Lego in a sub-zero environment

GeordiePaulGeordiePaul Glastonbury, CT, USAMember Posts: 520
edited January 2018 in Everything else LEGO
As some of you may be aware certain parts of the US are currently experiencing unusually low temperatures at the moment. As I type this at 11pm at night it’s -14C (6F) outside. I have pretty much all of my entire Lego collection stored in a walk-in closet in my wife’s office and that closet isn’t heated at all.

I’m wondering if I should be worried about my collection being exposed to such low temperatures. I know it’s well documented that Lego and high temperatures do not mix well, but I don’t recall reading anything regarding the other extreme.

Forecast to hit -18C by the time I wake up tomorrow morning although the damage may already be done. Does anyone have any information on this at all?

Comments

  • tmgm528tmgm528 Member Posts: 454
    Don't have anything to add really, but just chipping in of a similar question here! This Friday is forecasting lows of -9 F, currently 4F
  • madforLEGOmadforLEGO Chicagoland USMember Posts: 9,349
    edited January 2018
    I have had my LEGO sets in cold temps before, my guess is as long as you do not try to click them together in this cold they will probably be OK, if just in storage. Sticker sheets and box seals may be a different matter though. I have sealed boxes in my garage, which typically gets down to around 30-40 degrees and seem to be OK. Anything more than that and I'm not sure.
  • Bricklover18Bricklover18 PA, USAMember Posts: 720
    I'm also curious about this, it's currently 0F outside where I'm at. I'm assuming that if the bricks are exposed to freezing temperatures and then reheated they have a higher chance of becoming  brittle and possibly warping. 
  • M_BossM_Boss Houston, TexasMember Posts: 236
    Also experiencing the coldest weather in 5 years: 25°F
  • 12651265 Member Posts: 944
    edited January 2018
    I wouldn't worry about it.  Your Lego collection isn't exposed to the measured temperature outside as your collection is inside regardless if the space inside isn't heated.  Put a thermometer in the closet and you'll be surprised how small of a temperature change from the other rooms you have heated.
    LusiferSam
  • 560Heliport560Heliport Twin Cities, MN, USAMember Posts: 873

    Could you leave the closet door open, at least while it's so cold? But I'd say 1265 is right: it's surely not actually cold in there, just cool.

  • arathemisarathemis sometimes here, sometimes thereMember Posts: 353
    and what is the maximum temperature that lego storage can have? I`m asking this because we have a drier in the room I store my lego and that one makes a bit of heat while running. I usually leave the door open for better ventilation, but still the temperature is higher by about 4-5 degrees celsius than it used to be. prior to drying operation.
  • flordflord CanadaMember Posts: 673
    The high where I live was -30C before windchill a couple of days ago. Your bricks are fine.
    akunthitaSprinkleOtterLusiferSamGoldchainsBricklover18gmonkey76OrmskirkBricks
  • akunthitaakunthita USAMember Posts: 1,028
    flord said:
    The high where I live was -30C before windchill a couple of days ago. Your bricks are fine.

    Gosh! That's insane! You guys are so hardy! I'm here in Florida, and it's right around freezing point and I'm dying! :(
  • DeMontesDeMontes North YorkshireMember Posts: 550
    @Paperballpark aw I was going to say that!!
    Paperballpark
  • LusiferSamLusiferSam MontanaMember Posts: 480
    Are we talking about loose or sealed sets?  If the answer is loose then the question is, to be brutally honest, a silly one.  If the answer is seal then there can be some non-brick related issues if you're frequently cycling between hot and cold. 

    I'm also curious about this, it's currently 0F outside where I'm at. I'm assuming that if the bricks are exposed to freezing temperatures and then reheated they have a higher chance of becoming  brittle and possibly warping. 
    ABS isn't prone to warping.  It is a highly stable plastic.  Normal range is -20ºC to 80ºC (those of us in the US can do a little math to convent).  Storage a little outside of that lower range isn't going to cause any harm to the ABS.  They could exposed to even colder temperatures and be fine.  Just let them warm up to normal temperatures before playing with them.   That's not to say you can't harm them by putting them in liquid nitrogen and then dropping them in boiling water.

    CA on the other handis highly prone to warping.  It is best to avoid temperature swings.  So unless your collection is mostly from the 50s or very early 60s, this is not an issue and your bricks are fine.
    FizyxBricklover18Brainslugged
  • akunthitaakunthita USAMember Posts: 1,028
    edited January 2018
    akunthita said:
    flord said:
    The high where I live was -30C before windchill a couple of days ago. Your bricks are fine.
    Gosh! That's insane! You guys are so hardy! I'm here in Florida, and it's right around freezing point and I'm dying! :(
    There's no such thing as bad weather, just the wrong clothing ;)


    Hm... is that really true? I'm from Chicago, and I clearly remember tears from the brutally cold wind freezing on my eyelashes. No amount of clothing could have helped with that. We bundled up our face with giant scarves, but then you couldn't really get anything done. You just felt like a bear in a straightjacket. Not to speak of feeling like your fingers and toes would break up off! 

    I also lived in Arizona for several years, where you couldn't go outside after 10 AM due to the insane heat and dryness. My nose was constantly bleeding and my eyeballs were burning up - and that was from the heat and dry air, not the sun. I had to sleep in a tiny closed with a humidifier for several months when we first moved there. Never got used to that place, and I never-ever want to go to Arizona ever again, or any other desert.

    And most Northerners clearly suffer in Florida and can barely function, no matter what kind of clothing they are wearing. They are not used to the heat and humidity here, and could even have serious reactions. I know some people suffering from asthma and various allergies, and they can't even visit Florida.

    I love Florida's weather the most. I discovered that the high heat and humidity is perfect for me. I love when it feels like you can almost drink the air! So even though I'm not born and raised here, I have been healthiest and happiest in the Florida sun. Never even use the AC!

    So clothing may help some, but if the weather doesn't agree with your metabolism you can still suffer greatly. When I go up to Chicago to visit family in the winter, I'm good for a week or two, because I'm still filled with sunshine. But anything longer, and misery and depression starts to set in... so yeah, I would say there is such a thing as bad weather. It might just be different for different people. :)  

    MegtheCatdutchlegofan50SprinkleOttercatwranglerLittleLori
  • AstrobricksAstrobricks Minnesota, USMember Posts: 2,468
    flord said:
    The high where I live was -30C before windchill a couple of days ago. Your bricks are fine.
    Yes, but do you store your LEGO outside?
  • M1J0EM1J0E Calgary, ABMember Posts: 462
    We sorta just lean to one side & use one hand at a time.  Toughest is picking up the all too frequently dropped pieces off the carpet! :D
    FowlerBricksGoldchainsBricklover18Istokgbandit778stluxSprinkleOttercatwranglerLittleLori
  • TheOriginalSimonBTheOriginalSimonB Felixstowe Member Posts: 1,306
    M1J0E said:
    We sorta just lean to one side & use one hand at a time.  Toughest is picking up the all too frequently dropped pieces off the carpet! :D
    Presumably because they freeze hard to it...
    catwranglerM1J0E
  • CrownieCrownie WA StateMember Posts: 228
    I worry more about LEGO being shipped in the winter more than storing it once it's with me (but I store it all inside). I'm not sure how much exposure sets and Bricklink orders get bouncing around with the US Postal System. Does make me wince a little thinking about it, though.
    Fizyx
  • pharmjodpharmjod 1,170 miles to Wall Drug, USAMember Posts: 2,876
    I can assure you the long trek across the ocean in storage containers more routinely exposes LEGO to harsh temperature extremes than anything the USPS does.
    gmonkey76FizyxcatwranglerCrowniedatsunrobbie
  • AstrobricksAstrobricks Minnesota, USMember Posts: 2,468
    pharmjod said:
    I can assure you the long trek across the ocean in storage containers more routinely exposes LEGO to harsh temperature extremes than anything the USPS does.
    Good thing most of ours comes from Mexico :)
    pharmjodgmonkey76Fizyx
  • CrownieCrownie WA StateMember Posts: 228
    Hilarious, but true. Thanks.
  • piratemania7piratemania7 New EnglandMember Posts: 2,061
    I had a storage shed before having a LEGO room in the house. The storage shed outside was not insulated and being in New England it got pretty cold in the winter and quite the opposite pretty warm in the summer. But when I say that I don’t mean it was an extreme. The shed was pretty air tight so It was never too cold or the opposite too hot. But what I’m saying is I don’t notice any difference with any of my bricks now whether loose or sealed.  I honestly wouldn’t worry about it.
    LittleLori
  • jmeninnojmeninno The Batcave (MA)Member Posts: 708
    Ok, so now I am paranoid about something and I'm hoping someone here can help.  I've just discovered that my Egghead Mech has been getting sun for a few hours every day for about a week or two.  I'm haven't looked it over well enough to know if there's sun/UV damage yet, but should I even expect any after such a short amount of time?  Many thanks for your input...not a topic I know a lot about.
  • AstrobricksAstrobricks Minnesota, USMember Posts: 2,468
    jmeninno said:
    Ok, so now I am paranoid about something and I'm hoping someone here can help.  I've just discovered that my Egghead Mech has been getting sun for a few hours every day for about a week or two.  I'm haven't looked it over well enough to know if there's sun/UV damage yet, but should I even expect any after such a short amount of time?  Many thanks for your input...not a topic I know a lot about.
    Do a search on sun damage, UV damage, or discolored bricks on here and you will quickly have more info than you really wanted :)
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