Easy Tutorial On How To Fix A Zipper On A Bag DIY Style

Zippers are everywhere! From cushion covers that you made on your own to your everyday bag. Going on a trip and the zipper on your bag stops working at the last minute? Ok, you already know the hacks to fix a zipper issue with your jeans, but bag? Give yourself a minute and take a deep breath. The more you try to move the slider up and down, the more extensive the damage.

Woman's hand opens a bag with zipper

Learning how to fix a zipper on a bag is probably one of the most valuable hacks you will ever learn. You don’t have to use a sewing machine! You can quickly fix the zipper using everyday household items such as soap, crayons, pencils, etc. Keep reading for easy and quick solutions to fix the zipper on your bag!

Why is the zipper on your bag not working?

Wondering why your backpack’s zipper stopped working and now you are facing zipper problems? When you keep using it, the teeth become misaligned and cause your zipper to malfunction. Due to all the opening and closing, the slider wears out, which is normal but not fun at all! If the zipper is stuck and won’t move, it is probably because something – a thread or fabric – is caught in the slider or is wedged in the teeth.

How to fix a stuck zipper

Here’s how you can solve this issue.

1. Use tweezers Tweezers

Firstly, thoroughly investigate to see what the issue is. Turn the bag inside out and check for any piece of stuck fabric. Try to take off the stuck fabric by tugging it lightly. However, if it won’t move or you can’t get a good grip, you can use a pair of tweezers to do this. 

2. Use a pencil

If this doesn’t work, don’t lose faith! You have to give the zip a little extra help. Get hold of a graphite pencil and run it all over the top of the zipper, a few centimetres above and below the slider. This will lubricate the teeth and will help the zipper in moving smoothly.

3. Using laundry soap

Weren’t you able to fix the old zipper using graphite? You can try laundry soap. Take some pieces of laundry soap in a dish and add some water to it. Mix until you have a thick, semi-liquid solution. Take a cotton swab and dip it in the solution. Wet the zipper with it a few times. Try moving the zipper up and down now. Done!

4. Using candle wax or crayon
Flakes for candles

You can also use crayon or candle wax to get the metal zippers up and running again. The method of application of wax or crayon is the same as above. Simply rub the crayon over the affected area until it is lubricated enough for the zipper to start moving again. You don’t have to worry about residual wax as it will melt away due to friction when you use the zipper a couple of times. 

5. Use vaseline

If the jam is pretty bad, then you can up the game by using household items as lubricants such as talc powder, vaseline, bar soap, etc. Get a cotton bud and coat it lightly with a layer of vaseline, for example.

Apply the lubricant on both the right side and the left side of the zipper. Cover the zipper teeth and give the slider a light tug – you will be good to go!

How to fix a separated zipper

Are you trying to pull the zipper up, and the sides keep separating? This is probably because the slider is damaged. When you use a zipper quite often, the opening of the stopper starts to stretch over time. 

Check both ends of the zipper and determine whether the opening size is the same for each one. If one end is wider than the other end of the zipper, this is the reason why it has stopped working. 

If there are any visible issues – such as bent teeth or tears in the fabric around the zipper, then you need to fix them. Get a pair of pliers and squeeze the slider on the top and the bottom of the zipper. To put it simply, you use pliers to correct the size of the slider. After reshaping the slider, move it up and down to check if it is properly fixed. 

A pair of pliers

What to do if a zipper pull breaks off

It is fairly common to break off a zipper pull. Fixing it is very easy, and actually, there are several temporary fixes as well. So, when you ask, “how to fix a broken zipper pull?” the answer is using a paper clip. Open one end of the paper clip and put it through the hole where the pull goes.

You can also use a telephone wire connector, a keyring, etc. If you have time, you can replace the makeshift solution with a new slider pull. If you have tried everything and the pesky zip doesn’t work properly, you might have to replace it with a new zipper. However, until then, as a quick fix, you can simply use a safety pin to keep the zip closed

Caring for your zipper

1. Don’t Pull the Zipper Too Hard

Don’t want to go through the steps of zipper repair? The best way to avoid this is to make sure you don’t yank it too hard when you are using it. Don’t use too much force when you are fastening the zip, but rather use consistent, steady pulls to guide the slider up and down.

Hand open a zipper from handbag

2. Don’t Put the Zipper under a Lot of Pressure

If you are trying to zip an overflowing bag, think again. The pressure might be too hard for the zipper, and the teeth might come apart.  Never overstuff your backpacks. You’ll thank us later!

3. Clean Your Zipper Regularly

Dirt and dust can get between the teeth and will reduce the lifespan of the zipper, especially if you are using the backpack in a dusty environment. Keep your zipper clean to ensure it works properly. 

Mix some soap and water and dip a washcloth in it. Use this cloth to wash your zippers regularly. If there is anything caked onto the teeth, remove it. 

One of the most annoying things that can happen to you when going on a trip is a broken backpack zipper. If the zipper slider is not moving up and down properly, or if the zipper teeth won’t close properly, it might be because they are unaligned. With the passage of time, zipper teeth become stuck, or the teeth don’t match up, which makes your backpacks almost unusable. In this article, we have discussed very easy and simple ways to realign your zipper and get your backpack in working condition again. 

Here’s to a working zipper, folks!

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