Who and what is Boveda?
In the bunker with an intelligent sensor and a BovedaBoveda Inc. package. (meaning storage in Spanish) is an American company based in Minnatonka, Minnesota. It was originally known as Humidipak Inc. when it was founded in 1997, but was renamed Boveda in 2012.
Originally, the company, which wanted to develop a versatile product, was founded by Albert Saari and Robert Ess, formulation and packaging experts respectively.
The result is a patented assembly consisting of a floating and saturated solution of specially developed salts within a permeable reverse osmosis membrane. Their products are ISO certified, FDA approved and even produced according to GMP standards.
In addition, Boveda moisture bags are also used for musical instruments, food, legal hemp and much more. However, they are best known for the storage of cigars and therefore more and more brands of humidors use Boveda as their standard humidification system.
Why use Boveda for moistening?
Numerous tests with different humidity systems were carried out in the custom-built unit. When we founded Boveda, we found that it offered the simplest and most carefree solution.
Because we truly love Boveda, we have tried to build a special relationship with Boveda and become ambassadors of the brand. Before we go into the details of the different ways Boveda is used to store cigars, let’s tell you why we think it’s the best option.
First of all, Boveda produces the only available device that allows bi-directional humidification using the permeable reverse osmosis membrane mentioned above.
In this way, Boveda packaging not only releases moisture when the moisture content drops, but also absorbs the excess. This is especially useful if you store cigars in a place where the temperature fluctuates.
Other humidifiers on the same scale or budget can be devices such as foam or gel that use distilled water and sometimes glycol propellant. In contrast to Boveda packaging, they only distribute the moisture by constant evaporation and at the highest possible speed.
Evenly distributed humidity
The various chemicals used also release by-products and moisture that can damage cigars. In the meantime, the packaging of Boveda can only release and absorb pure water vapour.
In addition, conventional humidifiers give off a concentrated amount of moisture around a fixed perimeter, which cannot always be released into the humidifier.
This means that nearby cigars can be exposed to about 90% humidity, while distant cigars are much less exposed to humidity. There may also be pockets and corners that do not absorb moisture at all.
As a result, many cigar lovers roll and move their cigars regularly in a humid environment to make sure they receive the same amount of moisture. However, it is more an art than a science, and even with experience it is easy to make mistakes.
However, Boveda packaging only produces a fixed moisture level, which is evenly distributed in the humidifier. Therefore, no maintenance is required when installed in your humidifier.
Low maintenance solution
When used in tightly closed and old environments, Boveda packaging may last up to one year before it needs to be replaced. However, most humidors are made of wood, which breathes naturally during the day. Depending on their quality, they can therefore last a little shorter.
However, their high humidity packs provide the same amount of moisture throughout their life and do not need to be recharged. Even if they are dried, they still produce some moisture before they are replaced.
By comparison, traditional humidification solutions often need to be recharged to prevent them from drying out.
In fact, they can be quite dirty because liquids are poured into or near the humidor, which can end up on the cigars. Because Boveda packaging does not need it and distributes the moisture evenly, there is the added advantage that the cigars can be touched comfortably without damaging them.
In fact, it is perfectly normal to put cigars on the packaging and vice versa without any risk. It is therefore also a compact solution that does not take up too much space in the humidor.
Not only can you easily install Boveda packages and leave them without regular checks, but you can also set a wide range of different humidity levels to meet your needs.
Can you reload Boveda packets?
You may have heard that you can refill Boveda’s pockets by dipping them in distilled water. However, this is not the recommended practice. In fact, it’s possible, and some cigar lovers do that often. However, Boveda moisture bags are not designed for this process.
When refilling, Boveda packaging can easily be sprayed with water. In addition, the membrane can be pierced or tested in so-called microtubes when salt is formed in the solid state.
As a result, the reloaded Boveda packages become somewhat unreliable and work differently, depending on the humidity level. It can even damage your cigars, so we’d rather not take any risks.
It is true that we have received a lot of criticism for this belief in the above video. However, we are of the opinion that refilling is not worth the risk, given their value for money and their general availability in relation to the cost of your cigars.
Of course you can reload Boveda’s packages, but you do so at your own risk. But if you think you have to refill the Boveda bags because they are very short, maybe it’s not your fault.
Instead, it may be because you have a leaking humidifier with weak joints. Normally, Boveda packages should last six months to a year. Knowing that they can only cost $3.58 each, if you buy a 12-gram package for $42.99, they’re actually very cheap.
So you can benefit from a better price-performance ratio in the long term if you invest fully in a new humidifier. If you need references, we have several online guides to buy the best humidors.
What is the size of the Boveda package and how much should I use?
There are five different sizes of moisture packaging that can be used in different situations. Each size is expressed in metric grams, which corresponds to the weight of the contents of the package.
However, not all of them are suitable for cigars. For example, your 1 and 4 grams, which we have not listed below, are normally used for retail packaging.
First of all, it should be noted that the Boveda packaging cannot get too wet because of the double-sided membrane. In the same way, plastic and acrylic humidors can sometimes use slightly less Boveda bags when the sealant is completely sealed.
8G Boveda containers: for travel humidifiers
This Boveda packaging is rarely used for long term storage of cigars, with the exception of the small Boveda packaging with humidifier. Instead, it is often presented as a temporary solution for transport or travel.
In general, a pack of 8 grams can provide enough moisture for 5 cigars. Although we usually use 60g packs of Boved if possible, the small 8g packs are good for cigarette boxes and street humidifiers.
If you’re lucky, some sellers may even put a small packet of Boveda in the zipped pocket with your purchase if they feel generous. It used to be a bit rare, but now it’s very common, now more and more tobacco workers discover Boveda.
Boveda packaging of 60 grams: For tippers and table humidifiers
It is unlikely that you have not come across a standard Boveda wrapper. As a versatile and adaptable device, we usually use 60 g packs, which can be found in both our street and table humidifiers.
In general, a pack of 60 grams can provide enough moisture for 25 cigars. However, it is important to note that it is not the amount of cigars you have, but the announced storage volume of the humidifier.
The number of packages you can use can be multiplied by the capacity of each 25-bed storage. That’s why a 100-digit cigar cabinet needs 4 packets of moisture.
Packaging Boveda 320g: for radiators and cabinets
Finally, in 2016 the giant 320g packaging of Boveda was introduced as a solution for larger storage systems. In fact, we have been using this packaging for a few years to moisten our sealed cigars.
However, they also work with larger tabletop humidors. For example, we recently modified a wooden humidifier with a 320 gram Boveda bag that contained a metal plate on the lid.
Unlike other packaging, they are not designed based on the number of humidors, but on the available space. In short, a package of 320 grams of Boveda can provide enough moisture for a square metre of storage space. The size of the colour or cabinet should be calculated accordingly.
What is the right relative humidity for you?
As we have already mentioned, the special comfort of Boveda is that you can choose a certain humidity level according to your needs. Their moisture content is also less than 1% of what is written on the packaging.
Although these packages are very reliable, we still recommend a calibrated hygrometer. Finally, there are many external factors such as the material of the humidifier, its impermeability and even the temperature and humidity outside.
In this part of our overview we will break down the different humidity levels for different storage options. Just like the sizes they are not all suitable for cigars. For example, musical instruments account for 32 percent and 49 percent respectively, while legal cannabis accounts for 58 percent and 62 percent.
Boveda also refers to relative humidity (RH) to describe the properties of its products. In contrast to absolute humidity, the temperature is taken into account. However, we will explain this in more detail in the future handbook.
Finally, note that you should not mix packages with different percentages, as these can be contradictory. It’s pretty important to make sure they’re all on the same level.
62% Boveda packets: Prolonged aging
With a little experience you can determine your desired specific humidity level based on your personal preferences. Each degree of humidity can actually contribute to creating a totally different environment for smokers. So you can try several of them to see what you prefer.
For example, we discovered not only the advantages of using low relative humidity values for long-term storage. If you are trying to age cigars for a few years you should consider a lower humidity level to optimize the process.
Combined with a cool and stable temperature, the cigars will indeed be in a balanced state of suspension, allowing a gradual but controlled aging process.
Some people say that the exact temperature is not that important, but that it is constant. In general, however, we try to simulate cellar conditions in the range from 10°C (50°F) to 15°C (60°F).
However, we generally do not recommend smoking at this level. Some people do, and that’s a matter of personal preference, but we acclimatise them beforehand to a higher level of HR.
Although this method is mainly applied to Cubans, some Dominican books could also benefit from this approach.
65% Boveda packets: suitable for Cubans
Cooling Although 62% of Boveda wraps are a possible choice for ageing, 65% are generally best suited for the preservation of typical Cuban cigars. Indeed, Cuban cigars generally absorb more moisture than so-called New World cigars. This way they can really work better at a slightly lower humidity. Moreover, even at high humidity they can form mould.
Also, some Dominican cigars are 65% better preserved, as are some puros. However, this depends on the brand and the mixture obtained.
Moreover, some people prefer to keep their cigars for a long time or even to age them in an environment with low humidity. Usually this is combined with a lower and constant temperature.
69% Boveda packets: Ideal for hermetic humidifiers
Standard humidity level effective for Boveda packaging, 69% creates ideal conditions for your cigars Instead of making a simple 70% packaging, considered the ideal level, 69% remains just below the level to ensure it will never be exceeded.
However, it must be associated with a sealed safe. For example, bags with a moisture content of 69% are best suited for acrylic humidors or tightly sealed storage solutions such as humidors and bunkers.
However, you can work successfully with a few high-quality wood humidifiers. If it does not reach the desired level, consider a higher humidity.
72% Boveda Peck: Wood humidifiers
This humidity level is not only good for wooden humidors, but is also recommended for flavoring musical instrument cases. However, this is not particularly relevant.
If you have a typical wooden humidifier, bags with a humidity level of 72% may be the best solution to compensate for minor inconveniences. We also often use this level of humidity for cigarette boxes and street humidification systems, because they have weaker seals.
However, it should only be used in a scenario where there is a slight exchange of moisture. If your humidor is closed, this can lead to excessive humidification of the cigars.
75% Boveda Packaging: Best for leaking humidifiers
If you have a humidifier or a particularly poorly closed storage space, 75% of Boveda packages offer you the opportunity to store your cigars safely. This is also a good option if you are travelling and only have a typical zip bag.
We would only use it as a safety valve or as a temporary valve, although we generally do not recommend the use of an unreliable humidifier. It can be more of a temporary solution if you save money or if you find a quality humidifier where you don’t have this problem.
If you need recommendations, read our guide to the 10 best humidifiers to buy online. This guide covers all price indices, so you’re likely to find something to suit your specific budget.
84% Boveda Peck: Made for season
This high humidity packaging is not really meant for storing cigars, but for humidifying them for two weeks. Instead of the traditional, dirty, short-lived sweeping method, the Boveda herbs are designed to fully penetrate the cell structure of the wooden humidifier.
The procedure is longer than traditional methods, but it is much more difficult. So that’s the approach we recommend. If you are unfamiliar with this important process, we strongly recommend that you pay attention to it because a dry cigar cabinet is not only inefficient but also harmful to your cigars.
Our special guide on herbs for wood humidifiers will tell you more about how to do this.
How to replace the humidifier with the Boveda
Honestly you don’t have to do anything to use Boveda in your humidifier. As described above, the product is designed to be simple and straightforward.
Technically, it is sufficient to ensure that there are no other moisture devices. After that, you can simply drop enough behavioural HR packages, as described above.
Oh, by the way: Do not forget to remove them from the plastic film beforehand, otherwise they will not be activated!
However, you can customize your humidifier if you want it to look more presentable. Boveda offers a number of different trays and supports for the storage of the packages, which look good and keep the interior tidy.
We especially like the Boveda cedar beams, which can hold two packs of 60 g each. There is also the already mentioned metal tray for large 320 g packages.
They can be attached to the underside of the cover using the magnetic pads and Velcro strips provided. However, they can be difficult to place, as many humidors tend to place wooden frames on the lid for the supplied humidifiers.
However, they are usually relatively simple because they are often just glued or nailed. With a flat knife or a screwdriver they often jump immediately. However, be careful not to damage the humidifier and we cannot be held responsible if you do!
Can you calibrate the hygrometer with Boved’s Packs?
Whether you already know it or not, the calibration of the hygrometer is of the utmost importance. In fact, most hygrometers can be up to 10% inaccurate, which can lead to memory problems if that’s your starting point.
You may have heard of a method where the humidifier is calibrated with a cap filled with salt and water in the container. In fact, they are very inaccurate because the bins are rarely airtight, the amount of salt can vary and may contain additives.
Calibration kit for Boveda’s Butler hygrometer We thought it would be very interesting to point out for this report that Boveda has indeed developed special calibration kits for your Butler that you can use instead. They consist mainly of small, high-precision Boveda bags in double sealed pockets with zippers.
There are two versions, 75% or 32% relative humidity. You can use 75% of it yourself, which guarantees an accuracy of up to 2.5%. In the meantime, a 2-point calibration can be performed, also with 32 %, bringing the accuracy to 1,5 %.
In both cases, the hygrometer remains in your pocket and you can adjust the reading after 24 hours.
Although it is possible to calibrate the hygrometer with a typical Boveda housing, this is not the most reliable approach. However, you can do this by clicking if you have a small container that you are sure is completely airtight. However, the method described above is much more precise and gives the best results.
Boveda humidifier and hygrometer
Boveda Acrylic Humidifier Thanks to the growing success and reputation of quality products, Boveda has expanded its range with other products. As mentioned above, Boveda has launched a range of humidification bags on the market which offer a quick and inexpensive storage solution.
They are made of double laminated plastic, are also provided with a strong zipper and come with the required number of Boveda packages. Just open it and you have an affordable humidifier that will last up to a year before it collapses.
They are available in small, medium and large sizes, the smallest may contain 4 or 5 cigars, while the largest may contain multiple boxes.
Boveda has also released its acrylic humidors for a more permanent solution. What distinguishes them from most table top models is their hermetic magnetic closure. Moreover, the acrylic designs are masculine, do not need to be seasoned and can be used immediately.
These humidors are available in two sizes and are equipped with Boveda t-shirt shells to prevent disturbance. Even if they look a bit expensive, they don’t need much maintenance and are much more presentable than ordinary stupid doors. We think they’re worth the investment.
Finally, Boveda also launched its own intellectual sensor, the Butler Boveda. With this Bluetooth device, you can read and even check the temperature and humidity inside the humidifier. You can view your phone’s data and even leave it unopened to check it.
Where to buy Boveda humidification bags
Another advantage is that Boveda is one of the most widely used humidifiers you can buy online. They are easily available from Amazon and can be purchased in large quantities if desired.
We like to buy them in large quantities, so we have a stock in case we need to replace our old ones. As long as they’re wrapped in plastic, they don’t die or lose moisture.
Many cigar traders and tobacco manufacturers also started storing cigars in Boveda. Even if their choices are not so varied, they usually have what it takes to cover the essence.
Otherwise you can always visit the official website of Boveda. Not only do you have everything in stock, but you can also take out an Autoship subscription to receive regular packages.
Now that you have our detailed overview of what Boveda has to offer and how to use it, you can read our tutorials on how to improve or expand your system:
- BU Cigars – Homemade cigars
- Humidifiers and cigars for home storage
- Buy the best cigar humidifiers online
- Advantages of acrylic humidifiers
- How to install the humidifier. Do it yourself.
- The best humidifiers for your money.
How to use the Behavioral Test Guide
Reviewed by Terry T., 17. September.
A great leader! Because I have been using Xikar-gels for many years, I was curious how difficult it would be to move to Boveda. It’s not as hard as it looks!
Evaluation : 5.0 ★
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