A blog post by Darkroom 8 Team
Are you guilty of stocking up on film? I know I am, but do you know how to store your film rolls correctly?
Where and how you store the film rolls will make a huge world of difference in terms of the final image quality. Generally speaking, make sure to keep it at a cool and dry place and use it before the expiration date. However, if you’re looking to retain the best results here’s a detailed explanation supported by data provided by Kodak.
Where & How To Keep It (35mm and 120 film rolls)
According to Kodak, you can store consumer films and single use cameras at temperature up to 21°C. You must keep it away from excessive heat such as under the sun or in your car especially under this scorching hot Malaysia weather. Kodak also stated that they recommend users to store Kodak professional color films in their original sealed packaging under refrigeration at 13°C. As for 120 films, do be aware that high temperatures or high humidity may affect the backing paper and produce unwanted quality changes. My personal advice would be - Keep all your unexposed 35mm and 120 film rolls into a plastic zipper bag and place in the fridge as a short term solution. If you’re looking to keep it for more than 6 months, keep it in the freezer. I also always try to develop exposed film rolls as soon as possible.
Wait Before You Load Into Camera
Another very important step is to let your film roll warm up to room temperature before you unseal and use it. This prevents moisture condensation on the film surface because of possible cold-induced looseness between the layers. Here are the typical warm-up times sourced from Kodak. Please keep in mind that it varies according to the storage temperature, the package condition and so on. I know that you might be excited to start taking photos but a little wait goes a long way!
Keep It Clean
Uh oh… you’ve dropped the film roll into water? Maybe even oil or grease? If it’s not exposed, don’t load it into your camera because it might potentially harm and damage your camera. If it’s an exposed roll I have bad news for you, unfortunately the image quality is definitely going to be affected. If this happens, make sure to inform your film lab about it and if you’re unsure, just ask away. Keep your film rolls dry and clean, always!
Make it a habit to store your film rolls properly for longevity and best photo results. Now that you know the open secret that everyone knows, time to stock up on your favourite film rolls!