How do I protect my guitar from changes in Temperature and Humidity?

Bourgeois Guitars are built from carefully sourced wood purchased from suppliers that we personally know and trust. The wood is stored, cured and seasoned with all possible care.

Humidity, temperature and storage are the keys to a long and happy relationship with your guitar.

Your guitar was built in Lewiston, Maine in a climate of 45% average relative humidity , with a temperature between 65 and 70 degrees.

Guitars tend to be comfortable in the same environments in which their owners are comfortable. If guitars get too hot or cold, too dry or humid, they will become adversely affected. A good understanding of your guitar’s environment, no matter where you live, is essential to its care.

For most guitars, relative humidity (RH) between 40% and 60%, at around 70 degrees, is a comfortable range. Factors such as age, model and wood species contribute to how a guitar reacts to environmental stress. Guitars are most sensitive and require the most care and monitoring in the first year after completion.

More important than absolute relative humidity, however, is rate of change. Extremes of humidity or temperature are never good, but rapid changes of either of these conditions will cause the worst and sometimes permanent damage to your guitar.

Low Humidity can cause many problems such as shrinkage of bindings, cracks to wood, fret ends sticking out, low action with lots of buzzing.
High Humidity can cause swelling glue joints, glue failure, bridge failure, and swollen tops and high action.

Keep your guitar in a case when you aren’t playing it. The case is your best protection against changes in temperature and humidity. Hanging a guitar on the wall, or storing near a heat source (forced air, wood stove etc), or air conditioner is the cause of many woes including protruding fret ends, body cracks and bridge failure. For gigs, traveling and other times your guitar will be out in the weather or extremes of temperature and humidity, make sure to let it adjust to the new conditions before taking it out of the case or, if even out of the shipping box.

While important to control the environment inside your guitar case, regulating the environment in the room where your guitar is usually kept is optimum. Know the relative humidity and temperature of the room where your guitar is stored. Purchase a good hygrometer and thermometer for that room and keep an eye on it.

If using in-case humidification/dehumidification, it is important to follow the manufacturers’ recommendations and user instructions. It is also important to check your guitar daily. We can recommend the Oasis humidification system and the Planet Waves Humidipak. The Humidipak both humidifies and dehumidifies. Remember, soundhole humidifiers work well while delivering moisture, but once dry, they can act like a sponge and actually remove moisture, so monitor closely.

Whether you control climate in the room or in the case, we recommend using an in-case hygrometer and thermometer and checking them regulary.
And a last bit of advice, never ever travel with your guitar in the trunk of your car.

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