How to repair a Bow in Minecraft (even if enchanted)

A Bow enchanted with good enchantments like Power, Infinity or Unbreaking is an incredibly valuable item. Losing it because you’ve used it too much is very annoying, but the good news is that you can fix it before it reaches the breaking point and keep on using it.

How? We are here to answer that.

minecraft how to repair a bow

Why does a Bow break?

A Bow has a limited amount of uses, which is 385. This means that every time you shoot an Arrow you consume 1/385 of its durability. When this number goes from 385/385 to 0/385, the Bow breaks.

minecraft how to repair a bow

You can check a Bow’s durability from its icon in your inventory, like for every other tool. It doesn’t tell you the exact number, but it will give a good enough idea of how damaged it is.The icon of a tool that has never been used will not have any durability bar visible.

There are 4 ways to repair a Bow:

  • using an Anvil
  • using a Crafting Table
  • using a Grindstone
  • with the Mending enchantment

How to craft an Anvil

Before seeing the 4 methods in detail, let’s see how to craft an Anvil. It’s quite an expensive item, it will require a lot of Iron. You will need 4 Iron Ingots and 3 Blocks of Iron. Just in case you don’t know it, to obtain a Block of Iron you need to put together 9 Iron Ingots in a Crafting Table like this:

minecraft iron block crafting recipe

This means that an Anvil will require the equivalent of 31 Iron Ingots! If you don’t want to spend all these resurces, you can try to find one in a Village and steal it from the Villagers. You will need a Pickaxe to break and take an Anvil.

If you want to craft an Anvil, this is the crafting recipe:

minecraft anvil crafting recipe

How to repair a Bow with an Anvil

To repair a Bow with an Anvil you will simply need to put the damaged item in the Anvil like this:

minecraft repair a bow with anvil

Then you will have to put another Bow in the other slot:

minecraft repair an enchanted bow with anvil

Now you will be able to take the repaired Bow from the output slot and put it in your inventory. Repairing a Bow (or any other item) by using an Anvil will require you to spend levels of experience, just like enchanting.

If you repair an enchanted Bow, this will keep its enchantments at the end of the process. If you consume an enchanted Bow in order to repair another Bow, the Anvil will try to combine all the enchantments of the two Bows. “Try” because sometimes this will not be possible because of two reasons:

  • some enchantments can’t coexist in the same item (like, for example, Protection and Blast Protection)
  • the Anvil has a cost limit of 39 levels of experience

Even if it sounds like a lot, 39 can be reached and surpassed by combining two heavily enchanted Bows.

Few things worth knowing about repairing with an Anvil:

  • by using the Anvil you can also rename your Bow. This will costs a little extra experience
  • the Anvil will lose durability as well while using it. This is important since it would require so much Iron to craft another one
  • if you repair an item a second time, a third time and so on, this will cost you more and more every time, eventually making your item “Too expensive!”

How to craft a Grindstone

Like we did for the Anvil, let’s see how to craft a Grindstone first. You will need 2 Sticks, 2 Wooden Planks and a Stone Slab. Before crafting a Stone Slab you will need 3 Stone blocks, that you can obtain by smelting 3 Cobblestone blocks in the Furnace.

minecraft stone slab crafting recipe

Once you have all the materials, just put them in the Crafting Table this way:

minecraft grindstone crafting recipe

How to repair a Bow with a Grindstone

Note: Grindstones can do two tasks: repairing and disenchanting. Keep in mind that it will always remove every non-curse enchantment from the items you use it on. So if your goal is to repair an enchanted Bow, don’t use a Grindstone.

Using a Grindstone is very easy, you simply need to put the Bow that you need to repair in one of the two slots:

minecraft repair a bow with grindstone

Then put another Bow in the second slot. The result will be a Bow with better durability that you can put in your inventory.

minecraft repair two bows with grindstone

How to repair a Bow with a Crafting Table

This is very similar to the Grindstone: you need to put two Bows in the Crafting Table and the result will be a more durable non-enchanted Bow.

minecraft repair a bow with crafting table

Why to use a Grindstone

As we saw, Grindstone and Crafting Table can repair Bows, but they both end up removing every enchantment from them. So why should you use a Grindstone instead of a Crafting Table? Why would you need a Grindstone at all?

If your goal is to repair a non enchanted Bow, there is literally no difference. And you don’t want to repair an enchanted Bow using them.

What the Grindstone is good for, is that it gives you some experience when you disenchant an enchanted item, while the Crafting Table doesn’t. So if you accumulated many enchanted items that you don’t need, a Grindstone can turn them in a good source of experience.

How to repair a Bow using the Mending enchantment

The last method is a bit different, but it can be considered better than the others. You are not going to suddenly improve a big chunk of a Bow’s durability, but this will recover slowly over time.

minecraft bow mending

Keep in mind that you can’t get the Mending enchantment through an Enchanting Table, but only by fishing, trading with Villagers or in Chest loot. You can check the article where we covered how to get Silk Touch: other than the Enchanting Table one, all the other methods will do just fine for Mending as well.

If you hold a Mending enchanted Bow (or any Mending enchanted tool) in your hands, every time that you get an experience orb, this will be used to repair the Bow instead of going into your experience. To see how exactly this process works you can check here.

This method is considere by many players the best one, since it is completely automatic and it doesn’t have all the Anvil drawbacks. Finding a Mending enchanted Book can be quite tedious, but it’s worth the hassle.


So that’s all you need to know on how to repair a Bow. Keep in mind that if the Bow that you want to repair is enchanted, you will need an Anvil or the Mending enchantment. Otherwise, a simple Crafting Table will be more than enough. Thank you very much for reading the article till the very end and I hope I’ll see you again around here. See you and take care!