This is one of the first questions a cigar newbie will ask: “What humidor humidity percentage should I store my cigars at?” The answer to this question, like most cigar-related questions, comes down to personal preference. Although most cigar smokers agree on the appropriate range of humidity (60%-75%), every seasoned cigar smoker has their own preferred humidity level that they swear by.
I think it is important to break the question down into two different parts:
1) What percent humidity should you keep your humidor if you are aging your cigars?
2) What percent humidity should you keep your humidor if you smoking your cigars?
If your goal is to store your cigars for a short period of time prior to smoking them, then you should keep your humidity lower than if you are aging them. I have always kept my regular (non-aging) humidor at 63%-67% humidity because I prefer a dryer smoke.
If you are not sure what humidity level you prefer, the best way to find out is to experiment by smoking the same cigar kept at different humidity levels. I did this experiment using the Gurkha Factum Presidente Cigar. I closed three cigars inside three Zip Lock bags with three different levels of Boveda Pack (65%, 69%, and 72%). I left the cigars in their Zip Lock bags for 2 months and then compared them.
The Gurkha Factum kept at 72% humidity had an overly soft, spongy feel to the length. The punch cut was a bit difficult as the tobacco didn’t provide very much resistance so the pressure of the punch cutter caves in the cap a bit. The draw was easy and clear but it didn’t produce a lot of smoke. Shortly after lighting, the wrapper busted towards the foot. The ash was extremely flakey and dropped often. The burn was pretty hot so I couldn’t smoke it down to the nub. The total smoking time was 81 minutes.
The Gurkha Factum kept at 69% humidity was slightly more firm and less spongy than the one kept at 72% humidity. The punch cut was clean. The draw was easy and clear and produces plenty of smoke. The ash was flakey and dropped often. The burn was fairly cool and I was able to smoke it down to the nub. The total smoking time was 96 minutes.
The Gurkha Factum kept at 65% humidity was firm and plump. The punch cut was easy. The draw was clear and easy and produces lots of smoke. The ash was strong and compact and dropped every 1.5 inches or so. The burn was fairly cool and I was able to smoke it down to the nub. The total smoking time was 88 minutes.
These humidor humidity percentage results just solidified my preference for keeping my smoking humidor at 65% humidity. It seems as though excess moisture ends up expanding when exposed to the heat of the lit cigar and thus splits the wrapper. The 65% cigar did burn quicker than the 69% but the ash was more compact and the burn line more even. The 69% cigar didn’t perform poorly so I would say 65%-70% is the perfect range for storing your ready to smoke cigars.What is the Best Humidor Humidity Percentage? by Kayla Becker