With summer far behind us, and winter looming large in the not-so-distant future, we want to make sure that all cigar smokers are ready and prepared for the cold weather. Winter brings with it a series of challenges that can hinder the smoking community, especially those who prefer cigars. There’s nothing greater than lighting up a cigar on a cold winter’s evening, feeling the warming sensation of the smoke. However, without the proper care, your stogies can go from glorious tobacco sticks to shrivelled leaves in a matter of days.
To help you through the dark mornings and long evenings, we’ve put together some of our top tips for keeping your cigars and humidors healthy during the winter months.
Minimise Humidor Openings
Humidors work by regulating the humidity within the confines of the container, meaning exposure to different temperatures or humidities can cause changes to the conditions within the humidor. By regularly opening your humidor and leaving it open for prolonged periods of time, more severe changes can occur, resulting in a drop in humidity. Over time, this change will cause damage to cigars resulting in dry sticks and reducing the quality of the smoking experience.
By reducing the amount of time you have your humidor open for and minimising the number of times you open it, you’ll be reducing the exposure to damaging conditions. This rule applies to all weathers really, as it’s unlikely that the conditions outside of the humidor match those within.
Many humidors use built-in humidification devices to ensure that the correct conditions are maintained within the humidor. During winter, ensure that you are regularly checking these and recharging where necessary. Typically, every two months is a good amount of time between checks, and if your device needs a recharge, grab your preferred solution and top it up with a few drops.
It’s also possible that your humidor isn’t maintaining the correct conditions in the same way it used to, which means you could be due an upgrade! Don’t be afraid to grab yourself an early (or late) Christmas present during winter and replace your kit.
Before throwing in the towel and replacing your humidor, there is one more option to try, the amazing Boveda Humidity Control packets. These cheap and cheerful little packs serve the purpose of reinvigorating your humidor with the necessary humidity. Because they limit the humidity to a specific percentage, it’s not possible to use too many, as long as they work to the same percentage. However, it is worth noting that these can work quickly when used in multiples, so we’d suggest introducing them one at a time when there are cigars in the humidor.
Check Your Kit
Humidors are designed to limit exposure to external elements, meaning when they are closed, the seal should be airtight. In a perfect world, this would be the case; however, things don’t always go our way. As many humidors are made of wood, a material that can expand and contract with the external humidity, it’s possible for gaps to appear in the seal.
To ensure this doesn’t happen during winter, try wiping the lip of the humidor with distilled water soaked into a cloth, to allow the wood to absorb it and swell. You could also place tape around the lip of the humidor to add an extra layer and sure up the seal.
Humidor maintenance during winter is key as you can really risk your cigar collection. The last thing you want is to have dried out cigars when you come to smoke them. If you find yourself in this predicament, all is not lost as there are a number of ways to fix under or over humidified cigars.
Make sure that you are fully prepared for this winter with a top-notch Xikar humidor for your cigars. We have a range available on our online store along with useful accessories such as the previously mentioned Boveda packets. You can also find useful tips and tricks on cigar care from our blog.