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If you are thinking about adding a pinball machine to your home, you are not alone. Many homeowners are purchasing pinball machines in hopes that their kids will enjoy this beloved game just as much as they did (and to indulge in a little nostalgia). But when you add a pinball machine to your home, you must know how to treat it. Storage is an important part of caring for your machine and making it last.
What is the proper way to store pinball machines? Pinball machines should always be in a climate-controlled area. The best place for your pinball machine is inside of your home. Too much moisture, heat, or humidity can cause significant damage to the pinball machine. If you decide to store it in a garage or basement, it is recommended to have the pinball machine up off the floor to avoid potential water damage.
Taking proper care of your pinball machine is critical to its lifespan. The good news is that a pinball machine is easy to take care of, but you need to make sure you are doing it the right way. One important aspect of pinball ownership is proper storage, and this article will provide you with the best details on how to store a pinball machine.
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Why Is It Important to Properly Store a Pinball Machine?
Think of your pinball machine like you would any other type of gaming system or device. You wouldn’t toss your expensive PlayStation 4 into the basement without a thought, so why drag your pinball machine down there and expect it to be fine? Sure, pinball machines are much larger than most current gaming systems, but it doesn’t mean that they can be neglected.
Without proper storage, your pinball machine can be affected in many ways. The biggest issue is that the overall system can malfunction and become damaged from excessive heat, humidity, or moisture. Additionally, there is also the problem of dust accumulating in the pinball machine, which can cause the pinball machine to stop working properly.
Another thing to worry about when it comes to storage is the possibility of water destroying the pinball machine. Certain areas, such as a garage or basement, are more prone to leaks and floods, which can have a seriously negative impact on your pinball machine and potentially destroy the sensitive electronics or damage the entire cabinet.
Proper storage is imperative for the functionality of your pinball machine. Continue reading to find out some of the best places to store your pinball machine and how to store it correctly to avoid damage.
How to Properly Store a Pinball Machine
The best place for your pinball machine to be stored is inside of your house. In most cases, the inside of the home is going to be climate-controlled to suit you and your family. This means that the humidity levels will be relatively low, and the temperature should never rise too high or drop too low.
If you can, find a spot in your home to place your pinball machine. Your machine will be the safest in this environment You also won’t have to worry about cleaning your pinball machine too often while it is inside because there is less of a chance of dust or dirt accumulating in the playfield. Of course, it’s probably best to keep it out of direct sunlight since the sunlight can cause the machine to deteriorate over time.
But what should a pinball machine owner do if he can’t find room in his home? What if he needs a temporary space to place his precious device? If you can’t store your pinball machine in the home, there are a few other options. However, you will need to take extra precautions when using these areas.
The Basement or Garage
The most common places you might find a pinball machine stored in are garages and basements. After all, many people have basements and garages that can make excellent storage spots for their pinball machines. Does your garage or basement have to be finished, though? Of course, not. Even unfinished areas like these are great places to store different things.
But when you opt for a basement or garage, you need to be extra careful. Always make sure that the humidity levels don’t rise too high in the basement or garage. Humidity can have the biggest impact on pinball machines and can render them unplayable if exposed to too much humidity. Always check the levels, especially if you live in an area that is prone to high humidity.
If you live in an area where the humidity is high over the summer time then investing in good dehumidifier is a good option to keep your basement moisture free. If moisture collects inside of your machine it will quickly begin damaging a variety of components.
The other thing to worry about is potential leaks or floods. Since basements and garages are prone to these disasters, it is a good idea to place the pinball machine up off the floor by using a wood pallet or another similar item to keep it safe. As you can imagine, water getting into your pinball machine is going to cause significant damage, so it’s better to be safe than sorry.
Many people may end up using a self-storage facility to house their pinball machines temporarily. This is a great option because self-storage locations are generally climate-controlled, and you won’t run the risk of moisture destroying your machine. This leaves the owner feeling confident and secure.
I wouldn’t store it in a self storage facility that isn’t climate controlled. Often the climate controlled units are more expensive but being that you spent thousands on your pinball machine a few extra dollars a month is well worth it to keep it in good condition.
Clean Your Machine Before Storing
Wherever you end up storing your pinball machine, there is one thing to keep in mind: always clean your pinball machine before storing it. This will help to reduce the amount of dust and grime that may end up on and inside of your pinball machine. The “Cleaning Your Pinball Machine” blog from Flippers has some wonderful suggestions for cleaning your machine.
For the most part, running a cloth across the playfield of your pinball machine regularly is enough to keep it functioning and increase its lifespan. This should be done as much as possible while in storage. If kept in the home, you will only need to clean it every couple of weeks.
The video below is a great place to get lots of useful information on all aspects of cleaning and storing your machine.
Don’t Wrap Your Pinball Machine
Some people might think that they should wrap their pinball machine to keep it safe. This is mostly because many items that are kept in storage and should be handled with care, such as a glass table, will likely be covered with a blanket of some sort. But should you cover your pinball machine?
The simple answer is no. You should not cover your pinball machine while it is in storage. This will make it easier for dust and dirt to find itself into the smaller crevices of your pinball machine, which will make the grime harder to remove once out of storage.
Taking care of your pinball machine is an important task. If you need to store a pinball machine, the best option is inside of your home. If you cannot keep your pinball machine in your home, you must find another climate-controlled area. Humidity and moisture can wreak havoc on a pinball machine, so keep your device as far away from them as possible.
If you’re honest with yourself, though – You will probably be playing your pinball machine much too often to need to store it except for in rare instances like a move.