Are Humidifiers Bad for Guitars?

are-humidifiers-bad-for-guitars

If you come from less humid and dry areas, you’re probably wondering if you can use a humidifier for your guitar. And to the players, if you pay attention enough, you’ll find that sometime your guitar produces a quality play at a specific time of the day. So, what could be the reason behind that experience? Are humidifiers bad for guitars?

Humidifiers are good for your guitar, but they can be bad in cases where they provide more humidity than required. However, humidifiers are great for maintaining the guitar’s quality sound production and shape. When the wood water evaporates to completion, there are chances the wood will shrink, and the shape of the guitar will interfere.

When hanging your guitar on the wall, it may not only fall and break but also get exposed to the atmospheric heat and cause water loss in the guitar’s wood. However, the dry effect on your guitar wood may not be prominent in the early times and, if not properly treated, may negatively influence the quality of sound produced by your guitar.

This article is of great help to learning how humidity work and how to prevent its effect on your guitar.

How Will You Know Your Guitar Needs Humidification?

Your guitar changes will help you know that your guitar needs humidification. They include a change in distance between the strings and the fretboard, and also, the ends of the fret may turn sharper than normal. Whenever the absence of humidity continues, the fret gets sharper and harder to play than usual. Also another change you’ll notice is the playability of the guitar. You could notice a change in the sound produced. Your guitar may sound like another guitar but much more negatively. When the dryness persists, it may initiate movement of the bridge, thus causing extra harm.

Wooden Acoustic Guitar

In the final, when no cation is taken, you may notice cracks on the finish and fretboard of your guitar. Some parts like the glue joints may begin to deteriorate, neck and bridge may also separate. Under extreme conditions, your guitar’s neck may start to deform and eventually twist.

Determining the humidity level in your guitar so that you can take action in case of any change is very important. You can use an instrument like the hygrometer in doing so. A hygrometer is known for providing accurate figures about the humidity level. Based on the results you get, you’ll be able to rectify your guitar’s change of humidity level.

How Does a Humidifier Perform Its Work?

Humidify work by maintaining the air at a specific humidity level. Humidity is the level of moisture present in the air. Using a humidifier for your guitar will ensure a better performance for your guitar at all times. And you may minimize any possible damage to your guitar. There exist three different types of humidifiers that can help you maintain the optimal performance of your guitar.

Soundhole Humidifier

A soundhole humidifier is mainly made for acoustic guitars and is easy to use. When using, you place it on the guitar’s soundhole in between the third and fourth strings. But you can also use them on any hollow guitar, although their design is meant for acoustic guitars.

Soundhole modifiers are rechargeable, and you can add a little water to its canister.

Guitar Case Humidifier

You’re probably wondering what’s the difference between a soundhole and a case humidifier. The difference is unnoticeable because what you’ll put on the case is the same as the one you’ll place on the sound hole of an acoustic guitar. The known difference is the piece included, which helps in sticking on the side of your case.

Also, if you want to determine your guitar’s humidity level, use the hygrometer.

Room Humidifier

Unlike the others, humid modifiers usually humidifiers a whole room. Most people prefer them, but others don’t find them a blessing. They are best to use in a guitar room where you place several guitars or a whole collection. They are best to use because they maintain the best level of humidity for your guitars in the room.

However, a point note is that whenever you buy a room modifier, ensure it’s an evaporative one. If not, it may cause rusting of any metallic instrument or damage the wood of guitars in the room.

My Recommended: 3 Best Guitar Humidifiers

Which Is the Best Humidity Level for Your Guitar?

Most experts recommend a level between 40-50 percent of humidity. They suggest that at this level, guitars sound the best when paid. However, if you want to control that humidity, use a humidifier. Most of the repairs are expensive so maintaining it in optimal condition is the best thing you can do for your guitar.

Humidifiers for guitars are the easiest to use and are also effective. Some of the humidifiers are fixed between the third and fourth strings and have sponges that need to be remoistened every three to four days. Such products are good but do not consistently work. Because the humidity will rise at first but reduce as time proceed, and the sponge is drying out.

The modern humidifiers for guitars have a gel that helps absorb high humidity while emitting moisture. The humidifier that uses such technology is the humidipak—also, it’s best to use a hygrometer to check on the humidity level.

Humidifiers are made of different sizes and shapes, but getting the correct one sometimes becomes too hectic. You have to be choosy because some of them perform better than others.

Does the Case of the Guitar Protect From Humidity?

Hard guitar cases are best to protect from humidity. That is when you compare them to the soft case. Hard chances are immune to changes in temperature and humidity. But if you want to maintain a better guitar performance and protection against humidity, you should use a humidifier. What is required of you is to put the humidifier in the guitar case.

Black Guitar Case

Guitars and Temperature They Work Best

Despite humidity level, there is also the temperature at which each type of guitar work best. Observe the table below:

Type of guitarTemperature in degrees Celsius
Electric guitar30-50
Acoustic guitar60-70
Classical guitar65-75
Flamenco guitar30-60
Resonator guitar65-75
Solid-body electric guitars30-50
Singlecut Les paul style guitar30-79
Stratocaster style guitar65-75
Telecaster style guitar65-75
Super strat65-75
Baritone guitars65-75

Conclusion

Humidifiers can be bad for your guitar, although they play an important role in maintaining great shape by protecting the guitar’s body. The wood-like tree is spongy and has little water. When the water removes to completion, it may cause the shrinking of the wood, thus interfering with the guitar’s shape and sound quality. However, electric guitars do not require humidification as much as acoustic guitars.

Sourav Biswas

Music is my life and I love to play guitar so much. It's been a part of me for as long as I can remember. I grew up in a musical family, and my parents were always supportive of my passion for music. I am also a freelance writer who has been writing for over 10 years. I have written for both online and offline publications, including Amazon and Medium.

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