LEGO products are usually very durable. They are made with high-quality materials and to high standards. However, to make sure they last as long as possible, how you store them becomes paramount. For this reason, I have researched the best storage tips for keeping LEGO like new. Here they are for you:
- Keep your LEGO out of direct sunlight
- Keep your LEGO in a room with a constant temperature
- Keep your LEGO in sealed compartments
- The bigger your LEGO collection, the more important a storage system is. Otherwise, you will end up scratching some pieces when looking for the ones you need.
In the following section, we will talk a bit more about each of these tips and why they help in keeping LEGO like new.
The four best storage tips for keeping LEGO like new
In order to keep LEGO like new, it is important that the color stays as bright as the first day. It is also important that the shape of the pieces remains as it was at the time of the purchase. Also, it is important that dust does not accumulate, since it can be challenging to take it out fully. Lastly, it is important that there are no marks or scratches on the pieces. With these characteristics in mind, let’s have a look at the four best tips.
Keep your LEGO out of direct sunlight
One of the first causes of aged LEGO is the discoloring of the pieces. This is such a common problem that we have created a post to solve the problem. The article is “Tips To Restoring Discolored Lego”, where we explain to you how best to restore the color of your LEGO pieces. But, if you store the pieces properly, this problem doesn’t happen.
The discoloring of the pieces happens because of the effect of direct sunlight on the pieces. Over time, if the sunlight hits the pieces directly, it will make your pieces lose the color they once had.
The solution to this? Store your LEGO in a place where the sunlight doesn’t reach. There are multiple solutions to this. One solution would be to place them in a certain room or in a certain location of the room where you know that the sun doesn’t hit. This is, in itself a good solution, but not my preferred one because in itself it doesn’t solve any of the other issues that make LEGO age.
Another solution is to place your LEGO in boxes that protect the pieces inside from sunlight. The best solution, in this case, would be fully opaque boxes so the light cannot go in. The only downside with this solution is that you cannot rely on the inside as a description of what there is on the boxes. So, if you have a lot of pieces and you have divided them by a specific metric, you will need to have a tag on the front of the box or open the box in order to find out what there is inside.
Another solution is to store your LEGO inside a cabinet. By doing this, the cabinet doors (as long as they are opaque) will stop the sunlight so your LEGO will not suffer from discoloring.
Keep your LEGO in a room with a constant temperature
In addition to discoloring, another of the main causes of LEGO damage comes from exposing your LEGO to extreme temperatures. LEGO sets do not fare well at temperatures over 104°F (40°C), nor do they fare well at temperatures below 32°F (0°C). Therefore, keep them out of areas in your house where those temperatures could be reached. Mostly the attic can be a problem in certain locations because it is usually not very well insulated and can get very warm.
The garage can also be a problem if it is not properly insulated or even the basement. No one knows your house better than you do, so just keep in mind the temperature thresholds I have mentioned and make sure your LEGO sets don’t go over or under that.
If they go over 104°F (40°C), the heat could make the plastic deform, so after that, the pieces may no longer fit well with other pieces. If the LEGO pieces go under 32°F (0°C), there could be some problems with frost that could cause damage to the pieces or even breakage.
In addition to the change in shape or breakage, extreme heat also discolors the pieces, the same as the sunlight does.
So, keep it in a room that is well insulated, the more constant the temperature is, the better, and you will be fine.
Keep your LEGO in sealed compartments
Another enemy of your LEGO looking like new is dust. Even though not as damaging as the other two we have just discussed, and certainly easier to fix, dust will make your LEGO look older than they really are.
Moreover, cleaning them can be very time consuming if done without risks. According to LEGO’s official website, they should be cleaned by hand in order to avoid damages. Imagine the work if you have thousands of pieces!
Now, it is true that most people clean them in the washing machine or dishwasher, and, as long as the temperature of the cleaning program does not go over 40, they usually come out fine. But, as the saying goes, better safe than sorry, so cleaning them by hand is the best way.
To avoid that, though, there is a simple solution. Keep your LEGO in sealed compartments. By having them in closed compartments, you will dramatically decrease the amount of dust that they gather. If you place them inside a box and inside a cabinet, then you will have even fewer problems. In general, the more layers between the environment and your LEGO, the less dust you will have.
The bigger your LEGO collection, the more important a storage system is
My last tip is to have a good storage system. Even though most beginners think that the best way to store your LEGO is to have them divided by set, this is usually not true. The only exception is if you only want to be building the sets themselves but, if so, then you are missing most of the fun from having LEGO, so think about it twice.
So, storage by set being discarded, it is important to have a way to find the pieces you need without much problem. This is usually not a big deal if you don’t have many pieces. In this case, having them all together and simply going through them looking for the one you need is a good option. It will not take much of your time and it is easy and simple.
But, if your collection grows, you will want to start systemizing it. If not, you will find yourself going through the pieces and moving them around time and again, which could long term create scratches and marks in the pieces. By having them divided, you will be able to find them much faster.
As a storage system recommendation, do not divide them by color. You will have a very difficult time finding the right piece. The best way is to divide them by type. If there are a lot of types, then by specific piece size and, if you have a lot of pieces, then you can divide them by size and color.
And with this, we have arrived at the end of this post. To sum it up, make sure your LEGO is not exposed to direct sunlight. Otherwise, over time, they will lose color and not look as new and as shiny as you want them to look. If this has happened to you, though, be sure to check our post “Tips To Restoring Discolored LEGO”, where we explain a step-by-step process for fixing this problem.
Also, keep your LEGO in a room with a constant temperature. High and low temperatures will damage your pieces, deforming or even breaking them.
Keeping the dust out is also a good strategy. Even though this can be easily fixed by cleaning it, the task can be very time consuming or with risks, so it is better to keep your LEGO in a sealed compartment so dust does not accumulate over time. If your LEGO parts have dust and you need to clean them, be sure to have a look at our post “This Is The Best Way To Clean LEGO”, where we give you the best option to clean LEGO parts.
Last, but not least, having a good storage system for big LEGO collectors is a must. This will not only allow you to spend less time looking for pieces and more time playing. It will also avoid a lot of shuffling and moving around of pieces that could, long term, damage them.
If you are interested, here is a link to the entire Lego section found on Amazon.