How to Get Rid of Loose Temple Tips?

Loose temple tips can be really nerve-wracking. In this article, you will learn what you can do to get rid of loose temple tips on your glasses. In most cases when we talk about loose temple tips the plastic slips a bit back and forth. The following methods can be used to get rid of the slipping temple depending on the materials used:

  • Glueing the plastic to the temple
  • Using a little heat to shrink the temple tip a little

Both methods are viable options. In most cases, both options will work. Because these days in most cases the temple tips are made out of acetate. In seldom cases when the base material of the temple reacts with ingredients of the glue the temple could be destroyed. However, let us assume we work with temple tips made out of acetate.

Applying Heat to Get Rid of Loose Temple Tips

Cellulose acetate, for example, starts to shrink slightly at a temperature of 176°F/80°C, which is also its softening temperature. The goal is to heat up the temple tip (one at a time) to the desired temperature and then place them shortly after in cold water.

This causes the material to shrink a little every time you heated the temple tip and cool it down. The shrinking process will ensure the temple tips fit more tightly around the temple. As a result, the temple tips will not slip anymore.

The image shows a sliding temple tip.

Here is the information on how to actually do it. Your local optician uses a hot air tool and a bowl of cold water for this process. You could use your hairdryer to apply the heat to the temple tips. Make sure to only apply heat to the temple tips and not to the lenses as the coating could be damaged by the heat.

So basically push the end of the temple tip up to the stop. Then heat up the temple tip until you feel it gets a little softer and then put it into the bowl of cold water. Depending on the temple tip and how old the material is you need to repeat this a dozen times. Yeah, the process can get a little lengthy because acetate only shrinks approximately 1% after each heating and cooling down. Make sure to not burn yourself.

When you apply too much heat the material could form bubbles. In such a case new temple tips are needed. Pro Tip: Try to apply the heat evenly and turn the temple tip in the stream of warm air. Place the temple tip for approximately 20 seconds in the hot air and then pull it out to feel if it got a little softer. You may use a tea towel or disposable gloves if the heat is too much for your hands.

With temple tips made out of acetate, this process works great because you work with temperatures you can actually handle easily. With other materials, it gets really tricky. For example, In the case of polycarbonate, a change in size is only noticeable after a temperature of 320°F/160°C. Other Materials like TR90 react similarly and especially for a layman this starts to get unsafe. When heat did not work or you did not try it because you know the temple tips are made out of other materials we go on to gluing.

Use Glue to Get Rid of Slipping Temple Tips

Take off the temple tip and carefully. Clean the end of the temple with a wiper to get rid of the debris. I recommend also cleaning the inside of the temple tip with a dishwasher and water for example or with alcohol if the material of the temple tips can handle it. Dry everything.

Then put a tiny drop of super glue on the metal temple end and slide the temple tip back on until it stops. Make sure no glue has tried to escape. Depending on the type of glue you used you need to wait a few minutes until the temple tip does not move anymore.

The good thing is this method usually works very well. The downside is depending on the glue you need to be very fast to slip the temple tip in the correct position. In addition to the mentioned downside super glue could make replacing the temple tips in the future impossible.

You could also use clear nail polish instead of superglue. It is less powerful than superglue which good be an advantage if the temple tips get glued on the temple and you were not able to push them into the correct position.

In such a case you can heat the temple tip up a little and the nail polish will get a bit more liquid which super glue will not. In most cases, you will not be able to make super glue more liquid with heat as the melting point for the plastic of the glasses frame or the temple tips sits lower compared to the one of super glue.

So when the temple tip sits in the middle of the temple and you can not move it just visit your optician and he or she will replace the used temple tip with a new one. The optician does this by crushing the temple tip which is stuck in the wrong position with a plier. Afterward, he or she is able to slide on a new temple tip.

When you are not sure about what you are doing just visit your local optical shop. They will be happy to help you out and in most cases this service is free of charge even if they need to replace your old temple tips with new ones.

After the temple tips do not slip any more adjustments may be needed. If you want to learn more on how to adjust the frames in a DIY style I wrote you articles for metal and plastic frames.

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