Because electric guitar strings are made out of steel, they contain iron, which corrodes when exposed to oxygen. It won’t be overnight, but humidity and the residue left behind by your hands can speed the process.
Luckily, regularly cleaning your strings will keep them stronger longer. Use some string cleaner with a special wipe, or simply a polish cloth, to keep things properly maintained.
Finally, don’t forget to wash your hands before playing to rid your fingers of potentially damaging oils.
Here are some things that will tip you off that it’s time for a string change:
– You are having trouble staying in tune.
– The strings have visible corrosion.
– Your tone sounds dull.
– You can see the windings coming apart.
The good thing about having a variety of strings for your electric guitar is that you have options. The best way to find out which is best for you is to try several types before you pinpoint your favorite.
Then once you have your strings picked out, just make sure to monitor them regularly so you’re always sounding great.