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Repair Guide: Fix Broken Glasses – Vint & York

Posted June 20, 2016 by vintandyork
  • Snap! * Oh, no,  your frames!

How many times have you had your eyeglasses damaged in one way or another? If you’re like most people, lots. We here at Vint & York have seen eyeglass damage that ranged from minor to major, but we have tips that can help. Our eyeglasses repair guide will teach you all the tips and tricks you need to know to fix glasses on your own.

Here you’ll find the best ways to fix eyeglasses, whether you’re looking to. Repair scratched lenses, crooked frames or other eyeglass issues.

P.S. And if the situation is too dire to repair your glasses, below repairable, there’re you can always go for new glasses from Vint & York. 

glasses in 1h NY optical store
In NY? Get your glasses made in 1h at our store in NoLita!

1. How to Fix Glasses Lenses Scratches?

Eyeglasses can break or bend when you carry them without a case, lay them on the table or accidentally drop them. It’s inevitable that somewhere along the way they will get scratches or break down.

Everyone who wears eyeglasses knows how annoying it is to have scratches on the lenses. Scratched lenses are uncomfortable to wear, impair your vision, and, most importantly, can actually damage your eyes.

Spots on the lens can sometimes be just dust or smudge, but other times it can be an actual scratch on your eyeglass lens. Most quality lenses have an anti-scratch coating, but it’s inevitable that some scratches will appear.

how to fix eyeglasses

TIP: Do not confuse scratches with cracks. A lot of people look for ways to fix cracked glasses, but there’s nothing you can do. The only way to fix cracked lenses is to replace them. You need to go to your optician and order a new pair of lenses.

Just because your eyeglasses have been mildly damaged, doesn’t mean that you have to discard them.

You can fix small scratches without having to go to the clinic. In fact, you can find most of the products that you need in your house.

If you are having trouble with scratches on eyeglasses, here are a few easy ways to fix them using household products.

fix eyeglasses

Here is how you do it:

  1. Use a microfiber cloth to remove the first layer of dust off your lenses. Clean your glasses well.
  2. cleaning eyeglasses
  3. Apply eyeglasses cleaner and continue wiping the lenses to remove smudge.
  4. Do this for both sides of the lenses until they are sparkly clean
  5. Once you finish with the cleaning process, it’s time to remove the scratches from your eyeglass lens. There are three types of products you can use as scratch removers. Two are common household products, and the third is a special product you can get in most supermarkets. Check them out.

We’ve rated the scratch-removing products with stars, by with how easy it is to use them and how accessible they are.

Toothpaste

  1. Believe it or not, toothpaste is effective in removing scratches.
  2. how to remove eyeglasses scratches with toothpaste
    Vint & York Razz Eyeglasses – Get them here!

Here’s how to use toothpaste for removing scratches:

  1. Apply non-abrasive toothpaste on the lenses, particularly in the places where you spot a scratch. Then use a cotton or wool cloth to buff away the scratches.
  2. Rub the lenses firmly, in small circles, for about 30 seconds.
  3. Rinse the eyeglass frame and lenses with cold water and dry them with a soft cloth. The scratches should be gone, and your glasses are now clean, to boot.
  4. Depending on the size of the scratch, you may have to repeat the process.
  5. If your lenses have anti-scratching coating, you have a reduced risk of getting scratches on your lenses. But it can still eventually happen. Be patient as you rub your lenses using the proper technique and the pesky scratch will go away.

Five stars because you already have it in your bathroom.

Baking Soda

Baking soda is as accessible as toothpaste and can do a wonderful job for you.

how to remove eyeglasses scratches with baking soda
Vint & York Big Timer Eyeglasses – Get them here!

Here’s how to use baking soda for eyeglasses scratches:

  1. All you need is just one or two tablespoons of baking soda mixed with water.
  2. Combine the baking soda and water in a small cup, stirring the mixture slowly until it forms a thick paste.
  3. Apply the paste onto the lenses and use the same process as you did with the toothpaste.
  4. Don’t forget to rinse your glasses in cold water and dry them thoroughly.

Four stars and let’s hope you’ve got it in your kitchen!

Scratch Removal Products

There are a variety of supermarket products that are designed to remove scratches from your eyeglasses. Never use any type of product on glass lenses unless there are specific instructions that tell you to do so. Most of these products have hydrofluoric acid that dissolves the coating and removes the scratches.

how to remove eyeglasse scratches with special wax
Vint & York Jordan Eyeglasses – Get them here!

Here’s how to use scratch removal products:

  1. Apply the cream to the lenses and let it sit for five to 10 minutes. After that, rinse your eyeglasses in cold water and dry them with a soft cloth.
  2. You can also use car wax or glass polish to treat scratches on your lenses. While car wax or glass polish won’t make the scratches go away, they will fill them up temporarily.
  3. Rub the wax or/ polish onto the lenses for a couple of minutes. It should feel like you are polishing the lens.
  4. Wipe it off with a thin cloth without using water.
  5. Repeat the process weekly to keep the lenses clear.

Three stars because you have to look for it in the supermarket.

2. How to Tighten Glasses?

Sometimes, eyeglasses can bend on their own, in a natural way, as a result of prolonged wearing.

The nose pads can also make your glasses sit too high or too low on your nose. The eyeglass arms can make the frames slide down of your face, or they can make your glasses feel too wide on your temples.

Besides the discomfort caused by tight or loose glasses, they’re also putting your eyes and health at risk.

Not having the proper position for your eyeglasses can lead to headaches and other unpleasant problems. You can read more about this here.

Fortunately, this is an easy fix that requires no risk of breaking them. The method for tightening eyeglasses is easy enough that you can do it at home.
Here’s how to tighten your glasses:

Bend the Nose Pads

  1. If the eyeglasses sit too high on your face, you have to loosen the nose pads.
  2. Here’s how to do it:
  3. Hold the frame with one hand. Use your thumb to slowly push out one of the nose pads.
  4. Once you have pushed it enough, try on your glasses to compare the adjusted nose pad to the existing nose pad and ensure you now have the proper fit.
  5. Do the same thing for opposite pad by switching hands. Play with the pads and keep trying on your glasses until you feel completely comfortable with the adjusted fit.
  6. If the frames are sitting too low on your nose, use the same process but push the nose pads inward, not outward, to adjust.
  7. Bend the Arms

If the arms on your glasses are too tight or too loose, they will make the frame sit uncomfortably on your face. You can fix this by bending your glasses frames back into shape.

Here’s how to do it:

  1. Expose the frame to hot steam, or run it in hot water from the faucet  to make the material more malleable.
  2. Depending on the problem, you’ll either bend the arms into a deeper curve or a more relaxed curve. Bending the arms into a deeper curve makes them tighter. Bending them upward to relax the curve makes them looser.

Bend the temples

If your problem is the temple of the frames, you will have to apply pressure on them. Here are the steps:

  1. Secure the frames and hold them firmly with one hand.
  2. With the other hand, push the temples inward or outwards, depending on the issue.
  3. Repeat the process for the opposite side and try on your glasses as you continue to adjust the temples. You’ll know you’re done when your eyeglass feel natural on your face.

Tighten the screws

You can sometimes track the problem of tight eyeglasses back to the screws holding the arms.

In time, these screws get loose from constant use. This causes the eyeglass arms to flap around. In this case, all you have to do is pick up an eyeglasses repair kit and use the small screwdriver to tighten them up.

tighten eyeglasses with screw

Use an eyeglass kit screwdriver to tighten the screws on both sides of the frames, until the arms feel stiff when you close and open them.

3. How to Fix Metal Glasses?

Metal is a beautiful and reliable material for eyeglasses frames. At Vint & York, we created an entire collection metal eyewear collection based on this powerful material.

how to fix metal glasses
Vint & York Attaboy meta glasses

How to fix bent metal glasses?

Titanium metal frames have graceful, thin lines. But they are also fragile looking glasses that need attention and care. The most common problem with metal eyewear frames is that they bend out of shape, causing problems to your eyesight.

Razz round metal eyeglasses
Vint & York Razz Metal Eyeglasses – Get them here!

 

nylon jaw chain pliers.
Nylon jaw chain pliers – ideal for all your eyewear modifications

Even a small bend in your metal frames can cause problems with your eyes because the focal point of the lens has moved.

Frames bend for a variety of reasons. They can bend when you drop them, sit on them or forget them in a bag and they get squeezed. A bent frame is not that big of an issue. If you don’t feel like paying a visit to the optician, you can fix it yourself.

To bend your eyeglass frames back into shape, you first perform a simple test. Place the glasses on the table or any other flat surface. The side that remains up and does not touch the surface is the one you should bend.

After establishing what side needs bending, you will need to break out the proper eyeglass repair tools. We recommend you use soft pliers that have their ends covered in plastic, or nylon jaw chain pliers.

1. Begin to apply pressure to straighten out the frames, but remember not to force them.

2. Work gently to ensure you don’t break your frames. Repairs are generally costly.

3. If the eyeglass arm is the problem, warm up the metal up a bit. Use hot air from a hair dryer. Never expose your eyeglass frames to open flame.

4. When eyeglasses are crooked, the nose piece is the problem. Apply pressure on the nosepiece.

How to fix a broken metal frame?

broken metal frame

If this situation occurs, the best course of action is to go to an optical shop. Metal frames can break at the hinges, frame front or the temple.

Repairing broken metal eyeglass frames requires special welding that molds the metal back into shape. This is a job that is best done only by experts.

Besides your obvious lack of eyeglass frame welding tools, the process needs to be extremely precise. If metal frames are welded incorrectly, the lenses might not fit back into the frame.

Is your frame unfixable? 🙁

4. How to Fix Plastic Eyeglasses?

Plastic eyeglasses frames tend to have a higher risk of breaking than other types of frames..

At Vint & York, we make plastic frames from high-quality acetate that is as reliable as it is gorgeous. Yet, even the best frames can suffer unfortunate accidents, and that’s when you need to be prepared.

Swanky round plastic eyeglasses
Vint & York Swanky Eyeglasses in Black – Get them here!

How to fix bent plastic frames?

Fixing plastic eyeglasses requires a different approach due to the hard, inelastic material.

Here are some tips:

  1. To straighten plastic eyeglasses, apply the same basic principles as with metal frames. Unlike metal frames, where heat is optional, plastic glasses need heat to alter their shape.
  2. One of the best ways to heat plastic eyeglasses is exposure to hot steam. After you heat them with the steam, dry them off and bend them by hand.
  3. Broken plastic eyeglasses
  4. Do not use any source of fire, such as the stove, because you risk permanent damage. Overheating your plastic eyeglasses can cause melting or discoloration.
  5. Professionals use sandboxes to adjust plastic glasses frames. The eyeglasses are heated in the sand and bent into place.
  6. The safest way to adjust plastic eyeglass frames is to pay a visit to an optician or eyeglass store. The optician or store employees can fix the frames for you. Most opticians won’t even charge you for this service.

How to fix broken plastic frames?

Plastic frames break more often than metal ones, causing a lot of inconveniences.

Depending on the eyeglass manufacturer, the plastic can be of good quality or of a poor one. Even with the highest-quality plastic frames, disaster can still strike. It’s best if you know what to do.

The most common breaking point for plastic eyeglasses is the bridge. Breaks can also happen at the arms or the temples.

Here are some tips on how to solve the problem of broken plastic eyeglass frames, rated by how easy they are.

Five stars means the process is very easy, and one star means the process will give you plenty of work.

Fix Your Eyeglasses with Super Glue

Yes, the old friend who can fix nearly everything.  Super glue is accessible, efficient and cheap. To fix your plastic frames with superglue, follow some basic steps that will ensure complete success of your crafty work.

plastic eyeglasses with superglue
Vint & York Keen Eyeglasses – Get them here!

Here’s how to do it:

  1. Clean the parts of the eyeglasses you want to glue together. The surface on which you apply the glue must be extremely clean, with no trace of dust or other impurities. Use sandpaper to flatten out the surface.
  2. Rinse your glasses with water and dry them with a soft cloth before you glue them together.
  3. Apply the glue on both sides of the two parts that need to be glued together. Fit the pieces together and then proceed to clamp them. You have to keep the frames steady for 20 to 50 seconds until the glue sets itself into the desired shape.
  4. Finally, place your eyeglasses on a flat surface and let the glue dry for a few minutes. It’s important to not rush the job. Give the glue adequate time to dry.

These same principles apply to whatever part of the eyeglasses that needs gluing, whether it be the arms or the nose bridge.

Five stars because nothing beats superglue.

Fix Your Eyeglasses by Sewing them Together

eyeglasses sewing kit thread drill
Vint & York Swanky Eyeglasses – Get them here!

Another efficient way to fix your plastic frames is by sewing them together. This option is usually used when the bridge is the broken part of the frame.

Here is how you can sew your frames together in eight simple steps.

  1. Start by cleaning the eyeglasses well. Use sandpaper on the broken area.
  2. Rinse your glasses with water or rubbing alcohol and wait for them to dry.
  3. Tie the two pieces of the frames together. You can do this with the help of some rubber bands and two small pieces of a wooden stick.
  4. Put the stick on the top of the frames and secure it on each side with rubber bands. You do this to hold the two pieces tightly together when you sew them. You can review this technique fully at Wikihow.
  5. Apply a little super glue to the breaking point. Be careful to not pour too much glue onto the area, and remove any excess super glue with a small cloth, piece of paper or cotton swab.
  6. Leave your glasses on a flat surface and let the glue dry.
  7.  It’s time to sew the frames. To perforate the frame, you need to use a small drill bit. Make two small holes with the drill bit, one on each part of the broken frame, in a parallel position.
  8. Use a thin needle that fits through the holes. Thread the needle with nylon string or another type of durable thread. Then tie the broken pieces of the frame together. Sewing your glasses is a slow process, but it will get the job done. Pass the needle and thread it through each of the holes several times to securely tighten the thread in place.
  9. Trim what’s left of the thread and then apply another touch of super glue. Once the glue is dry, your repaired frames will be ready to wear once again.
sewing eyeglasses
Vint & York Mulberry Eyeglasses in purple – Get yours here!

 

Two stars because you have to be quite the handyman/woman.

Fix your plastic eyeglasses with a pin and heat

fix eyeglasses with pin and hot steam
Vint & York Hill Eyeglasses – Get them here!

Another way to repair those broken specs is by using two needles to put the two pieces back together.

This option is more discreet than sewing your glasses. The break will be harder to notice. It’s the best choice when you broke your glasses in half. 

Here are the steps:

  1. Heat up the plastic frames.
  2. Do not use an open flame, as it will damage the plastic and you won’t be able to repair them. Instead, boil some water and hold the frames over the hot steam. This way, you will be sure that they won’t melt.
  3. Once the plastic is soft, flexible and compliant, you can push a metal pin through each side of the glasses.
  4. Unite the two pins as if you were completing a puzzle, pushing the edges toward one another. Because the plastic is soft, the metal pins will enter smoothly.
  5. Let your glasses sit until the plastic hardens.

Four stars because it’s easy and it must be interesting puzzlin’ up your frames.

5. How to Fix Glasses Parts?

Sometimes, small pieces of your glasses, like nose pads, hinges or screws, can end up lost or damaged.

Your frame cannot function properly without these small yet important pieces, so it’s best to have a repair kit around for emergencies.

How to fix/replace eyeglasses hinges?

vint and york frame arm

One of the most common and annoying eyeglasses problems is the loss of a hinge screw. After regular use, the hinges might break down, or the screw might get loose and fall on its own.

If this occurs, there are several ways to solve your problem without having to go to the opticians.

Replace a Lost Screw

eyeglasses-repair screw

The best and easiest way to replace a lost screw is by using the replacement screws found in an eyeglasses repair kit.

Eyeglass repair kits are highly affordable, and you can find them in supermarkets, drug stores and online.

A standard eyeglasses repair kit contains:

  1. A small screwdriver, designed for frames, screws and nose pads
  2. A cloth
  3. A magnifier and a storage case

The tools included in the eyeglass repair kit allows you to do a lot of repairs to your frames, whether they’re sunglasses or eyeglasses.

eyeglasses complete repair kit

Here are three ways to replace a lost screw:

  1. Use the screwdriver to replace the broken or lost screw. It’s advisable that you replace your eyeglass screws regularly to keep your frames as strong as possible. It’s never fun having a screw break or fall out when you’re out and about with no way to fix your eyeglasses.
  2. If you lost the eyeglasses screw and don’t have a repair kit around the house you can use other household items as a temporary solution.
  3. A simple and ingenious way to fix your glasses temporarily is with a toothpick. Line up the hinges of the front of your eyeglass frame and the arm, and place the toothpick in the screw’s place. Your final step is to trim the toothpick down to size. The toothpick can last you at least a couple of days until you manage to get your hands on an eyeglass repair kit.
  4. You can also use the wire from a twist tie to secure the arm that is loose. Strip the plastic from the twist tie until you are left with the metallic wire. Align the hinges and insert the wire through the hinges a couple of times.

Replace lost or damaged eyeglasses nose pads

Like hinges screws, nose pads can be lost or need regular replacement to avoid the unpleasant feeling of metal on skin.

eyeglasses nose pads

Nose pads are held together by small screws, usually like the ones from the temple hinges.

If the nose pad is damaged you can use the screwdriver from the eyeglasses repair kit to remove it. Simply unscrew the screw holding the nose pad in place and remove the pad entirely.

Most repair kits come with two or three extra pairs of nose pads. If you don’t own any extra nose pads you can pick them up at any optical shop.

6. How to Fix Rimless Eyeglasses?

Rimless eyeglasses are even more likely to break because they are more fragile. Unlike regular eyeglasses, rimless frames have little hard material to protect them.

Most rimless glasses hold their lenses with monofilament line, a thin wire that is also used for fishing. Sometimes this line breaks, or the lens just falls out of it.

It’s a tricky task to put it back in, so here are some tips on how to do it.

Changing the rimless eyeglasses thread

fix eyeglasses with fishing line
The Vint & York Fitzgerald Eyeglasses – Get them here!

For a variety of reasons, you will want to change the thread in your rimless frames at some point in time. You need a standard fishing line, a pair of scissors and some patience.

Here’s how to replace the thread in your rimless eyeglasses:

Start by inserting the fishing line through the small holes that the eyeglasses have near the bridge.

  1. Thread the line in and out near the bridge, and then repeat the same process on the other side near the temple.

Once you have the thread locked in, it’s time to put in the lens. Insert the lens into the frame, placing the fishing line into the built-in groove.

Tighten the fishing line so that it holds the lens perfectly, and then trim off any remainder.

Reinserting the lenses on rimless glasses

Never try to force your lenses back into your rimless eyeglass frames. You will most likely fail and end up damaging the lens or the frame. The best way to go about it is to cut the wire altogether and replace it with a new one.

Use the same process you would as if you were replacing the wire. Lenses fall out of rimless frames because the wire is not tight enough, or pressure was applied to it. To avoid glasses lenses popping out, tighten the wire on a regular basis.

7. How to Prevent Damage to Your Eyeglasses?

Keeping your eyeglasses safe at all times can be difficult, but it’s not impossible. Quality eyeglasses are designed to last for a long time, so don’t be in a hurry to throw them away.IMG_1064

Here are some recommendations on how to keep your eyeglasses frames in good condition:

  1. 1. Use an eyeglasses case. Whenever you are traveling and don’t need your eyeglasses, put them in a case. They will be protected from scratches, impact and all other unforeseeable problems.
    1. 2. Clean your glasses on a regular basis, always with a microfiber cloth or high-quality cotton. To avoid the scratches and other damage to the lenses, keep your eyeglasses clean.
    2. You can find more tips and instructions for cleaning your eyeglasses from our guide.
    3. 3. Don’t fall asleep wearing, on top of or anywhere near your glasses. Falling asleep in or near your glasses is a surefire way to bend or break them.
    4. 4. Take your glasses off when you are practicing sports or doing any sort of physically demanding activity. Demanding activity causes you to sweat, which can make your glasses slide off your face. You don’t want that.
    5. 5. Have your eyeglass frames adjusted at least once a year. Pay a visit to your local optician and have your screws, nose pads and frame checked for quality. This way, you won’t have any surprises.
    6. 6. Buy quality frames from trustworthy retailers.
    7. You can prevent a lot of problems if you pay attention to the quality and services of your optical store. You can read more about refunds and replacements policies in this article from All About Vision.

8. Where Can You Fix Your Glasses?

If you have tried to fix your eyeglasses frames on your own but didn’t have much luck, it’s time to consider a specialist.

Most optical stores have a lab where they can fix frames, replace screws or nose pads, and perform other eyeglass fixes as needed.

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If you need to fix your glasses in NYC, you can also drop by the Vint & York brick-and-mortar store in No-Lita. We’ll be happy to help!

If however, your eyeglasses are beyond saving, maybe it’s time to invest in a new pair. 

glasses in one hour NY optical store
In NY? Get your glasses made in one hour at our store in NoLita!

new eyeglasses 

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