Have you ever picked up a guitar only to notice the fret ends are sharp and sticking out from the fingerboard on the sides? Or picked up an acoustic that used to sound great but now buzzes and sounds thin and weak? These are common issues that have plagued guitarists for years.
One of the most commonly overlooked aspects of keeping your guitar healthy and happy is the environment it is kept in. Heat and humidity play a key role in how your guitar plays and sounds. Even electric guitars are sensitive to this. Wood contracts when it gets too dry as it loses moisture and expands when it absorbs the surrounding moisture in an overly humid environment. This causes many issues that can eventually cause costly repairs and damages not to mention making a great guitar not so great....
During the more extreme seasons we tend to use our air conditioners and heaters more and that can cause the relative humidity in an enclosed space to lower. Ideally most guitars prefer to be somewhere around 45% humidity. Here at Righteous, we can pump up to 70 gallons of water a day into the air to maintain our humidity. We also have an airlock at the entrance of the store to help keep the humidity regulated. Our walls are made of rough cut, raw wood to help keep things from moving too quickly. We have put careful consideration in the area of humidity and temperature control in order to have a showroom housing 800 happy and healthy guitar year round.
So how can you ensure your guitars stay happy and healthy too? There are several approaches to humidity control that can help. The easiest and most foolproof way is to employ an in-case humidifier. We recommend the D'addario Humidipack. These packets have a gel like substance inside that will absorb moisture if the area is too wet and emit it if the area is too dry. Putting these in your case will regulate the humidity and keep things looking good. When you notice the packs are getting hard, simply replace them. Another approach is to use a standard cool mist humidifier and a hygrometer in a room where the guitars will be kept. This is approach you should use if your guitars are hanging on the walls or on stands. Be careful to keep the hygrometer in a spot the furthest from the entrance of the room so you get the most accurate reading. Also make sure the humidifier is not too close to a guitar where moisture could accumulate on the instrument. Then, just keep the humidity around 45% and you should be good.
Following these steps will help you keep your guitars happy and healthy and playing their best year round. It will also help you avoid costly repairs to your instruments. For more information, please feel free to reach out to one of our associates here at Righteous Guitars.