Q. What do I need to know about humidity and my Park Guitar?
Guitars go through changes related to humidity as the seasons change throughout the year. The most common problem relates to a lack of humidity, and this is frequently a problem in winter when the relative humidity drops significantly and electric base board or forced air heating systems circulate this dry air. The subtle symptoms of a guitar drying out are generally noticed while playing – a lack of humidity can cause the arch of the top to fall, and this causes the action of the instrument to drop, creating frustrating buzzes. One may also notice the ends of the frets feel sharper, caused by the fingerboard shrinking. In more extreme cases, cracks can appear, braces may loosen and irreversible damage can be done.
Many people have humidifiers for their homes, and I while I certainly recommend their use, they should not be relied upon exclusively to keep your guitar moist in the winter. I highly recommend the use of an internal guitar humidifier as they provide moist air where it is needed most – inside the guitar. The Planet Waves system works really well – the unit hangs through the strings when the guitar is not being played, and it is easy to maintain and won’t leak. When you aren’t playing your guitar, consider leaving it in its case with the humidifier in place.
There is a wealth of information online related to guitars and humidity. Just type in ‘guitars and humidity’ into your search engine to find out more on the subject.
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