How to Tell Good Jewelry Repair from Bad Jewelry Repair
Does your favorite jewelry piece need repair? Over time, wear and tear appears as visible blemishes, scratches, dents, and more. Repairing your jewelry helps keep it looking brand new again, displaying the beautiful details you love.
How do you know if you have a good jewelry repair or a bad jewelry repair?
This article will cover the following topics: When Does My Jewelry Need Repair? How to Find a Reliable Jewelry Repair Shop, Top Questions to Ask During Jewelry Repair, Common Signs of Bad Jewelry Repair, What To Do If Your Jewelry Was Repaired Improperly, and Key Takeaways.
When Does My Jewelry Need Repair?
When it comes to your most-loved pieces, you want the best repair services for your money and time spent researching various repair options. Different jewelry requires specific attention, making each repair personalized for any piece. Below are some examples of jewelry in need of repair:
Gemstone & Diamond Replacement/Loose Stones
Re-pronging (repairing the tips and bending existing prongs), tightening the prongs, or completely new prongs are all methods for keeping your stone securely in the setting.
Micro pave and pave stones are potentially in danger of falling out–replacing these melee stones with new ones offers the same look as before, replenishing the original concept and filling out the recessed holes left in their place.
Channel set stones may also pop out. Consulting your professional jeweler for stone replacement or sending photos to an online jewelry repair store that does “mail ins” will guide you through the process with price points along the way.
Engagement Ring Upgrades
Upgrades consist of switching out the stones and replacing them with another stone you desire. This process can also be used on other rings and jewelry.
Dented, Scratched, Discolored Rings
Engagement rings, wedding bands, anniversary rings, and other rings may show a worn-out appearance. Scratches and dents are usually buffed or polished out, revealing a rich, smooth shine.
Discoloration (white gold) can be alleviated; replating white gold in rhodium refreshes the white top coat. Avoid swimming in pools with chlorine while wearing white gold.
*Please note: Matte, satin, sandblast, diamond-cut, filigree, openwork, milgrain, and other specialty finishes may not be eligible for repair depending on their design process. Inquiring about these finishes and other noteworthy design details helps save time before you drive to the appointment.
Not all jewelry can be placed in liquid jewelry cleaner or an ultrasonic—getting professional advice on cleaning will avoid permanent damage to the stone and metal. Sleeping in your jewelry can expose it to body oils, sweat, and microbes. Cleaning your jewelry frequently removes build-up and bacteria.
Permanently adjoining two or more rings together (frequently bridal sets) allows them to sit in properly on the finger. Soldering can also be used to heal cracked rings or bangle bracelets.
Necklace, Bracelet & Anklet Findings/Clasp Replacement or Repairs
Necklaces, bracelets, and anklets close with a variety of clasp types that may loosen. Spring rings and lobster clasps are easy and affordable to replace.
Jewelers can also repair figure-eights, safety latches, and hidden box clasps. Do you feel your clasp was never secure in the first place? Bringing in your chain and requesting a suitable lock will elevate much-needed reinforcement.
Chains can break–sometimes they can be repaired depending on the chain links. If not, purchasing a new chain to hold your pendant will also work.
Pearls and beads are strung on cords that stretch and weaken after exposure to liquids or getting caught on objects. Replacing old cords with clean new cords using the existing pearls/beads gives any strand security.
A good test for knotted pearls and beads is to see if they can wiggle between their knots. If the beads slide freely between their knots, it is time to restring.
Broken posts/needles, omega, click-tops, hooks (French, Shepherd’s, etc), and other latch/lever backs are eligible for repair–or even replacement for your preferred closure as the style allows if you are not satisfied with the original backing.
How to Find a Reliable Jewelry Repair Shop
Setting an appointment with the shop or conversing over the phone if the jeweler is not local should answer any concerns. Going over the step by step process of the repair and special characteristics of your jewelry will instill confidence in your jeweler. Reading reviews of their services from past clients also reinforces trust.
Top Questions to Ask During Jewelry Repair
Doing research on price points of repairs helps you budget without unnecessarily overspending. Retaining a price estimate and comparing it to other establishments offering the same service is also advisable. Seeing before and after photos of previous repairs is a preview of how yours will turn out.
A good jeweler who does top notch jewelry repairs will not be the least expensive option. Like most services, you get what you pay for and there are unqualified people who offer inexpensive repairs.
Common Signs of Bad Jewelry Repair
What are some of the signs of bad jewelry repair? The most common sign of bad jewelry repair depends on the item–however, if you see no difference (the stone is still loose, the item is still scratched, and the lock is still broken), these are all signs the job wasn’t done or done properly.
Is your piece designer or hallmarked with information? The distinctive hallmark or authentication should never be covered with a repair, unless there is breakage in that area.
Locks or other add-ons that are not of the same quality or metal/karat shouldn’t be accepted as work finished.
Tool signs or other methods of repair should not be noticeable. Hammered dents, asymmetrical bands with indents, eye-visible seams from soldering (lumps of metal or unsightly irregular metal work) should not be acceptable on chains, rings, bracelets, and other pieces.
The repair should be as seamless and discreet as possible.
What To Do If Your Jewelry Was Repaired Improperly
Request the jeweler to fix the error without extra cost and explain why you aren’t satisfied with the work; the work is not completed until the repair is finished. Outlining your standards and explaining why you won’t accept the repair opens a healthy conversation.
Inspecting your jewelry before and after repair will help you receive the customer service you envisioned. Frequently cleaning your jewelry, keeping track of your jewelry, taking good care of your jewelry, storing it properly, and noticing any defects like loose stones or dents, will aid in repairing your piece at the proper time.
About Ilah Cibis Jewelry
Looking for a Worcester jewelry store that carries daddy rings and other LGBT jewelry? We specialize in unique, hand-made, responsibly sourced custom jewelry, gay jewelry, lesbian jewelry, and queer-friendly jewelry as the top independent jewelry store in Worcester, MA.
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-Ilah ♥ / IG: @ilahjewelry