7 Tips to Care for the Books in Your Library

April 08, 2020

7 Tips to Care for the Books in Your Library

Your Library is Important 

Are you in the middle of your cleaning routine, sorting through cupboards, closets, washing windows?

Don't forget about your extensive library of old books they also need love and care. The authors have put their heart, mind, and soul writing it.  To enjoy the many benefits of a well-stocked personal library for years to come, we need to add our books to our cleaning routine.

7 Book Care Tips 

To preserve the books the library lends to the public librarians follow expert methods to support the long-term protection of the books in there care. Your home library might not meet the rigorous standards of libraries, but here are some tips to care for your books you love just like the professionals do. Whether the books on your shelves are first editions or book club favorites to enjoy them for years, follow these tips to maintain the books on your bookshelf.


1. Add Your books To your Dusting Routine 

Dusting the books on your library shelves will protect them from musty smells and mildew.  Use a resh cloth just for your books. Don't use the same cleaning cloth that you use on the shelves when dusting. A very gentle brush can be used to eliminate dust from delicate books. 

2. Shelve Your Books Upright

Shelving upright and support them with bookends, they won't slump or become misshapen. This practice will help keep the binding firm. Large or oversized volumes can be safely stored flat.

3. Never Store Your Books in Direct Sun

When shelving your favorite books to avoid sun-fade, damage to the bindings, paper, and leather avoid direct and indirect light. Remember to turn off the lights in the room; you store your books as much as possible.

4. Wrap Older Books

It is recommended to use an acid-free, UV-resistant plastic book cover to protect cover. Book jacket covers are available in a wide variety of styles. However, the specific method you choose often boils down to a matter of personal preference. This article, The Book Doctor is In has more useful information to help you protect your books.  

 5. Store Books Away from Heat Sources

Furnace vents and sunny windows are not the ideal locations for your shelves of books. High temperatures can crack leather spines and make book glue fragile.

 6. Handle with Care

Remove books from shelves by gripping over the spine near the center. Don't "hook" the upper spine with your finger; this creates pressure, and damage, to the spine.

7. Wash your Hands

Handle and read your books with clean, dry hands. Oils and dirt on your hands can stain and destroy the bindings and pages of books your reading.


The Whole Family Approach

It is our responsibility to preserve books for future generations. If you're a parent who has a love of books and reading, our children need to learn to love and take care of books, too. Children learn by watching, doing, and will follow your lead in your love of books.

Resources for Parents

 A love of books is one of the greatest gifts you can give your child, developing these habits to take care and treasure books can be part of that.  Any book that helps a child to form a habit of reading, to make reading one of his needs, is good for them.

Here is an excellent article from Lessons by Sandy, Teaching Book Care.  Great activities to teaching the littles to care and appreciate books.


Feel free to share this article with friends and family who love to read; they will appreciate your thoughtfulness.

Happy Reading,

Pam of Reading Vintage


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