Collectors Cards Stuck Together? Here’s One Simple Method To Unstick Them

If you have some older collectors cards laying around, you may notice when you get them back out again some of the cards might be stuck together as thick as a brick.

Ugh, this is never any good. Just recently I pulled out my old Rage collectible card game set and most of the cards were stuck together. I decided it was time to sell them. When I started going through them, quite a few of them were really stuck together. When I pulled them apart, some of the lovely artwork came off and it damaged the front and back. This makes the value of the card go down just like that. I kept pulling away gently, carefully and hoped that no more artwork would come off, but it did. 

As I was trying to pull the cards gently apart, I was getting a little impatient while doing it since it takes so long and you need to be very careful when doing it. I thought there had to be a way I can do this without pulling the artwork off with it. So this is what I did. 

Before steam – damage done to the sides
Damaged cards 😤😱

My cards are glossy so this should work with any glossy cards. This was my simple method separating them apart that I found worked for me the safest and easiest way. 

What you will need: stove, a pot and water 

1. Start by putting water into the pot

2. Place the pot on the stove and wait for it to come to a steamy boil

It’s steaming and ready for the cards

3. Once the water has come to a boil, take some of the bricked cards and bend them a little bit but not too much. You will hear some crunching, this is normal. Then place them over the boiling hot water about 10 cm from the pot, letting the steam get in the cracks of the cards without getting them too moist. Be careful not to burn yourself!

Grab a stack of cards
Bend them a little. You should hear a little crunching

If the cards get too steamy, remove the cards off to the side and wait a few seconds for them to dry a little

4. While you are you doing this, move the cards all around so the steam gets in all of the areas

Move the cards all around

The cards should slowly start to come apart with a little help from your fingertips

The cards should be coming apart. Do this very slowly
Slowly pull them apart
Stick your fingertips in the cracks and slowly pull them apart

5. Slowly and surely keep bending and very slowly pull the cards apart

This should help the process to pull them apart easier

Voila – no damage 😊
What the cards should look like afterwards – no damage 🙂

It got me thinking about what causes this to happen? I mean, I know they are about 25 years old, but still. Is it the glossy material? Does it just break down over the years? It’s just too bad that companies didn’t make them to last so the ones that want to go back in time could take a trip down memory lane without worrying about damaged art! 

This method worked out pretty well for me with minor damage to the rest of the cards I steamed! So I hope it will work for you too and don’t get too hot from the steam. You might want to place a fan nearby 😉