4. Your fretboard looks and feels dry
A dry fretboard not only looks bad, but is also bad for your guitar. A dry fretboard can lead to the neck bowing, warping, and in severe cases, cracking. Guitar necks have to hold anywhere between 80 and 180 pounds of tension! Having a healthy, hydrated fretboard is key to a strong neck. You can tell your fretboard is dry from the discoloration of the wood. For example, rosewood fretboards may turn from a dark brown/red color to a light brown/grey color. In some cases, frets may start to stick out the sides of the neck, ever so slightly, due to the shrinkage of the fretboard that dehydration causes. You may also notice white lines appear on your fretboard, a common sign your guitar needs a drink. What should it drink? Lemon oil! This is especially important during the winter time. Not only does lemon oil hydrate the fretboard, but it is also a fretboard cleaner. Another way you can prevent dehydration is with a humidifier. Like I said before, it is best to keep your guitar in a place with controlled humidity (40 – 55%).