Preservation Tips


Once an item has been graded, it is carefully secured inside one of our durable acrylic cases. It is then sealed to prevent all contact, leaving only an extremely thin seam to allow airflow. Once protected inside its case, an item is much more likely to stay in the same condition as when it was graded. It can no longer be touched by human hands, and the high quality acrylic case is designed to prevent additional creases, dings, and other damage.

If you have items which are ineligible for grading, or you’d prefer an alternative to a sealed case, we’d recommend a durable high quality sliding bottom acrylic case. CGA offers these cases in many standard sizes and any custom size requested. The quality of CGA’s sliding bottom cases is identical to the unparalleled quality of our sealed cases for graded items, so neither type should look out of place when on display in your collection.

When shipping or transporting items, we always recommend that you provide your item with some type of protection. An inexpensive solution for many types of items is a soft plastic case designed specifically to fit your item. If these plastic cases are not available for your item, we always recommend some type of support. An example is placing cardboard behind an item, then gently wrapping both in bubble wrap to support the cardboard flap, card-back, etc.


It is very important that your collectibles be kept indoors and that you have them in a temperature controlled environment. Items which are kept in relatively hot or cold environments for an extended period of time can deteriorate and display undesirable characteristics. The ideal temperature range is likely between 60 and 75 degrees Fahrenheit. Prolonged exposure to high temperatures can increase the chances of cellophane, blister, or tape yellowing, growth of mildew or ‘frost’, and deterioration of plastic, cardboard and other packaging materials. Prolonged exposure to cold temperatures can increase the chances of blister and tape lifting, and can also lead to additional deterioration of materials.


It is very important that your collectibles are kept in a climate controlled environment which is relatively dry. Prolonged exposure to high humidity can lead to severe deterioration. High humidity levels greatly increase the chances of cellophane, blister or tape yellowing. Additionally, high humidity can lead to the growth of mold and mildew as well as severe discoloration of any vinyl parts or accessories. Humidity is a greater problem in certain climates and areas. If humidity is consistently high in your area, we strongly encourage the purchase, installation, and proper use of a dehumidifier.


Circulation goes hand in hand with humidity and is no less important. An item which is sealed in a virtually airtight environment or even an environment with extremely limited airflow is much more likely to retain even small amounts of humidity. Often, items are shipped from one climate to another and then immediately placed in a safe, a sealed bag in a closet, or another enclosure or location which is nearly airtight. The climate change experienced by an item during transit can lead to the development of humidity within an item’s enclosure. By sealing that item off immediately, you can effectively trap even small amounts of moisture, thereby increasing the potential for damage. It is very important that your treasured collectibles are occasionally allowed to ‘breathe’. All CGA cases have a seam along the back bottom edge to allow airflow. It is always a good idea to inspect your items at least a few times a year. Many problems can be avoided by noticing small climate-related effects early. Most moderate to severe deterioration occurs when an item is left unattended for years in an improper environment.


Exposure to direct sunlight (and to a lesser extent, indirect sunlight) can lead to fading in any material. Although it’s not ideal and you should always keep a close eye on an item’s exposure to many types of light, indirect exposure to sunlight is usually not as dangerous to an item as many of the other factors referenced above. However, direct exposure to sunlight should almost always be avoided. If your item will be kept in a room which gets a good deal of sunlight, we’d recommend it be kept in an ‘Archival’ acrylic case. These cases are manufactured from either UF-5 or OP-3 acrylic which blocks about 99% of harmful light spectrums. All acrylic used by CGA is UV-resistant and our standard material is sufficient to protect items in the vast majority of situations. However, based on where you plan to display an item or based on the value or importance of a certain item, you may opt to request certain items be encased in ‘Archival’ material.