A bent Pokémon card can ruin your collection and make them unplayable, as their bent nature means they stand out in a deck. Therefore, it is really important to protect your Pokémon cards from damage.
One of the things that will happen to a Pokémon card over time is it becomes bent, which can happen for a number of reasons. So, it is important to learn how to fix a bent Pokémon card.
There are a number of different ways to fix a bent or warped Pokémon card, as well as things that can prevent damage in the first place. Stacking heavy textbooks on your Pokemon cards, using a hair dryer, or using steam from boiling water are a few ways to remedy a bent card. Let’s take a look at each of these methods with more detail.
This is the safest and slowest method of unbending a Pokémon card, but also takes the longest. This method may also be ineffective for a heavily warped card due to moisture and humidity.
If you have caught the bend in your Pokémon card early enough, then it is possible to place your card under a large pile of books. It is recommended that you leave them overnight to give the process time to bed in and make a difference. Having your books add up to a couple of thousand pages should do the trick.
Whilst this will only work on some of the less bent cards, it is often a good idea to combine some of the following methods with using a stack of books afterwards to complete the job.
As the main reason for a bent or warped card is humidity, most of the best methods for fixing them involve drawing out humidity.
Using a Hair Dryer or Heat
This method relies on using your normal household hairdryer, nothing special. Although we do recommend using a hair dryer with a flat nozzle like this one from Amazon as it will help direct the heat better than a rounded nozzle.
Start by placing the card face down, with the bend or curl of the card facing towards the flat surface, as a creased card can resist being bent back into shape.
Because you will not be touching the card directly, you can put your hairdryer onto its highest / hottest setting, to give you the best chance of fixing the bent Pokémon card. It also means you do not need a cloth or other barrier between the hairdryer and the Pokémon card.
Now it is time to blow hot air on your card, being sure to cover the card evenly for about half a minute. It is possible that the card will blow away, if that is happening, then hold it down with your hand.
Remember, get the hairdryer close to the card without ever touching it. At the end of thirty seconds, check the card and see what has happened to the damaged part. Be sure to evenly distribute heat around the card and to not stay in one spot for too long to help prevent damage.
If the issue persists, repeat at least twice before moving on and trying a different method.
Using Steam from Boiling Water
This method involves creating steam from boiling water, so you have a few options for how to create the boiling water.
- Boil water in a pan and then carefully tip the water into a glass bowl
- Place warm water in a glass bowl and microwave the water until it is boiling
- Boil a kettle and pour water into a glass bowl
Whichever method you use, you will now have a bowl of boiling water. Your next step is to place clingfilm or plastic wrap over the top of the bowl and you will start to see condensation appearing.
You can now place your card on top of the clingfilm or plastic wrap and watch It for thirty seconds to see how it changes. Leave it for slightly longer, up to a minute, if needed.
It is vital you ensure no holes exist in the clingfilm or plastic wrap, as that would allow dampness to affect the card, which would be bad.
All these methods rely on heat sources, so you can use other forms of heat to fix the problem. One example is placing your card underneath a modem. This will place heat onto the card and also use the weight method, so it is a good combination.
If you do use this type of approach, remember two important points. Firstly, always protect the Pokémon card in a protective sheet when placing under a heat source. The second key is checking the card regularly, never just put it under the heat source and leave it for an extended period.
Using a Steam Iron
The single most important thing to remember when we start talking about ironing out the dent in your Pokémon card – never put the iron directly onto the card! This would be a disaster and lead to a permanently damaged card that is burnt. This method is also not recommend for very expensive or valuable cards because it’s very easy to permanently damage your card if done incorrectly.
Therefore, step one is to use a cloth to protect your Pokémon card. This could be an item of old clothing like a t-shirt, maybe a tea towel or if you have it, an ironing board pad. This will be your barrier that prevents the iron ever touching your Pokémon card.
The best cloth type to use is one with high heat resistance because this will allow you to have the iron at a higher temperature, giving you the best chance of ironing out the bent part of your card. Fabrics with high heat resistance include cotton, polyester, linen or denim. It is wise to avoid really low heat resistant items like wool and nylon.
Having selected the cloth of choice, select a temperature on the iron that fits the material, then you are ready for the next step, ironing out the card. Before you do, just make one last check on the iron – ensure any steam setting is not turned on. As humidity is not the friend of your Pokémon card, adding steam will further damage the card.
The final step is simply going back and forth across the cloth covering your card, to ensure you get an even spread across it. Run this for about half a minute and then check progress. If the bend is not sufficiently ironed out, then repeat the process a couple of times.
How to Prevent Pokemon Cards From Bending or Warping
Whilst the techniques above should help to fix your bent Pokémon card, the best approach would always be to prevent them from being damaged in the first place. Therefore, try following a few of these tips to help prevent your Pokémon card getting bent or damaged.
Keep your cards in protective card sleeve when they are not in use and being stored. Where possible, place those protected cards into a protective card binder. We recommend using a professional card binder for collectible cards like this one by Ultra Pro on Amazon. This effectively gives you a double sleeve on the cards, which is the best way of preventing moisture from getting into them. Store them in a dry place, with no direct sunlight on them.
Another good method to use in your storage is to keep them inside a box with sachets of silica gel or desiccant. These are designed to draw moisture away from other things inside a box and can easily be purchased online or you might have some in packages you’ve received yourself.
One element that can cause your Pokémon card to bend is shuffling. By continually shuffling the cards when you play, you naturally add a bend to them. The best way of preventing this from causing an issue is to reverse shuffle them on a regular basis. Turn the cards upside down and shuffle them, doing this as many times as you shuffle them the right way up.
Pokemon cards tend to bend or warp due to moisture and humidity in the air. Try keeping your cards stored away in a cool, dry place to help prevent moisture buildup.
When you are trying any of the methods to fix your bent Pokémon cards, always start with a lower value card, one that you won’t be upset if something goes wrong. Only once you are happy and confident with the process should you use it on more valuable cards.
Furthermore, one of the best ways to prevent your cards from warping or bending is to keep them in card sleeves and card binders. Keeping them stored away in a binder will almost ensure that they will stay dry and in mint condition.