How to Clean Nylon Guitar Strings

Written by christi aldridge
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How to Clean Nylon Guitar Strings
Keep your guitar sounding crisp by cleaning your guitar strings regularly. (guitar image by cherie from

Playing your guitar with dirty strings can alter and distort the sound of your instrument. Keeping your strings clean will prolong the life of the strings and therefore save money. The oils from your fingers start to adhere to your strings the first time you play your guitar, so proper maintenance after every playing is the first step to keeping your guitar strings sounding perfect.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • Cleaning cloth or cloth diaper
  • Rubbing alcohol or string cleaner
  • Hand sanitiser

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  1. 1

    Loosen your guitar strings so you can properly clean them.

  2. 2

    Put some professional string cleaner or rubbing alcohol on a cloth diaper. Professional string cleaner can be purchased at any music shop where guitars are sold. Alcohol works just as well and is a cheaper, more convenient option that you may have on hand already.

  3. 3

    Rub the cleaner up and down the strings removing dirt and oils. Clean the entire length of the strings for best results. Repeat until the cloth comes back free of dirt.

  4. 4

    Tighten the strings, retune your guitar and go back to playing.

Tips and warnings

  • To keep your strings clean daily, wash your hands with hand sanitiser before you play your guitar, and wipe the strings down with a dry cloth diaper when you are done playing.
  • Once your strings are worn out completely, replacing the strings is the best option for quality sound.

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