Sewing Machine Care Tips

For someone who enjoys all kinds of craft activities and sewing, a sewing machine is one of the most important pieces of equipment. Taking good care of your machine is vital, as many common issues can be avoided with some basic preventative care. Here are some tips for keeping your machine in excellent running order:

Use a cover

All kinds of small atmospheric particles can get into your machine and cause problems. Animal hair, grit and dust can cause particular issues if your machine is computerized. It’s best to keep the machine away from open windows and always use a sewing machine cover. You can buy one specifically for the purpose, make your own or even just use an old pillowcase.

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Frequent needle changes

Ideally, a needle should be replaced after every 4 hours of sewing. The needle passes through fabric may thousands of times, making a hole and forming the stitch. When the needle becomes blunt, you might notice missed stitches or broken threads which can make the fabric pull and cause damage to your machine.

Always ensure you are using the correct needle for your chosen fabric. For example, sharper needles are better for natural fibre woven fabrics like cotton. For a great range of Cotton Fabric, visit

Correct bobbin winding technique

When you insert the bobbin into the bobbin case, make sure there are no loose threads hanging out. This can cause the machine to jam. Be aware that there is no ‘one’ bobbin to fit all machines. Use a bobbin specifically designed for your make and model.

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Cleaning is important

A good habit to get into is to give your machine a wipe after every project. You’ll find information about your model in the instruction manual, but a basic routine can be done quickly:

  • Take a piece of muslin and fold in half using the folded edge to wipe between the tension disks.
  • To keep the tension springs loose, make sure the presser foot is in the up position. This makes it easier for the muslin to be used to rid the machine of dust or lint between the disks.
  • Remove the needle used during the last project, discard and replace with a new one. Wipe under the feed dogsand also around the bobbin, ideally with a small brush. If your machine has a removable hook mechanism, remove it for a wipe and a small dot of oil before replacing.
  • Avoid oiling any plastic and remember that a tiny dot of oil is better than drenching an area with too much.
  • Dot the race hook with some special sewing machine oil before returning to the machine if it’s removable.

This routine is really simple and recommended after each completed project before storing the sewing machine until next time you need it. A further recommendation is a full service from a mechanic every couple of years. This should guarantee years of happy sewing!

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