Why does the binder weaken? First, some of the tape is rubbed off every time it is played. This occurs because VCRs and camcorders have moving parts that thread the tape over playback heads.
The environment also plays an role. If you store your tapes in humidity, or in a room where the temperature changes substantially (like a spare room that is warm in summer and cold in winter), that dramatically affects tapes. We frequently cannot transfer video from tapes that have experienced these conditions.
Magnetic fields can also cause signal loss, even when the cassette tape is being stored. And tapes are vulnerable to sudden data loss resulting from static shock or strong electric fields, such as those generated by TVs and electronics.
Even worse, magnetic particles can become separated from the binder just over time, a process that accelerates as the tape ages. As the binder absorbs water from normal humidity, it swells and exposes more surface area – absorbing even more moisture.
The video tape to DVD process is essential for anyone who owns family movies!