How to Replace Felt Pads on a Clarinet

Written by sean chappell
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How to Replace Felt Pads on a Clarinet
Clarinet pads can be easily replaced if they come loose or are damaged. (clarinet player image by pixelcarpenter from

Seasoned clarinet players are well aware of the care and maintenance that goes into owing your own clarinet. Clarinets must be assembled and carefully disassembled after each use. Since clarinets are wind instruments that use reeds to make sound, moisture that remains after playing can cause corrosion in replaceable components such as the felt pads. These pads are attached under each key are used to soften the contact against the barrel. The pads are attached with a sticky adhesive, so removal and replacement of felts pads can get messy if directions are not followed carefully.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Tweezers
  • Adhesive remover
  • cotton swabs
  • Rubber cement
  • Rubber bands
  • Cigarette lighter

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  1. 1

    Remove the damaged felt pads using a pair of tweezers. Eliminate any leftover sticky residue using an adhesive remover and a soft cloth to rub the area clean. Ensure that the key cups are clean by using a cigarette lighter to warm them up briefly. Hold the flame near the key cups for a few seconds and wipe away any dirt or residue with a cotton swab.

  2. 2

    Attach the new felt pads by placing a drop of rubber cement on the back of each one. Place the pads exactly where the old pads were, directly below the key cups.

  3. 3

    Press each key down to fasten the pads into place. Place a rubber band tightly around each key so they are closed shut, causing the pads to become secured. Remove the rubber bands after five minutes.

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