Cigar Humidor Information & Facts
Storing your cigars in the proper environment is an important aspect of caring for your cigars. Cigars are natural, organic products and need to be stored just as carefully as you might store food or wine.
Cigars need to be kept in a relatively humid environment. If not, the natural oils in the cigar will dry out, resulting in a unpleasant, bitter-tasting cigar.
When storing cigars for any length of time, it is essential that they are kept in an environment with a humidity of 68-70 percent. As the humidity in an average house is around 50 percent, you can’t keep cigars in a drawer for more than a few days, even if they are in a tube, without running the risk of them drying out.
This is where a cigar humidor comes in handy. In a humidor, cigars can be stored for years before they have to be smoked, as long as they are kept in the correct environment. For most serious cigar smokers, a humidor is a small investment, which will protect a much larger investment of valuable cigars for many years.
Humidor – Cigar Storage
The best option for storing your cigars is investing in a cigar humidor. A humidor is a storage container designed to allow controlled air flow and equipped with a device that maintains the internal humidity in the range of 68 to 72 percent. Without something to maintain the internal humidity, it’s not a humidor, it’s just a box.
The temperature of where you keep your cigars is also important too. Fortunately cigars like to be kept at a temperature that humans also fine comfortable, between 65°F and 75°F, which makes life a bit easier.
As long as your humidor is kept in any part of the house that is regularly used, out of direct sunlight and the humidor kept at the correct humidity levels, then your cigars should be fine.
Humidors come in a number of different styles and sizes. Some can store around 25 cigars and will sit nicely on your desk, others can store thousands of cigars and stand as tall as a fridge. No matter how much you’re prepared to pay, it is essential that the humidor does its job properly.
The best humidors are usually made of mahogany, have well-constructed joints, feel solid, and are lined with Spanish cedar, which help maintain the correct level of humidity. Humidors usually come fitted with a solution (propylene glycol) that absorbs or releases moisture depending on the humidity in the box, thereby keeping the humidity to within 68-70 percent.
Some serious cigar smokers often have more than one humidor. Perhaps a large one that stays at home, and a smaller, more portable one that holds a few day’s supply for travel. Some cigar smokers even keep different humidors for different brands of cigars because if different types of cigars are stored together in the same humidor, they may take on each others’ flavors. Though, this can get quite expensive for some to purchase different humidors, a good solution is to make sure your humidor has a divider
When you first buy your humidor, don’t put cigars in it right away. You must make sure you season your humidor. First make sure that the humidifier unit has been charged with propylene glycol. If so, add distilled water and wait for the humidity to reach the required level. If you’re unsure whether or not the humidifier has been pre-charged then check with the supplier.
A lot of humidors come with built-in analog hygrometers, which provides a humidity reading in the humidor. Whether or not your cigar humidor has a built-in hygrometer, it is always good idea to purchase a separate digital hygrometer, for these tend to be more reliable than the built-in analog hygrometer that comes with the humidor. Also, remember that the magic number on the hygrometer should read 70 to makes sure you are properly storing cigars.
The hygrometer is very helpful in determining the humidity, although you should also check on the condition of the cigars every few weeks to make sure your cigars are humidified properly. A good way to check the condition of your cigars is to see if the cigars are exuding a little oil, if so, the conditions are perfect. Also, you can gently touch your cigars and based on how your cigars feel, you should be able to determine whether or not to add or remove moisture from your humidor.
If your cigar humidor has too much humidity the cigars will have too much moisture and be hard to light and keep it lit. Also, another problem with too much humidity is they can become susceptible to mold but and even a species of beetle, called a tobacco beetle, which can quickly bore holes through the contents of humidors. This will sometimes occur when the humidor maintains a temperature above 75 degrees for more than 24 hours.
If the humidor doesn’t have enough humidity the cigars are too dry and the wrapper will crack. With dry cigars the essential oils within the cigar will evaporate and the cigar will burn hot leaving you with a bland and tasteless smoke.