How To Repair A Zip - Clothes Doctor

How To Repair A Zip

Zippers can become a nuisance when they start to encounter their classic problems like separating, sliding open, or just getting stuck, and no one wants to throw away a perfectly good garment because of a faulty zip! Well, with these tips and tricks, you won't have to. 
Follow these steps to get your zip running smoothly again in no time.


  • Check that the surrounding fabric isn't caught in the teeth. Assess for any snags, folds or tangles that may have got caught.
  • If you find that the surrounding fabric is caught, gently pull it away from the zip, either by hand or with tweezers, to ensure you do not tear the fabric.

graphite pencil

  • Take a graphite pencil and rub both sides of the teeth, focusing on the middle where the teeth intersect. If the zip glides smoothly, wipe off the remaining graphite. 

lip balm on zip

  • If the zip continues to stick, use a product with more lubrication. Common household items such as soap, window cleaner, or lip balm will do the trick. 
  • Add the product directly to the teeth. Gradually pull down the zip, applying more product as you go, and continue to do so until the zip comes all the way down. Keep the product on the zip, avoiding the surrounding fabric to prevent discolouration and staining. 

Are you finding your cycling kit tough to get properly clean? Try our Eco Wash For Sportswear for the perfect wash for those tough performance fabrics. 



zip not up

This is a common problem with zips on trousers or jackets, and can lead to an embarrassing situation if not fixed! This happens because the middle section of the zip tends to be stretched, and the pressure can cause the zip to slide back down. 

  • If the affected zip is on trousers, as a temporary fix you can attach a key-ring (about the size of a penny) or rubber band to the zip pull and hook to the button. 
  • Alternatively, if you find the zip is slippery, coat the top teeth with hairspray to add resistance. 

If these fixes don't work, the zip might need replacing completely. For zip replacement just request a quote from our team  - we can repair everything from performance fabrics to synthetics and waterproof materials!


This issue is definitely a common one, and one of the most annoying! It's sometimes hard to pin down what's causing this, so you may need to try a few tricks to find what works. 
  • Check whether any fabric is caught in the zip, and remove with tweezers or by hand if so.
  • If not, take a look at the individual teeth. If any of the teeth are sticking out, move them back into place with a pair of pliers. 
  • If the teeth are straight, there might be an issue with the slider mechanic. Over time the slider can start to come apart and lose grip of the teeth of the zip. With a pair of pliers, apply some gentle pressure to close the slider. 

Want to know more tips for caring for your cycling gear? Check out our blog with all the tips and tricks to keep you looking Tour de France ready. 


Hopefully these tips and tricks can help you tackle a multitude of zip problems - you'll be back on the road in a cycling kit that looks fabulous in no time! 

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