person reading book while drinking beverage

How to Care For Library Books

Library materials require careful handling as they are fragile and can easily become damaged.

Avoid eating or drinking near books as food and beverage stains are difficult to remove from them. Furthermore, avoid using paper clips, Post-it notes, or tape as bookmarks as these could stain or otherwise ruin them permanently.

Please remember to return your book prior to its due date or you will incur a fine.

Keep Them Clean

Book donations that come into a library are often subjected to extensive handling, making them magnets for dust, fingerprints, smudges and stains that could degrade its pages and covers over time. Regular cleaning helps extend their lives as well as protect other volumes within a collection.

Clean a book effectively using a dry cloth or brush just like you clean your PC where you work or play online poker on sites mentioned on, removing dust and debris from its cover. A vacuum cleaner fitted with a brush attachment or cheesecloth covering its nozzle may also provide gentle yet thorough cleaning without causing damage.

Book bindings, cover materials and paper can all be damaged by prolonged exposure to UV rays from either natural sunlight or artificial lighting sources, including direct sunlight or fluorescent bulbs. UV light can yellow pages over time while warping covers and spines over time – in order to protect these delicate parts it’s wiser to stay away from bright lights as much as possible.

Mold and mildew may accumulate on books over time. When this occurs, they should be thoroughly disinfected using either water or rubbing alcohol soaked sponges and cloths to safely scrub off mold and mildew from covers and text blocks before carefully drying these materials before being returned to their shelves.

Insect infestation in library collections is another threat, so any book with silverfish infestation should be placed in a sealed plastic bag and kept frozen for 24 hours in order to eliminate them before being thoroughly cleaned and disinfected prior to returning it to shelves.

Maintaining good condition for books to ensure other patrons will also enjoy them is paramount to their enjoyment. Writing or leaving food and drink near a book, can cause staining or discoloring and ultimately break down its binding over time. Furthermore, any unnecessary accessories like paper clips or rubber bands could crease pages further while leaving adhesive residues.

Keep Them Dry

When your library book becomes wet, the first step should be removing it to a dry space and gently blotting its cover and pages – taking care not to over-blot, otherwise pulp fibers may shred and disintegrate.

Once in a dry environment, let the book drain freely. Do not pick it up by its inside pages or cover as this could damage it; rather support it on a firm (preferably covered) surface as it drains. After it has completed draining, place any remaining water in several small tubs filled with clean water (no chemicals!). Upon drying the book entirely, blot the cover and pages as required to eliminate moisture build-up.

Next, place a few sheets of plain white (non-dyed), absorbent paper towel in an area with clear, flat surfaces. Outdoors is often best for this step but you could also use tables or non-carpeted floors if available. Start small groups of books depending on time and space constraints before moving forward with larger volumes.

As the paper towels soak up water, keep replacing them. Over time, you should notice that the text block of your book is drying up and its pages no longer stick together; this may take several days depending on your climate and weather conditions.

Paper towel not only absorbs moisture but can also prevent mildew and mold growth in humid climates; you may wish to utilize a dehumidifier in the room where your books are drying so as to speed up the drying process and eliminate any chance of mold or mildew growth.

As a rule, library books should never be exposed to light for too long, either natural or artificial. Both sources of illumination can damage books by discoloring paper and binding materials as well as drying leather and cloth surfaces brittleness. You should keep library books out of direct sunlight and dim lights in rooms where you store or read them to reduce light exposure; in addition, writing in them or underlining with permanent marker is prohibited as this may cause permanent damage.

Keep Them Cool

Members of the library staff are experts when it comes to keeping library books cool. They know which shelves are hottest and when fans need turning on or off. Furthermore, they understand when opening or shutting blinds is allowed during certain times of the day as well as which controls need adjusting and only ever do this for repairs if something doesn’t seem quite right with air conditioning systems.

Long exposure of books to direct sunlight and heat can damage spines and paper; additionally, this heat may hasten their degradation over time. Cramming books together on shelves could result in warping covers or bindings for older and more fragile volumes; to preserve your investment consider spacing them out as best you can!

Avoid eating or drinking near library books; food and beverage spills can stain pages and damage bindings, leaving permanent marks. Also, never place books in purses or diaper bags – this is often how items get damaged and results in billable replacement fees.

Library materials must not be exposed to smoke, fumes or odors; and should be stored away from direct sunlight as this can fade the pages and covers. When marking or writing in library books with pencils or markers, please avoid doing so; this can smudge pages and permanently damage bindings as well as leave sticky residue that’s difficult to remove. Additionally, tape, Post-It notes or any adhesives could leave sticky residue that’s difficult to clear off after use. If needed bookmarks may also help.

Please refrain from using rubber bands, paper clips or metal bookmarks on library books as these could leave permanent marks and scratches. Folded pages also damage bindings and could result in missing pages or tears in bindings; should you need assistance caring for your library books please speak with any member of our staff at one of the service desks; they’d be more than happy to assist! If you need any more help regarding how to care for them please reach out – they are more than willing!

Keep Them Warm

Books should generally be stored in cool, dark locations as their organic materials can easily be damaged by extreme temperatures or humidity levels, or pests like mice and bookworms who leave tell-tale frass (larvae droppings). Unfortunately, many library and museum collections remain stored for years or even decades at a time, which will often cause their books to age or deteriorate after prolonged exposure to environmental elements.

Libraries and museums use preservation guidelines as a guideline for caring for books. While it may not be possible for home libraries to meet all these standards exactly, adhering as closely as possible will extend the life of a collection.

Temperature can have an enormous effect on a library’s books and materials, so it is essential to store them in an ideal temperature range of 68-72 degrees Fahrenheit with between 40-55% relative humidity. Furthermore, monitoring humidity can be particularly important in areas exposed to fluctuating weather such as basements and attics; thermometer-hygrometers provide an inexpensive yet useful way to monitor levels effectively.

Light is another key factor, both natural and artificial. Exposure to bright lights causes bindings made of paper or leather to fade, weaken and disintegrate pages, as well as warp books. Therefore it is crucial that books be kept out of direct sunlight or window light while not in use, with lights switched off when not needed.

Other factors that can damage books include dirt, spills, dust and pests. It is recommended to regularly dust books using a very soft brush away from shelves so as to not disturb the bindings or disturb food and beverage as this can increase mould and mildew growth.

Store books upright rather than flat and shelve them loosely so as not to crowd the shelf too closely together. Shelving similar-sized books together is also recommended, while using clean hands when handling books to avoid staining and damaging them from oil produced from your skin.