The acoustic guitar is often the first instrument for many people pursuing their interest in music and so the preservation of this instrument may have strong sentimental importance beyond keeping it in playing condition. However, keeping an acoustic guitar in its pristine condition is a lot harder than you might think. See our smart Acoustic Guitar Maintenance tips!
Humidity is the biggest enemy for all kinds of musical instruments, especially wooden ones. The best condition for storing acoustic guitars is around 40%-60% humidity. Unfortunately, annual average humidity in Hong Kong is well above 70% and very often beyond 80%. Moisture can cause the deformation of the instrument, specifically in areas such as the neck and panel, which would make the tone of your guitar dull and weak. Don’t think you could “dry off” your guitar with a hairdryer to reduce or repair the damp; damage from damp is always irreversible once it’s set in.
Keeping your instrument dry is always the first step to preservation. Protecting your guitars within sealed guitar bags or cases after use is very important. To strengthen your protection, you should also use moisture beads / silica gel packet dehumidifiers but remember that you should replace these regularly to ensure effectiveness. If your environment is excessively damp, think about an electric dehumidifier to control the overall humidity.
Temperature is another headache. In the summer heat, frequently going in and out of air-conditioned places with a guitar can also lead to thermal expansion and contraction. High temperatures may also make the glue melt. A guitar bag is designed to protect your guitar during transportation so don’t forget to use it. You should also try to keep it in a cool place to avoid heat exposure.
Since the high temperature and humidity can easily cause guitar distortion, the neck of your guitar can’t stand for long. Therefore, if your guitar is not often used, loosen the strings to decrease pressures on the neck and prevent causing a bulge on the body.
On the topic of strings, replacing the strings regularly is crucial to keeping the tone. It is very common to see strings changed only when they are damaged or broken and even then, only the ones in question and not the full-set. This will hurt the neck as old and new strings perform with different tension strengths. In addition, the use of a combination of brands of strings on the same guitar would also distort the neck due to the different intensity from different brands of strings.
Have you ever been eating snacks while practising? Or knocking a few drinks back while jamming with your friend? The fact is, salt, oil and water are really difficult to clean up from your instrument and they can make your guitar rust and age prematurely. The guitar’s sound hole and saddle are also both prone to a buildup of dust and dirt. Use a dry cloth or paper to clean these areas effectively but do not use water.
As a guitar cannot stand on its own, installing a guitar stand is essential if you don’t want to see it falling apart or getting dirty from the floor.
A guitar is an instrument full of personality and you can present various emotions by playing different makes of guitar. Many guitar players often have more than one guitar at home. However, the weather and storage space can often be a major obstacle to guitar players who wish to expand their collections.
This can be extremely frustrating for guitar players, especially if they know that instrument stores are promoting special offers or that they can’t snap up that collector’s piece because they don’t have the space they need to store another guitar. These problems can be easily solved if you use a self storage service like Cube Self Storage. Here at Cube, you can enjoy the flexibility of storage space and 24 hours access. Most importantly, the temperature and humidity control system maintain storage humidity at 40%-60%, which is the best condition for keeping guitars!