Direct sunshine, temperature increases, and uneven storing setup are the main causes of warping vinyl records. However, warped records can easily be repaired, so you can rejoice with your musical bliss.
But how can these damaged records be fixed? Can you mend them with stuff you already have at home?
For example, can you fix warped record hair dryer?
Yes, you can use a hair dryer to mend your warped record. Place your record between two glass panels and apply heat. After applying minimal heat, place a heavy object on top of the glasses. The heat and consistent pressure should be enough to repair your records. This works best for small records.
But what about larger records? What approach should you take and how reliable are those? All of this will be covered in the following section. Keep reading!
Can You Fix Warped Record Hair Dryer?
When it comes to vinyl, the most annoying problem to deal with is a warped record. A warped record may result in different types of issues. It can range from slight sound distortion to complete incapability to play the record.
Though it may appear hopeless to repair, some unusual methods like a hair dryer can help. Heat can be applied using a hair dryer to fix these distorted records quickly.
Even some records play after getting terribly warped!
But you might not be that lucky. So, heating up the warped record can be one way to solve the issue.
When heat and pressure are applied together, they straighten the record player. However, you must avoid overheating the record player to avoid further warping them.
As a result, a hair dryer is an ideal heating source for small record players. For larger records to be straightened, a bigger heating device is required.
Steps to Fix the Warped Record With A Hair Dryer
To correctly repair the records, you must use the proper techniques and the necessary equipment. Or else your vinyl might get more ruined. This is one of the causes behind your record player sounding low-pitched.
Let’s go over the necessary equipment and processes. Here are the necessary tools you’ll need to go through the whole process-
- Two thick panel glasses bigger than the record
- Flat heavy books
- Hair dryer
- Oven mitts
Always remember to use good-quality oven mitts for this process. For example, KitchenAid Asteroid Cotton Oven Mitts or OXO Good Grips Silicone Oven Mitt.
You can also check out All-Clad Oven Mitt. These are all heavy-duty oven mitts that won’t let your hands get burned.
Step 1: Placement of the Warped Record and Glasses
You need to place the record between two glasses. This sandwich method will help to fix the warped record.
First, one of the glass panels should be set on the table. Now center the record on the first glass panel and place the second glass panel on top.
Try to set the glasses so that one side is against the edge of the table. This will make it easier to pick them up after heating them.
Step 2: Use Hair Dryer to Apply Heat
Now switch on the hair dryer and apply heat on the top of the glass panel. The glass won’t get hot enough right away; it will take a few minutes.
The warped area is gently heated by the hairdryer, flattening it between the glass. But be cautious to check to see if the glasses are getting too hot.
Because too much heat can start the record to melt. And sometimes excessive heat can cause spontaneous glass breakage as well.
What Temperature Do Records Melt?
The vinyl record usually warps at 140 degrees Fahrenheit (60-degree Celsius). When the temperature rises above 212 degrees Fahrenheit (100 degrees Celsius, it will begin to melt).
You can use a thermal meter to determine the heat, so you don’t exceed the limit.
Step 3: Let the Glasses Cool Down
Move the glasses away from the table’s edge and set them down on the surface carefully. As you wait for the glasses to cool, place 1-2 thick books on top of them.
To prevent further warping, avoid placing too much weight on top of the glasses. Give it a couple of hours for them to cool down and to have the warps straightened.
Step 4: Check the Record for Warps
Look closely at the record to check if any warps remain after the glasses have cooled. If the warping is still noticeable, you might have to repeat the technique. However, repeating these procedures can be far more damaging.
Other Ways to Fix the Warped Records
There are two other methods for repairing the warped record. One of them uses a heatless approach to correct minor warps. The second one is used for large vinyl records. These records are more difficult to heat up with a hair dryer.
You will need two heavy books for this. These books need to be wider than the records in order to fully cover the records. They must also be relatively heavy in order to provide sufficient pressure on the records.
First, the books’ surfaces must be thoroughly cleaned. Because even a single grain of dust or other particles could scratch records and damage them.
The book should now be placed on a flat surface. It should be a place from where you won’t need to remove it for a while. Corner tables are frequently a wise choice for this.
Place the record at the center and the second book on top of the record. Make sure the books cover as much of the record as possible. Or else the uncovered area will remain distorted.
You’ll have to wait a few days for it to be fixed. Sometimes it takes weeks for the records to be unwrapped. This is a lengthy process.
So, if you’re short on time and seeking a quicker solution, give the oven method a try.
However, there’s an important thing to keep in mind. This process does not solve your record player spinning issue. So, you have to move forward with that.
The best option for large records is to use the oven. For this procedure, you will also need two glass panels.
Your oven needs to be preheated to 150 degrees Fahrenheit first. This preheating process should take 10 to 15 minutes to complete. Once the oven reaches the right temperature, carefully lay the record on the rack.
Keep the glasses next to the oven door so it will be easier to take them out afterward. Ensure that the glass is at room temperature before placing it in the oven. Or else there’s a risk it will break.
Now add a little weight to it, about 1 kilogram. Then wait around 3 minutes. The record might melt if it is kept much longer.
As it warms up, keep an eye on the record. Remove the record immediately if you detect any off-putting odors or sounds.
The glass and recorded combination must then be removed from the oven. Use oven mitts because it will be very hot to the touch. The glass panels should be set down on a level surface, such as a table or countertop.
Protect your surface from the glass by placing a potholder, piece of cloth, or cutting board there.
Put something substantial over the record in the center of the glass panels. The heat and continuous pressure will contribute to the record’s restoration. Until it cools, keeps the object on the glass panel. The record can be removed after the glass has cooled.
This method involves a considerable amount of risk. So, before trying this method on something priceless, test it out on a record less valuable.
Safer Way to Solve Warped Records
Using a hair dryer or any other DIY technique is highly dangerous. Instead, you can use the Vinyl Flat Record Flattener. Using this tool, all record sizes 7″, 10″, and 12″ records can be fixed.
Although a heating pouch is included, you can also use additional heat sources. The Vinyl Flat evenly distributes pressure throughout the record-playing surface.
When coupled with a straightforward, minimal heating source (Groovy Heating Pouch), it works best. It is safe for all vinyl records and can reduce most warps and spots.
Although it is somewhat costly, your vinyl record is definitely worth spending money on. But if money is an issue, you can wait until the holiday season sale.
3 Tips On Stopping Records From Getting Warped
Taking safety precautions to protect your records is always preferable. Because if the records aren’t in good condition, the best speaker system won’t matter.
To maintain them as undamaged as possible, try to comply with the following methods.
Tip 1: Store Away From Direct Sunlight
Leaving records in direct sunshine or heat might cause deformation. Don’t keep them near the heaters or windows. Additionally, you should avoid leaving your records in a car on hot days.
Tip 2: Avoid Stacking Records
Vinyl records are rather heavy. So piling them up puts a lot of pressure on the bottom of the pile. As a result, they may get bent, scratched, or scuffed. To avoid this pressure, store your records vertically.
Tip 3: Keep Away from Humidity
The majority of people keep their records in basements. Dampness in these areas is likely to cause the records to distort.
Look for a room you can use that isn’t extremely humid. If storing your records safely in a basement is your only option, consider installing a dehumidifier.
Now that everything is done, you can enjoy your refreshed vinyl record! However, always try to take care of your vinyl records. Otherwise, you’ll again fall into this misery!
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Is It Normal for All Records to Have Slight Warp?
Not necessarily all records will have a slight warp in them. But as records come in different sizes and shape some may have them. Records from the 60/the 70s used to be a lot thinner. Thicker records tend to get warped easier than thinner ones. Storage conditions can also affect the records greatly
Do Warped Records Have An Effect on Sound?
Yes, it does have an effect on the sound. If the record is too warped the stylus won’t accurately follow the record’s grooves. This will also make the tonearm and needle bounce. All of these together will degrade the vinyl’s overall audio quality.
Does Cold Cause Vinyl to Warp?
Yes, it does. Recordings should not be exposed to heat, even the cold weather. This is because plastic is used to make vinyl records. These plastics have a particular melting point. Warping of the vinyl often begins when the temperature hits the melting point.
That’s the end of the discussion on how to fix warped record hair dryer. Thankfully warped records can be fixed by a hairdryer. But if it is not done with precision there’s a chance you might damage it further.
There are other methods to fix the warped record which we have mentioned above. Hopefully, you’ll make the best choice for your vinyl recordings.