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How To Fix A Cracked Suitcase


Modified: December 28, 2023

by Leta Haire



Traveling can be an exciting and fulfilling experience, but it also comes with its challenges. One of the most frustrating situations that can occur during a trip is a cracked suitcase. A cracked suitcase not only compromises the safety of your belongings but also hinders your ability to travel comfortably and conveniently. However, there is no need to panic. With a few simple steps and the right materials, you can easily fix a cracked suitcase and get back to enjoying your journey.


In this article, we will guide you through the process of fixing a cracked suitcase. From assessing the damage to reinforcing the repairs, we will cover everything you need to know to get your suitcase back in top shape. Whether you’re dealing with a small crack or a more substantial split, these tips and techniques will help you restore your suitcase’s structural integrity.


Before we begin, it’s important to note that the specific steps and materials may vary depending on the type of suitcase you have and the extent of the damage. It’s always a good idea to consult the manufacturer’s instructions or seek professional assistance if you’re unsure about the repair process. With that said, let’s dive into the essential steps for fixing a cracked suitcase.


Assess the Damage

The first step in fixing a cracked suitcase is to assess the extent of the damage. Carefully examine the crack or split to determine its size, location, and severity. This will help you determine the appropriate repair method and gather the necessary materials.


If the crack is small and only affects the surface layer of the suitcase, you may be able to fix it with a simple adhesive. However, if the crack is large, deep, or compromises the structural integrity of the suitcase, a more extensive repair may be required.


Take note of any additional damage around the crack, such as loose or broken handles, locks, or hinges. It’s important to address these issues as well to ensure the suitcase functions properly and securely.


Additionally, consider the material of the suitcase. Hard-shell suitcases made of plastic or metal may require different repair methods than soft-sided suitcases made of fabric or canvas. Understanding the material will help you choose the right adhesive or repair kit.


Lastly, assess the timing of the repair. If you’re currently on a trip, you may need to opt for a temporary fix to get you through the remaining duration of your journey. In this case, prioritize quick-drying adhesives or temporary reinforcement methods. However, if you have time before your next trip or if you’re at home, you can opt for more permanent repair solutions.


By thoroughly assessing the damage, you’ll be able to make informed decisions about the repair process and ensure that you appropriately address all necessary repairs. This will save you time and effort in the long run and help you regain confidence in your suitcase’s durability for future travels.


Gather the Necessary Materials

Once you have assessed the damage to your cracked suitcase, it’s time to gather the necessary materials for the repair. Having the right tools and supplies on hand will make the process much smoother and increase the likelihood of a successful repair.


Here’s a list of materials you may need:

  1. Adhesive: Depending on the type of material your suitcase is made of, you may need a specific adhesive. For hard-shell suitcases, epoxy resin or super glue can be effective. For soft-sided suitcases, fabric glue or patch kits may be more suitable. Consider the size and depth of the crack to determine the strength of the adhesive needed.
  2. Clamps: Clamps are useful for holding the cracked area together while the adhesive dries. Make sure to choose clamps that are appropriate for the size and shape of the crack.
  3. Sandpaper: Sandpaper is used to smooth the surface of the repaired area and ensure a seamless finish. Different grits may be needed depending on the material of your suitcase.
  4. Paint or Sealant: If your suitcase is made of a material that can be painted or sealed, you may want to consider using a matching paint or sealant to further strengthen and protect the repaired area.
  5. Applicator or brush: Depending on the adhesive or paint you choose, you may need an appropriate applicator or brush to ensure precise application.
  6. Cleaning supplies: It’s important to clean the cracked area before applying any adhesive or repair materials. Use a mild detergent or cleaning agent and a soft cloth to remove any dirt or debris.

Depending on the specific repair method and the condition of your suitcase, additional materials such as reinforcing fabric, tape, or patches may also be required.


Before you start the repair process, make sure you have all the necessary materials readily available. This will save you time and frustration during the repair and ensure that you can complete the process smoothly.


Clean and Prepare the Crack

Before you can proceed with repairing the cracked suitcase, it is essential to thoroughly clean and prepare the crack. This step ensures that the adhesive or repair material can bond properly and provides a strong and long-lasting fix.


Here’s how to clean and prepare the crack:

  1. Clean the area: Use a mild detergent or cleaning agent and a soft cloth to clean the cracked area. Remove any dust, debris, or dirt that might be present on and around the crack. It’s important to start with a clean surface to ensure optimal adhesion.
  2. Remove loose parts: If there are any loose or broken pieces around the crack, carefully remove them. This includes loose threads, plastic bits, or any other fragments that may interfere with the repair process.
  3. Smooth the edges: Use sandpaper or a file to gently smooth the edges of the crack. This helps to create a flat and even surface for the adhesive to adhere to. Be cautious not to apply too much pressure or widen the crack further.
  4. Apply solvent (if necessary): Depending on the type of material your suitcase is made of, you may need to apply a solvent to the crack. This is particularly important for hard-shell suitcases made of plastic. The solvent helps to dissolve the material slightly and improve bonding with the adhesive. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for the specific solvent you are using.

Take your time during this step to ensure that the crack is properly cleaned and prepared. This will set the foundation for a strong and durable repair.


Once you have completed the cleaning and preparation process, you are ready to move on to the next step: applying the adhesive to fix the cracked suitcase.


Apply Epoxy Resin

Epoxy resin is a strong and durable adhesive that is commonly used to repair cracks in various materials, including suitcases. This versatile adhesive has excellent bonding properties and can effectively restore the structural integrity of your cracked suitcase.


Here’s how to apply epoxy resin to fix a cracked suitcase:

  1. Mix the epoxy resin: Follow the manufacturer’s instructions to properly mix the epoxy resin. This typically involves combining a resin and a hardener in specific proportions. Use a disposable container and a stir stick to thoroughly mix the two components until they are well combined.
  2. Apply the epoxy resin: Using a small brush or an applicator, carefully apply a thin layer of the mixed epoxy resin to the edges and the inside of the crack. Make sure to evenly distribute the adhesive along the entire length of the crack. Press the cracked edges together and hold them in place, ensuring that the resin is evenly distributed.
  3. Scrape off excess resin: Use a clean and disposable tool, such as a putty knife or a plastic scraper, to remove any excess epoxy resin from the surface. This will help achieve a smoother finish and prevent any hardened resin from protruding and causing discomfort when handling the suitcase.

Keep in mind that epoxy resin has a relatively short working time, so work quickly and efficiently to apply it before it starts to harden. If necessary, you can apply the resin in small sections, working your way along the crack.


After applying the epoxy resin, allow it to cure according to the manufacturer’s instructions. This typically involves letting the adhesive dry for a specific amount of time, often around 24 hours, before proceeding to the next step of the repair process.


Once the epoxy resin has cured, you can move on to the next step of the repair process: clamping and allowing time for drying.


Clamp and Allow Time for Drying

After applying the epoxy resin to the cracked area of your suitcase, it is essential to properly clamp the repair and allow sufficient time for drying. This step ensures that the adhesive bonds securely and effectively holds the cracked edges together.


Here’s what you need to do:

  1. Align the cracked edges: Make sure the cracked edges are properly aligned before clamping. This will ensure a seamless repair and prevent any misalignment or gaps.
  2. Apply pressure with clamps: Position the clamps along the cracked area and tighten them gently to apply pressure. The clamps should hold the edges firmly together without applying excessive force. Be careful not to overtighten as this could damage the suitcase.
  3. Allow time for drying: Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for the epoxy resin and allow the repair to dry for the recommended duration. This usually takes about 24 hours, but drying times may vary depending on the specific product and environmental conditions.

During the drying period, it’s essential to keep the suitcase in a stable and dry environment. Avoid any movement or handling that could put stress on the repaired area. This will give the adhesive enough time to cure and strengthen the bond.


Once the drying time has passed and the epoxy resin has fully cured, you can carefully remove the clamps and inspect the repair. If the crack is still visible or the edges are not securely held together, you may need to repeat the process or consider alternative repair methods.


With the clamps removed, you can move on to the next step of the repair process: sanding and smoothing the surface of the repaired area.


Sand and Smooth the Surface

After the epoxy resin has dried and the cracked edges of your suitcase are securely held together, it’s time to sand and smooth the surface of the repaired area. This step ensures a seamless and aesthetically pleasing finish, as well as enhances the durability of the repair.


Follow these steps to sand and smooth the surface:

  1. Select the appropriate sandpaper: Choose a fine-grit sandpaper, typically around 220 or 320 grit, to gently sand the surface of the repaired area. Using a finer grit will help prevent damage to the surrounding material while achieving a smooth finish.
  2. Wet or dry sanding: Depending on the type of sandpaper you’re using, you may need to wet the surface of the repair area. Wet sanding reduces friction and prevents the sandpaper from clogging up with debris. Follow the instructions provided with the sandpaper for the best results.
  3. Gently sand the surface: Using light pressure, move the sandpaper back and forth over the repaired area in a smooth, even motion. Sand in one direction to avoid creating uneven patches or scratches. Continuously check the surface to ensure you’re achieving a smooth and level finish.
  4. Remove dust and debris: Regularly wipe away any dust or debris that accumulates during the sanding process. This will help you assess the progress and prevent particles from interfering with the subsequent steps.

Be cautious not to oversand or apply excessive pressure, as this can damage the surrounding material or disrupt the repair. Take your time and proceed gradually until you achieve a smooth and seamless surface.


Once you’re satisfied with the smoothness of the repaired area, use a soft cloth or sponge to wipe away any remaining dust. This will prepare the surface for the final step: painting or sealing the crack.


Paint or Seal the Crack

Now that you have repaired and smoothed the surface of the cracked area on your suitcase, it’s time to consider the final step: painting or sealing the crack. This step not only enhances the aesthetic appeal of the repair but also provides an added layer of protection and reinforcement.


Here are the options to consider:

  1. Painting: If your suitcase is made of a material that can be painted, you can choose to paint the repaired area. Select a paint color that matches or closely resembles the original color of your suitcase. Ensure that the paint you choose is compatible with the material of your suitcase. Use a small brush or sponge to apply the paint evenly over the cracked area, blending it with the surrounding surface for a seamless finish.
  2. Sealing: If painting is not an option or you prefer a more subtle approach, consider sealing the crack with a clear sealant. There are various sealants available specifically for repairing cracks and preventing further damage. Apply the sealant carefully, ensuring complete coverage over the repaired area. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for drying and curing times.

Both painting and sealing serve the purpose of protecting the repaired area from further damage and providing additional strength. They also help to minimize the appearance of the crack, making it less noticeable and preserving the overall aesthetics of your suitcase.


Remember to let the paint or sealant dry completely before using your suitcase. This will allow the paint to fully cure or the sealant to set, ensuring optimal durability.


With the crack painted or sealed, you’re nearing the end of the repair process. However, before you consider the repair complete, it’s important to test and reinforce the repaired area.


Test and Reinforce the Repaired Area

Once you have completed the repair process for the cracked area of your suitcase, it is important to test the durability of the repair and consider reinforcing it for added strength. This step ensures that your suitcase will withstand the rigors of travel and provide long-lasting protection for your belongings.


Follow these steps to test and reinforce the repaired area:

  1. Conduct a stress test: Apply gentle pressure or light stress to the repaired area to determine if the crack has been adequately fixed. Test the area by gently pressing or flexing it, mimicking the typical movements and stresses encountered during travel. If the crack remains secure and the repaired area holds up without any signs of weakness, the repair has been successful.
  2. Apply reinforcements (if necessary): Depending on the severity of the crack or the level of reinforcement desired, you may consider adding extra support to the repaired area. This could be in the form of reinforcing fabric, adhesive patches, or additional layers of epoxy resin. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for the specific reinforcement materials you choose.
  3. Allow time for reinforcing: If you have added any reinforcements, such as adhesive patches or additional layers of epoxy resin, allow them to dry and cure according to the manufacturer’s instructions. This will ensure that the reinforcements effectively strengthen the repaired area.

By testing the repaired area and reinforcing it if necessary, you can have peace of mind knowing that your suitcase is ready to endure the demands of travel. This step adds an extra layer of confidence in the repair and ensures that your belongings will remain safe and secure throughout your journeys.


Remember, regular maintenance and care are essential to keep your suitcase in good condition. Inspect and assess the repaired area periodically, especially before embarking on a trip, to ensure that it remains intact and ready for use.


With the repair process complete and the cracked area of your suitcase fixed and reinforced, you can now confidently pack your belongings and embark on your next adventure!



Repairing a cracked suitcase is a practical and cost-effective solution to restore its functionality and extend its lifespan. By following the steps outlined in this article, you can fix the crack and ensure that your suitcase is ready for your next travel experience.


Remember, the key to a successful repair is thorough assessment, gathering the necessary materials, and properly cleaning and preparing the crack. Applying epoxy resin and allowing it to dry, followed by sanding and smoothing the surface, contributes to a seamless and durable finish.


Painting or sealing the crack not only enhances the appearance of the repaired area but also provides added protection. Testing the repaired area and reinforcing it, if required, will give you peace of mind knowing that your suitcase can withstand the demands of travel.


As you embark on your journeys, it’s important to care for your suitcase and periodically inspect the repaired area. Regular maintenance and precautionary measures will help to extend the life of your suitcase and prevent further damage.


Now that you have the knowledge and steps to fix a cracked suitcase, you can confidently tackle this common travel hurdle. So, go ahead, repair your suitcase, and embark on your next adventure with confidence!