How to Take Care of Your Guitar

Any musical instrument requires careful maintenance. If you do not look after an instrument you will find that it does not function as well as you would wish, impacting on both your performance and your practice. Whether it is keeping strings dry and clean, or making sure that your instrument is stored and transported carefully, a guitar requires some care and attention.

Perhaps the most important thing to consider when looking after your guitar is how it is transported. If you are going to be carrying your instrument to rehearsals or performances in different venues, then you need to acquire a proper case or carrier. Soft bags can be adequate for some people, who are using less valuable instruments and are not chucking their stuff into the back of a van.

With a more expensive instrument you may prefer to buy a hard case. These are especially useful for people who are transporting their equipment frequently, as they can be stored in vehicles safely, protecting the instrument from damage such as scratches and breaks.

When it comes to the actual things you need to do to keep your guitar in excellent working order, a lot of it comes down to cleaning. Keep your instrument dust free by wiping its body and neck down with a dry furniture cloth every time you play.

It is also crucial to keep the strings clean and dry. Wipe the strings with a dry cloth after every playing session, that way you will keep them free from sweat, grease and grime, all of which can cause them to corrode more quickly than usual. Using strings in poor condition will be expensive, as this makes them more likely to break.

Sweat and grime also worsen the performance of the strings in musical terms, making them sound duller, as well as making them harder to tune. It is essential that you wipe them down thoroughly after every session on the instrument.

Keeping the fret board of the instrument clean will also help the guitar retain its performance quality. Every time you change the strings for a new set, clean the fretboard thoroughly too. Grime can build up around the frets, so use an old toothbrush and a weak solution of soapy water to get it all off. Dry thoroughly with a cloth afterwards.

These simple steps should ensure that your guitar stays looking and sounding good throughout the time that you own and play it. Maintenance of your instrument comes second only to practice when it comes to being a better musician. Never neglect it and then one day people may well be buying box office theatre tickets to see you play.

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