The one environmental condition that will damage an instrument more than anything is low relative humidity.
Low relative humidity can be caused by many factors (where you live, artificially heating, dry atmospheric conditions, etc).
Colder months can wreak havoc on acoustic guitars as the temperatures drop and we turn the heat on in our homes.What many don’t realize is that by heating a room it forces the relative humidity down to a level that poses a threat to drying out and cracking an acoustic guitar.
A proven amount of proper humidity for an acoustic guitar is anywhere from 45%-55% humidity.
Without keeping it properly humidified, the following symptoms could occur:
►The neck begins to ‘hump’ where it attaches to the body of the guitar
►The strings are extremely close to the frets causing buzzing or ‘fretting out’
►The arch on the top ‘sinks’ thus taking the bridge with it
►The fingerboard ‘shrinks’ causing sharp edges along the fret-board
Fortunately, we can avoid these situations by doing the following:
►During the cold months, keep your guitar in a case (it acts as a barrier to the outside world)
►Use a humidifier!There are plenty of different humidifiers on the market – choose one that is easy to use to maintain the proper humidity for your guitar.
►Use a Hygrometer – this will provide you with the humidity level in your case
►Every guitar is different regarding humidity!Use multiple humidifiers if you can – guitar ‘designs’ and woods affect the way humidifiers work with each instrument.
Lastly, the first 5 years of a new guitar are crucial in keeping it well adjusted and humidified.Things ‘move and shake’ the first few years with a new guitar as it settles in and becomes your pride and joy.
Click HERE to find the right Guitar Humidifier for you.