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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Posts
    7

    Humidity control for guitar collection

    Hello all - need some advice. I recently had an Aprilaire 700 installed to protect my guitar collection. To keep them happy, I need to keep the RH between 45-50%. The issue I have is that the humidistat control included with the 700 maxes out at 45%, and unfortunately I've only been able to coax about 40-41% out of the system. Is there a good substitute humidistat that gives me control up to about 55%? I'd even consider a commercial unit if someone was aware of one.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Middle Tennessee
    Posts
    11,347
    honeywell makes a fine line of humidifiers, look em up on the web and take your pick

    no problem maintaining 50% humidity!



    .

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    PA
    Posts
    68,769
    Honeywell makes several humidistats that can be set a lot higher then 45%.
    You may need to have your humidifiers water supply connected to the hot water heater to get your humidity to 50%.
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  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Posts
    7
    Thanks for the suggestion. I already come off the hot supply, so that shouldn't be an issue, thankfully.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    Minnesota
    Posts
    349
    Honeywell humidifier thermostats go up to 60%. Be careful getting so close to 60%, mold stays domant below 60. If you get a humidistat and set it at 55%, there could still be particular spots in your home that get up to 60% (basement areas, etc.)
    White Bear Township, Minnesota
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  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Posts
    7
    Yep, understood. I will be putting in a UV system in the spring.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    Madison, WI/Cape Coral, FL
    Posts
    6,638
    Quote Originally Posted by Morogan View Post
    Yep, understood. I will be putting in a UV system in the spring.
    What part of the country do you live in? Most home in cold climates can not handle +40%RH with <10^F outdoor conditions. You will end up with condensation at the cold surface. Maintaining wood at 40%RH will be ok for the guitars. During the summer get a good dehumidifier like Santa Fe for summer. Manintain <50%RH throughout the summer. What has a UV light have to do with controlling mildew/mold in the far corners and under rugs in a structure?
    Remember that wood response to %RH and not temperature. Raising or lowering the temperature raises or lowers the %RH by +2%RH per degree. Take the advice you get on this site with a grain of salt. Regards TB
    Bear Rules: Keep our home <50% RH summer, controls mites/mold and very comfortable.
    Provide 60-100 cfm of fresh air when occupied to purge indoor pollutants and keep window dry during cold weather. T-stat setup/setback +8 hrs. saves energy
    Use +Merv 10 air filter. -Don't forget the "Golden Rule"

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Posts
    7
    I live in the mid-atlantic. Temperatures here rarely get below 20-25 degrees (in our coldest month, Jan., the average of our lows is 25F, with a daily mean of 32F). Average here is only about 70 days below 32F.

    I've lived here since 1994 and I've got multiple digital indoor hygrometers around the house and in the worst part of summer I've only ever seen this house get up to about 49&#37;RH - and even then that's only happened once. In the summer, my home's summer humidity is fine without dehumidification, sitting between 42-47%RH typically.

    40% is a tad dry for certain guitars depending on their construction climate. For example, the Taylor Guitar Company's factory is a constant 47%RH @ 75 degrees, and they recommend that stores carrying their product be kept at 50%RH.

    Incidentally, my house was recently tested for mold and only showed a few signs of black mold in the blower unit. I assume this is because of my home's perpetual dryness (at least until last week when I had the humidifier installed). This is why I am having UV installed at the source, since I don't seem to have any issue with mold elsewhere in the house.
    Last edited by Morogan; 11-25-2007 at 08:56 PM.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    Madison, WI/Cape Coral, FL
    Posts
    6,638
    Quote Originally Posted by Morogan View Post
    I've lived here since 1994 and I've got multiple digital indoor hygrometers around the house and in the worst part of summer I've only ever seen this house get up to about 49%RH - and even then that's only happened once. In the summer, my home's summer humidity is fine without dehumidification, sitting between 42-47%RH typically.

    40% is a tad dry for certain guitars depending on their construction climate. For example, the Taylor Guitar Company's factory is a constant 47%RH @ 75 degrees, and they recommend that stores carrying their product be kept at 50%RH.

    Incidentally, my house was recently tested for mold and only showed a few signs of black mold in the blower unit. I assume this is because of my home's perpetual dryness (at least until last week when I had the humidifier installed). This is why I am having UV installed at the source, since I don't seem to have any issue with mold elsewhere in the house.
    Signs of mold in the blower unit are not caused by dryness. Mold in the unit is more likely caused by continued dampness during the cooling cycle. The ducts down stream of the cooling coil are +90%RH when the cooling coil is operating. When the tstat is satisfied, the a/c shutts off. There are several lbs. of moisture on the cooling coil. As the this moisture slowly evaporates, the ducts continue to be damp for days at a time. This grows mold. A UV lite is only effective within 18" of the bulb.

    Regarding being dry during warm, damp weather, the lack of excess humidity is a sign of inadequate fresh air infiltration/ventilation. You need +-75 cfm of fresh air in a home to purge indoor pollutants and renew oxygen when the home is occupied by people. Most well built homes do not get the fresh air they require to be healthy during mild weather. The force that makes homes breathe during cold weather is the "stack effect" or hot air ballon effect. This is great for the guitars-not so go for the people.

    For ideal IAQ, bring 75 cfm of fresh air into your home when you are there. Maintain <50%RH for comfort, health, and yes, the guitars. Most health organization are recommending fresh air ventilation and <50%RH when occupied. With accurate monitoring, you will realize the importantance of a good ventilating dehumidifier during damp, cool, low/no a/c requirements. Following these recommendations will you to will also grow old along with your guitars. Seasons Greetings, TB
    Bear Rules: Keep our home <50% RH summer, controls mites/mold and very comfortable.
    Provide 60-100 cfm of fresh air when occupied to purge indoor pollutants and keep window dry during cold weather. T-stat setup/setback +8 hrs. saves energy
    Use +Merv 10 air filter. -Don't forget the "Golden Rule"

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Posts
    11,808
    are you the guy from usenet with the guitar 'humidor'?
    The way we build has a greater impact on our comfort, energy consumption and IAQ than any HVAC system we install.

    http://www.ductstrap.com/

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Posts
    11,808
    easy enough to control humidity in a sealed off closet than it is to try and risk mold in the whole house in the winter
    The way we build has a greater impact on our comfort, energy consumption and IAQ than any HVAC system we install.

    http://www.ductstrap.com/

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Posts
    7
    Quote Originally Posted by Carnak View Post
    are you the guy from usenet with the guitar 'humidor'?
    No. Not sure to what you are referring, although if I had room in the house to make one, I would.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Posts
    7
    Quote Originally Posted by Carnak View Post
    easy enough to control humidity in a sealed off closet than it is to try and risk mold in the whole house in the winter
    I'll keep that in mind the next time I am practicing my guitar in a closet. ;-) Seriously, I play as many as eight or more hours throughout the day, so my environment honestly needs to be the same as where my guitars are stored.

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