New Furnace and Humidity

Weldaar

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I just had a new furnace installed, not by choice LOL. The guy tells me to keep the humidity at 30% To me it seems a bit low for my guitars. My LP's are cased unless they are being played and very rarely left out. What's the optimum humidity for my studio? My house has a climate controlled unit on the furnace that keeps the house at whatever I choose. I personally do not like it humid, but I am not a guitar :) Recommendations?
 

BDW60

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I have a whole house humidifier on the furnace. It maxes out at 40 percent (to keep from getting condensation on the windows). That’s all I use. It keeps the guitars happy. I used to have a dedicated room unit where I keep the guitars and I would keep that room at 45 percent. But it was a pain in the butt so they get 40 percent and like it ... :)

If for some reason I had to keep it at 30, I would definitely add some moisture in the guitar room. But 30 percent all winter is not ideal for humans, either, so I would ask the installer why he advises that.
 

Weldaar

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Yes, that's what I was referring to, a whole house Humidifier/Dehumidifier on my furnace, Aprilaire is what I have. So, 30% is too low? I can adjust to any level I want. My studio is in my basement which is very dry so I can do 40% or more.
 

BDW60

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Yes, that's what I was referring to, a whole house Humidifier/Dehumidifier on my furnace, Aprilaire is what I have. So, 30% is too low? I can adjust to any level I want. My studio is in my basement which is very dry so I can do 40% or more.
Maybe he says 30 for fear of your windows getting wet. I am in the Midwest and haven’t had a problem keeping it at 40. Yes, IMO 30 is too low for optimum guitar and people. Also, the drier your indoor air is the more airborne particles (like viruses) hang around to infect you. It’s one of the reasons flu season starts when the weather gets colder and goes all winter. Dry indoor air also just isn’t very comfortable.
 

Weldaar

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Thanx for you reply. I will keep it around 40%. Was just concerned 30% would be too dry
 
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Yep, 40% is a much better number. Most luthiers try to build around 45%, and figure the instruments can tolerate +-15% from the build humidity, so that gives you a 30-60% range. If some of your guitars were built closer to 50% humidity then asking them to live at 30% could eventually start stressing joints and result in cracks, warps, and other bad things.
 

CB91710

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Ya... 40 is tolerable, 45 to 50 is really better, and can be easier to maintain if you keep the temp up to 74 or so.

I'm lucky in that my interior is pretty much 45 year round with occasional dips to 30 when it gets into the 10% range outside.
I have humidifiers in my cases, but when they dry out, all it seems to do is "sharpen" the peaks and valleys when ambient changes.

Note that acoustics are far more sensitive than electrics.
I'd not worry about electrics at 30%. Just a quick dab-on-wipe-off of Dunlop 65 will take care of the fingerboards. Electrics will show they are getting too dry through fret sprout. Acoustics warp and crack, but the entire interior is unfinished wood.
 


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