How to Judge a Cigar Humidor

In category: Storing Cigars

A humidor is a storage box that is used to help keep good cigars to remain smokable even after long periods of time. Observing the cigars is the only way to figure out whether the humidor is doing its job well or not.

A high humidity level can cause the growth of molds or mildews inside the cigars. These growths, which are the bluish substances on the cigar’s wrapper, may or may not be observed immediately.

Mold or mildew growth can be a result of either a high humidity level or a too airtight seal. The seal of a humidor must not be too airtight because the cigars still need to breathe slightly.

Whitish substances may also appear on the cigars. These may be the result of either the usage of a non-distilled water in the humidor or the presence of an innocuous organism. An innocuous organism can easily be brushed off and it doesn’t harm the taste of the cigars.

The presence of whitish substances in the cigars may also be due to the existence of larvae such as beetle eggs. The presence of larvae in cigars may cause a problem because these eggs hatch in warm and humid environments. They may even start to feed off the cigars. Small holes in the wrapper leaf may signify the presence of beetle larvae in the cigars.

Affected cigars have to be discarded while the humidor containing the other cigars must be placed inside a freezer for about 48 hours. Put them in the refrigerator for a day before putting them back in the room. To allow the interior to stabilize, remove the cigars first then wipe out the humidor with a damp sponge and replace the cigars.

Cigars that exude a bit of oil signifies a generally good sign. Dry-looking cigars, however, need to be given a bit moisture by adding a little water using a small sponge. In extreme cases of cigar dryness, the wrapper may either start to unwind or crumble. Rolling them between the thumb and the forefinger gives a better feel.

The use of distilled water in a humidor is preferable because even if a small amount of minerals will not lead to a ruin, a hard water will eventually clog the moisturizer and finally reduce the effectiveness of the humidor.

The warping of a humidor’s lid must still be checked carefully even if it doesn’t seal perfectly. A large opening may cause the interior to dry out which will then cause the humidor to lose its ability of storing the cigars properly.

A new humidor must be “seasoned” first before it is used. The air in the interior must be allowed to get out before adding distilled water. The interior must be allowed to stabilize first for a day before adding the cigars. Its lid must be kept shut and the humidor must be kept away from sunlight and heaters. A 69F temperature with a 70-75% humidity is the best environment for keeping cigars for a longer period of time.

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