Changing guitar strings: Everything you need to know

A guitar without strings like a life with any aim. True, it is. So, it deserves extra care, especially the electric guitar strings. The strings of electric guitars require frequent changing as it may become dirty, sounds dull, or broke down.

The most guitarist doesn’t know how to change electric guitar strings properly. Due to this, they even don’t change their strings often adequate. The truth is, electric guitars are equipped with hardware that makes it easy to change the strings.

However, there are several ways of changing electric guitar strings. At all, you need to be careful as electric guitar strings have a lot of tension. If it becomes loose or snaps, you may get hurt.

Here we can help you with our expert’s guide. We’ll tell you where to be careful and all. Relax, it’s not difficult at all, as you think. Before we start, make sure to get these things.

Things you’ll need…

  • A new set of strings (Of Course!)
  • Peg Winder or string winder
  • Wirecutter
  • Pliers
  • Tuner
  • Flat-head screwdriver
  • Workbench
  • Guitar pad
  • And neck rest

Here is our step-by-step guide on changing electric guitar strings quickly, safely, and correctly. We hope you’ll get a better idea of how to change electric guitar strings. 

Step 1: Take away your old strings

First and foremost, you need to take away those faulty old strings. This process also requires skills, but there is no big trick. Instead of changing lots of strings at a time, it is better to remove one by one.

  • Loosen The Strings

To remove strings, you’ll need to loosen the strings first at the tuning peg. Turn them clockwise by using a peg winder. It works effortlessly on guitar with tuners on one side of the headstock.

For guitar with tuners on both sides, the turning direction is the same, but the angle is different. You may want to flip the guitars if you found any trouble. But, the string side of the guitar should be facing you.

  • Cut The String

However, when you are done loosening all the strings, cut them with a wire cutter. Cut all the strings nearby the 12th fret. Take away them and wind all into a coil. It comforts the tension of strings gradually.

Make sure to remember the way string ball comes out. It will be easy to put the new one in.

  • Take Away The Strings From Bridge

If you have Fender type guitar, the strings come out at the back of the guitar. Make the ball is removed from there. Now pull out the strings from the back of the guitar’s body. You may want to push the strings to remove quickly.

Also, you may want to remove the plastic backplate to see what you are doing. At this point, grab the string by a donut-shaped metal. Then pull it slowly through the guitar.

Most guitars have a simple setup of strings, so you only need to follow the way it goes. Elsewise, for guitar with wrap-around Bridge, you may want to pull them at the bottom of the Bridge. 

Electric Guitar String

Step 2: Clean the Unstrung Guitar

Once you unstrung your guitar, it’s time to wipe away all the dust from the guitar’s neck. It helps your guitar to look good and increase the durability as well. Carefully wipe down your guitar’s fretboard with a lint-free cloth.

Make sure to rub on the direction of the grain. For deeper cleaning, you can own fret-cleaner. You may also want to use lemon oil on your rosewood board sometimes. It makes your guitar lubricated and polished.

Step 3: Putting On the New Strings

Now comes the crucial part. It’s time to grab your new set of strings and to put them into your electric guitar. Here is how;

  • Get The Correct Strings

The first step is to pick the correct set of strings for your electric guitar. Most guitarists suggest using regular lite strings, whereas others prefer heavier gauge. However, you cannot choose any random strings set for your electric guitar.

The heavier gauge strings are made for guitars that can wrap the neck without appropriate adjustment. It is better to use regular strings until you become an expert. 

  1. a. If you need the high E of 0.008” to 0.0011”, you’ll need medium lite and extra lite strings.
  2. b. If you need drop tuning like drop D, you’ll need heavier strings.
  • Lay The Guitar Properly

Now with the correct set of strings, you may proceed. At first, lay the guitar on a table that has a flat, soft surface. Make sure to place the guitar in a way, so the ole point away from the string.

  • Thread Your Strings Through The Bridge

With your guitar in place, start threading the first string. You need to thread the string from the inside of the guitar out. You may start with the top E that marked as 6th string.

Poke it in the opposite way you remove the strings. Run the string through the hole in the tuning peg. Then pull it away from the guitar, make sure to leave 2 to 3inches of slack.

  • Crimp Both Sides Of The Strings

Now grab both sides of the strings firmly and turn your hand clockwise. It makes sure to crimp both sides of the string beside the tuning post. The string would look like the “S” if you pulled out the string.

  • Lock Strings In Place

Wrap one end of the string to lock it in place. Once you go under the string, then take the end back over the top. Now pull the string taut and pull toward the guitar’s tip. It creates a loop at one end of the string around the rest of the string.

  • Start Turning The Tuning Peg

Now place your index finger on the string 1’2″ away from the tuning peg. By keeping tension, start turning the tuning peg counter-clockwise. You should wind the string accurately to get proper tension. Do not overtighten the strings as it may break.

  • Repeat The Same

Once you are done with one string, repeat the same process for the rest of the strings. You need to leave some slack in the string before tightening. Make sure all the strings have the same tension. Lastly, cut the excess string by using a wire cutter.

Step 4: Tune Up and Stretching

After all the setup, it’s time to tune the string. You may use an electric tuner so you can hear how it sounds. Finally, you must stretch the string in by pulling it with your right hand.

And, hold the string with the left hand in the nut. If it goes out of tone, make sure to tune it again. You need to stretch it until you get fine-tuning.


See how easy it is! So far, we show you how to change electric guitar strings. Now you can change your electric guitar strings like a pro. Every time you’ll change your electric guitar string, you’ll surely be satisfied.