Why is My Record Repeating? (8 Reasons and Solutions)

Embarking on a vinyl listening journey is an unparalleled experience until the serenity is disrupted by the unwelcome repetition or skipping of a record. Fortunately, when faced with the annoyance of a repeating or skipping record, some remedies can swiftly restore the harmonious flow of your favorite albums, allowing you to resume the enchanting voyage of analog audio.

In this comprehensive guide, we will explore the most common causes of record repeating and provide solutions to help you troubleshoot and fix the issue.

We will cover topics such as dirty recordsdamaged recordsstylus weartracking force, unsuitable turntable surfaces, and more.

By understanding these factors and taking the necessary steps, you can ensure a seamless and enjoyable vinyl playback experience.

1. Dirty Records

Dirty records, especially vintage ones, often cause skipping or repeating during playback due to dust and dirt buildup in the grooves. Regular cleaning is crucial. Use a carbon fiber brush for loose surface dust, brushing in the direction of the grooves.

For stubborn dirt, a wet cleaning kit with a solution and specialized brush is recommended for thorough cleaning, following the provided instructions.

Carbon Fiber Record Brush vs. Cleaning Kit

Carbon Fiber Record BrushCleaning Kit
Gently removes loose surface dustRemoves deep-seated dirt and grime
Quick and convenientMore thorough cleaning
Comes with a specialized cleaning solutionComes with specialized cleaning solution

By keeping your records clean, you can minimize the chances of experiencing record skipping and repeating issues. Regular cleaning should be a part of your vinyl maintenance routine, ensuring that each playthrough is smooth and enjoyable.

2. Damaged Records

Damaged records, with scratches or warps, often lead to playback issues like skipping and repeating. Cleaning may help, but it won’t fix deep scratches or warps. To address scratches, a household toothpick can be used, while fixing warps is more challenging, with products like Vinyl Flat potentially improving playback.

It’s important to recognize that extensive repairs or replacement may be needed to resolve repeating issues with damaged records.

Record Repair Solutions

Scratched RecordsUse a toothpick to gently remove gouged vinyl
Warped RecordsTry using a Vinyl Flat to flatten the record surface
Deep Scratches or Extensive DamageConsider professional repairs or replacement

By addressing the damage to your records, you can minimize the chances of experiencing record-repeating issues and ensure a smoother vinyl playback experience.

3. Stylus Wear

Stylus wear is a common cause of record skipping or repeating. Regularly clean and inspect the stylus, using a jeweler’s loop, and replace it every 800-1000 playing hours if signs of wear are observed. Consider other factors like dirty or damaged records, tracking force, and turntable setup to troubleshoot and resolve record repeating. For maintenance, follow these steps:

  1. Gently brush the stylus to remove debris.
  2. Use a stylus cleaning solution for visible dirt.
  3. Inspect for wear or damage under a jeweler’s loop.
  4. Replace the stylus if significant wear is noted.

Maintaining a clean stylus minimizes record issues, ensuring an enjoyable vinyl experience.

4. Tracking Force

To prevent record skipping and repeating, achieving the correct tracking force on your turntable is crucial. Tracking force, the stylus’s downward pressure on the record’s grooves, must be within the manufacturer’s recommended range.

Use the counterweight at the tonearm’s back to adjust the tracking force, aligning it with the manufacturer’s guidelines.

Some turntables feature an anti-skate setting for additional balance. Proper tracking force minimizes playback issues, ensuring a seamless vinyl experience.

Recommended Tracking Force Ranges for Popular Turntable Models

Turntable ModelRecommended Tracking Force Range (grams)
Audio-Technica AT-LP120XUSB1.5 – 2.5
Rega Planar 31.8 – 2.2
Pro-Ject Debut Carbon DC1.8 – 2.2
Technics SL-1500C2.0 – 4.0
VPI Prime1.8 – 2.2

5. Unsuitable Turntable Surface or Excessive Vibration Interference

Turntable placement and external vibrations significantly affect record playback, leading to skipping and repeating. Placing the turntable on the same surface as speakers or exposed to vibrations can cause instability.

To optimize playback, separate the turntable from speakers and reduce vibration sources. Solutions include moving the turntable to a different surface, using isolation platters, and employing speaker isolation pads.

In rooms with suspended wooden floors, specialized platforms or anti-vibration feet can help. Creating a stable, vibration-free environment is crucial for an uninterrupted vinyl experience.

Key Solutions:

  • Separate the turntable from speakers and other vibration sources.
  • Use isolation platters or platforms to absorb and reduce vibrations.
  • Utilize speaker isolation pads or stands to minimize vibrations from speakers.
  • Consider anti-vibration feet for turntables on wooden floors.

“Proper turntable placement and isolation are crucial for optimal record playback. By minimizing vibrations, you can prevent skipping and repeating, enhancing your vinyl listening experience.”

Turntable Surface and Vibration Interference SolutionsDescription
Separate the turntable from speakersPlace the turntable on a different surface or use stands to keep it physically separate from speakers.
Use isolation platters or platformsIsolation platters and platforms absorb and reduce vibrations, providing a more stable environment for the turntable.
Utilize speaker isolation pads or standsThese pads and stands help minimize vibrations transmitted from speakers to the turntable.
Consider anti-vibration feet for turntables on wooden floorsDedicated anti-vibration feet or solutions can reduce the impact of floor vibrations on the turntable.

6. Environmental Factors and their Impact on Record Repeating

Environmental factors play a significant role in record skipping and repeating. Temperature and humidity fluctuations can cause warping, impacting playback.

To prevent this, store records in a cool, dry environment (65-70°F, 18-21°C, 40-50% humidity).

Ensure turntable stability by placing it on a vibration-free surface, away from speakers and subwoofers. Use isolation products like platforms or dampening feet.

Minimize vibrations further by isolating the turntable with cork or rubber mats and isolating speakers with foam pads or stands. These measures help prevent playback issues caused by environmental vibrations.

7. Troubleshooting Mechanical Issues with Your Turntable

If you’ve tried cleaning your records, inspecting the stylus, and adjusting your turntable setup, but you’re still experiencing record skipping and repeating, it may be time to look into potential mechanical issues with your turntable. Mechanical issues can interfere with the proper tracking of the stylus, leading to repeated sections in your vinyl playback.

One common mechanical issue is a problem with the turntable tonearm. A misaligned or damaged tonearm can cause the stylus to skip or get stuck, resulting in the repeated playback of a particular segment. Carefully inspect the tonearm mechanism for any obstructions or irregularities. If you notice any issues, consult the manufacturer’s instructions or seek professional assistance for repairs.

Another potential mechanical issue is a motor malfunction. If the motor is not operating at the correct speed or is inconsistent in its rotation, it can impact the playback of your records. Check your turntable’s motor function and ensure it is operating smoothly. If you suspect a motor malfunction, it may require further inspection or servicing by a qualified technician.

Troubleshooting mechanical issues with your turntable can be more complex than other troubleshooting steps. It’s important to adhere to the manufacturer’s instructions and exercise caution when dealing with the internal components of your turntable. If you’re unsure or uncomfortable with conducting mechanical repairs yourself, it’s best to seek professional assistance to ensure the proper diagnosis and resolution of the issue.

8. Quality of Vinyl Records and Its Impact on Record Repeating

The quality of the vinyl record itself is crucial in addressing the issue of record repeating. Manufacturing defects or inconsistencies can disrupt the listening experience. Opt for records from reputable labels and trusted sources, known for stringent quality control.

This minimizes the likelihood of defects and ensures a high standard of production. Before purchasing, visually inspect the record for scratches, warps, or blemishes to gauge its condition and potential playback issues. Mindful selection of high-quality vinyl enhances the overall enjoyment of your collection.

Advantages of High-Quality Vinyl RecordsDisadvantages of Low-Quality Vinyl Records
Enhanced audio fidelityIncrease in overall playback longevityReduced chances of manufacturing defectsHigher resale valuePotential for skipping and repeating sectionsDecreased audio qualityGreater susceptibility to scratches and warpsLower resale value

By recognizing the importance of the quality of vinyl records and making informed purchasing decisions, you can minimize the chances of encountering record repeating issues and enjoy a more consistent and immersive vinyl listening experience.

Quickly resolve any vinyl record playback problems with expert tips and solutions for troubleshooting various issues.

How to Fix Warped Vinyl Records: Discover effective methods to rescue your cherished vinyl records from warping and restore their smooth playback.

How to Fix Scratched Vinyl Records: Uncover valuable tips and techniques for repairing scratches on your vinyl records, so you can enjoy your music without interruption.

How to Remove Crackle from Vinyl Records: Learn how to eliminate those annoying crackling sounds from your vinyl records, ensuring a pristine listening experience.

How to Remove Static from Vinyl Records: Say goodbye to static interference on your vinyl records with expert guidance on static removal techniques.

Why Is My Record Skipping: Explore the common reasons behind record skipping issues and find solutions to keep your vinyl spinning smoothly.

Why Does My Record Sound Distorted: Delve into the causes of distorted sound in vinyl records and discover how to restore the clear, vibrant audio you love.

How to Fix a Broken Vinyl Record: Find out how to mend a broken vinyl record and salvage your favorite tunes from potential loss or damage.


Understanding why your record is repeating is key to troubleshooting and resolving the issue. By following the steps outlined in this guide, you can identify the common causes and find solutions to fix the problem.

Start by ensuring your records are clean and free from dust and dirt. Regular cleaning with a carbon fiber brush and wet cleaning with a record cleaning kit can help minimize record skipping and repeating. If your records are damaged, try using a toothpick to gently remove scratches or consider using products like Vinyl Flat to flatten warped records.

Stylus wear and tracking force are also factors to consider. Regularly clean your stylus and replace it when necessary to ensure optimal playback. Adjusting the tracking force according to the manufacturer’s guidelines can help prevent record repeating.

Kenneth Haney


Kenneth Haney is an ardent collector and a scholar of vinyl records, with extensive knowledge ranging from production roots to pressing nuances and audio equipment.

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Written By Kenneth Haney

I am Kenneth Haney, an unyielding audiophile and an ardent collector of vinyl records.My love affair with vinyl started at a young age of 15. As a teenager, I found myself enchanted by the distinct warmth and depth that vinyl brought to music. Unlike digital music, vinyl records carry a tangibility, a piece of history, an art that exists far beyond the confines of an MP3 file.


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