How To Fix Sole Separation
How To Fix Sole Separation
One of the most common problems with shoes is sole separation. Most people will face this issue with at least one pair of shoes and you may be tempted to throw shoes with a detached sole in the trash. If these shoes are in otherwise good condition and you like wearing them, don’t be too hasty to send them to the exile. Reattaching soles to shoes isn’t all that difficult.
A comfortable pair of good quality shoes is certainly worth fixing so grab those shoes and follow these easy steps to fix sole separation and get the most out of your favorite pair of shoes.
Remove The Soles Completely
If the soles of your shoes have become partially detached, the temptation may be to dab on some glue and stick that part back. While this will work in the short term, you are far better off to remove the sole completely and give it a full treatment before reattaching. Not only will this ensure your sole is properly attached, but you’ll also have a more even finish without any bumps.
Give Them A Good Cleaning
In order to the soles to reattach firmly back to your shoes once you’ve applied shoe glue, the surfaces you are sticking together need to be clean. After you’ve completely separated your shoes from their soles, give them a thorough cleaning. Remove any old glue with the help of acetone, or nail polish remover and put both parts aside to dry completely. This will ensure the surfaces don’t have any particles that will prevent the shoe glue from adhering the two parts of your shoes together.
Buff The Bottoms
Once your shoes are completely cleaned and dry, lightly buff the two sides you want to stick together. This will give you a mildly rough surface to work with and it will make gluing a lot easier. Use a soft brush to remove the dust left behind from buffing and you’re ready to start gluing.
Apply Shoe Glue
Using a paint brush, apply shoe glue to the sole of your shoes. Add enough glue to stick the two pieces of your shoes together, but not so much that you end up with glue oozing out all over the place, ruining the outside of your shoes. Once you’ve applied the glue, carefully reattach the sole to the uppers of your shoes and press tightly.
Clamp Or Tie The Uppers And The Soles
In order for the shoe glue to effectively adhere both parts of your shoes together, you need to apply pressure while the glue is drying. You can do this by clamping your shoes, or you can simply grab a few strips of cloth and tie them over your shoes to hold everything together. If you’re worried about ruining the shape of your shoes, place a bottle inside them to retain the shape of your uppers.
Wipe Away Any Excess Glue
Once you’ve clamped or tied your shoe’s uppers to the soles, you may notice some of the shoe glue seeping out of the seams. Using a small stick or Q-tip, remove this excess immediately to avoid a glue stain on your shoes. If some glue does remain on the outside of the shoe and dries, simply use a dab or acetone to gently remove it.
The shoes you’ve just reattached the soles to may be your favorite pair, and you may be very eager to put them on again and head out the door, but be patient. You must give the shoe glue enough time to dry completely before you put those shoes on again. Keep in mind that when you attach the soles to the uppers, the glue is not exposed to the air which would speed up the drying process so it will take at least 24 hours for the glue to adhere these two surfaces and dry completely. If you can, it is best to leave your shoes alone for a few days to be certain the shoe glue has taken hold.
What Types Of Glue Can You Use To Fix Sole Separation?
When repairing shoes with sole separation, it’s important to use the right glue. Shoe glue is your best bet as it has been specifically formulated for use with shoes. Ordinary glue may be counterproductive and can even ruin a good pair of shoes as the chemical compounds may cause deterioration. The other issue with ordinary glue is that it can be stiff once it dries. Shoe glue tends to have some elasticity to it which allows for movement. Considering how much movement your feet get, this is a wiser choice for sole reattachment in shoes. There are a number of different shoe glues you can use, but always check the instructions to ensure you are using the right shoe glue for the right type of shoes.
DIY Sole Attachment Or Professional Cobbler?
Some shoes are going to be easier to re-sole than others. Sneakers are usually quite simple to re-attach soles to as both uppers and soles are made from materials that stick well. There are many types of shoes you can fix sole separation yourself, but with others you may need to consider taking them to a professional cobbler for repairs. Expensive dress shoes, some boots and even some sneakers may be tricky to fix and if you aren’t confident of doing a good job at reattaching your soles to your shoes, it may be safer to leave it to an expert. In particular, if your shoes are on the pricey side, you don’t want to ruin them with a shoddy repair job.
Are Your Shoes Worth Saving From Sole Separation?
You can certainly try to reattach the soles of your shoes to their uppers but in some cases, it may not be worth the effort. If your shoes have been with you for a long time and are really showing sign of use and abuse, it may be time to say goodbye and get some new shoes. Cheap shoes are also questionable and may not be suitable for reattaching the soles. You may even render them useless during one of the steps needed to fix sole separation so tread wisely before you start.