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Maybe you’ve found some Fleetwood Mac records at a garage sale or thrift store. Or, maybe you’ve had the same vinyl records in your family for multiple generations. In any case, they have likely experienced some wear and tear over the years. No matter how careful a music enthusiast is, they will be bound to have a few scratched or warped records on his hands at one point or another. 

Damaged vinyls can emit subpar sound quality and even cause the tracks to skip. To improve your listening experience and restore the condition of your beloved records, read our guide below. 

Repairing a Warped Record

Improper storage or excessive heat can cause your vinyl to warp and become unusable. Here’s how to repair this kind of damage:

  1. Purchase two sheets of flat overproof glass. They should be big enough to cover a 12” record but small enough to fit into your oven.
  2. Turn your oven on to the lowest heat possible (no higher than 120 degrees Fahrenheit).
  3. Carefully sandwich your vinyl in between the two sheets of glass.
  4. Place your creation into the oven for no more than ten minutes.
  5. Take it out and remove your vinyl from in between the pieces of glass.
  6. Place the record on a flat surface and set a book or another heavy object on top of it.
  7. Leave it to cool in this position for at least an hour. Remove the object and inspect it.

Be aware that this process may cause further damage if you don’t follow these instructions carefully. 

Repairing a Scratched Record

If scratches are your main concern, here’s how you can repair them using sandpaper:

  1. Gently wash your vinyl with water to remove any obvious debris.
  2. Grab a piece of 1500 grit sandpaper and wet it. Optionally, you can use a small amount of liquid soap as a lubricant. 
  3. Wet your vinyl as well and place it on a hard, flat surface.
  4. Lightly sand each side of the vinyl where there are scratches. Some people prefer to sand the entire record so it’s left with a uniform look. As you sand, use curving strokes that run parallel with your vinyl’s groves. 

How to Care for Your Vinyls Once They’ve Been Restored

Once you’ve put in the work to restore your vinyl records, you should follow certain practices to keep them in good shape. 

Static electricity and grease from your hands are the two main causes of record damage. To offset the effects of these damages, make sure to regularly clean your records. You'll need a record cleaning solution and a microfiber cloth.

If money is not an object, you can invest in a record cleaner. However, these items often start at around $500, so it may be more realistic to clean your vinyls by hand whenever you:

  • Add a new record to your collection
  • See visible contamination
  • Notice an abnormal amount of hissing or crackling during use

Also, be sure to store your vinyls properly to prevent future damage. Ideally, you should store records at or below room temperature in a relatively dry environment. 

Conclusion

Whether you’re looking to resell them eventually or enjoy them yourself for the next twenty years, these practices will keep your vinyls in pristine condition. 

The first commercial vinyl records capable of playing more than a few minutes of music made their debut in 1930—hard to imagine that was a mere 90 years ago. After being replaced by newer and better technologies, like the compact disk, mp3 format, and the current era of streaming platforms, records are making a comeback!

Major streaming websites, such as Spotify and Pandora, might have dealt a major blow to CD sales, but even they couldn’t come up with a way to push records off the market. If you are a record collector and have ever wondered what the most valuable types of old records are, we’ve got some points for you to consider.

Factors That Determine a Record’s Value

Age

Many new collectors assume that old records are automatically valuable, and that’s not exactly true. While old records can certainly have considerable value—both monetary and otherwise—there’s a lot more to it than that. For instance, a super common record isn’t going to fetch much no matter how old it is.

The Artist

What's actually on the record also matters. Would you pay a bundle for a rare, old record if it was an artist you had no idea who was? Most people wouldn't. In general, famous artists have a better chance of having a higher value, as do records from specific genres (rock, jazz, blues, soul, and classical). Spoken-word, comedy, and country tend to be the least valuable record types.

Rarity

If you have an old record from a popular artist, the next factor that can supercharge its value is scarcity. How many copies of the record were made? Is it a special edition, limited or promotional, from a small label, foreign, or withdrawn from the market? The fewer copies of a record just like the one being valued, the higher the value of the record, assuming age and artist are of value.

Likewise, records that are still in their original packaging or autographed get a value boost from that added rarity—especially if there are multiple autographs or the message isn’t personalized (think “for Nancy” and so on).

Condition of the Record

Finally, the state of the record also counts. While unopened and never-played records are going to have the highest value, of course, there's an entire range between that and an unplayable, heavily damaged record (which may be worth nothing if it's not very rare in some other fashion). In general, though, the closer to mint-condition the record is, the higher the value.

The sleeve’s condition is also a consideration. Covers aren't necessary to have a high-value record, but they certainly help. Sleeves with scarcely printed artwork in particular value well. If the cover is rare for a controversial reason—such as a withdraw from the market—that’s even better.

Record Valuation: The Quick Version

To sum it all up, record value increases with artist popularity, age, scarcity, condition, and uniqueness (autographs, cover art, etc.). Value decreases for unknown artists, commonality, and damage.

Vinyl records can withstand a lot of wear and tear. However, they also have a reputation for attracting grime and dust. If you recently dug up a rare gem from a flea market or just need to clean up a favorite record, there are steps you have to follow.

Keeping vinyl records clean is essential to avoid unwanted noise caused by scratches, static, dust, and fingerprints. It is hard to enjoy your favorite song if too many pops and cracks make it inaudible! Follow these steps on how to clean vinyl records, and you will keep your record collection in tip-top shape.

Step-By-Step

  1. Clean static and dust with a vinyl record brush
  2. Inspect for blemishes or visible marks/scratches
  3. Spray cleaning solution on any problem areas
  4. Wipe clean only using circular movements
  5. Rinse and dry
  6. Store properly to avoid future issues

The process seems straightforward, right? Well, time to dive into more detail!

Clean Static and Dust with a Vinyl Record Brush

Think of this step like sweeping and mopping. You have to sweep the floor before using the mop – the same principle applies here. A designated vinyl brush is easily found at any record store. It should be used with gentle, long strokes to remove dust without harming the record.

Inspect for Blemishes or Visible Marks/Scratches

With the help of soft, bright light, check for smudges, fingerprints, or discolorations. These problem areas will need a little bit of TLC. If you are cleaning used vinyl, the entire record might need a cleaning.

Spray Cleaning Solution on Problem Areas

Whether you found one smudge or need to clean the whole record, a cleaning solution can do the job. Avoid touching the label with the liquid since it can affect the epoxy.

There are several cleaning solutions designed specifically for vinyl cleaning. Some people report diluted dish soap also will get the job done.

Wipe Clean Only Using Circular Movements

With the cleaning surface in play, take a clean cotton or micro-fiber cloth and wipe in light, circular movements. This rubs away the blemishes without damaging the record. Again, avoid the label to prevent damage.

Rinse and Dry

This part has to be done with extreme care. Take a controlled spray bottle or a light stream of water from the sink to wash away any leftover solution. Dry completely with a new cloth and get ready to store it. Only touch the record at the edges or on the label, or you risk leaving new smudges and fingerprints.

Store Properly to Avoid Future Issues

You should always store your records in sleeves and handle them with care. You want to keep your records in a dry, clean space to avoid infiltration of dust and other debris. Ideally, there will be minimal exposure to extreme heat or direct/intense light. Vinyl records also do not thrive well with high humidity or under pressure.

Need help getting started? Many stores sell cleaning starter kits offering everything you need, from brush to microfiber cloth.

The first commercial vinyl records capable of playing more than a few minutes of music made their debut in 1930—hard to imagine that was a mere 90 years ago. After being replaced by newer and better technologies, like the compact disk, mp3 format, and the current era of streaming platforms, records are making a comeback!

Major streaming websites, such as Spotify and Pandora, might have dealt a major blow to CD sales, but even they couldn’t come up with a way to push records off the market. If you are a record collector and have ever wondered what the most valuable types of old records are, we’ve got some points for you to consider.

Factors That Determine a Record’s Value

Age

Many new collectors assume that old records are automatically valuable, and that’s not exactly true. While old records can certainly have considerable value—both monetary and otherwise—there’s a lot more to it than that. For instance, a super common record isn’t going to fetch much no matter how old it is. Our vinyl record buyers can help you identify the best records to sell.

The Artist

What's actually on the record also matters. Would you pay a bundle for a rare, old record if it was an artist you had no idea who was? Most people wouldn't. In general, famous artists have a better chance of having a higher value, as do records from specific genres (rock, jazz, blues, soul, and classical). Spoken-word, comedy, and country tend to be the least valuable record types.

Rarity

If you have an old record from a popular artist, the next factor that can supercharge its value is scarcity. How many copies of the record were made? Is it a special edition, limited or promotional, from a small label, foreign, or withdrawn from the market? The fewer copies of a record just like the one being valued, the higher the value of the record, assuming age and artist are of value.

Likewise, records that are still in their original packaging or autographed get a value boost from that added rarity—especially if there are multiple autographs or the message isn’t personalized (think “for Nancy” and so on).

Condition of the Record

Finally, the state of the record also counts. While unopened and never-played records are going to have the highest value, of course, there's an entire range between that and an unplayable, heavily damaged record (which may be worth nothing if it's not very rare in some other fashion). In general, though, the closer to mint-condition the record is, the higher the value.

The sleeve’s condition is also a consideration. Covers aren't necessary to have a high-value record, but they certainly help. Sleeves with scarcely printed artwork in particular value well. If the cover is rare for a controversial reason—such as a withdraw from the market—that’s even better.

Record Valuation: The Quick Version

To sum it all up, record value increases with artist popularity, age, scarcity, condition, and uniqueness (autographs, cover art, etc.). Value decreases for unknown artists, commonality, and damage.

Like anything in life, vinyl records need to be handled with love and care if you want to protect them and maintain their value.

Although vinyl records are sturdy and thick, they can be ruined easily if not handled correctly.

If I don't take care of my vinyl records, what happens to them?

  • Mold
  • Dust
  • Break
  • Bend
  • Warp

If you just decided to throw all your vinyl records into a big box and set it off to the side in your garage, shed or attic... Odds are that most of your collection, if not all, will be damaged. When records are so badly damaged they cannot be played. If a record cannot be played, it has no value.

How should I store my vinyl records?

One of the most obvious signs that the owner of the record does not take care of their collection is when you see them stacked like pancakes. Vinyl records need to be stored vertically.

It's important that the vinyl records are packed tightly in appropriate boxes. Warping often occurs when the vinyl records are stacked on top of each other. If you do decide to invest in a good box and solid shelves - make sure they can handle the weight. Vinyl records can be pretty heavy!

I have a collection of LPs, 45s and 78s. Some vinyl records are 12 inch and others are 7 inch - Can they be stored together?

The simple answer is no. All LP Vinyl Records, 45s, 78s and any other random pieces you have need to be stored seperately to minimize the possibility of the records breaking.

Is it okay to store records up in the attic, under ceiling vents or near radiators?

Since heat can cause your vinyl records to warp, it's best if your records are stored in a cool, dry place and away from direct sunlight. Extreme heat and a humid environment can cause your album covers and sleeves to stick together. This will damage the covers and lower the value of your albums.

What happens if I don't take care of my vinyl record collection?

Warping

All records, no matter if they are LPs or 45s, 7 inch or 12 inch - They should all have a flat surface. When you store your records on top of each other or set them at a bad angle, they will become warped. Exposing them to high temperatures can also lead to a warped surface. Sometimes if the warping is severe, the records may not even be playable.

Chips

If you accidentally drop your records then it may cause chips on the outer rim or edge of the vinyl record. Some cracks may show up across the playing surface. Both of which can affect the sound quality and cause the records to skip when played. Sometimes chip damage or cracks can be so severe that the record cannot be played.

Place your records vertically in a tightly closed container. Always ask for assistance if you need help getting them down from a high shelf.

Scratches

The sleeves of the vinyl records are an important part of history as they usually contain artwork from the recording artist. But the sleeves also serve to protect the record. If your records are stored without their protective sleeves, then they can rub against tables, shelves, boxes and even other records - Resulting in scratches that can negatively affect the sound of the vinyl records. The sound of your vinyl record is very important as it is one factor in determining the value.

Are you committed to taking care of your vinyl records?

Caring and protecting your vinyl records can take a lot of work. Not to mention, the expense of purchasing the tools and products to keep your records clean and in top shape.

Paul at Cash For Records understands that you may not have the time and money to commit to taking care of your records. And that's okay.

We understand you may be busy with a full time job. Your spouse and kids also need your love and attention - Maybe even your dog! Life just happens. Sometimes there is not enough time in the day to take care of anything.

So let us provide the care and love your records need! Call us today at 216-315-8216 to set up an appointment.

We will come to you, inspect your records and make a cash offer. No need to worry about stopping at the bank to cash the check - We have CASH on hand!

Want to sell your Jazz vinyl record album collection to vinyl record buyers? Are you looking to find the value of a Blue Note LP?

Looking for someone near you who buys vinyl LPs, 45s, 78s and 12 inch singles?

If you're in Akron, Dayton, Springfield, Columbus, Youngstown, Cleveland or in any surrounding area in Ohio, give us a call if you're looking to sell vinyl records for cash!

Let's get started! First call Paul at Cash For Records. He'll guide you through the process of how to sell your vinyl records, and set up an appointment with you. We will travel throughout Ohio and adjoining states. We love to meet collectors in Cleveland, Erie, Pittsburgh, Youngstown, Toledo, Columbus, Cincinnati and everywhere in between.

Are you looking to sell jazz albums or find the value of a Blue Note LP from our record buyersOur Cleveland, OH record buyers specialize in Rock & Roll, Blues, Soul and Jazz like Miles Davis, John Coltrane, Kenny Dorham, Hank Mobley, John Lee Hooker, Muddy Waters and Howlin' Wolf. We also love Punk, Metal and Alternative genres like Nirvana, Metallica, Alice in Chains and Smashing Pumpkins. Don't see your collection on the list? No worries. Give Paul at Cash for Records a call. We're glad to help people located in Columbus, Akron, Youngstown, and the surrounding areas sell their record collection.

Cash for Records is the #1 Buyer of Vinyl Records in Cleveland Ohio, so if you're looking to sell old vinyl records, you've come to the right place. Unlike some vinyl album buyers who take their time getting to the person who wants to sell their vinyl collection, we'll respond as quick as we can. We'll make a cash offer on site after reviewing your record collection. No vinyl record collection is too large to sell, or for Cash for Records to buy! Of course, vinyl records in good condition and in their original album sleeves are going to have a higher resell value. But, don't be shy. Call Paul at Cash for Records to discuss. Unfortunately, at this time we are NOT interested in buying Country, Big Band, Swing or popular vinyl records. We appreciate your understanding if you were looking to sell vinyl records of those genres.

Cash for Records in Cleveland, Ohio, also serving Akron, Columbus, and Youngstown, also understands your vinyl record collection could hold memories for you, or be part of an inheritance from a relative who left you a nice record collection. We are the best company to sell vinyl records to. You may have a 45RPM or LP (long-playing) album collection from a radio station. Sorry, but our vinyl record buyers generally don't purchase exercise, motivational, comedy or political albums.

Areas Served In Ohio:

  • Cleveland
  • Columbus
  • Youngstown
  • Akron
  • Springfield
  • Dayton

Turn Vinyl Into Cash! Call Paul at 216-315-8216 or 330-318-3450.

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