It’s only been weeks since you last used it, but your gel pen won’t write! And it’s relatively new at that. Could it be you stored it the wrong way? That’s possible. Storing your gel pens properly has got to with the position, location, and temperature. Though storing gel pens may not seem important, it’s helpful to understand the storage needs of gel pens. Learn how to store gel pens and make them last as long as possible.
Why Should You Know How to Store Gel Pens
Different types of pens would act differently, and gel pens are no exception. You might notice that though you stored it similarly with other pens, its performance would still be faulty. Gel pens have different storage needs from regular ballpoint pens. Abandoning and replacing a seemingly defective gel pen is not always the solution because you can avoid making the pen defective in the first place.
You must remember that gel pen ink isn’t the same as regular ballpoint pen ink. Typically, gel pen inks are composed of pigment and water. The perfect balance of these components will allow the ink to flow freely and dry quickly. This pigment-and-water is the mixture behind your gel pen’s smooth writing and minimal smudging.
But it can’t be that perfect, can it? Arguably the most frequent issue with gel pens is leakage. Due to the ink’s consistency, it can easily leak out when stored incorrectly. Another problem you may have encountered is the ink drying up or clumping.
There really is no reason to fear buying more gel pens despite their imperfections. Here are some simple solutions to these problems.
Easy-to-Remember Storing Tips
It takes no rocket scientist to know that pens have to be stored with their caps on. Keeping the caps on will keep the ink from drying up or getting all over. But this obvious trick is not enough to ensure the longevity of your gel pens. So why not prolong their service by trying these simple tips on how to store gel pens.
Lay it Down
The best way to store gel pens is horizontal. This way, the ink is distributed evenly in the cartridge. Storing pens comes naturally most of the time when we put down pens after using them. By default, pencil cases also allow you to keep your gel pens horizontally. This storage technique makes it easy for the ink to flow out when it’s time to utilize your purchase.
There is, however, a particular drawback with using this technique. It uses more surface area in your bag when you travel. It also takes up a lot more desk space.
Keep the Tip Up
If you want to maximize your desk space, you may choose to store your gel pens vertically with the tip-up. Having the tip up will keep unwanted pressure off the nib, which may cause leakage.
However, if you store your gel pen this way for a long time, don’t expect it to write smoothly right away. You might need to take it on a test run before letting it take on the actual job.
Keep Gel Pens Away from Bright Light
Having been made with pigment and water, gel pen ink can’t hold color against bright light for a long time. Its lightfastness is generally shorter than inks that use dye. So if you want your gel pen ink to remain vibrant, it’s better not to expose it to bright lights often.
Store at room temperature
The ideal temperature to store your gel pens in is from 20°C to 23°C (68°F to 73.4°F). Avoid leaving them freezing in the cold or melting in the heat.
Extreme temperature can warrant unnecessary changes to the ink’s composition.
If you accidentally forgot your gel pen in a hot area, you might find the ink dried out the next day. And keeping your gel pens at cold temperatures can harden the ink and restrict its flow. So it is best to keep your gel pens at room temperature, especially if you use them frequently.
If you need to store your whole collection of gel pens because you will not be using them for a long time, you may consider the refrigerator. Keeping at a cold temperature will minimize the evaporation of the ink solvent. Just make sure to let it warm up before using it.
Gel pens come in various colors, perfect for your artwork or simply your notes. They write effortlessly and are almost smudge-free. What a waste it would be to throw them out because of one thing you may have done incorrectly. To keep their satisfying performance level, gel pens require your care. Follow these tips on how to store gel pens and give your gel pens their much-needed attention.