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Topic: Define Water Damage?

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Subject: Define Water Damage?
Date Posted: 1/17/2013 8:58 PM ET
Member Since: 12/28/2012
Posts: 3
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Can someone define "water damage" for me?  I just received a book that has the "wavy" look of water (or steam) damage, but is perfectly readable with no staining.

Can I re-post it when I'm done?

Similarily, I have a book I would like to post that got a very small amount of water on ONE page.  There is no smearing, no staining, just the slight wave to the single page.  Postable?

Should I post, and then PM the requestor explaining the "damage"?


Date Posted: 1/17/2013 9:00 PM ET
Member Since: 4/28/2009
Posts: 10,177
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Have you tried to "iron" that single page on a low heat setting?  That can work sometimes when it's just a few pages.

But in general, multiple wavy pages are sure sign of water or humidity damage and make a book unpostable.

Date Posted: 1/17/2013 9:04 PM ET
Member Since: 12/28/2012
Posts: 3
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I can definitely try ironing the single page.

The book I received is wavy throughout, and you're right, it's probably humidity damage.  I guess it can go to Goodwill when I'm done.


Date Posted: 1/17/2013 9:05 PM ET
Member Since: 1/17/2009
Posts: 10,166
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As far as your book that you want to post, no, you really can't post it.

I know that it seems silly that a few drops of water on one page can make a book unpostable here, but the reason for that is that since it would be impossible for the site owners to quantify "how much" water damage might be allowed, the rules simply say, "no water damage", which means none.

So, your book, if it's WL, could be offered in the Book Bazaar for a credit, or if it's not WL, you could still offer it to someone for a credit, but you are unlikely to get takers for a book that has undamaged copies available, so you could also offer it free with an order from your shelf, or just for free if you wanted.

The book that you received with wavy pages, it can be hard to tell if that's water damage. There are a lot of books being produced with cheaper bindings that are "wavy" right in the store.

If the pages look waviest close to the binding, and there is no water stains on the pages, and the paper doesn't feel like it has a texture difference, where it's wavy vs. where it is not, then it's likely to just be a cheap binding, and is OK to trade here.

Sometimes books can also become wavy from humidity, and in my opinion, that is also fine to post (although perhaps a slightly gray area in the rules).


Regarding humidity ... some people may argue, but I don't think it's fair to penalize people who read books in humid parts of the country, and carefully keep them from touching any actual liquid. In my opinion, waviness from humidity is perfectly OK to post here.

Last Edited on: 1/17/13 9:07 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 1/17/2013 9:11 PM ET
Member Since: 12/28/2012
Posts: 3
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The book that's wavy throughout is definitely from steam or humidity, it's an older book...

I'm pretty new here.  I'm not sure I want to pay for postage without getting a credit.  Goodwill seems like a better option.

I'll check out the Book Bazaar idea.  Thanks!

I am clearly pickier than some, because I have received two books now that I don't think I will be able to re-post...

Date Posted: 1/17/2013 11:00 PM ET
Member Since: 12/28/2006
Posts: 14,177
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Like Sarah, I've not seen where TPTB define humidity (or steam) as water damage...otherwise, our members in the South would have difficulty keeping their books postable.  And due to cheap paper, some brand new books arrive with wavy pages. 

If the wavy pages are clumped together, yes it's probably water damage...although I've rarely seen true water damage (except for fingerprints) that doesn't also have at least a light stain/water mark.  If it's being difficult to tell, I take the book outside.  Natural sunlight can make the watermark visible when they might not be under artificial lighting.  Some members laugh at my method, but it works (and is only about 4 steps away from my computer).

Last Edited on: 1/17/13 11:01 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 1/18/2013 6:14 AM ET
Member Since: 11/14/2005
Posts: 1,442
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Jennifer, just want to clarify something -- you will always receive your credit for a sent book, as soon as the reciever marks it "Received".  They can, however, mark it RWAP (Received with a problem) and request their credit back.  Returning the credit is up to the sender.

Date Posted: 1/18/2013 5:54 PM ET
Member Since: 4/28/2009
Posts: 10,177
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Since I'm in central FL, which I suspect is one of the more humid places in the US, the ONLY appropriate way to store books is in your climate controlled areas of the house.  I know when we lived in IL it was often humid year-round and NOTHING made of paper could be kept in the basement, garage, or attic without being ruined.

Date Posted: 1/18/2013 7:46 PM ET
Member Since: 10/13/2007
Posts: 36,445
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If there is no water line or marks, the pages ARENT crinkly or brittle, then I'd say yes it's humidity and can be posted.  Since the waves are uniform and not clumped together, it doesn't to me sound like it was dropped in a puddle or took a bath.

Humidity affected books can straighten out when in cool weather or sent to an area without the humid issue.