Seasonal Guitar Care
Dave Haley - Acoustic Guitar Specialist
During the winter season the air is dryer with cooler temperatures. Because of this your guitar will undergo changes that should be addressed. Humidity is the subject that comes up most often in our shop. Storing your guitar at a healthy humidity level is the most important aspect of maintaining it.
An acoustic guitar kept in a humid environment will experience swelling of the wood which could cause bracing and binding damage, as well as the risk of cracking. If it is kept in an overly dry environment, you will also risk cracking the instrument. Most guitar manufacturer's warranty will not cover damage caused by excessive humidity or dryness.
Playability is another subject that comes up often. As the temperature and humidity change at a rapid rate this time of year, you may notice that your guitar's tuning is sharp or flat on a daily basis. This is a result of the wood expanding and contracting. Fret buzz or high action can also result due to atmospheric changes.
The solution that most major guitar manufacturers recommend, is a humidifier for your guitar case or in the sound hole. Monitoring a humidity level between 40 and 60 percent Relative Humidity is optimal. This can be done with a digital hygrometer which are available at the store. Normally, a guitar stored in your home will be fine, but is it a good idea to monitor humidity levels. If you use your guitar outside for gigs, etc..., storing it in the case with a humidifier for a few days afterwards will help immensely.
If fret buzz or high action can't be corrected with humidity control, our repair department should be able to set-up the guitar at minimal cost.
For repair/maintenance information please visit us here or call us at 813-254-8880.