How to Set Up a Humidor First Time: A Complete Guide

A cigar humidor is a box or other container with a controlled humidity level that creates the perfect atmosphere for preserving tobacco or cigars. In this easy-to-read guide, we cover all you need to know about utilizing a humidor to maintain the best possible condition for your cigars.

 If you are feeling confused or stuck while setting up your Humidor, then you are right in place. As a Cigar enthusiast for 20 years, I know how to use a Humidor and how to set it up. That is why you can use this tutorial guide to set up your humidifier properly and easily.

how to set up a humidor1
how to set up a humidor

Let me teach you;

Many folks will be excited to stock their new humidor with their cigars as soon as they receive it. You will damage your cigars if you attempt this without first re-humidifying the wood in your humidor.


Well, the wood is Spanish cedar that has been dried, and it hasn’t had time to reach its equilibrium humidity of 65%. Your cigars will essentially lose all of their moisture due to it. This is not ideal.

1. How do a cigar Humidor work

The purpose of a cigar humidor is to replicate the ideal ambient temperature needed to preserve cigars. 

Your cigars will age well over time if you store them in a humidor. Cigars are best enjoyed when they have had time to age, much like a good wine. However, they must be stored properly, at the right temperature and humidity, or they will quickly lose their freshness and flavour.

how to set up a humidor2
how to set up a humidor

2. How to Re-humidify your humidor before use

Re-humidifying every humidor before usage is the best solution to this issue. Before storing cigars, the right humidity and temperature must be established in a humidor.

To do that, you may set up your humidor by simply following these steps:

Ensure you have all the supplies on hand before assembling your humidor. Among them are:

  • A hygrometer
  • Distilled water
  • A plastic bag
  • Rag sponge
how to set up a humidor4
how to set up a humidor

Then follow these steps;

  1. Avoid using water to clean the inside of your humidifier. This is bad advice that will harm the cedar lining of your humidor. If you want to use a clean cloth to wash it down faster, dampen it with distilled water rather than getting it wet.
  2. Place a humidifier in there. If your humidifier is built into your humidor, fill it up to the brim with Propylene Glycol Activation Solution. To ensure no dripping, dry the humidifier’s surface and cover it with a towel for about an hour.  
  3. Put a plate or plastic cup filled with water inside the humidifier.
  4. Insert your humidifier into the humidor after charging it.
  5. Insert your hygrometer that has been calibrated inside the humidor.
  6. Shut the cover.
  7. Don’t forget to check the hygrometer’s calibration.
  8. After a day, check the humidity level within the humidifier. The humidifier will gradually release moisture into the humidor for gradual, appropriate seasoning.
  9. Wait until the relative humidity in your new humidor reaches 65% to 70% before adding any cigars.
  10. Depending on the size of the humidor and your climate, this process may take two to fifteen days. We advise using extra humidifiers if you reside in a very dry climate.
how to set up a humidor5
how to set up a humidor

You can now keep cigars in your humidor. Make sure the cigars don’t obstruct the humidifier’s vents before adding them to the humidor.

If you need to, clean your humidor as the next step in humidor preparation. Your humidor might not require cleaning if it is brand-new, but you will need to remove any tobacco if it has been used. To do this, lightly mist the humidor’s interior with compressed air and then wipe it down with a gentle cloth.

The humidor needs to be seasoned after that.

3. How to set up and use a humidor

  • How to set up and use a humidor
  • Submerge the humidifier fully in a bowl of distilled water. Do not use tap water as it can damage the element.
  • Keep the humidifier submerged, face down, for up to 3 minutes
  • Remove the humidifier from the bowl, then wipe away any excess water
  • Line the bottom of your humidor with a plastic bag
  • Dampen a sponge with distilled water, then place the sponge on top of the plastic bag
  • Place the hygrometer and humidifier in the lid of the humidor
  • Close the lid of the humidor, then leave it closed for 12 – 24 hours. The longer you can leave it, the better  
  • Repeat this process
  • The humidity level should now be between 65% and 75%, ready to store your cigars

4. How to charge a Cigar Humidifier

Rechargeable batteries must be fully charged and discharged around once a season or four times a year (every three months) if your humidifier is in storage. You must periodically charge your humidifier to guarantee that it stays at the ideal humidity level:

  1. From the humidor, remove the humidifier.
  2. Pour distilled water or a specialised humidifying solution into the humidifier using the grate. Use only a small amount of liquid—the goal is to slightly wet the humidifier, not completely submerge it.
  3. Wipe any extra solution off the front of the device with a dry cloth.
  4. Change the humidifier inside the humidor’s cover.
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how to set up a humidor

5. What is a Humidor Ideal temperature

Every humidor comes with a calibrated hygrometer, except travel humidors. It is unavoidable that you store your cigars at a temperature as close to 21°C as possible, with a humidity level of approximately 70%, in order to preserve their optimal flavour and intensity. The ideal tool to do this this is a cigar humidor.

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how to set up a humidor

Most cigar smokers think their humidors are broken if they can’t maintain 65% humidity. This is untrue. Your cigars can be stored safely at 60–75%. Some argue that 65% is the proper storage temperature and that the recommended smoking range is closer to 80%. Your cigars are safe if your humidity level is within this range.

While some individuals enjoy their cigars somewhat drier, others like them quite moist, you’ll quickly discover your comfort zone and maintain that humidity for your cigars. As long as you are satisfied with the hygrometer’s placement, where it is placed is not important. In order to guarantee an accurate reading, it is best to let air circulate around the hygrometer. The best option is to mount it on the lid or try it inside the humidor.

6. Placement of Humidifier

Your humidor’s humidity is kept constant by the humidifier. Use these guidelines to charge your humidifier.

  1. Take out the humidifier or humidifiers from the humidor.
  2. Pour distilled water or our humidification solution, a mixture of distilled water and propylene glycol, through the grate and into the humidifier.
  3. Avoid filling the humidifier to the brim. You want it damp, not drenched.
  4. Wipe the humidifier’s front using a towel to remove any extra liquid.
  5. Put the humidor back together.

7. A Basic Rule for the Cigar Humidor

Use the “pinch” and the hygrometer, if you discover that your cigars are a touch too dry, rinse the oasis with distilled water and make any necessary adjustments to the propylene glycol/humidor solution mixture. Generally, solution lowers humidity, whereas distilled water raises it.

how to set up a humidor8
how to set up a humidor

8. Precautions for you to take while Setting up a Humidor

Here are some precautions for you to take while setting up your Humidor to get the best results;

  1. Humidification solution, a concoction of distilled water, polyglycol, and a mould inhibitor, should be added to the humidifier in your humidor on a regular the basis. This will ensure that the humidity level in your humidor is maintained at 65% relative humidity (+/-2%).
  2. Choose a spot for your humidor where the temperature never rises above 70 degrees Fahrenheit. You want to be in the range of 65 to 72 degrees Fahrenheit. The optimal range for relative humidity is between 55 and 65%. There is no need to wait a few days to use the humidifier; you should be able to use it as soon as you pour water to it.
  3. Press the cigar slightly below the band with the pad of your thumb to check its condition. If the cigar feels firm but springy, it is in good shape; if it feels brittle and hard, it is not humidified enough. A cigar that feels mushy and spongy is overly humidified.
  4. A white mold-like substance called “bloom” may occasionally appear on the cigar wrapper. Excessive moisture may be the source of this, but it’s not a concern and won’t affect the flavour of your cigars. Using a soft bristle brush, work your way down the cigar’s length until the open end to remove the bloom.
  5. Cigars from Havana require air. If you don’t smoke frequently, rotate your cigars in your humidor by opening it from time to time and moving the cigars from the bottom to the top layer, and so on, at the end of each week. Keep nothing of metal, such cutters or lighters, inside the humidor’s cigar storage section.
how to set up a humidor4
how to set up a humidor

9. Precautions for your humidor while installing

Your humidor can last for many years if you give it the right maintenance. Here are some fundamental pointers to assist you in protecting and preserving your investment:

  1. Avoid placing your humidor in an area where it could be accidentally knocked over.
  2. Avoid keeping your humidifier out in the open. This could overheat the interior and fade the wood.
  3. Avoid setting anything on top of the humidifier.
  4. When cleaning your humidifier, always use a soft cloth.
  5. You may safely clean or polish your humidor with good solutions like furniture polish or beeswax.
  6. It can be kept looking brand new with routine dusting.
  7. Avoid using water or any other liquid to clean the inside of your humidifier, as this will damage the wood.

10. How to take care your Humidor

You must take good care of your humidifier if you want it to last a long time and perform well. Here are a few helpful pointers:

  1. Keep your humidor stored somewhere it won’t fall over.
  2. Keep the direct sun off of your humidifier.
  3. To clean your humidifier, use beeswax polish and a gentle cloth.
  4. Water will destroy the wood in your humidor, so avoid using it. All you need is a moist cloth.
how to set up a humidor1
how to set up a humidor

11. Right Place for your Humidor to put

The way you store your humidifier affects how well it works as well. To avoid mold, keep it in a cold and dry atmosphere. Avoid placing your humidor in direct sunlight since high humidity and temperature might cause fungus to grow on your cigars or attract tobacco beetles.

The ideal temperature for the space is between 65 and 70 degrees. Additionally, ensure that while your cigars are inside your humidor, they do not obstruct the vents.


It’s crucial to season your humidor first. Your stogies will keep moist and fresh if you follow this procedure, however you should research best practices for your particular humidor. The last thing you want is your cigars to dry out and become damaged from not seasoning your humidor. Second, every two weeks, check the humidity levels in your humidor. As soon as it falls below 70%, take note. To function, the humidor must be filled with distilled water or a specialty solution.

Additionally, ensure your thermometer/hygrometer is operational and does not give inaccurate readings. Thirdly, store your humidifier in a dry, cool location. Keep it out of the direct sun. Make sure your cigars don’t cover the humidor vents when you place them inside.

So, till now, I guess you have all the information you need to take good care of your Humidor.

Finally, take some more time to educate yourself on best procedures as they may differ according on the size, make, and brand of your humidor. You can visit our website to learn more about all these specifications.


What if Humidity Levels are too High?

After my experiments, I think the best way is to use a pencil or pen to open up a gap in the top of the humidor box, so that the excess humidity dissipates gradually without shaking the humidor. This can take several hours, and if the lid is opened directly, the humidity dissipates faster and we can easily ignore it when it returns to normal humidity.

What if Humidity Levels are too Low?

We can add more distilled water to the humidifier while ensuring that the humidor is well sealed.

I forgot to close the humidor. Do I need to rehumidify it?

Yes, we need to re-humidify the cigar through the humidor, otherwise the cigar will taste bad.

How long will my humidor keep my cigars fresh?

In humidors, cigars have the potential to be stored for months to years, and Settings can be up to 5 years.

Why do I need to use distilled water in my humidor?

Because distilled water does not have any impurities, nor any harmful substances, it can make the cigar last longer.

Why Setting Up Your Humidor Is Important

1. Long-term storage
2. Enhance taste;
3. Prevent deterioration;
4. Control the humidity to prevent the cigar from drying out.

How to set up a small cigar humidor

1. Do not use water to clean the inside of your cigar box.
2. Plug in your humidification device and fill a plastic cup or plate with distilled water and place it inside your humidor.
3. Check the humidity level inside the humidor within 24 hours.
4. Do not add new cigars to the humidor until the relative humidity reaches 65% to 70%.

How to set up a travel humidor

1. Test the humidity inside the travel cigar box to make sure it is not too high;
2. Place a cotton soft towel in distilled water and take it out and wring it out;
3. Wiping the inside of the travel humidor;
4. Test the humidity level by placing it in a humidifier;
5. When the humidity reaches 65%-75%, put in the cigars.

How to set up a humidor with boveda

Just put the boveda directly into the cigar box, the boveda will both increase and decrease the humidity, thus keeping it stable.

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