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How to Change Acoustic Guitar Strings

Stephen Rampur May 13, 2019
Knowing how to change acoustic guitar strings is one of the first lessons in learning to play the guitar. This information will let you know how to replace acoustic guitar strings.
As a beginner, it is better to learn to play the guitar on an acoustic one. While taking guitar lessons, after the basics of the guitar, chords, and strumming techniques; you would usually be taught how to change guitar strings.

Why Change Guitar Strings Occasionally?

There are many beginner guitar players who do not even try to change the strings of the guitar. They directly approach the music instruments store and ask the attendant to get strings changed.
Though the process of changing the strings may seem a bit tough, once you get the idea of how it is actually supposed to be done, you will do it easily and also in a very less time.
After you play the guitar regularly for a significant period of time, it is certain that the guitar strings will collect a lot of sweat. And due to the accumulation of sweat on strings, the guitar will sound clogged or muffled.
Those who practice on the guitar everyday will need to change the strings very often, considering the wear. It will really be very difficult to tune a guitar with bad strings. It is recommended to change the strings every three months to maintain a better tone of the guitar.

How to Change Acoustic Guitar Strings?

For changing strings, you will require a good set of acoustic guitar strings, a plier, and some time. The tone that is produced from the guitar majorly depends on the quality of the strings used. Therefore, it is suggested that you purchase good quality strings of reputed companies.

Removing the Old Strings

The first step in stringing acoustic guitar is to remove the old worn out strings. In order to take out the old strings, you will have to detune the guitar completely. After you are done with loosening all strings, unwrap and remove the strings from their respective tuning heads.
Now you have to take out the strings from the other end, which is the bridge. Unlike in electric guitars, acoustic ones comprise elongated caps that are fixed on the bridge to secure strings. Generally, you will find acoustic guitars with black-colored caps on the bridge. These caps hold the tension of strings while the instrument is being played.
Try to remove the caps with your hand, and if they do not come out, use a plier. When you remove the caps, you will easily be able to remove the strings off the bridge. You will notice that all the strings have ringed ends which were secured by the caps.

Putting the New Strings

The process of putting new strings onto the guitar has to be done in the same manner in which the strings were taken off. Remove new strings from the pack, and take any one string.
Put the ringed end of that string in the respective hole on the bridge and secure it with the cap. See to it that the cap is fitted properly, so as to prevent the string from getting loose when the tension builds up.
Use the same process to secure all strings onto the bridge. Take the other end of the string and put it in the hole of its respective tuning head on the guitar head. Pull the end a bit, but see to it that you keep a little slack, so that when you tighten the string for tuning, it properly coils around the tuning head for a minimum of two times.
Once you get the required slack, hold the end of the string, start to tighten and let it coil around the tuning head. Typically, while tightening the first three strings, you will have to turn the tuning key in the clockwise direction. In tightening the last three bass strings, you will have to turn the tuning key anticlockwise.
Make sure that you do not tighten the string completely. Use the same procedure for all strings to be secured on the tuning head. Now it is time for tuning the guitar accurately. You can use a guitar tuner to tune all six strings.
This was the standard procedure regarding stringing an acoustic guitar. If you get to practice changing the strings a few more times, it is certain that you will string the guitar in very less time progressively.