December 12, 2023

Learning Guitar Tech Tips: Care and maintenance for your new guitar

Question. I’ve just spent a reasonable amount on a new guitar. What should I be doing to take care of it and what are some of the common problems that I should look out for?

Answer. The main things you should pay attention to are heat and humidity. These are the two things that will turn your instrument to mush. Heat is obvious enough; too much heat can warp the wood in your guitar. This will kill any chance of your guitar staying in tune or sounding good. It might also make it harder to play.

People who have guitars damaged by heat generally have left their instrument in a car in the sun. This is not good for your guitar, and you MUST NOT do this. Guitars can stand some varying temperatures but anything extreme will warp and damage your guitar.

Low and high humidity can also be a problem. Low humidity can cause you guitar to dry up and crack. This will ruin your string clearance, causing your strings to rattle. High humidity can also be a problem especially for electric guitars. Moisture from the atmosphere or sweat can tarnish and corrode the metal parts. A little tarnish is not a big deal, but rusted electronics are a big deal.

You can prevent problems caused by high and low humidity by keeping your guitar in a place that is neither very dry nor very moist. This will depend somewhat on where you live. Some places will naturally have more of a problem with high or low humidity. Keeping your guitar in a cool place out of sunlight is the best option, but you should use your judgment depending on where you live. Your guitar is an important part of your life and you should treat it well.

Next week we’ll give you some tips on developing your own “sound”.

Learn more about Jon Coursey on his Google profile.

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