore your attention span. Nature has such a powerful impact on attention that “green time” has become a recommended treatment for children with ADHD.

7. Tackle the Task Head-On

If you know you have a project that has a deadline, don’t wait to the last minute to start it! Sounds simple, but I am just now finishing a blog that was due today at 5:30 pm! I knew this blog had a deadline, but kept putting it off until I thought I would have time to sit and finish it. What I should have done—as soon as I found out I would be responsible for this—was to start it that day. But as I continue to learn and grow in this area, I’ll make sure that’s what I do next time.

I hope that by reviling some of my weakness and hardship with some simple approach, it will help someone else that finds themselves in the same boat.

Finding the Right Food for Your Pet

Choosing the Right Pet FoodDo you ever walk into a pet store and become overwhelmed with all of the different pet food you can choose from? Of course you want the best for your furry friend, but how do you know which pet food to buy? Just like people, our pets have different needs. Some can do just fine on about any food, but other pets may have special needs, such as sensitive stomachs, allergies, or even conditions such as dry skin. Always make sure you do your research on your specific breed of cat or dog before shopping for their food.

Questions to Ask Before Buying Pet Food

Here are some questions that you might want to ask yourself before making your purchase. Is my cat or dog going to be mostly indoors, or will they spend a majority of their time outdoors? Do they have dry skin or any allergies that you know of? Is he/she a breed that has special needs? Some examples are Sharpeis, Bulldogs, and Pugs. What size is your pet? Is he/she very active or likes to lounge around a lot? Is he/she long-haired or short-haired? These are the most important things to focus on when finding the right food for your pet. If your pet has a condition such as diabetes or even if they’re very overweight, you might just need to go for a special prescription diet through your veterinarian, which will narrow down your results significantly.

Which Type of Pet Food Do You Need?

So, how about some answers to those questions? The first question is more important for cats, but can be important for dogs too. If your cat or dog is mostly indoors, you should find something with less fat assuming that your pet will be less active than a primarily outdoor cat or dog. If they have dry skin you should look for food primarily made from fish. If allergies are an issue, look for food with an uncommon protein such as duck or even bison. If you have a small dog, always buy food made for small dogs. This is important because smaller dogs need less protein, and also need smaller bites of food to avoid choking on large pieces. There are also special foods for larger dogs which have primarily larger kibble and more protein. If your pet is very active, look into foods with a higher fat content and once again more protein so that your pet can stay active. Dogs and cats that love to just lounge around need food with less fat, so they don’t become overweight which is a very common issue in pets, especially cats. If you have a pet with long fur, look for food with more omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids; there are even some foods made especially for long-haired pets to keep their coat shiny and manageable.

While those are the main things to look for before buying food, every pet is very unique, so once again, do your research before making your purchase. Sometimes, it will take a few tries before finding the perfect food, and your pets’ needs can also change. Finding the best food for your pet is very important for their health, and their overall happiness. So, if you want a happy pet, follow these guidelines and your furry friend will thank you!