Introduction

If you have found that a zipper slider is not moving up and down or will not close any of the zipper teeth, it may be because the zipper has become unaligned. Over time, zipper teeth will not match up or become stuck, causing accessories such as backpacks and purses to become almost unusable. This guide will teach you how to re-align a zipper on a backpack with a needle, thread, and pliers. Although some background knowledge in basic sewing skills is recommended, we will briefly explain some sewing techniques. We will be show you how to fix a backpack that will not zip properly by re-aligning an uneven zipper without the use of a sewing machine.

Locate the section of zipper with the problem.
  • Locate the section of zipper with the problem.

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Take off the slider by sliding it towards the side without a stopper at the end and pulling it off. Slider: the device that moves up and down the chain to open or close the zipper. Slider: the device that moves up and down the chain to open or close the zipper.
  • Take off the slider by sliding it towards the side without a stopper at the end and pulling it off.

    • Slider: the device that moves up and down the chain to open or close the zipper.

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Use pliers to remove at least 4 teeth on each side to leave room for a place to sew. Squeezing the handles of the pliers,  grab a single zipper tooth and pull it off. This may rip the zipper fabric, but you will sew it together later. Be cautious that you do not get hurt from pulling the pliers back.
  • Use pliers to remove at least 4 teeth on each side to leave room for a place to sew.

    • Squeezing the handles of the pliers, grab a single zipper tooth and pull it off. This may rip the zipper fabric, but you will sew it together later.

    • Be cautious that you do not get hurt from pulling the pliers back.

    • Small, sharp parts will come off during this procedure. Keep track of these small parts so you can throw them away.

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Black Friday
Broken doesn't stand a chance.
Using thread of similar color to the backpack, insert one end of the thread through the eye of the needle. Let the needle slide down the thread until it hangs at the center. You should have two equal lengths of thread on either side of the needle.
  • Using thread of similar color to the backpack, insert one end of the thread through the eye of the needle.

  • Let the needle slide down the thread until it hangs at the center. You should have two equal lengths of thread on either side of the needle.

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Tie the loose ends of the thread into a knot
  • Tie the loose ends of the thread into a knot

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Place the slider back on the zipper. The side of the slider that you feed in first has a divider in the middle.
  • Place the slider back on the zipper.

    • The side of the slider that you feed in first has a divider in the middle.

    • Feed in one side of the zipper in at a time and pull it up to see if the slider can zip up the backpack.

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After putting the slider back on the zipper, sew the ends of the zipper to prevent the slider from sliding off. Insert the needle through one side of the zipper fabric and pull until it stops at the knot. Then, insert the needle through the other side of the zipper fabric and pull tightly until it seems secure.
  • After putting the slider back on the zipper, sew the ends of the zipper to prevent the slider from sliding off.

    • Insert the needle through one side of the zipper fabric and pull until it stops at the knot.

    • Then, insert the needle through the other side of the zipper fabric and pull tightly until it seems secure.

    • Repeat this step as many times as needed.

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Tie a knot  to finish it off and cut the excess thread with scissors. Tie a knot  to finish it off and cut the excess thread with scissors. Tie a knot  to finish it off and cut the excess thread with scissors.
  • Tie a knot to finish it off and cut the excess thread with scissors.

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Tuck the zipper inside the flap of the backpack to cover the end of the zipper. Sew the zipper fabric to the backpack to secure it in place.
  • Tuck the zipper inside the flap of the backpack to cover the end of the zipper.

  • Sew the zipper fabric to the backpack to secure it in place.

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Conclusion

Test your zipper to see if it is working properly.

3 other people completed this guide.

Emily Liu

Member since: 04/28/2017

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UC Davis, Team S2-G1, Cole Spring 2017 Member of UC Davis, Team S2-G1, Cole Spring 2017

UCD-COLE-S17S2G1

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