What Causes Print Images to Fade?

Located in your parent’s spare closet is a box full of photos filled with memories you hold close to your heart. As you going down memory lane, you may notice a few images are starting to deteriorate and fade from their original print. But, what causes print images to fade? We’ve asked the Keepsake experts in our photo transfer department to offer a few tips for preserving your print images until you’re able to send them in to us for digital transfer.

Avoid Light Damage

Perhaps the favorite family photo of your grandparents is hanging on on your living room wall. The afternoon sun gives the photo a daily dose of light causing fading to occur over time. This is due to the harsh UV rays affecting the chemical makeup of the photo. Over time, the more light that is absorbed, the more the chemical bonds in the print will degrade. Avoid hanging photos in a direct ray of sunlight to avoid light damage.

Be Cautious of Tape

If you consider yourself a scrapbook fanatic and enjoy creating books of memories for relatives to enjoy, great! However, be sure you are using appropriate materials when taping photos to the album page. The adhesive in scotch tape contains a chemical composition that is strong enough to stain the photo. Before you create a scrapbook of your grandparents wedding day, we encourage you to digitize your photos to have both a digital and hard copy file.

Brown Spots: What Are They?

Have you ever looked through your old photos and found some that had brown streaks in the middle of the print? This happens when photos are stored in a moist, humid environment which causes fungal growth. Fungal growth is common on photos stored in basements or garages. Unfortunately, after brown spots appear there is not much to do that will preserve the print.
Although being aware of what causes fading in print images, you are still limited on what you can do stop stop the degrading process. The best option to preserve your memories is to get photos digitized, or scanned, into shareable digital files. The easy process will promise your photos will be preserved for generations to come.

Keepsake Solutions is a Columbus, Ohio based memory preservation service with over 15 years of experience.  We use cutting edge technology and state-of-the-art techniques to ensure that your memories are preserved, and that no precious moments are left in the past.  If you’d like to contact us with questions or comments, please feel free to do so at (614)392-1909 or email us below.