How to Protect Your Library and Its Books
By following these guidelines, you will join the library staff in preserving our multi-million dollar collection for yourself, others and future generations.
How to Handle Books with Care
- Handle books with clean hands.
- Do not write or highlight in books.
- Use bookmarks to mark your place. Folded corners and objects placed between pages eventually ruin a book. Laying a book face down will weaken and crack its spine. Book marks are available free of charge at the Circulation Desk.
- Keep books out of direct sunlight and away from moisture.
- Do not use paper clips, rubber bands, or Scotch tape in books. They can easily tear paper.
- Protect books from rain and snow. Water can irreversibly damage a book. Plastic book bags are available at the Circulation Desk during inclement weather.
How to Photocopy
- Gently photocopy books. Arrange them so that their pages do not wrinkle.
- Copy one page at a time, if necessary, to avoid opening a book to the point of cracking its spine.
- Do not apply pressure to the back of the book. Too much pressure can break its spine.
How to Remove Books from Shelves
- To avoid accidentally dropping books, use two hands to remove books from shelves.
- Do not grab a book by the top of the spine to remove it from a shelf.
- To remove a book, push forward the books on either side of the one you want. Grasp the book near the middle of the spine and remove it gently.
- Be particularly careful when removing oversize volumes. They can be heavy and awkward.
- Do not reshelve books. Place them on a table, carrel, or distribution shelf. They will be reshelved by trained staff.
How to Handle Audio Visual Materials
- Handle sound discs (LPs and CDS) by their edges.
- Do not touch the surface of magnetic media, such as computer software, audio tapes, and video tapes.
- Keep all audio and video materials away from heat, humidity, and extreme cold and out of sunlight.
- Keep computer software, audio tapes, video tapes, and other magnetic media away from sources of magnetism, such as telephones and electric motors.
How to Handle Microforms
- Handle microfiche and microfilm by the edges.
- If you have never used a microfilm or microfiche reading machine, ask a library staff member for help.
- If a film jams or tears in the machine, ask for assistance.
How to Check Out Damaged Books
- When checking out a damaged book, alert circulation staff to the damage.
- Do not try to repair books yourself. Attempting to mend paper using Scotch tape will cause long term damage to a books.
- Bring a damaged book to circulation Desk even if you don't intend to check it out. The library has trained staff who will repair it using modern techniques.
How to Prevent Theft and Mutilation
- If you witness the theft of library materials, notify a library staff member. Theft of library material is a crime. Violators caught will be assessed a fine for repairing or replacing the material and may be prosecuted.
How to Prevent Disaster
- Report all signs of fire, smoke, or standing water to a member of the library staff.
- Report sparking from electrical fixtures and elevators.
- Report all burning odors.
- Report leaking pipes and washroom fixtures.
- Bring wet or damp library materials to the attention of library staff. Immediate attention to water damage helps to reduce warping.
- Avoid eating and drinking when using library materials. Place your food and drink away from books and take special care to prevent accidents.
Library books are a shared resource. Please pass them along unchanged.