How to Change Fishing Line

How to Change Fishing Line
Today's angler can have a lot invested in a rod-and-reel combination. With the focus on high-tech tackle, it is easy to overlook the all-important link between fisher and fish, the fishing line. Fishing line is often neglected and taken for granted. Forgetting to replace the line can cause an angler to be heartsick when the line parts while fighting a trophy fish. Periodically inspect and change the fishing line on a regular basis to prevent failure because of age or deterioration.


Difficulty: Easy

Things You’ll Need:
  • New spool of line Nail clippers
  • New spool of line
  • Nail clippers
Step 1
Open the bail and strip off all of the old line. Clip the knot that attaches the line to the spool. Ensure that the old line is discarded in a responsible manner. Deposit in a monofilament recycling container if possible. See the link in the Resources section for more information.
Step 2
Examine the rod and reel for dirt and damage. Wipe the reel with a soft clean cloth. Inspect the rod guides for scratches or abrasions. String the new line through the rod guides.
Step 3
Fasten the line to the spool using an improved clinch knot. Run 6 inches of line around the spool. Make three turns of the tag end around the standing line. Pass the tag end through the small loop directly above the spool and then through the larger loop. Tighten knot snugly and trim the tag end.
Step 4
Close the bail and turn the handle two revolutions. Make note of the direction that the bail rotates. To avoid line twist, the new line must go into the spool in a direction opposite to the bail's rotation.
Step 5
Turn the new spool of line on the end that will let line feed off in the correct direction. Squeeze the line between your fingers to put tension on the line. Reel and fill the spool to the desired level. Clip line and fasten on a lure.

Tips & Warnings

Fill the spool until the line is 1/16-inch from the lip.

Article Written By Daniel Ray

Daniel Ray has been writing for over 15 years. He has been published in "Florida Sportsman" magazine. He holds an FAA airframe and powerplant license and FCC radiotelephone license, and is also a licensed private pilot. He attended the University of South Florida.

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