Storing Books? Make Sure You Don't Take Any Pests With You

19 October 2015
 Categories: , Blog

If you're placing your personal library in storage (such as Regency Self Storage), you have to make sure that pesky insects have not taken up residence in your books. If you store an infested book, you could look at your collection a few months later and discover that your books are full of eggs, bugs, and fecal matter. If bugs are only in one volume when you put your books in storage, the infestation could spread to other volumes, leaving you with several ruined books.  

Historically, book boring insects, such as bookworms and book lice, have destroyed quite a few rare books by eating through the paper, binding and glue that holds books together. While these types of insects still exist, they don't like the chemicals used in modern printing processes. This has led to the decline of these types of pests. However, books are still under attack. Today's book owner is much more likely to encounter other types of pests, such as bedbugs and spiders. Unfortunately, these bugs can do quite a bit of damage as well. 

How to Make Sure Your Books Are Free of Bugs

While packing your books, you should inspect each one to look for signs of insects. Since eggs and bugs can hide in the pages and crevices, you should open up each book and inspect them thoroughly. If you find bugs, follow these tips. 

  • Do not spray your books with any type of insecticide as it may cause damage to your books. 
  • Take care not to smash any bugs between the pages of your books. Doing so may stain your books permanently
  • Do not throw away your books. They are salvageable.  

If you find that you have insects in some of your books, you can kill them off fairly easy. All you have to do is freeze them. Before you can place your books in a freezer, however, you have to make sure they don't contain any moisture. You can do so by storing your books at room temperature for a few days as long as the relative humidity in the room is between 40 to 60 percent. Next, place your books in a tightly-sealed storage bag. Place bag in the freezer for a few days. Remove the bag and allow it to warm up to room temperature before removing the book. 

Insect infestations can ruin your books. Fortunately, there is an easy way to kill off any bugs that have decided to take up residence in your books.