Whether you have to protect your woodwinds, brass, percussion or strings, any musician will tell you, instruments are much more than just the sum of their parts. Storing instruments, mixers, amps, sheet music, and digital recordings must be done the right way to preserve them properly and ensure that they continue to sound beautiful for years to come. You should start with controlling the temperature within the storage unit by using a dehumidifier. Drastic temperature changes, and above-normal levels of humidity can cause brass instruments to expand and shrink, strings and wood to warp, drum skins to dry, and mildew to grow. Ideally you want to maintain a temperature within 50-80 degrees and reduce humidity.
Case sweat is another potential hazard to your instruments. Whatever climate you live in, there is always moisture in the air, usually ranging between 50%-90%. Exposing your instruments and equipment to hot and then cold temperatures will cause the natural moisture inside the case to condensate quickly.
For stringed instruments, water in the air is readily absorbed by the wood, which will create a noticeable loss of tone, and cause strings to rust and break. Humidity can cause serious damage to wood such as swelling, warping, twisting, and cracking. It can cause glue to soften, and joints to open, and also encourages mildew, and pest infestation such as weevils, mites, and woodworm. Don’t let this happen to your cherished investment or heirloom.
Remove damaging humidity by always storing your instruments, electronics and sheet music in a dry area you can control with a mini or compact dehumidifier!