Handy tips for preserving your photos will help prevent damage to precious family photos and documents is essential to preserving your items for future generations. The two main factors that accelerate deterioration of photos and documents are temperature and humidity. Cooler temperatures slow the rate of chemical decay and reduce insect activity, the optimum temperature rage is between 14C and 21C , too high and the items dry out and crack, too low and the items contract and become brittle, a consistent temperature avoids fluctuations that stress the photos. Keep the relative humidity (rH) below 65% to prevent mould growth and reduce insect activity, and avoid very low relative humidity as relative humidity below 15% can cause brittleness; again consistency of humidity range is important. It is best to avoid damp basements, garages, and hot attics, away from bathrooms, radiators, windows plumbing where pipes have the potential to leak. Find that safe part of the house such as bedroom cupboard away from food and water that attract insects and rodents which potentially eat away at photos, documents and negatives.
In my next blog I talk about the best products to use to store those precious family heirlooms.