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  • 1.  Looking for Freezer Advice

    Posted 06-13-2019 09:56 AM

    Hi all,

    We are currently cleaning out a non-HVAC closet in our 1920 schoolhouse-and have come across some newspapers full of silverfish. I've convinced stakeholders that we need to buy a chest or upright freezer so that we can treat things like this as well as new donations before they can potentially endanger the archive center in our Carnegie Library. We need a freezer that will go down to -20F. Has anyone ever used the quick freeze option? And of course, we prefer something in a moderate price range – under $700 if possible. I thought I would check if anyone on here has compared freezers recently and had any advice for me. Thanks!


    Tori Chasey

    Curator, Palmetto Historical Park

    For Angelina "Angel" Colonneso

    Manatee County Clerk of the Circuit Court & Comptroller

    "Pride in Service with a Vision to the Future"


    515 10th Ave W, Palmetto, FL 34221




  • 2.  RE: Looking for Freezer Advice

    Posted 06-15-2019 08:02 AM
    Dear Tori,
    Low Temperature Treatment (i.e. Freezing) is a safe and effective method for killing active infestations in a lot of materials, including archive materials like your newspapers. We have a good bit of information on the process on our website>Solutions>Low Temperature Treatment

    As you wrote, the key is to get the material cold enough, fast enough and to keep it there long enough to ensure a good kill of all life stages.  At -20F (-30 C) the recommendation is for a minimum of 72 hours but often we see people freezing for one week, especially for dense material like boxes of archival material.  While you have to check the individual freezer specs, most household freezers do not get down to -20 F.  But there are many chest freezers often billed for medical products or ice cream that do. 

    After consulting with colleagues and doing some research I purchased a Summit Accucold VLT2250
    I have been operating the freezer with no issues for over a year now and the temperature remains consistent.  This obviously isn't the only appropriate unit, but it was the most economical choice I found at the largest size that I wanted. It was $2,100 including delivery.  Investing in a freezer will certainly be cheaper than paying a vendor or a conservator to treat remedial damage!

    MuseumPests Working Group Co-Chair

    Rachael Arenstein
    A.M. Art Conservation LLC
    Scarsdale NY