Learning how to fix a broken zipper is one of the life skills that make homesteading or survival manageable.
How to Fix a Broken Zipper in a Jiffy
Why You Should Learn How to Fix a Zipper
Knowing how to fix a broken zipper is a skill people take for granted. When a zipper keeps pulling apart, many go to a tailor right away. They are more than happy to spend money to have someone fix a little trouble.
If not for the tailor, I know these clothes will never see the light of day again. Most probably, they will go straight to the trash or to a donation box. Well, you never have to let these things happen again when you learn how to sew and how to repair a zipper.
You Will Need
- A pair of pliers
- Thick thread (thicker than a regular sewing thread, often used for buttons)
Step 1: Remove the Bumper
The first step to learning how to fix a broken zipper is to grab the pliers. Detach the metal bumper from the bottom of the zipper. With a little bit of muscle, you’ll be able to do it. Pull the zipper down. Stop just before you reach the last teeth. Don’t remove the zipper completely.
Step 2: Arrange the Teeth
Know how to realign a zipper. Using your hands, straighten out the teeth. The goal here is to remove all sticky teeth on one side of it. After doing this, you may now pull the zipper up, stopping halfway. Watch out for locked teeth. Fix them as you go along.
Step 3: Stitch It Up
Now, stitch up the spot where the metal bumper used to be. A thread should now be in its place. Note, though, this isn’t an ordinary thread. It needs to withstand pressure and strain, which were the problems, to begin with. At least six stitches should replace your metal bumper. So sew as much as you need to achieve this.
Take your time sewing and use as much thread as you need until the replacement thread is strong enough to last another round of wear and tear. Finish it off by tying a thread into a knot on the zipper’s back side.
Step 4: Zip It Up
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Zita Memory 4 – Zippers can be tricky devils! I'm having one replaced on a wedding gown even as I write this. It reminds me of one of my favorite Wedding Rescues for our bridesmaid, or as we affectionately call it, Bridal 911! One particularly busy Saturday afternoon, I answered the phone to find a bridesmaid for one of our brides trying to maintain control but clearly under duress. You see, this was the Zita Bride's wedding day, and, in fact , the wedding had been a fabulous success earlier in the day. After pictures, however, all the Maids had returned to the @thepfisterhotel to relax prior to the reception. In an effort not to wrinkle the dresses, they had taken them off and hung them in the closet. When they went to redress, one of the zippers seemed to stick. (Sticky devil…) Their efforts to get the zipper to close had only made it worse, because now the zipper was busted below the slide. This bridesmaid was trapped with an unwearable dress stuck around her waist like a life preserver! Neither going up or down, this was a fashion disaster!! So…. Who do you call?!? Team Zita!! The entire group of beautifully dressed bridesmaids walked across the street to the salon. With a little bridal salon hocus pocus and the miracle worker of alterations, we were able to remove the dress, fix the zipper, recombobulate the bridesmaid and send the girls on their way. Just anotherSaturday at the Salon! No one had told the Zita Bride about the mishap, and to this day I'm not sure she knows. Or does she? 🤔Can anyone confirm? #countdowntoclose #brokenzipper #bridal911
Now, your zipper is good to go! Pulling it up should feel as smooth as a brand-new purchase. You should have no more failed attempts at tugging at that zipper. Since you can’t avoid accidents forever, here’s an easy remedy in case it happens again. Use a seam ripper (or any razor blade should work) to undo the stitching. Repeat the steps on how to fix a broken zipper.
Check out this video from TVProductsUSA for more tips on how to fix broken zippers:
Knowing how to fix a broken zipper isn’t as grand as learning the skills to survive terrorist attacks or other tragedies. It will help you get quite a bit more mileage out of your clothing, though. It alone will save you a ton of money in the long run. When the stores aren’t open, a zipper in good condition can keep you fully clothed! You can repair your backpack straps while in the outdoors, too. To be always ready for it, I recommend keeping a zipper pull repair kit in the house or car at all times.
Do you have other handy tips on how to fix a broken zipper? Let us know in the comments section below!
Editor’s Note: This post was first published in August 2013 and has been updated for quality and relevancy.