Does A Hardcover Book Last Longer?

by Alex Melen on August 03, 2022

Does A Hardcover Book Last Longer

A book may last longer than others, that is, depending on how you take care of it, and all other factors put together. If you have ever wondered whether a hardcover book is more durable than others, then you can find the answer here for you. Your search for the right answer maybe because you are planning to invest on photobooks to keep your memories, and you are torn in between buying hardcover photobooks and other types.

The General Answer

Basing on experience and research, it is known that paperbacks last up to 20 years. Hardcovers, on the other hand, last twice to thrice those years in contrast to paperbacks. This is because hardcovers are made from the more durable cardboard, whereas, paperbacks are crafted from paper. A paperback's spine weakens quickly over the years, causing its pages to fall apart. Hardcover versions do not wear and tear that easily.

More on The Paperback and Hardcover Differences

These two actually refer to bookbinding techniques used when manufacturing books. Paperbacks may also be referred to as softback or softcovers, that is why we can see softcover photobooks or softback books when we are searching for paperbacks. Hardcover, on the other hand, is sometimes referred to as hardbound or hardback.

Do They Last Forever?

The answer for that is NO. You may have seen books in your family that have been passed from one generation to another, lasting even beyond 60 years, as you may have observed. That is because their previous owners have taken good care and stored them properly. Considering physical and environmental conditions, though, it will be impossible for books to last forever.

Factors that Affect a Book's Longevity

As mentioned, environmental factors can impact the book's longevity. Among those included in this list are moisture, sunlight, dust, dirt, and extreme temperatures. The book's physical condition also says something about how long it will last. When pages are already yellowed or brittle, or the cover falls off, and ink has faded, then those are signs that the book had reached its end.

Choosing Between the Two

While hardcovers are proven to last longer than their paperback counterparts, a lot of people still go for buying the latter. One of the reasons for that is the fact that paperbacks are usually cheaper than hardbound books. It is also easier to carry them where you want to go since they are lighter in terms of weight, making them more portable.

Making Books Last Longer

It is obvious that hardcover books last longer than softcovers. That being said, it is still your responsibility as the owner to take care of them, regardless how they have been bounded by their manufacturers. Make sure that dust and dirt are wiped off from these pieces every now and then. Do not expose them to direct sunlight, or soak them in water. Turn the pages slowly when going through them and do not fold the book as you progress through its pages.

A hardcover book lasts longer than paperbacks, that is for sure. That does not mean you should limit yourself to buying hardbound versions, as you can always make softcovers your choice. At the end of the day, taking care of them is what matters most.