Shine the light on the bow's limbs and examine them with the magnifying glass. Systematically check for any cracks or splinters. On a compound bow, pay special attention to the areas near the wheels or cams. If the limbs have any deformities, replace them before shooting the bow again.
Examine the wheels or cams for cracks, bends or missing parts. (If you have a recurve bow, skip to Step 3.) If they show any signs of damage, replace them before shooting the bow.
Move your light and magnifying glass to the bowstring. Look for frayed areas and cut strands, especially near the axles and where the string wraps around the wheels or cams. If the string has any damage, replace it before shooting the bow.
If nothing looks damaged, shoot the bow with an arrow at a target. Make note of any odd vibrations or noises. If anything seems unusual or if you are uncomfortable for any reason, take the bow to a professional for further inspection and testing.