Is your cigar humidor sitting on a shelf gathering dust and cobwebs? When was the last time you checked the humidifier (from which the humidor gets its name)? Do you know how to top it up with water and so maintain a controlled environment to store your cigars so that they do not dry out, go stale and lose their flavour?
Why do you need a cigar humidor?
The countries that produce the finest cigars - Cuba, The Dominican Republic for example are countries that are high in humidity. When exported to countries with lower humidity levels cigars can quickly dry out.
This explains the need for cigar humidors. A humidor is a box, usually made from wood or lined with wood (generally cedar), that keeps the cigars moist. With the help of the humidifier, the humidor maintains a higher humidity inside than outside by ‘moisturizing’ the wooden lining. This in turn helps to maintain the correct moisture percentage in the cigars themselves to preserve their flavour.
Using your humidor for the first time
Many people make the mistake of putting their favorite cigars straight into their newly purchased humidor. This is a mistake. The humidor does not have the right humidity needed when it is first purchased. If you store them immediately the moisture in your precious cigars will be absorbed by the humidor and that would dry them out and ruin their taste. To avoid this from happening, you need to re-humidify the wood and set it to the ideal humidity before transferring the cigars.
Getting the humidity right
Every cigar humidor contains an humidifer. Without it you could not control the humidity inside the box. To maintain the right humidity inside the humidor, all you need to do is to add distilled water periodically (ideally once a month but more often if the humidor is opened daily). It’s easy to see if the water level is low by just looking - so check the water level weekly and top up as necessary.
Add this esssential task to your list of weekly duties.