Btravis72 2012-06-11 22:29:00
I bought a humidor recently and haven’t been able to get the humidity
to 70%. Here’s the story: it came on Thursday morning, reading 60%
out of the box. I followed the instructions that came with it (wiped
out the inside, calibrated the hygrometer, soaked the humidifier in
distilled water) and the humidity dropped to 48%. I placed a shot
glass of distilled water in it on Friday, no change. That night I
took a damp cloth of distilled water and wiped down the inside and the
level came up to 58%. Saturday it was unchanged so I went and bought
PG solution and used that in the humidifier. No change. Now today I
wiped the inside down again with distilled water and the level is
finally up to around 67%. Is this normal? I don’t think it has a bad
seal since once it gets to a level it seems to stay there. I was
under the impression that it wasn’t this hard to get a humidor set up.
Any advice is greatly appreciated.
Aapo 2012-06-11 22:29:35
It can take time. Folks regularly report the initial seasoning taking
Even more than that is quite possible.
Don’t rush it. Give it time to settle, and it will serve you all the
better for it.
Mickey 2012-06-12 00:22:09
The Spanish Cedar that lines the inside of your humidor has a large capacity
for moisture. Part of the seasoning process is allowing the wood to absorb
moisture. Even if you wipe it with water, it will still take time for it to
become fully moistened.
You will also find that once you load the humidor with cigars, the humidity
will be much more stable.
Tannwttz 2012-06-12 00:22:54
The problem with humidors today is that most of the seals are TOO good and
therefore ya get oo much humidity. Does it “whoosh” when you close it? I’d
forget the 70/70 c*** and try for 65/65 or even less. Your stix will draw
Who IS the shadow of the waxwing slain, no really?
Joseph m. lavi 2012-06-12 00:23:26
In article <firstname.lastname@example.org>, btravis72
Take that sheet that came with the humidr, and set it on fire with your
favorite cigar lighter.
1) How did you “calibrate” the hygro? Hopefully, you used the salt
test, and didn’t wrap it in a wet towel..
If you need more information on the Salt-test, see the FAQ at
jlavigne AT hits-buffalo com
When e-mailing, please include ASC or ASP in the subject
to clear the filters…
Bucketbutt 2012-06-12 02:13:36
Are you certain your hygrometer is properly calibrated, or even that it’s
orking? Many of the analog hygrometers that are bundled with humidors are
nothing more than pretty ornaments. Your humidor may be working better
than you realize.
Some (most?) of us in ASC use digital hygrometers. You can sometimes find
a digital hygrometer at your local Radio Shark, or check the various
online cigar retailers; good ones are available for $25, sometimes less.
But whatever type of hygrometer you use, calibrate it! Most digital hygro
manufacturers have an acceptable “accuracy range” that may be several
points off. The salt test Mickey mentioned is a good way to calibrate a
hygrometer — it lets you check accuracy at 70 percent relative humidity,
which is “close enough” for calibration purposes to the 65-70 percent RH
you want for storing cigars.
NOTE: If the humidor is an expensive one, please ignore the following.
Many humidors, especially the inexpensive ones, are made in places where
the relative humidity is almost always higher than most parts of the U.S.
This means your humidor’s spanish cedar lining may have dried out
considerably since the humidor was manufactured — and when wood dries
out, it shrinks. In extreme cases the shrinkage/expansion might be enough
to cause air leakage at corner joints, but more often the result is
nothing more than a loose-fitting lid seal; the raised lip is no longer
large enough to fill its matching recess and for a proper seal when the
lid is closed.
This is exactly what happened with my inexpensive humidor last winter.
The air inside my home wa so dry that the wood shrank, the lid-body join
leaked, and the relative humdity inside the humidor wouldn’t stay high
even with extra humdification. Figuring I had little to lose if I damaged
what was already a cheap, leaky humidor, I applied distilled water
directly to the Spanish cedar lip on the humidor, and also to the
routed recess where the lip fits. Actually, I overdid this a bit and the
lid was so tightly sealed I had to pry it open and let it dry out a bit;
within a few days the lip shrank enough that the lid opened easily, but
still maintained a good moisture seal when closed. My humidor no longer
leaked, and all was well … until late spring brought lots of rain and
high humidity, but that’s another story.
The grain of the wood on and around the lip is slightly raised, but that’s
why it seals now. In my case the wood did not warp or splits; I make
absolutely no primises that this won’t happen to you, though. I
(probably) would not have taken the chance with an expensive humidor,
because applying water to untreated wood can do some real damage. But I
took the chance with this cheap box, and now it works great.
Of course, you could always just make a tupperdor or coolerdor, and then
you’ll know you have a good seal. And the wooden box you have can be
used to store other items, or as a receptacle for storing cigars that are
still a bit “wet” when you receive them. (Save your empty cigar boxes.
Some of mine get broken up and the Spanish cedar panels go into coolerdors
or tupperdors. Others hold everything from recipe cards to spare change
and small hardware. And a few are just refilled with singles and bundle
cigars, which then go into a cooler.)
Walter Luffman Medina, TN USA
Amateur curmudgeon, equal opportunity annoyer
Btravis72 2012-06-12 05:51:08
I calibrated the hygrometer using the salt method, figuring that was
the best way. I plan on getting a digital hygrometer to check the
accuracy and to use as a backup in case the analog one goes down.
I did notice after I wiped it down that the lid fit much tighter than
it originally did. The fit seemed fine when I got it, just a slight
bit of pressure to actually get the lid open. After the wipe down I
had a heck of a time getting it open so I left it open for a while
until the moisture was absorbed.
Saving the cedar is a good idea, I actually hadn’t thought of that. I
may end up making a coolerdor sooner than I had anticipated. 😉
Thanks to all for the great advice! I’ll keep ya posted.
Tony miller 2012-06-12 05:52:11
On 15 Aug 2004 14:25:59 -0700, btravis72
Have you calibrated your hygrometer? For instructions on how to do it,
Alex w. 2012-06-12 11:38:57
Good call about the seals. It’s just a tad screwy if we
have to worry about something working too well…..
As for humidity levels, they rather depend on the cigars he
owns. In my experience, Cubans are quite happy at 63 or so
while Nicaraguans and Hondurans prefer a higher humidity, at
68 or thereabouts.