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Can Pokemon Cards Fade?

can pokemon cards fade

There are some types of damage to Pokemon cards that people expect. For example, they will often expect them to get scratched, torn, or maybe even a little bit of water damage. The type of damage that people often don’t think about however is the fading of Pokemon cards.

So, can Pokemon cards fade? The answer is ‘yes’. Pokemon cards can fade in the light. The type of light that they are exposed to will determine how quick the process is. However, it will happen. This means that they are not going to have the bright pizzazz that they had before, which is a huge shame since people love Pokemon cards for how beautiful they can look.

Let’s go into a little bit of depth on how the cards will be protected, as well as give you a few ways that you are able to combat that card damage.

Does Sunlight Exposure Affect Pokemon Cards?

Yes. In fact, sunlight is the worst type of light that you can have hit your cards.

Sunlight has UV rays in it. It is these UV rays that are going to be causing damage to your cards. The more UV rays that hit your card, the faster the cards will begin to fade. The more intense the fading will be too. So, if you left the Pokemon cards in a room right by the window, then you can expect the cards to fade a lot quicker than ones that are kept in storage out of the light.

Basically, whatever you do, you will want ot ensure that your Pokemon cards never come into contact with the sunlight. We will talk more about this soon.

Can Leds Damage Pokemon Cards?

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This is a question that many people do not seem to know the answer to. There are some people that claim that Pokemon cards are impacted by LED lights, but others claim that they are not.

The first thing that you need to understand is that LED lights will not have UV rays. Other types of lighting will. The only color of LED that will have UV rays will be blue.

This means that, in theory, if you expose your cards to any sort of LED that isn’t blue, then it should not cause any fading of the card. However, even then, we probably still wouldn’t take the risk of exposing your cards to too much light.

For example, there are some LEDs that emit blue light, even if you can’t tell. If you look at your cellphone right now, you wouldn’t be able to tell that the bulk of the light coming through is blue light. If you turn on the blue light filter, you will see that the color completely changes. The same would happen with LED lights. There will be hidden blue light there.

We are sure that there are not that many people out there that are planning on leaving their Pokemon cards under LED lights for long periods of time anyway.

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Can You Restore Faded Pokemon Cards?

No. Once the Pokemon cards have faded, they have faded. There is nothing that you are going to be able to do to help reverse the process. So, it is in your best interests to actually stop the cards from fading in the first place.

Remember, once the cards have faded, the value of them is going to fall. This means that you probably wouldn’t be able to command such a high price for them. That being said, the price of Pokemon cards will fall quite quickly once they leave standard anyway. This means that you do not have to worry about fading too much. The cost of most Pokemon cards would have been impacted a lot before the fading even impacts them.

The one thing that you do need to be aware of is the fact that the back of the Pokemon card may start to fade. If this happens, then you may not be able to play with the Pokemon card in any official tournaments.

This is because the judges need to ensure that you cannot identify the card before you draw it. If there is a small amount of fading that will distinguish the card from all of the other cards in your deck, then it will be removed.

Of course, this is a problem that you can get around by having card sleeves that do not expose the back of the card at all. in fact, this is pretty much all you really can do if you are planning on playing with Pokemon cards that have long since faded.

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How Do You Protect Pokemon Cards From Sun Damage?

Obviously, the best way to protect your Pokemon cards from sun damage is to keep them out of the sun in the first place.

If you are starting to get seriously into collecting Pokemon cards, then we highly recommended that you do the following:

  • Sleeve your cards up
  • Store them in a cool, dry place i.e. out of the light.

We recommend that you store your cards in a binder or inside of a cardboard box. This should help to eradicate the vast majority of light issues.

If you do want to check out your cards, then do so under LED lights (not ones with blue light!) and keep the curtains in your room closed.

The same is going to apply if your cards have been graded by the PSA. The light is going to get through that plastic casing and cause the cards to fade over time. Yes, it is going to be a little bit slower, but it is going to happen!

Final Thoughts

Pokemon cards will fade over time. In most cases, this is going to be down to exposure to light. In some cases, it may be because you have rubbed several cards together.

The best way to protect your cards is to have them sleeved and stored in a cool, dry location.

If you want to inspect your cards, then make sure that you do it under LED light. The color can’t be blue, though. Blue LEDs emit UVs which damage the cards.

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