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Accordion File

Martha Stewart Living, April 1996

A broken appliance is always annoying, but if you've lost the warranty or manual, it's positively maddening. Keep all those papers and guides in an accordion file, categorized with handwritten labels.

Comments (30)

  • 15 Jan, 2009

    I have several accordion files that are sort of like a brief case. They have rigid outsides so they stand up buy themselves and they have a latch-able lid. One contains all the manuals etc for the tv, vcr, dvd, receiver, remotes etc for the family room entertainment devices and lives out of site near the equipment for quick reference. The other I'm using to keep track, room by room, of redecorating plans.

  • 11 Jan, 2009

    I have reciepts in one file folder and appliance manuals is another file folder. Both folders are in my file cabinet. I find accordion files messy, and hard to look through, since the folder does not stand up. What's important though, is to keep these papers available and easy to find, when you need them!

  • 9 Jan, 2009

    I keep my manuals with reciepts attached in sheet protectors also. But I have a different binder for different things. Appliances, toys, tools, etc. Then each binder is either in one bookcase or in the room it is needed. ie. workshop has tools binder. Then I need only grab the appropriate binder to look something up.

  • 8 Jan, 2009

    3-ring notebooks are handy for keeping warranty/instruction books for new appliances. Attach the receipt or a copy of the receipt to the manual, place in a sheet protector and file using A-Z dividers. When I no longer need the item, sell or donate it, the instructions are always available.

  • 8 Jan, 2009

    I keep my receipts in an accordion file too. But I separate by categories and clean them out month by month. It makes consolidating credit card bills so much easier.

  • 7 Jan, 2009

    I file my receipts in an open-top, letter-size accordion file with pockets labeled Jan through Dec. This file minimizes the number of receipts I need to hunt through when I looking for a particular receipt. Since we just started a new year, I threw away most of my receipts from January 2008, and filed the important receipts that I need to keep. I will continue to do this monthly, if not sooner.

  • 7 Jan, 2009

    I file my receipts in an open-top, letter-size accordion file with pockets labeled Jan n n n n n n Dec. This file minimizing the number of receipts I need to hunt through when I looking for a particular receipt. Since we just started a new year, I threw away most of my receipts from January 2008, and filed the important receipts that I need to keep. I will continue to do this monthly, if not sooner.

  • 7 Jan, 2009

    if you put them in zip lock bags first, the paper stays like new.

  • 7 Jan, 2009

    The smaller accordians that are typically for things like coupons, are great for tracking receipts for credit cards, cash machines, and cash. I have mine organized alphabetically by credit card, and then cash and cash machine. When those monthly bills come it is just super slick to reconcile.

  • 7 Jan, 2009

    You gotta love those accordian files:) All those great recipes that come from Martha's website, newspapers and magazines are easily stored in accordian files. I have one for baking and one for cooking. For example my baking has sections such as cakes, cookies, bars, quick breads, breads, etc. Similarly, my cooking file is by side dishes, brunch, entertaining tips, chicken, fish, pasta, etc.

  • 7 Jan, 2009

    I suggest you write the date you purchased and where you purchased your new appliance on the front of the manuals. Store receipts fade and over the years you cannot read the information.

  • 7 Jan, 2009

    I recently renovated several rooms and have all new appliances. I have started a binder with the clear page protectors to put in the receipt (minus the credit card #s) as well as the instrux and manuals. When I sell the home, I can provide the new owner with the book. They will know how old all appliances are and what has been done to maintain them.

  • 7 Jan, 2009

    I Love this idea! I've always used an accordian keeping manuals and receipts but I've never been organized enough to actually label it! In addition, I have started scanning in receipts for big ticket items.

  • 7 Jan, 2009

    Great idea to mark the accordion file or ring binder according to the room in which the appliance or item is used.

  • 7 Jan, 2009

    Great idea on the back-up copy!

  • 7 Jan, 2009

    I staple the receipt to the manual and/or warranty but I've noticed that often times receipts are printed on the kind of paper fax machines used to have so the ink fades over time. I make a back-up copy of the receipt just in case the original receipt fades.

  • 7 Jan, 2009

    I have a 3 ring binder with plastic sleeves to hold all manuals, warranties and reciepts. It is divided into rooms where the item is found.

  • 7 Jan, 2009

    Something else that works, is putting your receipt, warranty, etc. between the mattress and boxspring, after you've purchased a new bed.

  • 7 Jan, 2009

    I use gallon size zip lock baggies to file manuals, warranties and receipts for each item and then you can write on the outside of the bag with a sharpie. All nicely packed away in one little package!

  • 7 Jan, 2009

    Douglams...I would love to see a photo of your system. It sounds great!

  • 7 Jan, 2009

    Ooops - . . . use binders with page protectors. One protector for each item. That way, all paperwork, receipts, extra hardware (allen wrenches!), CD's, etc. are all contained inside without getting mixed up with other items' paperwork.
    One binder for: kitchen/laundry, baby gear/toys, lawn/garden/garage, office, audio/video. Works great!

  • 7 Jan, 2009

    We find it helpful to staple our paid receipts to our respective manuals/warranties for future reference.

  • 7 Jan, 2009

    I've use binders

  • 1 Sep, 2008

    One tip to keep the volume of paper down to a dull roar...many manuals are printed in English and Spanish, French, etc. When you file, use a paper cutter/scissors and keep only that language you need. Recycle the rest of manual and the remainder will take up far less room in your accordion file. And remember to periodically go through your files to get rid of those manuals/instructions/warranties for items you no longer have.

  • 3 Jul, 2008

    This is a great idea....put it to use right away. Really saved me a ton of frustration. I also attached the CD's that came with some of technical and lawn equipment.

  • 6 Feb, 2008

    I agree, it really needs to be the legal size A-Z accordion file. The letter size is too limiting and doesn't open up enough to accomodate the various sizes of the brochures, etc.. Also staple or ziploc bag all the various pamphlets, receipts, and other brochures that come with an item before filing it.

  • 6 Feb, 2008

    I agree, it really needs to be the legal size A-Z accordion file. The letter size is too limiting and doesn't open up enough to accomodate the various sizes of the brochures, etc.. Also staple or ziploc bag all the various pamphlets, receipts, and other brochures that come with an item before filing it.

  • 6 Feb, 2008

    I agree, it really needs to be the legal size A-Z accordion file. The letter size is too limiting and doesn't open up enough to accomodate the various sizes of the brochures, etc.. Also staple or ziploc bag all the various pamphlets, receipts, and other brochures that come with an item before filing it.

  • 6 Feb, 2008

    I agree, it really needs to be the legal size A-Z accordion file. The letter size is too limiting and doesn't open up enough to accomodate the various sizes of the brochures, etc.. Also staple or ziploc bag all the various pamphlets, receipts, and other brochures that come with an item before filing it.

  • 11 Jan, 2008

    I use a legal size A-Z accordion file for all our warranties and manuals. I file all paperwork under the appropriate letter for the item, i.e. refrigerator goes under R, mixer under M, etc. I also staple the receipt or a copy of it to the inside of the manual. This has worked exceptionally well for our family for over 25 years. BB