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Question
Hi James.

I asked you about some white stuff on my cigars, sent you some pics and you verified it was mould. Now thinking back, it has been there for quite a while, and ya, getting worse , I mean months! I calibrate my hygrometers about twice a year, don't know how this happened.
I guess now I will have to deal with it. After seeing the pics I sent you in a private message, didn't mean for it to be private. But after seeing the pics can you advise me on the best way to  look after this?

Thanks again James,

Grant.

Answer
Hi Grant,

The first thing you should do is temporarily remove all your cigars from the humidor and gently wipe the mold from the cigars with a clean paper towel. You should then wipe them with a clean paper towel moistened with Isopropyl alcohol to kill any residual mold particles and prevent it from spreading. Allow your cigars to sit for a few seconds before re-wiping them with a paper towel moistened with distilled water to dilute the alcohol. Your cigars are now cleaned and should sit in a ziploc bag inside your refrigerator for several days. If mold does not reappear on your cigars, they are clean. If mold reappears, repeat the cleaning process.

If mold has formed in the interior of your humidor, you will need to thoroughly vacuum the mold up with a vacuum cleaner (use a soft bristle attachment so that you do not damage the wood) and then wipe down the interior with a soft, lint-free cloth moistened with rubbing alcohol. Allow the alcohol to sit for a moment before re-wiping with distilled water. Your humidor is now sterilized. Re-season your humidor and calibrate your hygrometer to ensure that it is accurate.

To prevent mold from re-appearing in your humidor, it's best to arrange your cigars so that they do not obstruct the flow of humidity from your circulating fans and humidifier.  Larger gauge cigars should be placed further away from the humidifier and fans while smaller gauge cigars should be placed closer. This will allow the humidity to flow throughout your humidor with minimal obstructions.  Although your humidity level is in an acceptable range, obstructions inside your humidor can cause the flow of humidity to localize and build up in a specific area and this can create an overly wet area for mold to form.

I hope this helps. As always, if you have any more questions, please feel free to just ask and I will be happy to help.

Regards,
James

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James Yee

Expertise

My main area of expertise is Cuban cigars and I can assist you if you have questions pertaining to Cuban cigars. I can also assist you with the following:

- General cigar-related questions and advice
- Humidor maintenance and troubleshooting (How to treat humidor mold, correct high/low humidity, humidor seasoning, etc.)
- Accessory maintenance and troubleshooting (Cigar cutters, hygrometers, humidifiers, etc.)
- Cigar restoration, preservation and troubleshooting (How to treat cigar mold/tobacco beetles, restoring vintage/dry cigars, etc.)
- Cigar/Brand identification
- Cigar etiquette

Unsure of a certain cigar brand? Wondering what a certain cigar tastes like? Have a question about Cuban cigars? Having problems with a humidor or Just let me know! I have smoked every brand of Cuban cigars and most reputable non-Cuban cigar brands on a regular basis so I know a fair bit about taste profiles, cigar etiquette and other fine nuances to cigar smoking. (NOTE: My main focus is on premium, hand-rolled cigars and not cheap, machine made, convenience store cigars.) IMPORTANT: PLEASE NOTE THAT I DO NOT PROVIDE CIGAR OR CIGAR-RELATED APPRAISALS. If you have a vintage cigar item and you want to know if it's worth something, please contact an antique dealer that specializes in "TOBACCIANA".

Experience

I currently have 19 dedicated years of cigar smoking and counting. I have smoked every brand of Cuban cigars and most reputable non-Cuban cigar brands on a regular basis so I know a fair bit about taste profiles, cigar etiquette and other fine nuances to cigar smoking. For 5 years, I studied with Cuban torcedores (rollers), catadores (taste testers) and revisadores (inspectors) on every aspect involving the production of the Cuban cigar and I am currently writing a book that will help beginners understand everything they need to know about cigars and cigar smoking.

Publications
Maple Leaf Gardens: Memories & Dreams 1931-1999 (1999; ISBN: 0920445616)
50 Things Every Guy Should Know How To Do (2006; ISBN: 0452286654)
The [London] Times (October 8, 2009)


Education/Credentials
B.A. University of Toronto

Awards and Honors
Allexperts Top 25 Shortest Average Response Time: 2008-2009
Highest Rank:
- 2008 - 6th Overall, July
- 2009 - 10th Overall, February

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