The best cigar humidor cooler should not be confused with a wineador. These coolers consist of a pre-made storage system that is designed for cigars only, however there are combo models available that allow you to store both. These innovative models offer total climate control for both temperature and humidity levels. Since coolers are relatively new, cigar aficionados may have a difficult time choosing the best model. But that’s where I come in. I’ll go over it the most important features to look for, the pros and cons of owning a cooler, and how storing your cigars in one will extend their shelf life significantly.
I’ve included reviews for five of the top models currently on the market. Below you’ll find a comparison chart that will show you the differences between each of these models, concerning price, rating, temperature range, and cigar capacity.
Humidor Coolers Comparison Chart
|NewAir Cooler||54-74 degrees||250 cigars||$$|
|Whynter CHC-122BD||50-66 degrees||250+ cigars||$|
|Schmécké Cooler||61-72 degrees||250 cigars||$$|
|Prestige Import Group Cooler||51-64 degrees||250 cigars||$$|
|Whynter CWC-351DD||50-66 degrees||350 cigars||$$$$$|
Best Overall-NewAir Cooler and Humidor
This model by NewAir provides ultimate climate control for even the most delicate cigars. The precise temperature control works to keep your cigars tasting fresh by providing both heating and cooling functions. The interior is equipped with Spanish cedar for ultimate freshness and the perfect aroma. The digital thermometer will allow you to adjust the temperature in one degree increment, with a temperature range of fifty-four to seventy-four degrees. Large and built solid, this model can store up to two hundred and fifty cigars, easily.
- Precise temperature control
- Heating and cooling capabilities
- Can hold up to 250 cigars
- Spanish cedar shelves
- Key and lock design
- Adjustable shelving
- The Price
This is clearly the Cadillac of cigar humidor coolers. It comes equipped with both heating and cooling capabilities, adjustable Spanish cedar shelves, and allows you to adjust the temperature using one degree increments, which is pretty impressive.
Large Capacity-Whynter CHC-122BD Elite Cigar Cooler Humidor
This model is perfect for the serious cigar smoker. It features precise humidity and temperature controls, thermoelectric cooling that’s vibration-free, and a thermostat that can be adjusted from fifty degrees up to sixty-six degrees. It also features an internal fan, which promotes proper air circulation, so your cigars remain tasting fresh and packed with flavor. The shelves are lined with Spanish cedar, which helps to repel insects and retains cigar freshness. It’s also large enough to hold over two hundred and fifty cigars.
- Removable Spanish cedar shelves
- Can hold over 250 cigars
- Powerful internal fan
- LED temperature display
- Does not come equipped with a warming feature
This compact, durable humidor cooler comes with removable shelving, can hold over two hundred and fifty cigars, and comes equipped with interior lighting and a large LED temperature display, so you can easily monitor the internal temperature. Feature-packed and designed to last, this model scored well in a variety of areas.
Most Efficient-Schmécké Thermoelectric Cigar Cooler Humidor
The latest model by Schmecke can hold up to two hundred and fifty cigars and comes equipped with precise temperature control for temperatures ranging from sixty-one up to seventy-one degrees. The heavy foam insulation does an excellent job of helping the cooler to retain the perfect temperature and humidity levels, ensuring your cigars remain tasting fresh. The addition of the Spanish cedar shelves will repel pests while working to regulate humidity levels.
- Spanish cedar removable shelves
- Precise temperature control
- Can hold up to 250 cigars
- Foam insulation
- Blocks out harmful UV rays
- Preserves cigar freshness
- Hygrometer is not very accurate
This is a feature-packed model that comes equipped with a powerful fan that will circulate the air, ensuring an even temperature throughout the cooler. Because it uses thermoelectric technology, this model is considered one of the most efficient on the market and allows you to easily maintain the perfect humidity levels and temperature to ensure freshness.
Highly Adjustable-Prestige Import Group – The Clevelander Thermoelectric Humidor
This powerful cooler can hold up to two hundred and fifty cigars, features three Spanish cedar removable trays, and is equipped with three adjustable free-standing feet. It also offers precise temperature control with a range of fifty-one to sixty-four degrees.
- Interior lighting
- Can hold up to 250 cigars
- Three removable trays
- Adjustable thermostat
- Adjustable feet and shelves
- Can be difficult to keep humidity levels at 70%
This compact model provides precise temperature control and comes equipped with a digital hygrometer and temperature display that will allow you to keep a closer eye on internal conditions. The spacious interior and removable shelves will allow you to store up to two hundred and fifty cigars, which is a huge plus for the serious cigar smoker.
Best Winedor/Cigar Cooler Combo-Whynter CWC-351DD Wine Center Cigar Cooler Humidor
This is a humidor cooler and wine cooler combo. It can hold over three hundred and fifty cigars and up to sixteen bottles of wine. It’s versatile, offers precise temperature control, and comes with a humidity tray that ensures your cigars are allowed to age in the perfect environment. It features two temperature controlled compartments, so each compartment’s temperature and humidity levels can be adjusted independently.
- Can hold over 350 cigars
- Can hold up to 16 bottles of wine
- Two temperature controlled compartments
- Thermoelectric cooling
- Humidity tray included
- Spanish cedar shelves
- Takes up a lot of space
- Quite expensive
As you can see, this model comes with plenty of bells and whistles. It’s larger than average cigar capacity, the two separate compartments, and the Spanish cedar shelves ensure that your cigars are kept at the perfect temperature and humidity levels at all times.
Humidor Coolers Buyer’s Guide
The cigar aficionado will take special care in choosing the best cigar lighters, learning about different cigar sizes, finding the best cigar cutters, and storing their cigars a special way to ensure freshness and quality. But not every new smoker knows how to properly store their cigars, what temperature and humidity conditions they require, or how to ensure they last longer. That’s where cigar humidor coolers come in. If you normally store your cigars in a simple box, one that’s not airtight, then you should know that the temperature of the surrounding air can negatively impact the cigar’s flavor.
But why? The surrounding air tends to fluctuate in temperature. If you have cigars that you plan to age them before you smoke them, then keeping them at the proper temperature and humidity level is essential. Learning how to correctly protect your cigars from fluctuating temperatures is crucial, especially considering these changes in temperature can occur from hour to hour and day to day.
The temperature that cigars are stored at will have an impact on the humidity levels of the cigars. If the humidity levels are not kept within a specific range it can impact your smoking experience. If the temperature is too high cigars can dry out. If the temperature is too cold they can become damp. With a cooler, you’ll be able to precisely monitor the temperature and humidity levels and keep them stored in the perfect environment.
There are a couple of different types of coolers to choose from. The most popular style option is a compressor system that works to keep your cigars at the perfect temperature around the clock. However, this style can also take too much humidity out of the air, which will result in damp and even moldy cigars. The other option is a thermoelectric cooling system which works by using a gradual cooling process. This type of gradual temperature control will allow the user to precisely control humidity levels and keep a more stable environment.
Humidity is probably one of the most important considerations for cigar storage. Usually, cigars that have been stored at a lower humidity level will dry out. This means that the oils inside the cigars have evaporated. This type of dryness will cause the cigar to lose most of its flavor, however, it can be somewhat restored to the original flavor if you place an already dried out cigar in a cooler. Just keep in mind, after this point, the flavor can never be fully restored. If a cigar is dry it burns too quickly and at a higher temperature, which can give it a burnt and bitter taste.
The Right Temperature
Ideally, a cigar should be stored at 70 degrees with 70% humidity. If the humidity level is too high, it can cause a cigar to absorb the humidity in the air. Once your cigar becomes damp, it can be difficult to light or draw on. It will usually result in an uneven burn and a significant change in the aroma and flavor. It can also cause a cigar to smoke excessively which can leave behind a lingering stench.
If the humidity level in the humidor is able to fluctuate then it will cause the wrapper to become wrinkled, which can change the tobacco in the cigar as well. When you’re shopping around for a cooler, you’ll want one that will keep your cigars at 65% to 70% humidity. If you have a good humidor it should be equipped with a hygrometer which is designed to track humidity levels.
A humidor humidifier can be either passive or active. With an active model, it will have a built-in sensor that’s designed to detect whether or not more moisture is needed in the air. Models that come equipped with an active humidifier are often much bigger than their passive counterparts. This type of model will use vapor conduction to create a certain level of humidity. It can also be used in both large and small units.
When it comes to choosing a new cooler you don’t want to skimp on quality. Cheaper models tend to lack insulation. This means that the cool air that’s circulating inside the cooler can leak out via two seals. Additionally, this will allow hot air inside the cooler, which can make it difficult for the appliance to regulate humidity and temperature levels. Most models will come equipped with two to four layers of insulation which will protect the cigars if you live in a hotter climate or a more humid environment.
When you’re searching for a new cooler, make sure you look for a model that’s double-paned. Some models will also come with extra features to safeguard and prevent cool air from escaping and hot air from entering. This will include extras such as rubber seals, which offer the best insulation possible.
Obviously, to ensure that your cigars remain fresh the cooler should provide a decent amount of air circulation. If the air inside the cooler is not able to circulate then the cigars were usually dry out, which will make them lose their aroma and flavor. Most models come equipped with a fan inside that’s designed to promote air circulation throughout the entire unit. If you purchase a model without a decent fan then you run the risk of ruining your stockpile of cigars.
Before you hit that by now button, determine how much room you have in the home to store a cooler. In terms of size, there are several options to choose from. Keep in mind that you cannot keep a cooler just anywhere in the home since this can have an impact on the temperature, air, and humidity inside the cooler. As an example, if the cooler is placed in a drafty area, this can make it more difficult for the cooler to regulate the air temperature and humidity levels, especially if you’ve chosen a model that doesn’t have a very powerful fan system.
How big of a cooler do you really need? Determine how many cigars you plan on storing. Some models will have a small-capacity that will only be able to hold 50 to 100 cigars at a time, while other models can hold up to 400 cigars at a time.
If you’re familiar with how cigars are made, then you already know that most types of cigars are rolled in tropical areas where the humidity level is around 14%. When one of these cigars are stored in a cooler it should be maintained at 70 degrees. The moisture that is already inside the cigar will stabilize. Basically, at a specific temperature, moisture in a cigar will not be released. This will allow a cigar to hang onto its essential oils, resulting in a more complex flavor when smoked.
Cigars that are stored in a climate such as this will have more flavor the longer they’re allowed to sit. While 70 degrees is the perfect temperature, you don’t have to store them exactly at 70 degrees at all times. However, you need to have a cooler that’s able to maintain a specific temperature that’s at least between 52 to 75 degrees. If the cooler should drop below 52 degrees then the aging process will cease. This means that the flavors in the cigar will not be able to blend properly. Should the temperatures go above 75 degrees then the cigars are at risk of rotting.
Since cigar smoking is now more popular than ever, you’ll find no shortage of design options or colors to choose from. Search for the perfect model and ensure that it includes almost every aspect of what you need. Models that are specifically made for cigars will come equipped with beautiful shelves made out of Spanish cedar and a built-in hygrometer which is essential for measuring humidity.
Carefully consider the placement of the cooler in your home and measure the available space to ensure that you choose a model that will fit perfectly. It should be placed away from drafts, doorways, and windows. This will make it much easier for the cooler to maintain the right humidity and temperature levels. These models also come available in a wide range of colors, which makes it easy for you to choose one that will complement the existing decor in any room.
Setting Up Your Cooler
When you buy a new cooler you’ll need to prepare it at least 2 days before you place any cigars inside.
- The first step in preparation is to thoroughly wipe down the interior of the cooler using white wine vinegar. Leave the door wide open and allow the interior to dry out for at least 24 hours.
- Next, you should place a small container of baking soda inside the cooler and allow it to absorb the smell from the vinegar. Leave a container of baking soda inside for 10 to 12 hours before you begin storing your cigars.
- The next step is calibrating the hygrometer. Despite the fact that most of these models come with a built-in hygrometer, it’s also a good idea to purchase a separate digital model to ensure that the readings of humidity and temperature settings match up. This should be done even with a basic humidor. The built-in hygrometer should be calibrated at least once a year especially if both hygrometers start to provide different readings.
- Once the cooler’s internal hygrometer has been calibrated you can begin to slowly introduce your cigar collection. You’ll want to gradually add a small number of cigars to store each day. Begin by just storing 5 to ensure that the humidity and temperature readings are accurate. This way, you won’t risk ruining your entire stockpile of cigars.
Do I Really Need a Cooler for My Cigars?
Yes. If you’re serious about getting the most flavor and aroma from your cigars and you buy only the best, then why wouldn’t you want to store them an environment that will allow you to age them and enjoy an even better smoking experience the longer they remain stored? These units will ensure that your cigars are stored at the correct humidity and temperature which will be controlled at all times.
If you live in a state such as Florida or Arizona, which deals with extremely high humidity levels and heat, then a cooler is the perfect option and one that will ensure your cigars are not ruined due to high temperatures or intense humidity.
Essential Air Circulation
By now you know that air circulation for cigars is essential. Without circulation, cigars will quickly become brittle and dried out. The fans in these units will help to ensure that the humidity is dispersed evenly throughout the entire unit.
Before You Buy
If you only occasionally smoke a cigar and keep one or two on hand, then you probably won’t benefit from owning one of these models. However, if you had at least 50 to 100 cigars on hand then you’ll definitely need a way to better control their environment.
Before you run out and buy the first cooler you come across, ask yourself the following questions:
- How many cigars do I normally keep on hand?
- How much space do I have to work with?
- What does my budget look like?
- Do I plan on aging cigars?
- Do I plan on buying more cigars in the future?
Once you have the answers to these questions you’ll find that it’s much easier to choose the perfect model for your particular smoking needs. Of course, as I mentioned earlier, a cooler should be considered an important investment.
Because of this, if you don’t have the budget right now for a top of the line model, it’s best to wait and save up for the best quality cooler to ensure that your cigars are stored correctly and won’t dry out or rot, which will happen if you decide to go with a lower-priced model.
The Perfect Storage Solution-Common Concerns
Most models are designed with the latest in climate control, however, they do have some issues.
- One of the biggest problems usually comes from the cooler’s electric components. At times, temperature control systems are poorly made so they can be unreliable or inconsistent. If that’s the case, then your cigars are better off in a traditional humidor since this type of temperature and humidity fluctuation can do a lot of harm.
- Another issue involves glass doors. Cigars are sensitive to light, so it can be very counterproductive to make them highly visible. Because of this, you’ll need to carefully plan where you place the cooler.
- Humidification is another common issue. Considering that these devices are electrically powered it’s easy to assume that they offer top-of-the-line humidity control. However, that’s not the case with every model. If you want a cooler that offers precise control you better be prepared to pay big.
- Keep in mind that these models are dependent on electricity, unlike a traditional humidor. Because of this, in the event of a power outage, they may lose their usefulness.
- Last of all, a cooler should be considered something of an investment. Typically the initial cost is high, especially when compared to a traditional humidor. However, unlike a traditional humidor, you’ll need to consider ongoing costs and an increase in your monthly electric bill.
Whether or not the best cigar humidor cooler is right for you and whether or not you really need of one, will depend on many factors, such as how many cigars you keep on hand, how serious of a smoker you are, where you live, how much space you have to work with, and what your budget looks like.
Paying top dollar for one of the leading models of coolers on the market will be considered an important investment especially for those who keep hundreds of cigars on hand, and those who live in hotter or more humid climates.
As you can see, the right cooler offers plenty of benefits and can really bring out the flavor in your cigars. Shop around and find a model that has a reputation for precisely regulating both the humidity and temperature levels, enabling you to properly age your collection of cigars. I hope this guide has helped you learn more about the important features to look for, the pros and cons of using a cooler, and exactly how they can help to enhance your next smoking experience.