Last updated on September 8th, 2017 at 05:26 pm
Another humidor accessory is the hygrometer. If you want to know the exact humidity inside your humidor you will need a hygrometer to check for changes in the humidity level. As a rule of thumb, if humidity drops under 65%, it is time to add distilled water to the humidifier.
You will find in the market analog and digital hygrometers. Analog hygrometers (like the one in the picture above) are commonly made with a metal spring, but some are made with natural or synthetic hair.
Digital hygrometers (like the one in this paragraph) take a few seconds to show changes in humidity level, but they are easier to read and do not require calibration. This does not mean that they are 100% accurate, so you still need to check the calibration of your hygrometer whether it is analog or digital.
To check your hygrometers calibration, there is a simple test using salt. Place your hygrometer inside a ziplock bag. Also inside the bag, you will place a small container with table salt that you have moistened with a few drops of water. Seal the bag and wait at least 6-8 hours. Check the hygrometer without opening the bag. The hygrometer should read 75%, the relative humidity of the salt/water mixture. With analog hygrometers you can adjust the needle to the correct humidity by turning the screw on the back of the hygrometer. If you own a digital hygrometer all you need to do is add or subtract the difference when reading.
Analog or digital hygrometer?
In general, humidors use analog hygrometers.
There are three systems of analog hygrometers:
Spiral analog hygrometers:
Spiral analog hygrometers are used in the majority of humidors. They are less expensive but they have a limited accuracy.
Analog natural hair hygrometers:
This type of hygrometers is more accurate. However, they require a lot of maintenance work for maintaining their accuracy. For this reason, they are not the first option to use in humidors.
Analog synthetic hair hygrometers:
This hygrometer has a similar accuracy to that of the natural hair, but they do not require maintenance on the part of the costumer. They are the most used in humidors. Analog Hygrometer by Western Humidor are made up with high-quality synthetic hair. They are manufactured by a Cigar Oasis, in a special cigar edition that has been improved to measure with accuracy the high humidity levels in humidors. These hygrometers are highly accurate within a short interval of humidity, whereas, normal hygrometers achieve highest accuracy at a lower level of humidity, between 30 and 60 %.
For the typical levels of humidity over 65% in cigar storage, the accuracy of analog and digital hygrometers significantly decreases. The disadvantage of analog hygrometer is that you need to more care to maintain it and you need calibrate the hygrometer to use it first time. Another alternative is to equip the humidor with a digital hygrometer which is more accurate.
Digital hygrometers are easier to read and they do not require calibration. It is important to highlight that digital hygrometers need a very short period to adapt to changes in humidity that means immediately. Likewise, they are more accurate than the analog hygrometers. Another advantage of digital hygrometer is that some digital hygrometer also read the temperature.
However, the Caliber IV Digital Hygromter by Western Humidor is one of the few digital hygrometers on the market that has been optimized to achieve the best accuracy at humidity levels over 65%. You can also check HygroSet II Digital Hygrometer by Quality Importers.
There is another option for you is that the combo of analog and digital hygrometer be Western Humidor. Analog or digital, its totally depend on your passion but in case of accuracy digital hygrometer is best.