How to Maintain Your Sewing Machine

by Leanna Levine | Last Updated: May 7, 2017

Your sewing machine is one of your most prized possessions that you have an investment in. It can last for years to come if you perform a few routine maintenance steps while you are using it.

Careful maintenance will also keep your sewing machine running smoothly and it will help to prevent major problems from occurring.

Maintaining your Sewing Machine:

The following steps will help you to protect your investment:

Keep your sewing machine covered in between uses.

When you are not using your sewing machine, always keep it covered with the cover or case it came with. This will keep dust form accumulating on it and will prevent it from getting wet from accidental spills or splashes which can cause damage.


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Dust your sewing machine after every use.

After using your sewing machine, take a minute to dust it off with a clean soft cloth. You will be surprised to see how fast lint and dust accumulate on your machine from the fabrics you use.


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Remove loose threads

After you have finished sewing for the day, remove the throat plate along with the bobbin and bobbin case if you have one. Then using a lint brush remove pieces of loose threads from the feed dogs and bobbin area.

If threads are not removed, it will mix with oil in the machine and form a very hard substance which can cause major damage to your machine.

Wooden skewers are useful for removing threads stuck in the feed dogs. Try not to use metal objects to remove threads from the feed dogs as they may scrape them and cause permanent damage.

Keep it oiled

If your sewing machine requires periodic oiling, make sure to oil it according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Carefully refer to your sewing machine manual for areas that need to be oiled. Only use oil specific for sewing machines. After you have oiled your machine, sew a piece of cotton scrap fabric through the machine a couple of times to remove excess oil.


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Use a Surge Protector and Keep it unplugged when not in use

Use a surge protector for your sewing machine and make sure to keep your sewing machine unplugged when you are not using it. This will prevent accidental electrical surges from causing permanent damage to the motor.

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Leave major repairs to the experts

If your sewing machine is not working right and you have exhausted all trouble-shooting means, it is best to take it to an expert rather than trying to fix it yourself. You might potentially damage some of the mechanisms which could be very pricey to replace.

Your choice of thread makes a difference

Make sure to use good quality threads for your sewing projects. This prevents lint build-up from occurring in the bobbin and throat plate area.

There are many lower quality threads that cost much less than the higher quality ones, the problem is that they are weaker and shed much easier.