Sometimes, despite all your efforts to care for your cigars, a mistake may occur which leaves your cigar a little dried out. A dry cigar is something all cigar smokers will want to avoid, as it can create a bad tasting smoke. Whether you left a cigar loose in your car or forgot to check the moisture levels in your humidor, there are a number of ways in which we can accidentally cause a cigar to become dry. Whatever the reason may be, there is no need to worry too much as it is possible to rehydrate your cigar.
That being said, a cigar will not be able to be rehydrated if:
- The wrapper is damaged or cracked
- The cigar has become so dry that all the oils have evaporated from the tobacco.
The process of rehydrating a cigar is not a quick one; it can take weeks or months, in fact, so it is important not to rush it. A cigar that hasn’t been properly rehydrated will still smoke hot and have a bitter and unpleasant taste.
Rehydrating with a Humidor
Humidity and temperature work in a humidor work by contact, similar to when you put something in the freezer; the temperature drops little by little in intervals, not all at once, meaning it is a gradual process. Rehydrating your cigars gradually is important, as we will touch on in more detail later.
Take a tabletop humidor and empty its contents. Next, with a piece of moist, but not wet cloth, wipe down the walls of the humidor. Distilled or bottled water is fine, but do not use tap water as it contains minerals and other impurities that can clog the vent holes of humidors.
Next, remoisten the humidification element with distilled water. The humidor will then slowly return to the optimal 73-74% relative humidity, and the cigars will follow suit.
Note – Ensure you do not over humidify your humidor in the hope of bringing your cigars back to life quicker, as doing this may “shock” them into expanding too quickly, resulting in cracked wrappers and rendering them unsmokeable.
How Long Does the Process Take?
It usually takes between one and three weeks to re-humidify a cigar, depending on how thick the ring gauge is and how dry the cigar itself was when you started. It takes this long as it isn’t enough to just humidify the wrapper; you must allow the moisture time to reach the innermost leaves of the filler.
Using Boveda Packs
Maintaining your humidor can take a lot of attention, but alternatively, you can use Boveda packs with your humidor. Boveda packets are comprised of a blend of natural salts and purified water enclosed in a semi-permeable reverse osmosis membrane.
They are guaranteed to provide a constant level of humidity that never fluctuates or cycles, which helps to preserve your cigar’s natural oils and sugars, allowing them to improve with age.
Every pack is accurate to +/- 1% in an airtight environment, which humidors are not. It’s common that the actual RH of your humidor will stabilise up to 5 points lower, due to humidor quality and ambient dryness. For this reason, there are six different RH (relative humidity) levels: 62, 65, 69, 72, 75 and 84 %, so you can use the RH that achieves the humidity you and your cigars prefer.
The great thing about these self-regulating packs is that you can never over-humidify your cigars – they only even keep it at the perfect level. You can purchase these Boveda packs from our website here.
Before lighting up your recently rejuvenated cigar, test it is ready by gently pushing on it with your fingers. If it feels slightly spongey, then it is ready to smoke again. If you don’t have a humidor of your own, why not check out the extensive selection we have online, including Padron, S.T. Dupont and Dunhill humidors?