CCOM temp and humidity Q&A

This is from the latest CCOM newsletter: Q & A: Humidor Temperature? Q: I just received a new humidor to store my cigars. What is the recommended temperature to keep my sticks in good shape? A: The standard rule, regarding temperature and humidity, is referred to as the ’70-70’ rule. For the most part, cigars prefer 70 percent humidity along with a temperature of 70 degrees Fahrenheit. This ensures each cigar has the moisture and heat needed to age properly. Since some cigars, like maduros for example, are fermented longer than others and utilize stronger, thicker leaves, a temperature of 68 degrees Fahrenheit is also acceptable. Maduro wrappers do not need as much humidity or heat as Connecticut wrappers due to the amount of oils in the leaves. However, no humidor should be kept at a temperature lower than 65 degrees Fahrenheit. At a lower temperature, the aging process is drastically impaired and the cigars will begin to lose their unique flavors. If the temperature is kept above 75 degrees Fahrenheit, the combination between heat and moisture may not only lead to the decomposition of the tobacco, but also to an infestation of tobacco beetles, which is never a pleasant experience. To remain on the safe side and to guarantee the cigars in your humidor are aging properly in addition to being kept in the best condition possible, keep the humidity in each humidor at 70 percent with a temperature of 70 degrees Fahrenheit.

Comments

  • madurofanmadurofan Posts: 6,152
    Here's another case of "Hey they might be watching". I think most would agree with this for AGING. 70/70 is optimal for aging. Its the SMOKING that people vary at ... a lot of people like it lower bc it smokes better but I personally agree that less than 65 is scary.
  • kuzi16kuzi16 Posts: 14,616 ✭✭✭✭
    in europe they have their humidors lower. ive heard as low as 55%
  • madurofanmadurofan Posts: 6,152
    This is what I've heard too but when I was in both England and Italy this not what I saw. The B&Ms I went into were set at 70/70 or there abouts. What I did get from the couple of smokers I spoke with is that generally they aren't as obsessive as we are about this, as long as its somewhere near 70 they're happy. They typically don't hold as many cigars as we do either. Like I said this is just a couple of people not a proper pole by any stretch but still.
  • kuzi16kuzi16 Posts: 14,616 ✭✭✭✭
    all the cigar retail sites that ive ever been on (sorry cigar.com) say that 70/70 is the way to go. Every humidor retail site ive been on says 70/70. every place that i have looked up humidor care says 70/70.

    the vast majority of people i have talked to online in this and other forums have kept the humidity at 65%

    if every expert says that 70/70 is better why is it that most average guys keep the humidor in the 63-68% range?


    I know why i do it. I know why others do it. so i guess the real question is why do all the experts not do it?
  • madurofanmadurofan Posts: 6,152
    Good question. I wish someone would elaborate on that more than just "its best for aging".
  • dutyjedutyje Posts: 2,263
    madurofan:
    This is what I've heard too but when I was in both England and Italy this not what I saw. The B&Ms I went into were set at 70/70 or there abouts. What I did get from the couple of smokers I spoke with is that generally they aren't as obsessive as we are about this, as long as its somewhere near 70 they're happy. They typically don't hold as many cigars as we do either. Like I said this is just a couple of people not a proper pole by any stretch but still.
    70/70 in England?? Dang, those are some hot cigars! What's that convert to in Fahrenheit? ;)
  • kuzi16kuzi16 Posts: 14,616 ✭✭✭✭
    madurofan:
    Good question. I wish someone would elaborate on that more than just "its best for aging".
    i wanna say that Capt did somewhere. im sure i could find it if i looked.... lemme look
  • kuzi16kuzi16 Posts: 14,616 ✭✭✭✭
    madurofan:
    Good question. I wish someone would elaborate on that more than just "its best for aging".
    i wanna say that Capt did somewhere. im sure i could find it if i looked.... lemme look
  • kuzi16kuzi16 Posts: 14,616 ✭✭✭✭
    this thread should help at least a little. it kind of explains why I keep it at 65% but nowhere does it explain why 70/70 is accepted as "the best"
  • madurofanmadurofan Posts: 6,152
    Well that explains why he likes it at 65% but that goes to smokeability not aging reasons. The mold prevention is just overkill. 60-65% to keep them from hitting 82% is overkill, not that I blame him one bit with that collection. There has to be a reason 70/70 is better for aging.
    We've discussed this before about the smokeability reasons for less than 70% but no one anywhere to my knowledge has touched on reasons for aging at less.
  • I think the reason 70/70 is the accepted norm is because at 70%RH, the natural oils in the tobacco start to release from the leaf. This allows the marriage of the different types of flavors from the different fillers over time. I've read on Oliva's website that when aging a cigar, proper RH should be as high as 79%! I'm not sure about storing cigars at that high, but in my aging humidor i keep at 69-71% but my everyday smokes I keep at 64-66%, mainly because I have a lot of maduro's and I don't feel like dry boxing for days b/c they are too wet.
  • kuzi16kuzi16 Posts: 14,616 ✭✭✭✭
    i thought that was the thread capt was talkin about it. he did state some reasons somewhere. I have to go to work so i dont have time to hunt for it. i hope it wasnt in another forum... hmmm
    I keep my humi at 65% and i think that my aged stock has smoked well. im not sure how much i can say because i dont have a single cigar older than 3 years old.
  • madurofanmadurofan Posts: 6,152
    Thats cool I wanna know the science behind it.
  • madurofanmadurofan Posts: 6,152
    jaytothen:
    I think the reason 70/70 is the accepted norm is because at 70%RH, the natural oils in the tobacco start to release from the leaf. This allows the marriage of the different types of flavors from the different fillers over time. I've read on Oliva's website that when aging a cigar, proper RH should be as high as 79%! I'm not sure about storing cigars at that high, but in my aging humidor i keep at 69-71% but my everyday smokes I keep at 64-66%, mainly because I have a lot of maduro's and I don't feel like dry boxing for days b/c they are too wet.
    See there you go, jay thats the impression I'm getting a lot more is that more people store at misd 60's and age at 70 but idk.
  • dutyjedutyje Posts: 2,263
    Honestly, I would bet large sums of money that the reasoning behind 70% is a lot less scientific than all this. The reason 70% is ideal rather than 65% or 75% or 69% or what have you is this, plain and simple

    It's a heck lot easier to remember 70/70 than 65/70 (or is that 70/65? wait.. which was the humidity??)

    You'll find lots of silly rules in life that come down to perfect measurements. It's amazing that when we were inventing scales of measure that we were so advanced as to create a system wherein all of life's useful little "rules" would fall into magical, easy-to-remember things and round numbers such as this. Have you ever heard the 8x8 rule for drinking water (drink eight 8-oz glasses of water per day, which BTW has not been supported by any proper scientific medical study in the history of time)?

    The point I'm trying to make here is that there is likely a very comfortable tolerance up to the scientifically measured thresholds for things like hatching of beetles or growth of mold. I've personally found, and many others here have as well, that cigars tend to smoke really well with an rH in the mid 60's. I also doubt that the statement that cigars will not age as fully at temperatures below 65 to be rather suspect. I would like to see the studies that were conducted to test this. My guess is that they number somewhere around zero, give-or-take zero.

    I keep my tupperdor somewhere in the 65-70% range, and my humidor (smoking queue) stays very solidly in the 64-66% range. The temps of both are locked right around 72-74 degrees with our central air. My only worry is that when I receive a shipment with water pillows, the cigars have been subjected to temperatures above 80 degrees (it's summertime, right?) for several days, and the water pillows have been shown in my own tests to escalate the humidity when they are super-saturated.

    I've gotten no beetles in cigar shipments to date, so I'm going to go out on a limb here and say we can all just settle down a little bit with respect to our obsessive number-watching.
  • madurofanmadurofan Posts: 6,152
    I like it duty and there is probably more truth to this than anythign else.
  • urbinourbino Posts: 4,517
    My humi is at 66%. I like it. That's all I have to say about that.
  • madurofanmadurofan Posts: 6,152
    urbino:
    My humi is at 66%. I like it. That's all I have to say about that.
    Thats all that needs to be said.
  • urbinourbino Posts: 4,517
    I have to say, though, this conversation does have me kinda curious about what the makers do. When you buy a cigar that comes from the maker with some age on it, what RH/Temp were they aged at? I bet it differs from one maker to another.

    I don't think the answer would make me do anything differently. It'd just be interesting to know.
  • pilot711pilot711 Posts: 176
    I store all mine at 70%. I travel with cigars a lot and find this works best. I might be on the road 3 to 6 days and they seem to do better out of the humi for that period with the higher rh. I still use a travel humi though.
  • j0z3rj0z3r Posts: 9,403
    urbino:
    I have to say, though, this conversation does have me kinda curious about what the makers do. When you buy a cigar that comes from the maker with some age on it, what RH/Temp were they aged at? I bet it differs from one maker to another.

    I don't think the answer would make me do anything differently. It'd just be interesting to know.
    I would bet dollars to donuts that most cigar makes would laugh at how obsessive and **** retentive a lot of cigar smokers are.

    I've recently been trying to just let go and enjoy. I still watch the numbers, but I check my smoking humidors every few days instead of every day, and I'm not obsessed with a 1% drop in RH. Enjoyment is inversely proportional to worrying.
  • madurofanmadurofan Posts: 6,152
    j0z3r:
    I would bet dollars to donuts that most cigar makes would laugh at how obsessive and **** retentive a lot of cigar smokers are.
    I agree. I have read and heard repeatedly that most cigars in cuba are stored in rooms that have water flowing through them, a stream or something, and thats it.
  • kuzi16kuzi16 Posts: 14,616 ✭✭✭✭
    well theres the problem. I dont have a stream running through my second story bedroom.
  • j0z3rj0z3r Posts: 9,403
    kuzi16:
    well theres the problem. I dont have a stream running through my second story bedroom.
    Well why not dammit? This is the 21st century here kuzi, get with the times already.
  • urbinourbino Posts: 4,517
    Yeah, we thought you were serious about this hobby. Now I have to question everything I've ever learned from you. (Also, your 2nd-story bedroom is in Cuba, right?)
  • bocardsbocards Posts: 32
    I have only been here at CCOM for a few weeks reading, and only smoking for a couple of months my question is this (I hope it has not been covered somewhere and I missed it).... What is the absolute high or low your humidor should reach for both temp and humidity ? Thanks, Bo
  • kuzi16kuzi16 Posts: 14,616 ✭✭✭✭
    urbino:
    Yeah, we thought you were serious about this hobby. Now I have to question everything I've ever learned from you. (Also, your 2nd-story bedroom is in Cuba, right?)
    yes, that part ive got down. it feels kinda strange walking through the rift in the space time continuem. Every time i walk through my bedroom door my fingernails are 1/4 inch longer. but its worth it.
    bocards:
    I have only been here at CCOM for a few weeks reading, and only smoking for a couple of months my question is this (I hope it has not been covered somewhere and I missed it).... What is the absolute high or low your humidor should reach for both temp and humidity ? Thanks, Bo
    high end RH 72% much more and you have moldy cigars. even at 72 they wont quite burn right
    low end RH 60% ive heard in europe they dare to go lower but not me. any lower than this and youll have kind of a crispy feel to them
    high end temp would be (in some opinions) 72 because beetles start to become active then. I think its 78 because i dont have beetles and because above that its too hot in the house.
    low end temp.... well, ive had my cigars as cold as -10 and they still taste ok.
  • madurofanmadurofan Posts: 6,152
    kuzi16:
    urbino:
    Yeah, we thought you were serious about this hobby. Now I have to question everything I've ever learned from you. (Also, your 2nd-story bedroom is in Cuba, right?)
    yes, that part ive got down. it feels kinda strange walking through the rift in the space time continuem. Every time i walk through my bedroom door my fingernails are 1/4 inch longer. but its worth it.
    I think the harder part would be when they are a 1/4 inch shorter when you walk out of the bedroom, or am I misunderstanding the space time continuem.
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