Have you ever been in a situation where you find yourself with an excellent selection of cigars, and you are clueless about their preservation or how to keep cigars fresh?
Generally speaking, it could be challenging to know how to store them to keep them fresh and maintain their flavor.
Sure, there are some general guidelines that you should follow, such as using a humidor or keeping them away from direct sunlight, but finding the perfect cigar storage option for your collection can be confusing. This write-up could be ideal if you’re looking for ideas on storing cigars properly!
Ways To Proper Store Cigar
Maintain Consistent Humidity And Temperature
Consistent humidity and temperature are two of the most important things you’ll need to keep in mind when storing your cigars. Cigars that are dried out or too warm can destroy the flavor and burn your cigars so you must maintain a consistent temperature in your storage area. Humidors are perfect for this since they house multiple cigars and can be controlled with relative accuracy. If you use an air-tight humidor, like those made by Xikar, then there’s very little room for error as they’re designed to be air-tight.
The ideal humidity level is between 68% to 72% RH (Relative Humidity), but you should shoot for at least 70%. You mustn’t let your cigars get too humid or too dry in storage. If the RH is higher than 72% then you run the risk of mold or mildew growth and if it’s lower than 68% then they may dry out and lose flavor. If you’re using a lidded glass jar since they can be much more difficult to control, it’s always best to err on the side of caution and keep them at a lower humidity level.
Use A Humidor For Accurate Storage Conditions
Although using a humidor may not be ideal for everyone, if you’re looking to maintain the best possible storage conditions then it’s the best option. A humidor is a device or container that locks in your cigars and maintains the proper humidity. It is essentially a contained space where the air inside is sealed and controlled so that they maintain a consistent temperature, humidity level and draw.
A humidor can hold up to 9 different cigars at once depending on size and shape and will control each of them with the same level of accuracy. There are a couple of factors that can affect how well your humidors work, such as Temperature, Humidity & Relative Humidity (RH). All of these factors can be controlled with a mild temperature and relative humidity that is around 69% RH.
If you have a tight seal on the humidor, then it will maintain a higher RH than the surrounding air, which means the cigars inside the humidor will vary in moisture. So it’s important to do what you can to keep the humidor consistently humidified so that your cigars are consistent throughout. This is done by using either a passive system or an active system.
Using a Passive Humidifier — A passive system uses naturally occurring sources of humidity such as cedar and it’s an ideal way to maintain lower levels of relative humidity. It is ideal for those who don’t have a lot of space for their humidor and need somewhere to keep their cigars safely and securely.
How to store cigars in a humidor:
Assuming you’ve already seasoned the humidor with a humidification device, then first lightly wipe down the interior of your humidor using a damp paper towel. This will remove any dust or debris that’s inside.
Place the cigars in an even layer on the bottom of your humidor, or place them in their designated spots if they have slots for each cigar type. Leave about 1/3 of both boxes empty so that air can circulate to your cigars and prevent molding.
Lightly brush wood glue over the interior of your humidor and let it sit for several minutes until it dries.
Close the humidor, using either a snug-fitting lid or a humidor sealer. (NOTE: Avoid using humidifiers with active cooling features as they can cause significant damage to your cigars.)
Set your hygrometer/humidifier at around 69% as a starting point.
Allow it to sit for about 48 hours to get the humidity optimal and then adjust accordingly.
Using an Active Humidifier (An active system uses some form of cooling to help maintain consistent relative humidity and temperature. An active system is usually easier to maintain, but may be more expensive in the long run than a passive humidifier for those who don’t have the time to maintain their humidor properly).
Purchase A humidistat And A Hygrometer
A hygrometer is a device that determines the relative humidity of your cigars and it’s ideal for those who don’t have a lot of space for their humidor. It’s also useful for those who need to keep track of their storage conditions to ensure they are keeping them in the ideal conditions.
The hygrometer will determine the temperature of your cigars’ heads, so you’ll want to keep it in your cigar storage area away from other heat sources and direct sunlight.
A humidistat is what will maintain the relative humidity in your storage area and it’s perfect for those who want to keep a perfect level of humidity in their humidor cabinet with accurate control. You should use either a passive or active hygrometer; they’re both equally effective and good at controlling their interior conditions.
So, if you purchase a humidistat and a hygrometer, it will help you keep track of your cigars’ humidity and temperature levels. You can purchase a humidor thermometer as well, but they are much cheaper than the other two devices and they do similar jobs so it’s really up to you if you want to buy one or not.
How To Store Cigars Without A Humidor?
If you want to keep cigars in an area where you can’t use a humidor or if you’re just looking for a cost-effective way to store your cigars, then you can try using other storage methods. There are two main options for storing cigars without using a humidor and they’re wood boxes and glass jars.
Wood Boxes– Wood boxes are great for storing cigars because they provide the protection and air circulation that are required for cigar storage. They usually come with a hole on one side that allows them to breathe when the lid is on, so make sure to keep it there at all times.
Fiberboard Boxes– Fiberboard boxes are often used because they’re cost-effective and can be made in a variety of sizes. You must choose the right size box for your cigars so that they fit properly. Fibreboard boxes can tend to trap moisture, so you must check your cigars frequently to ensure they stay dry and at their ideal humidity level (68%RH).
Glass Jars– Glass jars are also an effective way to store cigars, but keep in mind that glass jars aren’t airtight so you’ll have to seal them with some other method. For example; you can wrap them in plastic or paper and tape them tightly, or place them in a sealed bag and then place them inside a wooden box.
Storing Cigars On The Go:
Transportation is a common issue when it comes to cigar storage. If you plan on taking your cigars with you, then it’s important to protect and carry them in a fashion that will preserve their moisture level. By using an airtight plastic bag, you can keep your cigars from getting damaged by outside sources such as cigarette smoke or other people. If possible, put them in a sealable plastic container so that they’re kept away from the sun or any outside elements that may cause damage.
Preserve Cigars That Have Dried Out
If you’ve ever left cigars in a humidor for too long or if they’ve gotten wet, then you may find that they’ve dried out or become moldy. If this has happened, then it’s important that you quickly act fast to save them because they’ll only get worse the longer it takes to deal with them.
How To Save Dried-Out Cigars:
- Carefully cut off any damaged parts of your cigar using a sharp knife.
- Place your damaged cigar in an airtight plastic bag and seal it tightly.
- Place your cigars in the back of the freezer (make sure they’re not touching anything) and leave them there for 24 hours.
- Remove cigars from the freezer and check their condition. If not dry at this point, then place them back into the freezer for another 24 hours and check their status again. Repeat this process if needed until the cigar is no longer damaged.
How To Save Wet Cigars:
- Place your wet cigars in a new plastic container with a humidifier and allow them to sit for 24-48 hours with low heat until they become completely dry.
- Use a humidifier with your newly-dried cigars, incorporating it into your cigar storage routine.