Looking after and keeping your guitar in working order is important, it you want it to continue to sound and play the way you love. Here at Volaris, we have customers that ask us every day about how often they should consider changing their guitar or stringed instruments strings and many seem surprised at the answer! Like a great car needing great tyres, your Guitar, Bouzouki, Oud, Banjo, Ukulele or Bass all need string changes regularly, but at a minimum, we recommend changing your full set every 6 months.
Well, there are many reasons. Your strings are wound very tightly on your instrument and as they are played, they stretch, bend, and twist, breaking down the string and exerting extra pressure on your guitar. Over time, you can find the guitar is getting more difficult to play due to old strings. The guitar may also lose its tonal quality and characteristics and old strings will also put more stress on your guitar.
The stress from old strings on a guitar causes the neck to start bending upwards. This creates a wider gap between the strings and the fingerboard. This is commonly referred to the “action” of the instrument at hand. Old strings can also put stress on the bridge which forces it to start pulling away from the body. In some instances this may lead to the bridge starting to detach from the body, in other instances where extra strong glue is used on the bridge, you might see the bridge pulling away from the body.
Another thing to keep in mind and this may sound a bit farfetched, is that the older strings do not allow the timbers of your instrument to resonate and mature adequately. This in essence makes the timbers “fall asleep” and your tone diminishes. This holds true to instruments that have solid timbers.
Strings do not break that often, which means that some strings can be on instruments years on end. Today we are focusing on guitars but theoretically the advise here holds true for most strung instruments.
How do I keep my guitar playing and sounding great?
Change your strings on a regular basis! If you play lots, you are going to need to change your strings lots, but if you are a more moderate player, we advise our customers at a maximum of 4-6 months between complete string changes. This applies to all strung instruments. Orchestral instruments like the violin or cello can be excluded in that the make up of their strings is slightly different, but the tonal variation still holds true.
Fresh strings allow your instrument to resonate better through the timbers of your instrument, you will find the playability of your instrument more consistent, and more importantly, you will enjoy playing your chosen instrument. If you are unsure about cleaning and stringing your guitar, our in-house service can turn it around for you promptly and in most cases for a same day service.
To view the extensive range of strings available at Volaris, browse the site and give us a call if you are after something that is not yet listed as we can get anything you need!