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Zip Ties are one major effective tools for properly securing items or materials at home or anywhere temporarily. The challenge then becomes how to undo a zip tie once it is secured. Zip ties can be very difficult to undo especially when you plan to reuse it. However, there are ways to undo a zip tie without cutting it.
How to undo zip ties? This process is a simple one. First, you must have an object with a sharp tip, for instance, a knife or a paper clip. Place the tip of the knife or paper clip in the head of the zip tie. With the knife tip in the head, disengage the locking lever and pull loose the zip tie free.
Most zip ties are not reusable. There are reusable ones which are two or three times the price of the non-reusable ones. Undoing a zip tie can come in handy, especially when you are making use of an expensive zip tie or you are short on zip ties.
Is There A Step by Step Process Of Undoing A Zip Tie?
You can follow this process to get your zip tie unlocked without any issues.
Step 1 – Locate the lock mechanism of the zip tie
A zip tie always has two ends. One end has a box shape and the other end is more of tail shape. Whenever you make use of the zip tie, you usually pass the tail end through the box-shaped end. This time you just have to locate the box end.
Step 2- Bend the zip tie free end
When a zip tie is in use, there is always a free end. You just have to bend the free end down to be able to access the lock mechanism.
Step 3- Bend the bar
When the free end is bent, it gives you more access to the lock mechanism. From here you would be able to see a bar in the box end, which is where the free end passes through. Using a knife(as described above) or a paperclip press down the bar you find in the box end.
Step 4- Pull the free end back through the box end
Pressing down the bar, use your other hand to pull back the free end through the box end. Your zip tie is free!
The above method of undoing a zip tie is one of the easiest means. Even though with constant undoing the zip ties become weaker. It is important you note that this method is effective for most zip ties but may not work for some. This is as a result of how the teeth gear of the zip tie is formed. The teeth of each zip tie vary based on their type.
What Are The Types Of Zip Ties?
Most zip ties are built in a similar way but there are some that are built with stronger strength. The strength of a zip tie is mainly dependent on its type.
- Standard Nylon Zip Ties: The standard nylon is one of the most commonly used zip ties. It comes in two forms which are the nylon light duty and heavy duty thick nylon. Although the commonly used one is the nylon light duty zip tie, the heavy duty thick nylon lasts longer. These zip ties usually come in different colors. The most common colors are white and black.
- Security Zip Ties: These types of zip ties are durable and stronger than the standard nylon zip ties. They can be cut but are very difficult to undo with paperclips. They are majorly used to secure suspects. The security zip tie varies. Some are tamper-proof which makes it very difficult to undo with paperclips. Some security zip ties have serial numbers on them. When in need of a stronger zip tie, this is a good option.
- Specialty Zip Ties: These zip ties are mainly singular purpose ties. An example is the radiator zip ties. They are used to secure components of equipment together. Some of them have screw mount holes on them making them easy to use with a screw.
- Stainless Steel Zip Ties: This zip tie does not make use of lever locks. In the place of lever locks, they have a ball lock or resistance lock mechanism. To break them, you have to hand tighten the head of the zip tie. These zip ties are used for securing high-heat applications. They do not melt and are very secure. They do not work in the same way other zip ties do. They seem slightly loose. They can be used to secure exhaust wrap.
- Food Grade Zip Ties: Some food companies make use of zip ties. All the food grade zip ties are blue in color and contain metal particles in them. This is so that they can be easily detectable when mistakenly placed in processed foods.
- LigaTie Zip Ties: This type of zip tie is not common It is majorly used by surgeons. This zip tie is very cool because it is absorbable. It is used by surgeons to speed up the surgery healing process. This zip tie is absorbable by the body. Most surgeons use them for gastrointestinal surgery.
There are other types of zip ties that can be very useful. Zip ties such as Hagar zip ties are chemical resistance and Tefzel zip ties are majorly designed for high-radiation surroundings.
What Can Happen When I Reuse A Zip Tie?
Reusing a zip tie can be very economical and helpful most times. But there are some things you should bear in mind when reusing a single-use zip tie.
- Tear: This can occur because this single-use are designed that way. And constant undoing can cause the teeth of the plastic to tear.
- Loose Grip: When manipulating the lock mechanism, the zip tie can become loose. It is important that you do not use old zip ties to hold anything you really want to be very secure.