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Cigars 102: Troubleshooting The Humidor

Updated: Oct 23, 2020

Uh oh!! We have trouble!! We got a great humidor, took our time, and seasoned it well. We put our most exceptional premium sticks in, and the box will not settle. What does this mean???

As mentioned in our previous series, tobacco is happiest in a similar environment as in which it was grown. As the temperature in your home goes up and down, so does the RH % in the box. This is the reason why it is recommended to place this humidor in a well climate-controlled area. As you add cigars to the humidor, a state of homeostasis is developing. Each cigar, with tobaccos from all over the world, want an environment just like home. This will cause fluctuations in humidity and, in some cases, temperature changes. The temperature changes are most prevalent when the cigars are not fermented fully or, like Cuban cigars, are not aged or rested before sent to market for sale. Another reason is because of the human element. We check our boxes, open and close, add humidification, and take it away. We like to play with our toys when we just need to leave it alone.

Now that we have gone over the most common issues let’s go over our troubleshooting methods. Please keep in mind; these are not the only way to fix these issues. These are the best way from my experiences over the years.

Step 1:

LEAVE IT ALONE! Be patient, watch the numbers, but most of all, watch the cigars. Feel them; they will tell you if the environment is too wet. Are they too soft? Do you notice the signs of mold? Is your hygrometer calibrated?

Step 2:

Remove all humidification delivery systems.

Pro Tip: Keep a high-quality cigar box handy; if your cigar is too wet, place it in the cigar box, in the environment, the cigar will be smoked in, for a few hours. This will help with the additional humidity and will limit the “relight.”

Step 3:

Every few days, open the humidor for a few minutes. The time will differ depending on how high the humidity is, how large the humidor is, and how may cigars are present.

(Note: Make sure the temperature in the humidor is similar to that of the room; if not, this can shock the cigars and cause the wrapper to split.)

Step 4:

If all else fails, you might have to start again. This happens on a rare occasion, but keep in mind the steps, as stated above, take time and patience. Remove all cigars from the humidor, Place them in an airtight container or plastic bag, with the preferred Boveda pack inside, this will absorb additional humidity.

(follow manufacture recommendations of packs per cigars)

Open the humidor and allow it to dry completely. Repeat the seasoning process.

(Note: You must know, if you’ve reached this step, you will have to leave the cigars in

the containers until the desired humidity is achieved. This step is the longest of all and requires the most attention)

Be patient, watch and feel the cigars!! Sometimes it will take several days to weeks for a humidor to settle. For further assistance, visit your local brick and mortar shop or stay tuned for more educational content!

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