How To Correctly Restring An Electric Guitar?

Did you know the natural oil on your fingers reduces the life expectancy of your guitar strings? This is important to understand as it affects the maintenance process of your guitar!

How to restring an Acoustic guitar? The step by step process for restringing your guitar includes: 

  • Step 1: Examine the guitar’s bridge
  • Step 2: Remove old strings with wire cutters
  • Step 3: Clean the guitar
  • Step 4: Apply the new strings
  • Step 5: Tighten new strings
  • Step 6: Use your hand to twist the string
  • Step 7: Lock the strings
  • Step 8: Sever any excess string
  • Step 9: Examine the new strings’ operation

In this article, we will look at these steps in a bit more detail… Lets get started!

1. When Should You Restring?

The answer depends on many factors but mainly your frequency of guitar usage will make the largest impact on it. If you play the guitar 1 hour per day, you should change them once a month regardless of its normal operation to ensure your best tones. Do not wait until the strings start to sound dull because there is a chance they will break before you get chance to replace them.

2. Which Factors Corrode Your Strings?

There are many elements influencing the longevity of your guitar strings. But in general, we can focus on these key reasons:

  • Frequency of guitar usage – This is one of the most decisive factors that impact your strings. The more you use the guitar, the more wear and tear your strings get. Therefore, you should regularly restring your guitar if your frequency of usage is high.
  • The quality of your strings – Simply put, the better your strings are, the longer time you will have to use them. As a whole, cheap guitars with low-quality strings will make you change the strings more often than an expensive guitar with high-quality strings.
  • The maintenance of guitar strings – If you want to increase the longevity of your guitar strings, you should have good maintenance for it. Any hard touch or overuse of your guitar can badly affect the strings. Not only the guitar strings, everything in the world requires great care to maintain its condition. Therefore, maintenance is very necessary to protect your strings.

Step 1: Examine the guitar’s bridge

Before starting to change the strings in an electric guitar you should carefully check the condition of the bridge and then gently loosen the tuning keys available on the keyboard to avoid damaging your beloved guitar.

Step 2: Remove old strings with wire cutters

You will turn the machine heads clockwise to slack to strings. Then you will trim off them by the neck pickup or by the midpoint of the guitar’s body. After cutting them, you can remove the old strings by gradually pulling them from the tuning pegs. Remember that you should not use so large force to pull the strings outwards because this action can cause unwanted damage on your guitar or dangerously hook into your fingers.

Step 3: Clean the guitar

In this step, you can do it the same as the above instruction applied for the acoustic guitar: combine the liquid of lemon oil with a soft cloth to clean every single part of your guitar.

Step 4: Apply the new strings

You should choose a new set of strings which are suitable for your electric guitar to avoid the problem that heavy new strings will bend your guitar’s neck. You will start renewing the strings with the thickest one first-the E. Simply, you will push it through the hole corresponding to the old thickest one. Then you will turn over your guitar and take it through the saddle and pull it tight. Similarly, you apply the same way with the remaining strings with the order from the thickest to the thinnest in turn.

Step 5: Tighten new strings

You will turn the machine head in an anti-clockwise direction to tighten new strings.

Step 6: Use your hand to twist the string

You will use one hand above the tuning post and the other hand below it to twist the string clockwise and create an S shape for it

Step 7: Lock the strings

After twisting the string, you will take the string through the post and the nut, wrapping the part of the string which are already through the tuning post, around the post and between the excess part between the post and the nut. Then you will lock the strings by looping its 2 ends and winding it tight toward the top of the headstock.

Step 8: Sever any excess string

Next, you will take wire cutters to trim off the excess string to make sure that it still has enough length to back up for future adjustments.

Step 9: Examine the new strings’ operation

Finally, after you change all six strings, you can tune your guitar to check if the sound can meet your requirement or not. You will adjust the strings to make a sound like the one you are familiar with. Then you use a towel to wipe the entire guitar once again to make it with the new strings become brighter.

All the detailed steps of restringing a guitar are shown in the above parts. There are some important notes which you should pay attention to when renewing your guitar’s strings:

In general, the strings on electric guitars should be changed more frequently than the ones in the acoustic or classical guitar. You should pay attention to your guitar and change the strings timely to make sure they are in perfect condition to vibrate properly, giving the best tones from your guitar.

Rich Wilde Music

My name is Richard Wilde and go by @richwildemusic on all major social channels. I am an artist, guitar player, and producer. I have been playing guitar for over 15 years and have come to learn the "tips" and "tricks" to enhance guitar playing, recording guitar, setting up guitar, and overall get that professional sound.

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