Pre-Stretching New Guitar Strings

If you play guitar consistently, you already know the importance of changing your strings on a regular basis.

Old guitar strings lose their tone over time, and left on long enough, will eventually break. We have many more Learn the Guitar Articles Now Available.

A guitar student playing on a daily or even casual basis should replace guitar strings at least once a month. Many gigging guitarists will put on a new set of strings before every show.

We all know the experience of putting on a fresh set of guitar strings – installing the strings, getting tuned up, then playing a song or two, only to realize the guitar is out of tune again.

Then we tune up all over, play for a while, and before you know it, the strings are out of pitch again.

The reason for this is that new guitar strings go through a “stretching” period before they finally “seat” and hold in tune.

One way to alleviate part of this anomaly is to accelerate the process a bit by “pre-stretching” the strings when you first put them on.

As you are installing each new string, gently rotate the string, pulling and pushing it in a circular motion.

This will help to get some of the stretch out of the string before you actually start playing. Perform the pre-stretch, tune the string to pitch, and repeat.

Do this several times until the string eventually remains at or close to proper pitch, then move on to the next string.

An important note is to do this “gently”, and avoid yanking on the string. Too much pressure can break the string, or cause damage to the guitar nut resulting in a costly repair.

Speed up the normal stretching process of new guitar strings by taking a minute to “pre-stretch” them, and you will find that you can quickly get back to what’s really important…playing guitar! We have many more Learn the Guitar Articles Now Available.