VHS Care

I admit, I’m the last person in the world to preach about VHS care. I leave tapes in the VCR, I store them sideways, and I never rewind a VHS completely if I decide I want to watch something else in the middle of a viewing. For someone who appreciates the VHS so much, I’m a poor excuse for a collector.

So don’t take my advice. Take theirs!

Videotape is best stored in a high-quality plastic case, free from dust, in an area where the temperature and humidity are fairly constant. Avoid excessive humidity. Tapes like to be kept in a dry place. Do not place or store videotapes near extreme heat, or in direct sunlight. Never leave videotapes exposed to direct sunlight inside a vehicle. Excessive heat will warp the cassette case, and may make your tape unplayable. Do not place videotapes on top of your TV. Avoid strong magnetic fields.

After completely rewinding them, place videotapes back into their cases when not in use. Cassettes are best stored upright on end, with the heavy end (the end with the tape) on the bottom. Rewind each tape fully after viewing.

Never leave a videotape inside a VCR when it is not playing. VHS machines keep the tape pulled out from the cassette whenever the tape is inserted in the machine. This can cause permanent damage to the tape if it is left too long. Always eject the videotape cassette completely, after the tape has been fully rewound.

Sometimes after a tape has been stored for an extended period of time without being played, the tape may not want to play smoo thly, or play at all, especially at the beginning of the tape. In this case, the problem can often be solved by stopping the tape, fast-forwarding it to the end, and then rewinding the tape to the beginning. You might even have to do this two or three times to smooth out the play.

Source: Adult Video Club

Below are some words of wisdom found in the Operating Instructions manual for the Panasonic Omnivision PV-1630 VCR, a manual my father kept from the first VCR he ever bought from the year 1986. It is now in my posession.

Pardon the glare

Video Cassettes and their tapes are made with high precision. Be sure to observe the following points.

  • Don’t subject the tape to unnecessary movement.
  • Don’t insert and eject the video cassette over and over again, because this may result in tape looseness or scratches on the tape.
  • Never try to disassemble the cassette or splice the tape.
  • Don’t open the cassette, touch the tape, or put anything inside the cassette.


  • Avoid places where humidity is high or there is dust.
  • Avoid places where there is magnetism (magnets, motors, transformers, speakers, etc.).
  • Avoid dropping the cassette; don’t subject it to intense shaking or vibration.
  • Don’t place cassettes in direct sunlight; keep them away from sources of heat.

Excuse me while I go choose a cassette to shake vigorously over a hot flame while I bounce up and down causing intense vibrations before I drop it several times in preparation for the insert-eject-insert excersize I’ve been warned not to perform.


%d bloggers like this: