Guitar Storage: 3 Elements to Avoid

0 Comment(s) | Posted | by Norm Kotoch, Jr. |

guitarsNortheast Ohio’s music scene has a pulse. With the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland’s backyard, and music venues like the Grog Shop, Mahall’s, Music Box Supper Club and Nautica, there’s no shortage of options for music fans. Even Tower City Center’s front yard has become an epicenter for the solo guitar enthusiast!

Whether strumming for thousands or a few passersbys, the right environment is critical for your guitar’s sound quality. Help keep your guitar in working order. Learn how these 3 elements can harm your instrument.

1. Heat

The glue that holds guitar parts together can only withstand so much. According to Frets.com, it liquefies at 140 degrees Fahrenheit. As a point of reference (also noted by Frets.com), a car left outdoors on a summer day can reach upward of 175 degrees Fahrenheit in 15 minutes. 

Under this kind of heat stress, your instrument will pull itself apart at its most critical piece: the bridge. This ruins string tightness and risks additional damage the longer it is exposed, causing costly repairs.

Heat can also ruin your guitar’s finish, leaving a messy and spotted appearance. 

2. Humidity 

Both low and high humidity impact the sound and appearance of your guitar. 

High humidity means high moisture, which will cause your guitar to warp. Structural damage can also occur as wood expands, leading to foundational misalignment.

In contrast, low humidity means low moisture, which can cause wood to dry out, shrink and crack. 

3. Dust

Dust can damage both the outside and inside of your guitar.

On the outside, dust mixes with other elements like sweat, skin oils and your guitar’s natural finish to form a sticky, abrasive film.

On the inside, dust can trap moisture and ruin your guitar’s sound. 

Control Your Instrument’s Climate

When you’re not performing or practicing, keep your guitar in a lined case to protect it.

Once in its case, pay attention to storage temperature and humidity levels. According to GuitarStorage.com, the optimal storage temperature for guitars is 75 degrees Fahrenheit with 50% humidity. But use yourself as a litmus test! Generally speaking, if the temperature and humidity is comfortable for a human (no sweating or shivering), then it’s comfortable for your guitar.

Want to be sure your guitar is always stored under the perfect conditions? Take complete control over its environment. Consider keeping it and all of your band’s instruments in a climate-controlled storage unit.

How do you protect your guitar from damage? Share with us in the comment section below. 

Image Source: tup wanders under Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic

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